A.J. Griffin is the Rangers' latest try at a low-risk, high-reward flier — something the team has done with relative frequency over the last handful of seasons.
For whatever reason, Griffin's case seems to have a little more staying power as he's two years removed from Tommy John surgery and put up some really solid numbers the last time he pitched in the bigs. Oh, and he's still in his 20s.
On Monday, Griffin spoke with 105.3 The Fan about his new opportunity with Texas after he was designated for assignment by one of the Rangers' biggest rivals, the A's, back in November.
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Remember that fateful Game 162 in 2012 when the A's unseated the Rangers after Texas' two-year run atop the division and the American League? Well, Griffin sure does.
"The thing I remember the most is Evan Scribner coming in and saving my butt. I had a rough little go there the first few innings. I remember Michael Young got that nice hit that I think hit the chalk down the right field line that kind of set the wheels in motion for you guys in that game. It was just really exciting. We just had one of those Cinderella seasons. No one really expected anything from us. We went on a tremendous stretch and put things together. Hopefully there will be more of the same on the Rangers for me."
As far as what made him successful in Oakland? That goes to his cutdown on home runs allowed, which is something that should be a concern in Texas as it's much easier to hit a long ball in Arlington than it is in Oakland.
"I'd say just being competitive and getting ahead of hitters. Not allowing any free passes. I've been prone to the home run ball in the past and I [wasn't] walking people and keeping my runners on base down that season was huge. It was easier for me to attack people and get ahead in the count."