David Murphy had nothing but praise for the Texas Rangers.
The newest Cleveland Indian recalled his seven years in Texas, saying it was a “perfect opportunity” for him to establish himself as a big leaguer.
“I’m extremely thankful and blessed every day I wore a Texas uniform,” Murphy said. “The only thing that would have made my time in Texas completely perfect would be winning those World Series, or one of those World Series.”
Murphy and the Rangers had discussions about a multiyear deal before last season, but nothing came close.
As Murphy said, “The possibility was discussed, but we never got to details. There was never years offered, never any amount of money offered. So we both agreed to let the season play out.”
Murphy then had a disappointing 2013 season, as he went from everyday leftfielder to bench player. He posted career lows in batting average (.220), on-base percentage (.282) and slugging percentage (.374).
Murphy talked about his struggles, saying he tried to do too much to fill the void left by Josh Hamilton, Michael Young and Mike Napoli. That led him to pulling the ball more often than using the whole field, and then he simply didn’t find holes when he did make solid contact.
After how last season went, a reunion seemed unlikely. Murphy said he had a conversation with Rangers general manager Jon Daniels after the season and, from that, determined it was in his best interest to pursue other options.
Murphy found a new home with the Indians, who offered him a two-year, $12 million contract with a club option for 2016. He went on to compare the Indians – one of the wild-card winners last season – to the Rangers in 2009 as an up-and-coming team.
“Group of young, talented guys with veteran leadership … guys who look like they have a lot of fun on the field and believe in one another,” Murphy said. “They won 92 games last year and it looks like they’re only going to get better.”
-- Drew Davison