Texas Rangers – MLB Trade Rumors 2018-05-21T14:21:19Z https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/feed/atom WordPress Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Cafardo: Rangers Had Recent Interest In Blake Swihart]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=122831 2018-05-20T21:59:51Z 2018-05-20T21:59:18Z
  • The Rangers had interest in Red Sox utilityman Blake Swihart as recently as a week ago, per Cafardo, who notes “that avenue may still be available.” A catcher by trade, Swihart’s out of options and doesn’t seem to have a place on this year’s Red Sox, which led his agent to request a trade earlier this week. Still, Boston’s unsure about parting with the 26-year-old, Cafardo suggests. If the Sox do explore a deal, though, there are other fits besides Texas, as MLBTR’s Steve Adams pointed out Wednesday.

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    Kyle Downing <![CDATA[Injury Notes: Kendrick, Bumgarner, Mauer, Moore, Souza, Cuthbert]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=122710 2018-05-19T23:02:45Z 2018-05-19T21:50:42Z Things got even worse for the Nationals today; Howie Kendrick appeared to sustain a serious injury while chasing down a Max Muncy fly ball. Kendrick was carted off the field, and was seen pointing to his ankle area. Jamal Collier of MLB.com reports that he’s off to get an MRI. The Nationals are already dealing with injuries to a number of other key players, including Ryan Zimmerman, Adam Eaton, Matt Wieters and Brian Goodwin, and can ill afford to lose another player from their outfield for an extended period of time. They’ll likely be anxious as they await further news on Kendrick.

    More injury news from around MLB today…

    • Giants lefty Madison Bumgarner considers his fractured left hand to be “95% or more” healed, according to a tweet from MLB.com’s Chris Haft. He’s on track to throw live batting practice on Tuesday and begin a rehab assignment on Saturday. Meanwhile, Haft says, Johnny Cueto will head to the club’s rehab facility in Arizona. The Giants will hope for the best-case scenarios as far as the timetables of these two players; their depleted rotation is a chief factor in the club’s sub-.500 record on the season.
    • Joe Mauer is headed to the Twins’ DL with concussion symptoms once again, according to LaVelle E. Neal of the Star Tribute. He reportedly did well in regards to concussion tests last night, but is apparently experiencing some sensitivity to light along with some balance issues. Mauer, who has dealt with concussion issues in years past, is walking at a 16.8% clip so far this season en route to a .404 OBP. According to chief baseball officer Derek Falvey (via MLB.com’s Rhett Bollinger), the club is “not saying at this time that Joe has a concussion.”
    • The Rangers have placed lefty Matt Moore on the 10-day disabled list with what the club is calling right knee soreness. The move will make room for fellow righty Ariel Jurado, who will make the jump from Double-A to debut in the majors tonight. Jurado has a 2.57 ERA in 35 minor league innings this year, but with a 5.31 FIP that strongly disagrees with those results. He posted a 4.59 ERA at Double-A last season, with 5.45 K/9.
    • Diamondbacks outfielder Steven Souza will avoid the DL for the time being, says Zach Buchanan of The Athletic. A key offseason acquisition by the Dbacks, Souza has already spent the bulk of the season on the DL after suffering a pectoral strain upon diving for a ball in the outfield. Fortunately, it seems as though some minor pec soreness will not require a second DL stint for the time being.
    • The Royals have placed Cheslor Cuthbert on the 10-day DL with a lower back strain, recalling fellow infielder Ramon Torres from Triple-A Omaha in a corresponding move. Cuthbert is a career .252/.308/.383 hitter, and is performing especially poorly this season, as evidenced by his -0.5 fWAR for 2018. However, Torres seems unlikely to provide any significant upgrade; he’s hitting just .229/.280/.307 at the Triple-A level so far this season.
    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Rangers Sign Cliff Pennington]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=122673 2018-05-19T01:30:37Z 2018-05-19T01:14:24Z The Rangers have signed infielder Cliff Pennington to a minor-league deal, per a club announcement. He’ll report to Triple-A Round Rock to begin his tenure with the organization.

    Pennington had opened the season with the Reds organization, but was optioned and then outrighted off of the 40-man roster after initially making the team out of camp. He was released earlier today to pursue other opportunities, which turned out to be a brief stay on the open market.

