Texas Rangers drop the drop shadow on their home and road jerseys

Prince Fielder appears to be wearing #84 with the Texas Rangers. This photo was tweeted out and it shows three different jerseys that Fielder will wear with the Rangers: the road gray, the blue alternate and the red alternate.

I didn’t notice this at first but I remembered why I hate the Rangers uniforms so much: it’s the drop shadow. The road gray jersey doesn’t feature that element at all. Compare the above photo tweeted to what new teammate Adrian Beltre has been wearing with the team, apparently the drop shadow has been dropped.

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Game 163: One of the best phrases in sports

Growing up as a kid, I would remember hearing and witnessing all the Game 7s in sports. The term “Game 7” is such a great term in sports. It’s the finality of something. It’s the last battle for the championship. Just by saying “Game 7,” the gravity of the situation is understood.

But right behind it, in my opinion is “Game 163.” It holds a different meaning but it still holds a lot of weight. For Game 163 means that we have to go one more step to find out who is worthy to enter combat. It means that the battle has been so great, that there needs to be one more fight to determine the victor.

Tonight, we get Game 163 between the Texas Rangers and Tampa Bay Rays.

These games have always turned out to be exciting games and the idea of a one-game playoff to determine who makes it into the postseason is pretty neat. And as Marty McFly would say, it’s pretty heavy.

Report: Nelson Cruz decides to accept 50-game ban

This will change the AL West race big time. Cruz will be done for the season and might end his tenure with the Rangers. The A’s would benefit greatly if Cruz is gone and the Rangers lose a major bat out of their lineup.

And more suspensions.

Will Manny Ramirez find his way back to the majors after signing minor league deal with Texas?

Manny Ramirez is looking for one last run in the big leagues.

The Texas Rangers have signed Manny Ramirez to a minor league deal with their Triple-A affiliate. Ramirez will be activated in a few days, will cut his hair to comply with team policy, and hope for a chance to latch on for one more run in the big leagues.

This season, Ramirez aws in Taiwan with the EDA Rhinos where he hit .352 with eight home runs and 43 RBIs in 49 games. His three-month contract expired and he’s hoping for a chance to get called up by the Rangers.

I don’t know how much he has in the tank. With the Oakland Athletics last year, he couldn’t generate enough consistent power in Triple-A to warrant a call-up. The A’s didn’t have room for him as a DH as the team was platooning Brandon Moss and Chris Carter at the time as well as rotating their outfield. If Ramirez wants to get called up, he has to hope that the Rangers DH situation would warrant such a move.

Does Ramirez offer the Rangers much? I don’t know if he does but it’s a low risk, high reward situation for the Rangers. And Ramirez is full of surprises, so maybe he has one more “Manny being Manny” moment left in him.

Did the 49ers deserve to win at the ESPYs? I don’t think so

Last night, the San Francisco 49ers (and the New Orleans Saints) won the award for Best Game of the Year at the ESPYs. I covered that game and saw it live. It was one of the greatest games I have ever seen.

But it wasn’t the best game of the year.

As Mike Klis of the Denver Post points out, Game 6 of the World Series was a whole lot better — and I didn’t even watch the game (I was at a concert).

The fact that the Cardinals scored in the bottom of the 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th to stay alive in that game was amazing. The Rangers had the win, but the Cardinals never gave up. That might have been the most exciting game in baseball history.

But then again, baseball is my favorite sport so there is some bias there.

Compared to the 49ers game, the Cardinals had drama and high stakes that was at a whole different level. But as Klis points out, football is king in this country.

It was great to see Jarrod Parker flirt with the no-hitter

The moment right before the no-hitter was broken.

I always watch the A’s games whenever I can. Especially now since I moved out of the Bay and don’t have cable, MLB.TV is my only outlet to live TV on my computer. So I was tuned into last night’s game. With the Rangers in town, I was hoping the A’s would find their groove.

The team did find their groove. Offensively, they exploded and scored 12 times. But the storyline was Jarrod Parker. After six innings, I noticed he had not surrendered a hit. This was the Rangers! The toughest offense in the majors. Then into the seventh, I was nervous. I was studying the pitch count. But I was hoping that he would get it.

Parker was magnificent and I thought he had a real chance at getting it. Unfortunately, he would give up a single to Michael Young and the no-hit bid ended. But he did go eight strong innings giving up that one hit.

To me, that potential moment was magical and it made me long for the Coliseum. I miss home. This moment brought me back home despite the fact I was so far from it.

Josh Hamilton’s call for help in his post-relapse press conference

The demons of Josh Hamilton’s past have been well-documented over the years. His addiction to alcohol derailed him from a promising baseball career early on. Now back in baseball, Hamilton has been open about his pas struggles and has made every effort to avoid any situation that would lead him to relapse.

In 2009, he slipped up and drank. This past Monday, he did it again. Like the first time, he held an open press conference after the fact and today, he had the same thing. Here’s a quote from today’s press conference.

“When I don’t do that off the field (be responsible), I leave myself open for a weak moment. I had a weak moment on Monday night in Dallas, personal reasons with a family member… It was just wrong. I needed to be in a different place. I needed to be responsible in that moment, and i was not responsible. The Rangers have shown nothing but support. I ask anybody watching, listening, pray for me and my family as I go through this difficult time, it’s not easy.”

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