Peanuts And Cracker Jacks

As many journalists can tell you, sometimes you have to leave out fun anecdotes when you write a story simply because there isn’t enough time or space to fit everything in. To combat this problem, I present Peanuts and Cracker Jacks where I can hopefully post these snippets of info that aren’t big enough to really constitute their own stories. This past week, I visited with Texas Rangers outfielder Michael Choice, pitcher Shawn Tolleson, and TV play-by-by announcer Steve Busby as part of the Rangers Winter Caravan. (You can read the full story here: Winter Caravan.) In addition to talking about the upcoming season, we talked about Matt Harrison’s return to the MLB, up and coming Rangers’ prospects, the Royals post-season run, and the Ogden Raptors.


“Matt is the kind of guy that you know one thing going in will give you 100% and will try as hard as he possibly can. Not a lot is known about the recovery process from that particular surgery at the big league level. Not that many guys have had it. Matt is in uncharted territory. But I have 100% faith as far as Matt is concerned, I know full good and well that he’s going to try as hard as he possibly can hopefully to get back in playing condition by the middle of the season.”


“I think they would benefit from being held back just a little bit. It’s been a whirlwind for them at the minor league level and sometimes that doesn’t translate as quickly as you would like for it to at the big league level. So from their standpoint, I know they want to play in the big leagues. They may be better served if they wait a little bit longer like one more year at Triple-A and really get a good, solid foundation going but I have no doubt that those two will be at the big league level very soon.”


“I thought it was great. I really did. I thought it was fantastic. You know 29 years for any city is a long time to wait. I know the folks in Kansas City were chomping at the bit for it. It couldn’t happen to a better bunch of folks. It’s kind of like what the Rangers went through the first time in 2010. A lot of people just had the feeling of I never thought I’d see this happen. I know the people of Kansas City felt the same way. George (Brett) always has a smile on his face but watching him up there during both the playoffs and the World Series, I’ve never seen him smile anymore. It was perfect.”


“It was an awesome place for my first professional experience. It was cool. It was the first team I ever played for. I lived with a host family and had a successful start to my pro career there. The Pioneer League was great. I had a blast. Guys complain about the bus trips and the cold and all that kind of stuff but I just love baseball and loved playing there. The people and fans were great all throughout the league. That’s really cool to hear that they’re doing well and I wish that I could have played in the championship series when I was there. I wasn’t ready to be done when it was time to go home. I was ready to keep playing.”


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