Nolan Ryan won’t rule out Texas re-signing Vladimir Guerrero

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When the Rangers signed Adrian Beltre to a five-year, $80 million contract last month general manager Jon Daniels said the team was “out” of the mix to potentially re-sign Vladimir Guerrero, but Rangers president Nolan Ryan has re-opened that door a bit.

Guerrero is still available with less than a month to go until the start of spring training despite various other veteran bats coming off the market recently and an inaccurate report claiming he was signing with the Orioles over the weekend.

Asked at the team’s annual “Fan Fest” event if the Rangers might reconsider their stance on Guerrero, here’s what Ryan said:

They were looking for a two-year contract and we had agreed with him and his agent that it was a mutual option this year, so we agreed to let them go out on the market and see what the market bared. And he hadn’t been able, to this point, to get a two-year contract. Is there still a possibility that he could end up signing with us? Yeah, there is. But I’m not for sure what other interest is out there as far as he is concerned.

I think that will play out in the next 20 days before spring training. You’d love to have that bat, another right-handed bat on the bench, or him DHing when Michael Young is playing a position. That will obviously come into play in the decision of where he’s going to go. How many at-bats he thinks he’s going to get somewhere.

In other words, if Guerrero wants to accept a one-year contract and a part-time role after searching for a two-year deal and everyday playing time all offseason the Rangers would think about bringing him back. If not they’ll stick with Michael Young as the primary designated hitter and, as Matthew Pouliot wrote over the weekend, perhaps look to add a cheaper right-handed bat to take playing time from Mitch Moreland against tough lefties.

Blue Jays clinch playoff berth with Orioles’ loss to Red Sox

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TORONTO — The Blue Jays clinched a postseason berth Thursday without taking the field.

Toronto was assured of an AL wild card berth when the Boston Red Sox beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-3.

If Toronto holds its current position as the first of the AL’s three wild cards, the Blue Jays would open a best-of-three wild-card series at Rogers Centre next week.

“These guys are excited to be in this position,” Blue Jays manager John Schneider said after Wednesday’s 8-3 loss to the New York Yankees. “You’ve got three really good pitchers lined up against a good Boston team, playing at home. So I think it’s more excitement more than it’s nerves or anything. I think the guys are going to come out and be ready to roll on Friday night.”

Toronto became the fourth AL team to clinch a playoff berth, joining division champions Houston, the Yankees and Cleveland. The Astros and Yankees have first-round byes.

The Blue Jays last went to the playoffs in 2020, when they were knocked out with two straight losses to Tampa Bay.

Eight of the 12 berths in the expanded postseason have been clinched: The Los Angeles Dodgers and St. Louis earned division titles, and Atlanta and the New York Mets are assured no worse the wild cards while still competing to win the NL East. The Dodgers have a first-round bye.