    While he has rarely been much of a hitter, Pennington is amply experienced in the middle infield. He could help the Rangers weather the absences of Elvis Andrus and Adrian Beltre, which have left the club relying upon a slate of light-hitting players — Jurickson ProfarIsiah Kiner-Falefa, and Hanser Alberto — on the left side of the infield.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Rangers Open To Trading Veteran Players]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=122632 2018-05-18T18:19:48Z 2018-05-18T18:01:39Z Though we’re only a bit more than halfway through May, the Rangers have already informed other clubs that they’re open to selling off some veteran pieces, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic reports in his latest notes column. The report doesn’t characterize talks as serious, which isn’t surprising given that it’s not even June (the Draft is still a larger focus for most teams), though Rosenthal notes that some rivals have begun to tell Texas that they’re interested in various players.

    The Rangers, off to just a 17-28 start to the season, find themselves buried under an 11-game deficit in the AL West and 8.5 games out of a Wild Card spot in the American League. Only three AL clubs — the Orioles, Royals and White Sox — have lower winning percentages than the Rangers.

    Rosenthal lists left-hander Cole Hamels as the “most prominent” name that is likely to move, though he also suggests that Adrian Beltre would be willing to waive his no-trade clause to head to a contender once he’s back from his second DL stint of the season (both due to a strained left hamstring).

    [Related: Texas Rangers depth chart | Texas Rangers payroll]

    The Rangers aren’t exactly teeming with useful veterans, but Doug Fister, Bartolo Colon, Jesse Chavez and Tony Barnette have all enjoyed above-average starts to their seasons. Lefty reliever Jake Diekman, too, is sporting a solid ERA and an impressive strikeout rate, though he’s walked a staggering 14 batters in 14 2/3 innings, which will surely make other teams leery.

    On the position-player side of the coin, the Rangers have fewer appealing assets, outside of the currently injured Beltre. Rosenthal notes that the organization isn’t keen on listening to offers for young players like Joey Gallo, Nomar Mazara or Delino DeShields Jr., and that leaves little in the way of productive assets. Speculatively speaking, perhaps Robinson Chirinos would be appealing for a club in need of catching help like the Nationals or Twins. While he’s hitting just .198/.280/.414, he’s again showing good power (six homers, .216 ISO in 125 plate appearances) after hitting .255/.360/.506 last season. He’s controlled through 2019 and would only be owed the remainder of this season’s $2.25MM salary plus a cheap $2.375MM option for next season ($1MM buyout).

    If Hamels is indeed the likeliest name to go, he’s provided interested teams with a mixed bag of results so far in 2018. Hamels struggled with his velocity early in the season but has seen his fastball surge back to life recently. After averaging less than 90 mph on his heater in his first three starts, he’s now sitting comfortably in the 91-92 mph range, including a season-high 92.2 mph in his most recent appearance. The lefty’s 9.9 K/9 rate and overall 25.1 percent strikeout percentage would be his highest since his rookie campaign in 2006, and his 12 percent swinging-strike rate is up considerably from last season’s career-low 9.7 percent.

    Hamels, though, is also walking more batters than ever before (3.7 BB/9, 9.3 percent overall walk rate), and his 43.7 percent hard-contact rate allowed to opposing hitters is among the highest in all of baseball. He’s also earning $22.5MM this season and is guaranteed at least a $6MM buyout on next year’s $20MM option.

    In addition to that sizable sum of money, Hamels also has the power to block trades to 20 teams; MLB.com’s Jon Morosi reported earlier this year that the only teams to which Hamels can be traded without his consent are the Mariners, Cardinals, Nationals, Astros, Cubs, Phillies, Royals, Rays and Braves. So while a team like the Yankees will be an oft-speculated and reported fit for Hamels, he’ll have the ability to try to negotiate a bit, perhaps by saying he’d only approve the deal if next year’s option were to be guaranteed.

    Looking around the rest of the roster, Fister is playing on a $4MM salary that includes a $500K buyout of next year’s reasonable $4.5MM club option. His 3.43 ERA isn’t supported by fielding-independent metrics, but he’d be a nice steadying force at the back of someone’s rotation. The timeless and affable Colon signed a minor league deal with a $1.75MM base salary, and while he’s not as good as his 2.82 ERA would indicate, he’s demonstrating elite control and inducing grounders at a 50 percent clip while racking up plenty of innings (51 through nine appearances, including seven starts).

    In the bullpen, Chavez’s 4.81 ERA sells him short, considering the fact that he’s averaged 10 strikeouts and just 1.9 walks per nine frames. He’s on a one-year deal worth $1MM. Barnette has missed time with inflammation in his elbow, but his velocity is holding at 93 mph. He owns a 9-to-2 K/BB with a career-best 56.7 percent grounder rate in 10 1/3 innings. With a $1.5MM salary and a similarly affordable club option, he’s fit nicely into a contending bullpen’s middle relief corps.

