If anyone in the Rangers’ clubhouse is nervous about the July 31 trade deadline, he has plenty of options for advice.
“It’s definitely not a fun time,” said Cashner, who was traded from the San Diego Padres to the Miami Marlins a year ago. “But at the end of the day it’s out of our control. We don’t pick and choose who gets traded and who stays here. We try our best to go out and win today.”
Manager Jeff Banister said his message hasn’t changed and won’t’ change during the club’s five-game losing streak, which is tied for the club high this season. The only concern for him and his players, he said, is the next game.
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“The last five games have not been good. We have not played well enough to win baseball games,” he said. “There is no revisiting a message that’s a message that is delivered daily. Any singular day can be somewhat tumultuous for a player. Our consistency of message is about today.”
With regard to the looming trade deadline, Banister said there’s no special counseling that needs to be done.
“If any of those guys out there want to know what it feels like or sounds like, they’ve got a lot of peers they can go to,” he said. “It’s like a birthday and Christmas for some. They look forward to it every year. And when it’s over with, they’ve unwrapped all their presents and it’s just another day, let’s move on.”
Cashner learned he was traded when his phone blew up with messages and texts early in the morning. His girlfriend called with the news.
“There are a lot of false reports because every reporter wants to be the first to report it,” he said. “I saw my teammate B.J. Upton trade clubhouses when we were in Toronto. That was tough. When you grind with these guys it’s always tough to seeing somebody go.”
The next day Cashner was traded.
“I started packing quick,” he said. “It doesn’t really matter what the uniform is, it’s still 60 feet, 6 inches.”
Indeed, the rituals of the game often become a player’s greatest place of peace when the rumor mills are swirling.
“Those white lines out there, the fair lines? They keep the foul out,” Banister said.