Neftali Feliz on track in recovery from Tommy John surgery

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Rangers righty Colby Lewis was cleared to begin a throwing program earlier this month and is on a good pace in his recovery from a July procedure to repair a torn flexor tendon in his throwing elbow. The club’s other rehabbing starter is also making progress.

According to Anthony Andro, Rangers beat writer for FOX Sports Southwest, the Texas medical staff is “pleased with where Neftali Feliz is in his rehab” from Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery, which he underwent back in early August.

“Nefty is doing well,” confirmed Rangers general manager Jon Daniels. “He’s coming into Arlington in a couple of weeks to get checked up by (team doctor Keith) Meister and then will report out in Arizona to continue his rehab. Everything’s on schedule.”

If all continues to go according to plan, Feliz could be ready to rejoin the Rangers’ starting rotation by next September. Lewis is expected to return at some point before the All-Star break.

Imagining Theo Epstein in politics

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“When Alexander saw the breadth of his domain, he wept for there were no more worlds to conquer.”

Or: “When Theo Epstein won World Series championships with the two most championship-starved franchises in baseball history, he got bored, and decided to run for the Senate or something.”

That latter bit is the premise of a Politico piece speculating that the Cubs president could go into politics one day. The story features an interview with former Obama chief strategist David Axlerod, who thinks Theo has what it takes. Mostly what he has is fame, popularity, good looks and money. No idea what his positions on issue are, but that other stuff goes a long way in politics these days.

Bonus: given what we just elected last fall, a guy who once had a little temper tantrum and dressed up in a gorilla suit is just as viable a candidate as anyone.

Another interestingly named player is promoted by the Pirates

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When you promote a player from the minors, the first and foremost consideration is whether or not he can help your ball club. But, assuming that’s taken care of, teams should really, really make it a priority to call up dudes with cool sounding names because it makes life more interesting for the rest of us.

The Pirates are doing that. The other night Dovydas Neverauskas made his big league debut. In addition to being the first Lithuanian born-and-raised player in major league history, it’s a solid, solid name. Now the Pirates are making another promotion: Gift Ngoepe.

Yep, Gift Ngoepe. He’s an infielder from South Africa, making the leap to the bigs due to David Freese‘s hamstring injury. Ngoepe, 27, was batting just .241/.308/.379 through 66 plate appearances this season with Triple-A Indianapolis, his ninth in the minors, so he’s not exactly a prospect. But man, that’s a killer name.

It’s also worth mentioning that Gift and Neverauskas were arrested together in a bar fight last August in Toledo, so there is already a good basis for some bonding here.

Good luck, Gift. Gift Ngoepe. Mr. Ngoepe. G-Ngo. Man, I could do this all day.