Darren O'Day and his beard return to pen
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Darren O'Day has no plans to trim his extremely thick beard.
"Why would he?" fellow reliever Mark Lowe said. "If I could grow one like that, I would."
But he does have plans on providing an important additional arm out of the bullpen down the stretch for the Rangers. O'Day said he's finally fully healthy, and he wasn't just talking about his surgically-repaired hip. O'Day said in July he found out he had walking pneumonia.
"I would go out to the mound and feel worn out," O'Day said. "My energy level is back up, and I feel like myself again."
O'Day tossed 5 1/3 shutout innings in his most recent stint in Round Rock and noticed he wasn't wilting in the heat as much now that he feels better. He was with the club Tuesday night when they clinched a division title.
"It was fun to celebrate with the guys," O'Day said. "I felt like I was part of the team, and those are good guys. I'm feeling better and pitching better."
O'Day said he's in a good place with his mechanics, throwing strikes and locating pitches better. And the key is he's able to repeat that motion.
"I just want to help this team," O'Day said.
103.3 FM ESPN PODCASTS
Play Podcast Rangers GM Jon Daniels joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to tackle the tough questions after his team failed to advance to the playoffs.
Play Podcast Nolan Ryan joins Galloway and Company to discuss having Nelson Cruz back in the lineup and how the Rangers are feeling heading into their wild-card play-in game against the Rays.
Play Podcast ESPN Insider and senior MLB analyst Jim Bowden joins Fitzsimmons and Durrett to discuss the wild-card race and the Rangers' chances of making the playoffs.
Play Podcast Chuck Cooperstein joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss why he feels Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish isn't an ace.
Play Podcast Elvis Andrus joins Galloway and Company to discuss the Rangers' stretch run and the morale level in their clubhouse.
Play Podcast Nolan Ryan joins Galloway and Company to discuss the latest Rangers news, including the team's struggles, Ron Washington's job security and a rumored trade with the Braves.
Play Podcast Ron Washington joins Ian Fitzsimmons and Tim MacMahon to discuss the Rangers' dismal September, who's to blame for their September struggles and his status as the team's manager.
Play Podcast Fitzsimmons and Durrett discuss how some people are calling for the Rangers to fire manager Ron Washington.