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July 17, 2008

Blalock back to third base

Rangers manager Ron Washington said Hank Blalock will be the team's starting third baseman when the second half of the season resumes Friday in Minnesota. Washington and general manager Jon Daniels talked with Blalock about the move while they were in Frisco Wednesday night. When the decision was made, they decided to play him at designated hitter. Chris Davis will remain with the club and be the everyday first baseman. German Duran is the likely candidate be sent down to make room for Blalock. What do you think about the latest move?

- Jeff Wilson

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Comments

It'll be a downgrade from Vazquez

It is the most logical decision for the team to make. Blalock is a good third baseman and his bat is needed in the lineup. Chris Davis is emerging as the teams first baseman and his bat is needed. This sounds like a win win for the team and the players.

It is the most logical decision for the team to make. Blalock is a good third baseman and his bat is needed in the lineup. Chris Davis is emerging as the teams first baseman and his bat is needed. This sounds like a win win for the team and the players.

Best plan! No way did I want to see Chris Davis sent down. This likely gives the Rangers a better opportunity to compete.

It is not the most logical answer...First of all, they don't need his bat in the lineup, they have done fine without him.
Second, it will change the dynamic of the team, that's just not something you want to do when things are going well. And it is a downgrade. Duran is more than serviceable, and will only get better. You gain with either Vasqez or Duran at third defensively. I do agree that keeping Davis at first is the right move, but unless Blalock has fixed what was the most horrific looking swing in baseball, don't expect miracles after being out since April 29. He could only help if he learned how to pitch instead of play first.

It is not the most logical answer...First of all, they don't need his bat in the lineup, they have done fine without him.
Second, it will change the dynamic of the team, that's just not something you want to do when things are going well. And it is a downgrade. Duran is more than serviceable, and will only get better. You gain with either Vasqez or Duran at third defensively. I do agree that keeping Davis at first is the right move, but unless Blalock has fixed what was the most horrific looking swing in baseball, don't expect miracles after being out since April 29. He could only help if he learned how to pitch instead of play first.

Having to bring Blalock back at this point is not real great all the way around... If they try to shoehorn Hank back into the top 6 in the order you're likely to lose production there. Vasquez is better defensively, and is filling a productive role in the 9 hole, something you probably lose when Hank hits the lineup. Scrambled lineup, scrambled chemistry, and until Hank proves be productive again with the bat, I pity whoever hits ahead of him.
I like this better than sending Davis down, but I hope they can showcase Hank quickly and move him. Right now with the top 6 in the lineup the Rangers are already running, you need a tablesetter more than you need all or nothing Blalock... I don't think it's that much of a coincidence that the Rangers became the best offense in baseball while Hank was out.
All that said, Hank isn't a bad player, and if there's a team out there where Hank would be an improvement in the 5 or 6 hole, I hope they step up and trade for him... he's just not the type of hitter the Rangers need to drop in their lineup right now...

Saying that Hank Blalock has the worst looking swing in baseball is a little bit ridiculous.

So is believing that Ramon Vazquez will continue to be a .300 hitter. In 1447 career at bats coming into this year, Vazquez hit .250/.308/.375. Vazquez has had a good run, but I think that is it, its just a good run. I'd bet he ends the season around the .280 range.

Keeping Duran here isn't a good idea--he needs to be playing everyday wherever he is. He served his role this season when the club needed him, now he needs to take what he learned and apply it everyday at AAA.

Blalock, while his defense may be a bit lacking, is the superior overall package to a Vazquez/Duran platoon.

The lineup chemistry may change a little bit, sure, but suggesting that this lineup is better without Blalock is completely unfounded.

rf, you're nuts. "It will change the dynamic of the team": how do you know this? Is Vazquez one of the leaders on the field or in the clubhouse? I doubt it. The team has had 40+ players on the roster so far this year. Ponson came in, had several nice outings, dissed the team and the management, and was gone. Now that had the potential for changing the dynamic of the team. Taking Vazquez out of the starting lineup, and sending Duran down, hardly seems like a big move. The team will weather this just fine.

Moreover, look at their career statistics: Vazquez is virtually identical to Hank in the field, and nowhere near him as a hitter UNTIL this year, his career year at age 31-32. Further, he had a very nice May and June and has been slumping badly in July.

Finally, what about a guy losing a job because of injury? Doesn't Hank deserve the chance to re-establish himself? Maybe he should have more time in rehab, but this is the right move.

How about trade Blalock for some pitching. Probably not going to happen, but I am tired of him getting hurt all the time. Vasquez is way better defensively and is batting over .300. I agree with giving Davis a shot at first.

How about trade Blalock for some pitching. Probably not going to happen, but I am tired of him getting hurt all the time. Vasquez is way better defensively and is batting over .300. I agree with giving Davis a shot at first.

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