As was reported recently, the Rangers have no interest in trading recently demoted power righty Keone Kela, who was optioned owing to his negative impact in the clubhouse. Both Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News and Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram provide further detail on what went wrong, and you’ll want to check out those pieces for the full rundown. All said, it seems there’s plenty of space for Kela to work back into good standing with the organization, though it’s anyone’s guess how long he’ll be shelved in the minors and what it will take for him to return.
Here are a few more pitching notes from around the game:
- The Phillies took home an Opening Day win after Jeanmar Gomez shut the door in the ninth, but the closer role seems far from settled. As Ryan Lawrence of the Philly Voice reports, manager Pete Mackanin acknowledged after the game that he’s “concerned” with Gomez — who gave up a two-run home run and, in the skipper’s assessment, is struggling to work down in the zone. It seems the club will stick with him for now, but Mackanin suggested continue to evaluate and won’t hesitate to pull Gomez if he’s struggling.
- Long-time staff ace Felix Hernandez left his start yesterday for the Mariners with groin tightness, as Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times reports (Twitter links). But the expectation is that he won’t miss any time; the veteran righty says he’ll be ready for his next scheduled outing “for sure.” He did miss time last season with a calf strain that proved worse than initially suggested, though of course there’s no reason to believe this new injury will follow a similar course.
- Veteran hurler Bronson Arroyo is on track to return to the majors, as Mark Sheldon of MLB.com writes. After a sim game on Sunday resulted in “very, very positive reports,” in the words of manager Bryan Price, it seems Arroyo is slated to make his first MLB outing of the year on Saturday. Arroyo has battled injury ever since going he required Tommy John surgery in the middle of 2014, but has remarkably positioned himself to make it back to the hill at 40 years of age.