Waiver talk: Right-handed hitter
Texas has until 11 p.m. Dallas time Tuesday night to make a deal for a player that could be included on the squad for the playoffs (any player that can be put on that 25-man roster has to be in the organization by the end of the day Tuesday). Just because the Rangers didn't win the claim on Manny Ramirez doesn't mean they've given up. Jon Daniels and his staff continue to work the phones to see if they can make any moves they feel will strengthen the club heading down the stretch. That includes looking at a right-handed bat.
There are a handful out there that might make some sense, likely via trade since these players are probably all through waivers. A quick look:
* Ryan Spilborghs, Colorado: The 30-year-old (turns 31 on Sept. 5) has played all three outfield positions this year and is hitting .269 with nine homers and 27 RBI. But he is batting just .236 against lefties with three homers and 12 RBI. Still, he's a player that hitting coach Clint Hurdle knows well from Colorado and one that is pretty consistent. His defense is good enough that he could slide into a number of spots late in games. He's making $1.3 million this year, so his salary is friendly as well (Rangers would only be paying for the final month, remember). The club has discussed him internally as a possible target.
* Reed Johnson, Dodgers: He's been in and out of the lineup recently, so maybe the Dodgers would be willing to make a move. He's not too expensive -- making $800,000 this season -- and he has a terrific average against lefties this season. Johnson is hitting .365 with a homer and six RBI in 74 at-bats against left-handed pitching. Like Spilborghs, he's played all three positions. Ken Rosenthal at FoxSports.com mentioned the Rangers were interested in Johnson.
* Jeff Francoeur, NY Mets: He's hitting .234 with 11 homers and 53 RBI this season, but he's just one season removed from a solid .280 average with 15 homers and 76 RBI and he has playoff experience. He's batting .284 against left-handed pitchers this season in 95 at-bats. But Francouer wouldn't come cheap -- he's making $5 million this year -- and he hit just .132 in July and is batting .215 in August.
* Marlon Byrd, Cubs: I only throw this in there because I find it intriguing, but Byrd fits the mold. He can play all the outfield positions and has a big bat against lefties. Byrd is hitting .366 with four homers and 19 RBIs against left-handed pitching this season. But, of course, he has two more years left on his contract in Chicago and I can't think the Cubs would consider dealing him. Even if they do, it would involve a top prospect. So I can't see it happening. But could you imagine Byrd back in the Rangers' clubhouse down the stretch?
Others: Mike Morse, Washington (hitting .302 with five homers againts lefties and making just $450,000), Ty Wiggington, Baltimore (the team was interested around the July 31 trade deadline).
What other right-handed hitters do you think the Rangers should consider?
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