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April 05, 2012

Thursday's Rangers notes: Opening Day lineup; Feliz throws 102-pitch simulated game

Baseball season is here, and the Texas Rangers begin their 2012 campaign against the Chicago White Sox on Friday afternoon at Rangers Ballpark.

The team held a workout today, and manager Ron Washington revealed the expected starters for the game. Mitch Moreland will not start, as Mike Napoli will be at first base and Yorvit Torrealba at catcher. Washington made that decision because the Rangers are facing left-hander John Danks.

Josh Hamilton will start in center field, and David Murphy will be in left. It's Murphy's first Opening Day start since 2008.

The lineup will go as follows: 1. Ian Kinsler (2B); 2. Elvis Andrus (SS); 3. Josh Hamilton (CF); 4. Adrian Beltre (3B); 5. Michael Young (DH); 6. Nelson Cruz (RF); 7. Mike Napoli (1B).

The final two spots will go to Murphy and Torrealba, although Washington didn't know how the final two spots would fall.

Colby Lewis gets the Opening Day start, the first in his big league career.

Here are other notes from Thursday:

* Right-hander Neftali Feliz threw a simulated game, allowing one run on five hits with two walks and five strikeouts over six innings. He threw 102 pitches. Feliz said he felt good coming out of the simulated game, and feels comfortable with all of his off-speed pitches.

* Nelson Cruz took batting practice, and said his bruised left elbow wouldn't keep him from playing on opening day. Mike Adams, who took a one-hopper off his left calf Tuesday, is good to go on Opening Day, too.

* In their history, the Rangers are 20-20 on Opening Day. They have won their past three Opening Days, all at home. Michael Young will make his 11th Opening Day start with the Rangers, matching Ivan Rodriguez for most in franchise history.

* The Yankees claimed right-hander Cody Eppley off waivers. The Rangers placed Eppley on waivers Wednesday to make room for the additions of left-hander Robbie Ross and utility infielder Alberto Gonzalez.

-- Drew Davison

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