One of the nicest people I have ever met is Texas Rangers outfielder David Murphy.  Not just in baseball, but anywhere.  Murf was traded with Kason Gabbard for Eric Gagne in 2007.  He was born in Houston and starred collegiately at Baylor, so returning to the Lone Star State has been a boon for David.  His Rangers are in pursuit of Boston for a wild card spot in the American League.  Murf joined us on PawSox Insider Saturday and we talked about Fridays’ Red Sox comeback and the odd sight of pitcher Clay Buchholz pinch-running for Boston late in the game.  Dustin Pedroia hit one deep to left and Murf went after it, causing Buchholz to have some second thoughts on the path.  Clay was ultimately thrown out at the plate,diving in headfirst, causing more than one loyal citizen of the Nation to cringe. “Jumping for the ball worked out well for us, Dustin hit it well.  If I tried to get it on a carom, Buchholz would hae scored easily.  Especially after a play like that it didn’t seem like it was a game you could lose in a million years.”  Even after two years, David still gets a kick out of facing his former team and a lot of old friends.  “It’s like when you were a kid playing against your friends, you’re playing for bragging rights.  I came up with Pedroia, Lester, Papelbon and Delcarmen.  We spent so much time together, I know them so well…You’re like a little kid again, trying to beat your friends.”  With the Rangers in contention in the West, David says there’s a much different feeling at the ballpark in Arlington this summer. “The crowds are electric.  The game last night (Friday) was the loudest I’ve ever heard it there.  Usually, by this time of year fans are just looking forward to the Dallas Cowboys.  This is fun.”  Murf is hitting .272 with 11 homers and 33 rbi.  He has done well, after getting off to a very slow start. “I put too much pressure on myself.  I had the starting job- I overthought things.  I’ve had a great opportnity with this organization, but I was putting too much emphasis on the numbers.  I felt like I had to live up to the expectations of myself and the fans after the success I had in 2008.  It can be such a mental game.  Once I got to 0-15, I thought “This is ridiculous.”  You have to be able to laugh at yourself.  After that slump, I realize I can handle things like that.”  David, the father of two young daughters still gets a charge out of playing in his own backyard.  “It’s definitely still a thrill playing in Texas.  A lot of Baylor fans come out to the game every night.  I always hear “Sic ’em, Bears.” from the stands.  It’s pretty special.  The sense of pride- the situation, it couldn’t have worked out any better.  It really has been a blessing.”  One of the keys to success fot the Rangers has been the emergence of Josh Hamilton.  Hamilton was the overall number one pick a few years ago and nearly blew it.  He has battled addiction and got a second chance with Texas and has blossomed.  Recently, Hamilton admitted he had had some drinks in a bar after photos surfaced of him with some scantily-clad women.  Murphy says the Rangers are behind Hamilton 100%.  “We’ve been extremely supportive.  He’s a great guy.  Everyone has some type of temptation or something they struggle with.  He has to deal with it in the spotlight.  He carried us on his back in 2008.  You feel for his family.  You hate to see that.  It happens to the best of us.”  David Murphy is the best of us.    


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