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Gameday Thread, #97: 7/22 vs. Rockies

Josh Fogg, RHP (7-5, 4.23)
Enrique Gonzalez, RHP (3-2, 4.99)

Getting this up early today, in case things get out of control a little later on - truth be told, I almost forgot to post the thread, until a gentle nudge from npineda reminded me at 6:30! I think EnGon will be treated with more respect than normal when he comes to the plate today, following on from his three-hitperformance last start. However, while that's certainly very nice, I would be more concerned about his performance on the mound, rather than with the bat. Last time out, he was a little shaky early on, but then kept the Dodgers lineup quiet in the middle innings, going 6.2 innings and allowing three earned runs. I would still like him to go deeper into games; so far, in eight starts, he's topped out at only 102 pitches. He got a surprising number of ground-balls last time, so we'll see if that's an ongoing trend.

Fogg relies heavily on his changeup, and is a flyball pitcher, which could hurt him at Chase. On the other hand, he did beat Arizona here early in the season (April 13, going 5.1 innings, giving up three runs), and only once in ten road starts has he allowed more than three earned runs, so is not an easy mark. He can sometimes be a bit wild, so I might be inclined to take a few strikes early, see if today is one of those days, and hopefully get to the Rockies bullpen early, like we did yesterday.

Saturday's rumour comes to you courtesy of Fox Sports. "The Rangers are targeting Diamondbacks left fielder Luis Gonzalez, but have yet to make an offer good enough for the D-Backs to ask Gonzalez to waive his no-trade clause, FOXSports.com has learned. Gonzalez, 38, would fit for the Rangers as a left-handed hitting outfielder and DH... Gonzalez likely would want to know more from the Rangers about his role this season and beyond. He could ask for a one-year extension of his contract at a salary lower than his option number."

As was noted elsewhere (I forget who by), the injury to Reggie Sanders has probably increased the trade value of both Gonzalez and Green. The lower the number of available outfielders, the more likely we will be to get offers for these two: however, the main problem remains the complete and near-complete vetoes respectively, which they have over any deals. Any trade would likely have to be to a contending team, and it does seem likely Gonzalez would be looking for security beyond 2006.

Speaking of Gonzo, he somewhat backtracked, somewhat explained further, his comments following his benching. He said:

"I'm not selfish. I want to win more than anybody in here. I want to be on the field every day. There's nothing wrong with that. You shouldn't fault an athlete for wanting to be on the field every day." In Gonzalez's view, many players beg out of games "for a hangnail. I played with a torn ligament in my elbow. Nobody ever wrote about that." [Actually, I think you'll find they did, Luis]

"I don't want to be portrayed as a bad guy. I'm not here to drag anybody down." As the team's longest tenured player, "I want to know what's going on sometimes. I don't want to be blindsided." Gonzalez said he discussed his feelings with Quentin Friday. He also said he had a conversation with general manager Josh Byrnes before Thursday night's game. He didn't give specifics but said it was a "good conversation."