Towards the end of spring training, Justin Grimm was pitching in minor league games and preparing to start the season at Triple A Round Rock. He started out with the Express and hoped to make it back to the big leagues.
It happened sooner than he even expected. Grimm made only one start with Round Rock before he was recalled to the big leagues when Matt Harrison, the Rangers' Opening Day starter, went down with a back injury.
Grimm impressed after that, going 2-0 with a 1.59 ERA over three starts and was named the American League rookie of the month for April. He has the lowest ERA among AL rookie qualifiers going into his start tonight against the White Sox.
Grimm is the fourth Ranger to win the monthly award since it began in 2003, joining Gerald Laird, Neftali Feliz and Yu Darvish.
The Rangers other rookie in the rotation, Nick Tepesch, finished second in the voting.
Here are a few other notes from Thursday afternoon:
* Jeff Baker gets his third start tonight in left field, as the White Sox scratched scheduled starter Jake Peavy and will go with left-hander Hector Santiago. It's the third consecutive left-hander the Rangers have faced, and manager Ron Washington is riding the hot bats.
That leaves David Murphy out of the lineup for a third consecutive game and it could stretch to four on Friday as the Red Sox are starting a lefty. Murphy understands the decision with the slow start he's gotten off to this season.
"It's no question that I'm slumping," Murphy said.
* Third baseman Mike Olt, the Rangers' No. 2 prospect, has had vision issues this season and was evaluated by an eye doctor. The eye doctor did not find anything out of the ordinary, and recommended that Olt see an eye specialist. The Rangers are currently setting up an appointment with the specialist.
* MLB and the players' union have combined to donate $100,000 for the victims of the West explosion last month. Fans will be encouraged to donate during all national broadcasts, as well.
-- Drew Davison