    As ever, it remains unlikely that anything too significant will happen in mid-May. The Rangers are undoubtedly only in the preliminary stages of gauging the market for their veterans, while some clubs throughout the league have yet to determine whether they’ll actively acquire talent this summer, end up in a holding pattern or wind up selling off pieces themselves. Contending always looked like a long shot for a Texas club that put together a patchwork pitching staff, however, and it seems they’ve largely accepted their fate as summer approaches.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Moore Remaining In Rangers' Rotation]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=122455 2018-05-16T02:33:57Z 2018-05-16T02:33:57Z
  • Despite a terrible start to the season, left-hander Matt Moore will remain in the Rangers’ rotation for now, writes MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan. The former Rays/Giants southpaw will lug a 7.82 ERA into Saturday’s start against the White Sox, having averaged 6.6 K/9 against 4.3 BB/9 with 1.42 HR/9 and a 38.6 percent ground-ball rate. Moore has no doubt had some poor fortune, with a .388 BABIP and 62.3 percent strand rate, but even fielding-independent metrics peg him well north of 5.00. Sullivan does note that Moore’s spot, however, is in some jeopardy. Manager Jeff Banister stressed that Moore has “got to show some progress” before adding that he’s not considering a switch in the rotation just yet. Right-hander Jesse Chavez has showed well in a long relief role, though Banister suggested that the organization is happy with Chavez in his current role at present.
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    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Rangers Place Adrian Beltre On DL, Select Contract Of Hanser Alberto]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=122459 2018-05-16T01:49:10Z 2018-05-16T01:45:29Z 8:45pm: Beltre has a Grade 1 strain and could miss two to three weeks of action, per Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram (on Twitter). Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News tweets that Beltre conceded that he may need to be more open to spending time as the designated hitter.

    5:19pm: The Rangers announced today that third baseman Adrian Beltre is headed back to the disabled list with a strained left hamstring. His placement on the DL is retroactive to Monday, and he’ll be replaced on the roster by infielder Hanser Alberto, whose contract has been selected from Triple-A Round Rock. Texas now has a full 40-man roster.

    [Related: Texas Rangers depth chart]

    This marks the second DL trip of the season due to a left hamstring strain for Beltre, who was only activated from his original DL placement a month ago. He’s eligible to be activated from the disabled list on May 24, though it’s not yet clear if he’ll be able to return in the minimum 10-day allotment. The future Hall of Famer is hitting .314/.375/.422 with a homer and eight doubles on the season and was 5-for-15 in the five games he managed to play between DL stints.

    With Beltre out of commission for at least another nine days, the Rangers can turn to the newly recalled Alberto and rookie Isiah Kiner-Falefa at the hot corner, where the latter already appeared on seven occasions this season. Renato Nunez absorbed some playing time in Beltre’s last absence, but he’s since been claimed off waivers and outrighted to Triple-A by the Orioles.

    As for Alberto, he’ll be making his first big league appearance since 2016 when he steps onto the field for the Rangers. The 25-year-old missed all of last season due to shoulder issues and was non-tendered this winter but re-signed on a minor league pact. He hit .281/.308/.383 in 135 plate appearances for Round Rock before being called upon and is a career .194/.204/.226 hitter in a fairly small sample of 162 plate appearances — all of which came at ages 22 and 23.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Adrian Beltre Re-Aggravates Hamstring]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=122246 2018-05-13T21:43:16Z 2018-05-13T21:43:57Z Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre left the team’s game Sunday after re-aggravating his left hamstring, TR Sullivan of MLB.com tweets. Another stint on the disabled list may be in the offing for Beltre, who suffered a strained hamstring on April 24 and didn’t come off the DL until this past Tuesday. When Beltre has been healthy enough to take the field this season, the 39-year-old future Hall of Famer has put together a .314/.375/.422 batting line in 120 plate appearances.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Orioles Claim Renato Nunez From Rangers]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=122227 2018-05-13T18:49:51Z 2018-05-13T18:42:57Z The Orioles have claimed infielder/outfielder Renato Nunez off waivers from the Rangers, Roch Kubatko of MASNsports.com tweets. In a corresponding move, Baltimore transferred infielder Tim Beckham to the 60-day DL.

    Nunez lost his spot with the Rangers when they designated him on Friday. The 24-year-old logged 41 appearances with the club prior to then and batted just .167/.244/.278. He offered similar production from 2016-17 in Oakland (.167/.194/.267 in 31 PAs), which jettisoned him in mid-April. Nunez has been far better at Triple-A, where he owns a .242/.301/.460 line in 1,113 PAs, and is capable of lining up in the corners.

