Rangers complete deal for free agent C Pierzynski - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

Rangers complete deal for free agent C Pierzynski

Posted: Updated:

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) -- A.J. Pierzynski can joke with Texas manager Ron Washington about last season's All-Star snub now that he's the starting catcher for the Rangers.
 
   They shared a laugh over lunch a few days before Wednesday's announcement that Pierzynski's one-year free agent contract with Texas was complete. Both considered the All-Star issue dead after it happened in July, even though Pierzynski had a cryptic retort when Washington explained the difficulty of the decision.
 
   "Everybody keeps trying to make a big deal out of it, but I've known Wash for a really long time," Pierzynski said. "It's not going to change the way I feel about Ron Washington because I know what he's done in this game and I know where he stands and what he's all about. It's over and done with for me."
 
   Washington said Pierzynski will be the primary catcher, pushing Geovany Soto to the backup role after he re-signed as a free agent. Pierzynski hit .278 with a career-high 27 home runs in 135 games for the Chicago White Sox, while Soto took a pay cut after hitting .196 in 47 games following a trade with the Chicago Cubs.
 
   Pierzynski, a two-time All-Star who has been to the playoffs four times and won the 2005 World Series with the White Sox, has long been known as an irritant to opposing players and even someone who didn't always please his teammates either. Washington says he always felt otherwise.
 
   "I always loved him; I never hated him," Washington said. "I always loved him because he always believed he did anything and everything he had to do to try to beat you. I admired that."
 
   The Rangers needed a left-handed power hitter after losing All-Star slugger Josh Hamilton in free agency to the Los Angeles. They also had a void at catcher because Mike Napoli, a key to Texas reaching a second straight World Series in 2011, bolted for Boston.
 
   Soto became a free agent when the Rangers didn't agree to a contract before a deadline earlier this month. But he eventually agreed to a $2.75 million, one-year contract, a more than 20 percent decrease from his $4.3 million payroll last season. Terms of Pierzynski's deal weren't disclosed.
 
   Pierzynski is a .284 career hitter in 1,629 games with the White Sox (2005-12), San Francisco (2004) and Minnesota (1998-2003). He could also play some designated hitter. He caught 121 games last year, leads and all active players with 1,559 games as a catcher and doesn't see a need to slow down even though he turns 36 on Sunday.
 
   "Physically, I feel awesome," said Pierzynski, who matched his career high with 77 RBIs last season. "Mentally, I'm as good as I've ever been. I always joke that I have to thank my mom and dad because they gave me good genes as far as health goes."
 
   To make room for Pierzynski on the 40-man roster, the Rangers designated catcher Luis Martinez for assignment.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Share Your Sports Photos & Video

Submit Your Sports Photos
  • White SoxMore>>

  • Walters, Indians beat White Sox 8-6 in 10 innings

    Walters, Indians beat White Sox 8-6 in 10 innings

    Wednesday, August 27 2014 2:27 AM EDT2014-08-27 06:27:10 GMT
    Zach Walters hit a two-run home run in the 10th inning, lifting the Cleveland Indians to an 8-6 victory over the sliding Chicago White Sox on Tuesday night.
    Zach Walters hit a two-run home run in the 10th inning, lifting the Cleveland Indians to an 8-6 victory over the sliding Chicago White Sox on Tuesday night.
  • White Sox send OF Danks to Triple-A Charlotte

    White Sox send OF Danks to Triple-A Charlotte

    The Chicago White Sox have optioned outfielder Jordan Danks to Triple-A Charlotte.
    The Chicago White Sox have optioned outfielder Jordan Danks to Triple-A Charlotte.
  • Beltran homers, Yankees beat White Sox 5-3

    Beltran homers, Yankees beat White Sox 5-3

    Carlos Beltran gave the Yankees' struggling offense a jolt with a home run in his return to the lineup, Martin Prado had another go-ahead hit and New York beat the Chicago White Sox 5-3 on Saturday.
    Carlos Beltran gave the Yankees' struggling offense a jolt with a home run in his return to the lineup, Martin Prado had another go-ahead hit and New York beat the Chicago White Sox 5-3 on Saturday.
Powered by WorldNow

KTTV FOX 11
1999 S. Bundy Dr.
Los Angeles CA 90025

Main: (310) 584-2000
News Tips? (310) 584-2025

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices