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Saturday, December 18, 2010
Rangers trying to build starting depth

By Richard Durrett

ESPN.com's Jerry Crasnick reported today, via twitter, that the Rangers have agreed to terms with pitcher Seth McClung on a split contract, meaning he'll make less if he is in the minors and doesn't make the big league roster. (Nothing official from the club yet on that).

Crasnick said the club will look at McClung as a starter and that if he makes the team, he'll make $700,000 with the chance to make $700,000 more in bonuses.

McClung will turn 30 in February and did not pitch in the major leagues in 2010. The 6-foot-6 right-hander was 3-3 with a 4.94 ERA in 62 innings for the Milwaukee Brewers in 2009, but only two of those 41 appearances were starts.

Out of the game last year, McClung decided to coach a girls high school basketball team in St. Petersburg, Florida. You can click here to read a story about his basketball coaching stint, written just before Thanksgiving in the St. Petersburg Times.

This is another example of GM Jon Daniels' belief that you might as well bring some arms to camp and see what they've got. It's a low risk/high reward deal. If McClung shows something, he gives the club some depth. His fastball, by some accounts, was hitting 93-94 mph in 2009 for the Brewers. If he still manages to show that kind of life on his fastball, who knows?

It's worth a try, and it doesn't cost much. I think that's a smart approach. We're not talking about major financial commitments here, so see what McClung's got in spring training and make a call.