Just wanted to make a quick note of something here before the MLBlogs network goes offline for an upgrade at 1 AM ET tonight – the Rangers have made a trade with the Arizona Diamondbacks to bring in pitcher Dustin Nippert.
Nippert has been an elite pitching prospect in Arizona’s system in the past, but hasn’t had much success on the Major League level. He had been having a miserable spring training for Arizona, and was out of options, and about to go on the waiver wire, hence the Rangers where able to accquire him for just an obscure minor league releiver, Jose Marte.
Make no mistake about it, Nippert has talent, though – he’s a hard thrower, who has posted some excellent strikeout numbers in the minors (534 K’s in 545.1 IP, against 207 BB’s). According to this scouting report brought to us by Lone Star Ball’s "Zywica" his fastball sits at 92-94, and tops out at 96, and he has an excellent "spike curve" he can throw for strikes. He also has a fairly mediocre, but developing changeup.
He’s been used as a starter by Arizona in the past, but spent last year in the bullpen – he could go back to starting at some point here in Texas, but for now, he has won the final spot in the bullpen, settling the battle between Robinson Tejeda and Wes Littleton.
Instead of either of those two making the ‘pen, Nippert will fill things out, with Tejeda being DFA’d, and Littleton heading back to AAA, making the bullpen look like this:
- CJ Wilson (CL)
- Joaquin Benoit (RHSU)
- Eddie Guardado (LHSU)
- Kaz Fukumori
- Josh Rupe
- Franklyn German
- Dustin Nippert
- Jamey Wright
So welcome aboard, Dustin – I hope you can find success here in Texas.
I’ll have more thoughts on the bullpen, and the final shakeout of the 25-man roster tomorrow, after MLBlogs is updated, and brought back online. Things should look a lot different tomorrow, from what I’m hearing – here’s to a quick and easy transition to the new platform.