12:17 AM CDT on Friday, July 30, 2010
By DREW DAVISON / Special Contributor to The Dallas Morning News
It caught Mitch Moreland by surprise. After all, he wasn't expecting a life-changing phone call at 10:45 p.m. Wednesday. Triple-A Oklahoma City manager Bobby Jones delivered the news to Moreland, informing him that the Rangers were calling him up.
The Rangers decided to go with Moreland with Ian Kinsler headed to the disabled list. "It's the best feeling in the world," said Moreland, who grew up in Amory, Miss. "I've dreamed of this since growing up and, ever since I could walk, this is what I wanted to do."
Moreland started at first base instead of Chris Davis on Thursday and singled in his first career at-bat. He went 2-for-4.
Moreland was able to fly in his parents and sister to be on hand for his big league debut.
Moreland, who played primarily in the outfield in the minors, will play only first base with the Rangers. His last 12 starts at Triple-A were at first base, and the team feels he is capable of playing it at the major league level.
"I know he is a player, and he's swung the bat well," manager Ron Washington said. "When we knew we weren't going to have Kinsler, we went down and got the best player down there. And that was Moreland."
Moreland comes to the Rangers after hitting .289 with 12 home runs, 29 doubles and 65 RBIs in 95 games with the RedHawks. Over his last 45 games, Moreland has hit .345 with nine home runs, 13 doubles and 40 RBI's.