11 Mar

next dog up

First, there was Rafael Palmeiro. Then Will Clark, followed by Palmeiro again, then Mitch Moreland and most recently Nathaniel Lowe. Now, it looks like Justin Foscue might join the list of Mississippi State products to start at first base on opening day for the Texas Rangers. An oblique injury may keep Lowe, the starter the past three seasons, on the shelf at the start of this season. Foscue, still learning the position this spring, reportedly stands a good chance of getting the nod on March 28, when the world champion Rangers open at home against the Chicago Cubs. Foscue — Texas’ No. 5 prospect — was held out of the Cactus League games over the weekend after reporting some pain in his side but was in the lineup today. He has hit .308 this spring in 26 at-bats. He batted .266 with 18 homers and 14 steals at Triple-A Round Rock in 2023, where he did play nine games at first. Defense might be the key for Foscue as he battles MLB veteran Jared Walsh, a non-roster invitee, for the first-base job the remainder of the spring. “It’s just (about) continuing to get reps in,” Foscue, a first-round pick out of MSU in 2020, told mlb.com. Palmeiro was the Rangers’ starter from 1989-93 and then again from 2001-03. In between, his former “Thunder and Lightning” partner Clark manned the spot (1994-96 and ’98). Moreland came along in 2013 and also opened at first in 2016. Lowe was acquired from Tampa Bay in a trade and took over in 2021, winning a Silver Slugger the next season. P.S. MSU alum Jordan Westburg, Southern Miss product Matthew Etzel and ex-Ole Miss standouts Errol Robinson and Anthony Servideo all played in a Baltimore split-squad game on Sunday. Only Westburg is on the big league roster.

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