Notes: Yu Darvish start attracts media

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- It was a crowded Texas Rangers clubhouse on Wednesday morning as about 40 media members took in the scene in anticipation for Yu Darvish's first Cactus League start.

Darvish talked to a few teammates and went about preparing for workouts in Surprise this morning. He'll then head over to Peoria with his teammates for the 20-minute drive down Bell Road. Darvish is slated to pitch two innings or around 35 pitches and the Rangers are expecting 150 media members, including a bunch of photographers, to watch his every move.

Full coverage of Darvish's start is right here on ESPN Dallas. We will be live streaming his start on the site, Eric Nadel and Steve Busby will carry the first two innings of the game live on ESPN Dallas 103.3 FM and we will also live chat during Darvish's start, where you can ask questions and give us your feedback on the Japanese pitching star. We'll open that chat room around 1:45 p.m. here on the blog, so join us.

Ben Snyder joked that he wasn't sure how many of those cameras would still be around when he pitches in the fourth or fifth inning today.

"I don't think they're here to see me," Snyder said.

Other notes:

* LHP Joe Beimel feels good and says he's looking forward to his first Cactus League appearance Thursday. Beimel hasn't had any more elbow stiffness issues and threw an inning against hitters on Monday and came out of it pleased.

* LHP Michael Kirkman is slated to throw two innings Thursday following Neftali Feliz's start and is looking forward to getting back out on the mound. Kirkman pitched better than his line indicated the other day, but he also knows he could have performed better against right-handed hitters.

"Some of those flares could have been ground ball outs," Kirkman said. "I need to keep the ball down just a little. I was throwing strikes, but kept some balls up. That's my goal tomorrow is to get the ball down and make quality pitches."