Michael Martini, the representative for free agent left-hander Derek Holland, said Saturday that his client would like a guaranteed rotation spot somewhere and is open to accepting a one-year deal. The Pirates are among the teams in the hunt for the 30-year-old, per Martini, but Holland told 105.3 The Fan that his ideal scenario is to re-sign with the Rangers (via the Dallas Morning News).
“I told (Rangers president and general manager) [Jon Daniels] when I get offered something, I want to throw that to them and see if they want to compete with it or whatnot,” Holland said. “I want to give the Rangers a chance, no matter what. I’m always going to leave that door open. I’m not closing that door. If they close the door, then fine, I guess I have to close the door. But as far as I know it’s still open and I’m leaving it open for them as well.”
The Rangers chose last week to decline Holland’s $11MM club option for 2017 in favor of a $1.5MM buyout, though Holland is pleased with the way Daniels handled it.
“We sat down and we talked about everything. He was class-act with me,” Holland explained. “Super nice, told me what was going on. Just told me straight up, he’s loved everything I’ve done and been a part of for this organization and helped out. Just told, ’It’s that time, I think we’re gonna decline the option and we’ll see what happens next, kinda go from there.”’
While the Rangers have obvious holes in their rotation behind Yu Darvish, Cole Hamels and Martin Perez, bringing back Holland still doesn’t seem particularly likely. Holland was a dependable option from 2011-13, a period in which he combined for a 3.98 ERA, 7.61 K/9 and 2.61 BB/9 over 586 1/3 innings, but Texas wasn’t able to count on him over the previous three seasons. After injuries sidelined Holland for most of the 2014 and ’15 campaigns, he threw 107 1/3 frames this past season and notched an uninspiring 4.95 ERA to go with a 5.62 K/9, 2.93 BB/9 and 38.3 percent ground-ball rate. Holland also experienced a dip in velocity and lost his spot in Texas’ rotation late in the season. The Rangers then left him off their roster for their American League Division Series loss to Toronto.