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May 10, 2012

Robbie Ross and the case of the gray Rangers jersey

Left-hander Robbie Ross initially had no idea that he was wearing a gray Rangers jersey in Game 2 of the doubleheader Thursday night when he started to warm up in the Rangers' bullpen during the eighth inning.

But his fellow relievers, the TV broadcast crews from both teams and several folks in the press box noticed that Ross should have been wearing a blue top like the rest of the team.

The Rangers wore gray tops for the first game of the doubleheader, and Ross said that he had a sweatshirt on over it. He never took off the sweatshirt between games, and then hustled out to the bullpen for Game 2 without changing into the blue jersey.

"The minute he took it off, somebody said something and then we starting laughing at him," right-hander Scott Feldman said. Ross was eventually told what was wrong, and "he looked like he was going to throw up," Feldman said.

Feldman said that bullpen coach Andy Hawkins calmed down Ross and told him to keep warming up and that a jersey would get to the bullpen before he would have to enter the game.

Clubhouse manager Richard Price dispatched 19-year-old bat boy Mike Apicella to the bullpen because he was the fastest runner available. Apicella's orders were to stop for no man, and he reached the bullpen in about a minute by running through the service level under Camden Yards.

TV cameras caught Ross changing on the mound. He was never needed, though, as Mike Adams worked out of a jam.

"That's classic," Feldman said. "I've never seen that before."

Manager Ron Washington just shook his head and said, "Rookie. I'm quite sure his boys are going to get on him about it."

Ross was glad to answer questions about his gaffe after the game.

"I finally saw it and I was like, 'Oh, gosh,' " he said. "If I have to wear a jersey like that for us to get a W, that's fine with me."

-- Jeff Wilson

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