Roy Oswalt Wants to Pitch for Texas Rangers

By Jeric Griffin

The Texas Rangers recently acquired Japanese pitching sensation Yu Darvish, but he’s never pitched in America. A three-time All-Star who has pitched in the big leagues for a decade is interested in joining the Rangers and Texas would be crazy not to take advantage of it. Philadelphia Phillies right-hander Roy Oswalt is a free agent and a source close to the Phillies said he wants to pitch for the Rangers.

ESPN Boston’s Gordon Edes wrote late Wednesday night that a Red Sox source said the team is afraid they won’t be able to sign Oswalt via free agency due to his interest in the Rangers and St. Louis Cardinals.

What free agent pitcher wouldn’t want to join either of the 2011 World Series participants? At 34 years old, Oswalt is likely looking for his last big deal and even major issues with his back aren’t hindering teams’ pursuit of him this offseason.

If the Rangers were able to sign Oswalt, it would mean Texas closer Neftali Feliz’ closer position would be solidified. There was talk of Feliz moving into the Rangers’ starting rotation after the departure of CJ Wilson, but that’s unlikely now that Darvish is in Texas and would be set in stone if Oswalt signed with the Rangers.

As for the current starting rotation, Oswalt’s arrival would give Texas plenty of time to work with Darvish and bring him after the start of the 2012 season. In fact, Oswalt would most likely replace Wilson as the Rangers’ ace. However, Texas would have a hard time keeping Matt Harrison if both Darvish and Oswalt were inserted into the rotation. After Harrison’s poor playoff performances in 2011, that wouldn’t necessarily be a bad thing.

Of course, the Oswalt-to-Texas move is just a long shot at this point, but the Red Sox sources are confident the 2005 NLCS MVP wants to join the Rangers for a chance to be the ace in Texas and the possibility of another World Series trip. It’s safe to say the Rangers would be very happy to have Oswalt.

Follow Jeric Griffin on Twitter @JericGriffin

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