Rangers fans lumbered out of the annual fan fest in a state of shock after watching a team of former Rangers beat a team of current Rangers 2-1 in a charity softball game.
“It just goes to show, old age and treachery can overcome youth and fitness every time,” said former outfielder Rusty Greer, who went 2-for-4 with an RBI.
“Why couldn’t he play like that when he was on the team?” asked stunned owner Tom Hicks. “I remember when Rusty was setting the Major League record for time spent on the DL, and I’m still paying for that.”
Besides Greer, the team included such retired players and non-athletes as Tom Grieve, Mickey Tettleton, Ray Burris, Mark McLemore, Kenny Saurez, Ellis Valentine, Jeff Russell, Jim Sundberg, Rich Billings, Mike Jeffcoat, Pete O’Brien, Dan Smith, Curtis Wilkerson, Dave Hostetler, Steve Buechele, announcers Victor Rojas and Eric Nadel, and bat boy Jimmy Smithson.
Hicks said he didn’t know if he would activate any of the former players, many of whom are still under contract with the Rangers.
The only problem player, according to GM Jon Daniels, will be team play-by-play man Nadel who pitched four innings for the former Rangers and looked solid, giving up just one hit to the current squad in middle relief.
“He was just trying to get some work in before throwing out the first pitch on Opening Day,” Daniels said. “Although he was going to be celebrating 30 years as the Rangers broadcaster, we might need him on the field.”
Current Rangers Michael Young and Josh Hamilton were a combined 1-for-5 against Nadel.
“It just took so long for his pitches to get to home plate,” a sheepish Young said. “It was effective.”
Nadel said he didn’t know what to think about the current Rangers squad.
“They didn’t look too good,” said Nadel. “I just hope they don’t make my 30th year in broadcasting seem longer than the first 29 combined.”