Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Nathan Haynes Now a Ranger

Nathan Haynes, one of two former RailCats to reach the major leagues, is getting a new address. The 29-year-old speedster signed with the Texas Rangers earlier this month, his third team in the last three years.

Haynes was a first-round draft choice of the Oakland A's in 1997 out of high school who joined the RailCats in 2006 after two injury-plagued seasons in the San Francisco Giants system. Haynes played in 31 games for the 'Cats in early 2006 before being picked up by the Los Angeles Angels, and one year later he was on the major league roster. After hitting .267 in 40 games with the Angels in 2007, Haynes was claimed off waivers by the American League Champion Tampa Bay Rays in 2008 and played 20 games in the big leagues before finishing the year in Triple-A.

Haynes signed a minor league contract with Texas and will not be invited to major league spring training, meaning he is likely to start the year at Triple-A. Haynes has stolen nearly 300 bases in his pro career, including 13 in 77 games with the Durham Bulls (AAA) last season.

Haynes and Tim Byrdak are the only two players to go from the RailCats to a major league roster. Byrdak, an Oak Lawn, Ill. native, will begin his eighth major league season in 2009 with the Houston Astros.

Thanks to RailCats fan Dan Stevenson for the photo.

Dallas Morning News

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