12:03pm: Chirinos will be out ten to 12 weeks, Grant tweets. Also, Shin-Soo Choo will miss four to six weeks with a Grade 2 calf strain. Choo’s injury has led to speculation about the possible promotion of top prospect Nomar Mazara, but the Rangers have yet to make an announcement about possible roster moves.
9:18am: Rangers catcher Robinson Chirinos got hit by a pitch Saturday night and has fractured his forearm, as Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News writes. Chirinos will be out for at least a month. The Rangers have already had problems with their catching depth this year, leading to a spring trade for Bryan Holaday of the Tigers, and Chirinos’ latest injury could have them heading to the trade market yet again.
“We’ve got a good start with Holaday here,” says manager Jeff Banister. “We are working through all of our other options right now. We’ve got limited, but multiple options.”
Chirinos hit a solid .232/.325/.438 for the Rangers last season and was off to a good start in 2016, so his loss is a relatively significant one. Chris Gimenez and Michael McKenry would normally be possibilities to replace him in the short term, as Grant notes, but Gimenez is recovering from a bacterial infection and McKenry has an abdominal strain. Brett Nicholas, who has never played in the big leagues but who split time between catcher and first base at Triple-A Round Rock last year, is healthy, but would require a 40-man roster move.
Grant thinks the Rangers could look to the trade market, possibly re-acquiring Bobby Wilson (who they shipped to Detroit in the Holaday deal and who’s currently playing for Triple-A Toledo). There’s also the possibility that Chirinos’ injury could spur the Rangers to make a bigger trade for a higher-profile talent like Jonathan Lucroy or Derek Norris, in whom they’ve had interest in the past.