Sunday, September 2, 2007

The 'other' trade pays off for Texas

It was that "other" trade right around the trade deadline the Texas Rangers made.

But, a month or so after the deals were consummated, it looks as though the trade that sent Eric Gagne to Boston is the one Rangers' fans can be happiest about right away.

With Gagne dispatched to the Northeast and Akinori Otsuka dealing with forearm issues, the Rangers have discovered a closer -- loopy left-hander C.J. Wilson, who, until recently, was better known for his oh-so-SoCal attitude and demeanor.

Since being thrust into the closer's role, however, Wilson has flourished. The latest example came Sunday night when he got into a jam of his own making.

Instead of imploding, however, Wilson walked the line and struck out hot-hitting Garret Anderson to give the Rangers a series win over the AL West leaders.

Regardless of whether Otsuka comes back in 2008 -- doctors are still searching for the source of his forearm issues -- Wilson has earned the right to start the season at the back end of the Texas bullpen.


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