04/02/11 8:13 PM ET
Moreland savors AL championship ring
By T.R. Sullivan / MLB.com
The Rangers presented one to Arlington mayor Robert Cluck and another to the family of the late Tom Vandergriff. It was a sneak preview of Saturday night's ring ceremony before their game with the Red Sox.
"They are very nice," Mitch Moreland said. "I'm looking forward to getting it."
The ring ceremony came a day after Opening Day and was really the closing act of the Rangers' celebration of their 2010 American League title. The flag was raised in pregame ceremonies on Friday, and the rings were handed out on Saturday.
"It's huge," Moreland said. "It is bigger than my finger. I probably won't wear it too much. I'm not much of a ring-wearer anyway. I might put it on for special occasions or if I go over to David Murphy's for dinner."
Moreland, after sitting on Friday, was back in the Rangers' lineup on Saturday night, and the ring ceremony reminded why that was the case. Moreland played a significant role in getting Texas to the World Series.
First base was a trouble spot for the Rangers last season, and Moreland was called up on July 28 to help address the situation. He ended up playing in 47 games and hit .255, with nine home runs and 25 RBIs in 145 at-bats.
Then came to the playoffs, and he really stood out, hitting .348 (16-for-46) with a home run and seven RBIs in 15 games. He hit a three-run home run in Game 3 of the World Series against Giants left-hander Jonathan Sanchez to give the Rangers a 4-2 victory. He is the only first baseman to hit a home run out of the ninth spot in the Fall Classic.
"I had a good postseason and it definitely helped me build up some confidence," Moreland said. "But a lot of guys stepped up. That's what this team does. Every day there is a new guy that steps up and gets a big hit or makes a big play. I'm glad I was able to do that."
Moreland sat on Opening Day because the Red Sox pitched a left-hander. But his home run against Sanchez was significant in that regard. He was the first left-handed batter to hit a home run off a left-hander in the World Series after having never hit one off a lefty in the regular season or first round of the playoffs.
He will always have a ring to remember that.
"It just shows what we accomplished," Moreland said. "I feel I was lucky to be a part of it and join the Rangers at the right time. It was a blast. The ring means a lot to me."
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.