Some rumblings on the Rangers, who improved to 24-19 on Saturday:
- After acquiring top-end starter Cole Hamels at last year’s trade deadline, the prospect-stocked Rangers are well-positioned to make another major splash this summer, writes Jon Paul Morosi of MLB.com. The Rangers aren’t yet engaged in “significant” discussions with other teams, reports Morosi, but he believes they could ultimately land another quality pitcher – be it a closer or a starter – and lists the Yankees’ Andrew Miller and the Rays’ Drew Smyly as possible targets. Texas would be “reluctant” to put together a package sufficient enough to land Marlins ace Jose Fernandez, per Morosi, who cites young infielder Jurickson Profar and corner infield/outfield prospect Joey Gallo as potential trade chips.
- The deadline is still a ways off, but the Rangers are poised to land a notable reinforcement in ace Yu Darvish, who hasn’t pitched since 2014 after undergoing Tommy John surgery a year ago. Darvish is on track to make his season debut for the Rangers next Saturday, tweets Morosi. Darvish’s last remaining hurdle is a 90-pitch rehab start Sunday for Double-A Frisco, relays Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News.
- Thanks in part to second baseman Rougned Odor’s forthcoming eight-game suspension, the Rangers might have to put right fielder Shin-Soo Choo back on the disabled list, as Grant details. Choo returned from a month-plus absence stemming from a calf injury Friday, but he had to leave the game because of a hamstring injury and is unlikely to play before Monday. Thus, rather than play with a 23-man roster and two-man bench (including a backup catcher), it could behoove the Rangers to return Choo to the DL and allow him to fully heal. “There is going to be a convergence of decisions,” manager Jeff Banister said. “We know we are going to have to play short-handed at some point. We are not in position to play ultra-short-handed.”