The Rangers announced four roster moves involving right-handed pitchers today, including the activation of Garrett Richards from the 10-day injured list. Nick Snyder was also called up from Triple-A. In corresponding moves, Dennis Santana was placed on the COVID-related injured list, while Spencer Howard was placed on the regular 10-day IL due to a blister and cracked fingernail.
Richards signed a one-year deal worth a guaranteed $5.5MM following the lockout, but his Texas debut was postponed by a blister issue of his own. Fortunately, it ended up being only a minor setback, and Richards is now lined up to take his spot in the Rangers bullpen. Reporter Jeff Wilson (Twitter links) that the Rangers are tentatively planning a bullpen game for Friday’s contest with the Angels, so Richards could conceivably get the pseudo-start if he doesn’t see any action tonight.
Howard has been initially stated to start Friday’s game, but he will now head to the IL (retroactive to April 11) to recover from his own finger issue. The 25-year-old didn’t fare well in his first start of the season, as Howard was tagged for four homers and six earned runs over three innings in a 12-6 loss to the Blue Jays. Blisters have been a recurring problem for the Rangers in the early going, between Richards’ absence, and both Howard and Jon Gray now sidelined. The Rangers have an off-day on April 18, so it’s possible the rotation might not need further re-alignment if Howard and/or Gray are able to return in short order.
Santana is still waiting results of his COVID-19 test, but Wilson reports that the IL placement was precautionary since Santana is showing symptoms. As per the 2022 rules, Santana will have to miss a minimum of five days and be free of symptoms for the last two or more of those days.