Notes: Rangers pleased with Wright

Notes: Rangers still pleased with Wright

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- Rangers general manager Jon Daniels was asked before the Monday's game if anything was at stake for Jamey Wright in his start against the Seattle Mariners.

"I don't expect a whole lot to change," Daniels said. "We met today and have a pretty good idea of where we are headed."

The Rangers have been heading toward Wright being their fifth starter and Kameron Loe in their bullpen. There has been much growing support for Loe, especially after his performance in Tucson on Sunday.

But manager Ron Washington was pleased with what he saw from Wright on Monday night. Wright allowed five runs on six hits and a walk in a 10-6 victory over the Seattle Mariners on Monday.

"He kept us in the ballgame," Washington said. "When I got him out of the game, we were winning. He wasn't walking anybody. They were swinging the bats. I thought he kept his mechanics intact and had good sink. He left some balls up and gave up some hits, but that's a good hitting team over there."

Asked if he was pleased with what he saw from Wright this spring, Washington said, "Yes I am. I just like the way he competes. He has a veteran presence."

Washington said Wright will start one more time on Saturday against the Milwaukee Brewers in Arlington.

"That's his game, the last one," Washington said.

Loe is scheduled to pitch in relief of Robinson Tejeda on Friday against the Brewers in Frisco.

The Rangers will first have to put Wright on the 40-man roster. Wright, in camp on a Minor League contract, can become a free agent if he's not added by Wednesday.

"It's part of the contract," Wright said. "They put it in there, and we agreed to it. Hopefully it's not a situation where they need to sit around another three weeks and watch me pitch."

Sosa, Blalock out: Manager Ron Washington wanted to use his everyday lineup on Monday night but outfielder Sammy Sosa and third baseman Hank Blalock were scratched. Sosa, who was going to start in right field, has a stomach virus and is day-to-day.

"He saw the doctor and then we let him go home," Washington said.

Blalock's ankle is fine but he still has a sore wrist from falling while going around first base in Saturday's game.

"He has a little bit of soreness, so we're not going to push it," Washington said.

The D-Mat way: Kevin Millwood says he never throws more than 60 pitches in one of his bullpen sessions between starts. Red Sox pitcher Daisuke Matsuzaka, according to a story in Sports Illustrated, has been known to throw 300 pitches in a bullpen session.

"Most guys do it that way," Rangers reliever Akinori Otsuka said. Every pitcher throws 300-500 pitches in one day. The most I ever did was 500 pitches."

Matsuzaka once threw 189 pitches in a game.

"I threw 150 in a game, but I was a starter," Otsuka said.

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"I don't think I've ever thrown more than 120 pitches in a game," Millwood said.

Actually he has done that seven times, with a career high of 131 on April 14, 1998. He had one reaction to Matsuzka's 300-pitch bullpen session.

"Good for him," Millwood said.

"That's the Japanese way," Otsuka said. "Most guys get hurt. The others get good. Guys with good mechanics don't get hurt."

Bauer designated: The Rangers have designated pitcher Rick Bauer for assignment and likely will either trade him or release him in the next two days. He was out of options and could not be sent to the Minors. If the Rangers release him by Wednesday, they only have to pay 25 percent of his $733,000 contract.

Bauer was 3-1 with a 3.55 ERA in 56 games for the Rangers last year but wasn't going to make the team this spring. He had a 15.63 ERA and and opponents were hitting .514 off him.

"Rick had a very good year for us last year," Daniels said. "More than anything, it's a credit to the guys who have stepped up."

Other roster moves: The Rangers added Minor League infielder Adam Fox to the 40-man roster as a procedural move. They were at 39 because they had placed Dominican pitcher Alexi Ogando on the restricted list.

The Rangers claimed Ezequiel Astacio off waivers from the Houston Astros, and that left them with 40 on the roster. The Rangers wanted to designate Bauer for assignment but couldn't do that unless they had more than 40 on the roster. So Fox was added.

He will be dropped later in the week when the Rangers need room on the 40-man. Others expected to be moved off the roster include pitcher Francisco Cruceta and catcher Guillermo Quiroz. Both are out of options.

Astacio is out of options and is not going to make the team. The Rangers will do later in the week what the Astros tried to do and get him through waivers.

He said it: "I've been working with Rudy [Jaramillo] on staying behind the ball and using all fields. Before I was known as a pull hitter. The biggest boost of confidence has been being able to carry it out into the games." -- Rangers catcher Chris Stewart, who is hitting .563 this spring and is likely going to be Gerald Laird's backup.

Up next: Millwood pitches against former Braves teammate Greg Maddux when the Rangers play the San Diego Padres at 3:05 p.m. CT at Peoria. This is only Millwood's second start in an Major League game this spring.

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.