Alex Speas, Grant Anderson and Taylor Hearn are all experiencing rollercoaster journeys to begin their Big League careers.

The Texas Rangers shuffled some cards in their bullpen this week by calling up Alex Speas, designating Taylor Hearn for Assignment and demoting Grant Anderson to Triple-A.

Led by three-time World Series winning manager Bruce Bochy and a starting lineup consisting of five All-Star starters highlighted by the half a billion-dollar middle infield combination of Corey Seager and Marcus Semien, the first place Rangers have been one of the biggest surprises in the Majors.

Coming into Sunday, their division lead over Houston sat at three games.

Entering the season most thought earning a Wild Card berth would be the best-case scenario for the club and would take a lead of that size to the bank, but it could actually be larger if not for a bullpen that has the fourth highest ERA in the Majors.

The group has had its highs and lows this year and when all is said and done, will be the difference in the team’s ability to make a long playoff run.  Here is a spotlight on their three MLBbros options at their disposal.


Alex Speas


The last few years have been a whirlwind for Alex Speas who made his Major League debut this past Wednesday against Tampa Bay, striking out three in 1 ⅓ innings just a year after retiring from the game to go coach youth baseball in North Carolina.



“Going out and doing my job was the only thing on my mind,” Speas told when asked his mindset when debuting against one of the American Leagues top teams.


“Coming into this moment, I know the team is hot so my goal when I got up here is to do anything to help the team win.  You have All-Stars behind you at just about every position, so have trust in them and myself and let whatever happens, happen.”


Speas, who has a 100-mph fastball and plus rated slider surged through the minors with some impressive numbers.

In 28 appearances he had a 1.00 ERA, 59 strikeouts and only 15 walks in 36 innings.

Speas did struggle with command in his second Big League appearance, taking the loss in last Friday night’s game against the Los Angeles Dodgers. He earned the loss after allowing three walks, including walking in the go-ahead run, allowing two earned runs on one hit while not recording a single out before exiting the game.


If Speas is on top of his game, he could be the bridge to get the ball to flame thrower Aroldis Chapman in the 9th during their playoff run, but he must avoid the struggles in command he had this weekend.

Grant Anderson


Rookie reliever Grant Anderson was sent down to Triple-A Round Rock after the team’s loss to the Dodgers Friday night for pitch count issues according to manager Bruce Bochy.


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Anderson threw 51 pitches in the game after being forced to get a few extra outs in order to conserve the bullpen for the weekend.


“Execution wise I was not at my best that day.” Anderson told after finishing with a stat line of 1.2 innings allowing four runs on four hits with four strikeouts and a walk.


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Anderson has had success during most of first month and a half in the Majors, including striking out a record seven hitters in his debut, but at times just has not been able to miss as many bats as he would prefer to.


“It comes down to execution and being able to make adjustments quicker,” said Anderson about his first stint in the Majors.

“I also learned that sometimes in baseball, you can make a really good pitch and they may still hit it.  At the end of the day all you can do is tip your cap and try your best to get the next guy out.”


Anderson should be recalled to the Major League club this week for a three-game set in Houston that will have a huge impact on which team wins the American League West pennant.

Taylor Hearn


The Rangers DFA’d Hearn last week to add Alex Speas to the 40-man roster.


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He made the Opening Day roster this year after signing a 1-year $1.462 million deal with the club this off-season but was sent to Triple-A after posting a 10.29 ERA with seven strikeouts in four games.


Despite the continued struggles of the bullpen, Hearn was never recalled.


While in Round Rock he posted a 2-2 record to go with a 3.66 ERA and 4 strikeouts in 39.1 innings.


Tuesday is the deadline for another club to pick him up off of the waiver wire. If not, he could return to the Rangers organization or be granted his release from the ballclub.


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