Mike Adams readjusts to life in Texas

Updated: August 11, 2011, 10:02 AM ET
By Buster Olney

On one of his first days with the Rangers, Mike Adams turned a corner and walked into the clubhouse manager's office, and there, sitting on the couch, was someone who filled a poster that was on Adams' wall as a kid -- Nolan Ryan.

"I was a little bit awestruck," Adams said Wednesday. "It kind of surprised me."

Ryan and Adams chatted a bit, about the conversation that Ryan had with Adams' father the night before, but Adams never got to the questions that he wants to ask Ryan. There will be time for that in the months ahead, now that Adams is entrenched in the Texas bullpen for the rest of this year, and probably through next year.

The Rangers were the team he followed as a kid, while growing up in Texas, and every summer he would travel to stay with his aunt, Nelda Chapa, and go watch Rangers games, and Ryan, particularly. Generally, Adams had hoped for the opportunity to pitch for the Rangers at some point, but in the last days before the July 31 trade deadline, it appeared that Adams would remain with the San Diego Padres and Heath Bell was more likely to be traded, because Bell is eligible for free agency after this season. Adams had heard that the Phillies were in trade talks for him, and he figured that once Philadelphia traded prospects to Houston for Hunter Pence, he likely would stay with San Diego to be the closer.

On the morning of July 31, Adams was in the trainers' room getting treatment when Padres pitching coach Darryl Akerfelds walked in and told him he needed to immediately stop what he was doing because manager Bud Black wanted to see him.