Rangers offense in early slumber

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The 2010 Blue Jays probably won’t end up being known for their pitching or their defense (or their offense, for that matter), but the team came within a Jason Frasor blown save of sweeping the Rangers to open the season.
Three games in, the Rangers have just two guys hitting their weight. Vladimir Guerrero, who always tore up Texas pitching as a member of the Angels, has found his new uni very comfortable, as he’s opened up 7-for-11 with a homer. Nelson Cruz, who has hit fifth right behind Guerrero in the lineup, has two homers, two doubles and five RBI in his 10 at-bats.
And that’s pretty much it. No other Ranger has more than one hit this season. The group is a combined 5-for-74 with two RBI against Shaun Marcum, Brian Tallet, Ricky Romero and four members of the Toronto pen.
The usual first three hitters in the lineup are 1-for-30. Julio Borbon is 0-for-12. Michael Young is 1-for-10. Josh Hamilton, who didn’t start Thursday, is 0-for-8 with six strikeouts.
So what’s next? A home series against Seattle in which the Rangers will face Jason Vargas, Felix Hernandez and Ian Snell. The depleted lineup missing Ian Kinsler and Jarrod Saltalamacchia better get something done Friday, as all Felix did last year was go 2-0 with a 0.86 ERA in three starts at Rangers ballpark.

Report: Guardians, 1B Josh Bell reach 2-year, $33M deal

Kyle Ross-USA TODAY Sports
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SAN DIEGO — The Cleveland Guardians and slugging first baseman Josh Bell have agreed to a two-year, $33 million contract, according to a person familiar with the negotiations.

The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the deal was pending a review of medical records.

Bell played for Washington and San Diego last season, batting .266 with 17 homers and 71 RBIs in 156 games.

Cleveland is coming off a surprising 2022 season, going 92-70 and winning the AL Central for the first time since 2018. The addition of Bell gives the Guardians more power for their lineup after they hit just 127 homers this year – the second-lowest total in the majors.

The 30-year-old Bell is a .262 hitter with 130 homers and 468 RBIs over seven seasons with three big league teams. He had his best year with Pittsburgh in 2019, making the NL All-Star team while batting .277 with 37 homers and 116 RBIs in 143 games.

The switch-hitting Bell also is expected to benefit from restrictions on defensive positioning coming to the game next year.