- Calvin Watkins, ESPN Staff Writer
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HOUSTON -- Rangers president and CEO Nolan Ryan said no trades are on the horizon at this time.
The Rangers are in first place in the AL West and have won two straight games over the hapless Houston Astros. However, the Rangers are just 7-7 in the last 14 games, a stretch that began when they were swept by the Yankees in a three-game set in New York.
The bullpen woes -- that have since subsided thanks to better production and the possiblity of some pitchers returning from injuries -- were Ryan's biggest worries. But not so much now.
"We're always trying to improve our ballclub," Ryan said Wednesday night. "As I said earlier, you're always trying to see what might be available and what we might be able to do. We don't have a deal pending right now."
The bullpen would seem be the area most likely to be addressed if the Rangers were to make a move, but it looked good Wednesday night, allowing no runs in a 3-2 victory over the Astros.
Mark Lowe has allowed just one run in his last seven appearances, closer Neftali Feliz has looked dominant the last three outings, Darren Oliver has given up just one unearned run the last eight games and Arthur Rhodes has a four-inning scoreless streak.
But there have been some struggles.
Yoshinori Tateyama had a string of four scoreless innings snapped when he gave up a run on three hits Tuesday night. Michael Kirkman has an ERA of 7.84 in his last four appearances and gave up four runs in four innings last Saturday against the New York Mets.
When asked is he concerned about the bullpen, Ryan said, "It's hard to say. We have [Tommy] Hunter and [Darren] O'Day and [Scott] Feldman coming back [from injury]. It gives us some flexibility in what we might do with the starting rotation or the bullpen. So, it's hard to say."
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