    Most of Nunez’s professional action has come at third base, where the Orioles have been without Beckham for a few weeks. Beckham underwent core muscle surgery April 26 and is in the early stages of what will be at least a six-week recovery, making his shift to the 60-day DL a logical move for the Orioles. This has been a year to forget thus far for Beckham, who slashed .179/.247/.262 in 93 PAs before landing on the shelf. Beckham’s fall from grace since last season, when he was an effective piece for Baltimore after it acquired him from Tampa Bay in July, has been one of many clear causes for the Orioles’ 12-28 start.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Rangers Purchase Brandon Mann’s Contract]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=122193 2018-05-13T15:52:51Z 2018-05-13T15:33:39Z The Rangers have purchased the contract of left-hander Brandon Mann from Triple-A Round Rock, according to an announcement from the team. Texas optioned southpaw Yohander Mendez to Triple-A in a corresponding move.

    Mann is finally in position to make his major league debut 16 years after the franchise formerly known as the Devil Rays selected him in the 27th round of the 2002 draft. Set to turn 34 on Wednesday, Mann is in line to become the second-oldest Ranger to make his MLB debut, per the team’s executive VP of communications, John Blake (via Twitter).

    Mann has taken a circuitous route to get to this point, as you’d expect. In addition to spending several years in the minor leagues with multiple franchises, Mann has garnered experience on the independent circuit and in Japan. After playing the previous couple seasons with the Oakland organization, including a 2016 campaign in which he earned an 80-game suspension for performance-enhancing drugs, Mann inked a minors pact with the Rangers over the winter. He then produced excellent results in Round Rock to open the year, with a 1.56 ERA and 6.8 K/9 against 2.6 BB/9 across 17 1/3 innings (12 appearances, one start), en route to a big league promotion.

    Kyle Downing <![CDATA[Central Notes: Reyes, R. Rodriguez, Taillon, Senzel]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=122101 2018-05-12T14:13:17Z 2018-05-12T14:13:17Z The presence of Rule 5 Draft pick Victor Reyes is somewhat of a strain on the Tigers’ roster. Evan Woodberry of mlive.com takes an extensive look at the topic, and notes that the speedy outfielder’s most definable job so far this season has been as a pinch runner for the aging Victor Martinez. While injuries mount for Detroit, other players have been forced to shoulder a heavier workload, including Mikie Mahtook, who had to start Wednesday’s game against the Rangers despite being jet-lagged and sleep-deprived. While Reyes certainly has a bright future, Woodberry points out that he’s clearly overmatched by big-league pitching in the present; he’s only managed to collect three soft singles so far this season and has an average exit velocity below 80 MPH. In accordance with the Rule 5 boundaries, Reyes must remain on the Tigers’ 25-man roster for the entirety of the season or be returned to his former club (the Diamondbacks). Few around baseball have any doubt that his future is bright, but rostering him for the entire season could prove a significant burden for a club that’s already going to have a hard time winning baseball games.

    Onto some items from the NL Central…

    • Travis Sawchik of Fangraphs writes that the Pirates found a winning lottery ticket in the form of recent minor-league free agent Richard Rodriguez. The 28-year-old right-hander has been just about as dominant as a pitcher can be, evidenced by his 15.53 K/9 and microscopic 0.16 FIP on the young season. He’s already been worth half a win above replacement, as Sawchik points out, which is remarkable considering we’re not even halfway through May. Sawchik has plenty of other interesting facts throughout a deep look into RichRod’s dominance, including the whiff rate on his fastball, his first-pitch strike percentage and the way he’s attacking hitters.
    • In other Pirates news, right-hander Jameson Taillon exited last night’s start with a finger laceration. According to Adam Berry of MLB.com, Taillon is frustrated at the freak accident and hopes it won’t cost him a start. “It just got worse and worse. It’s tough in the short term to come out of a game, but hopefully by coming out when I did, we’ve kind of mitigated it,” Taillon said. “Hopefully I won’t miss starts down the road.” The budding Pirates ace has had something of a Jekyll-and-Hyde season so far, allowing 15 earned runs in his three losses but permitting just three across his other five starts.
    • Nick Senzel’s vertigo is back, and the Reds prospect has landed on the 7-day DL as a result. Mark Sheldon of MLB.com notes that Senzel hasn’t played since being removed from a May 3rd game after just one plate appearance. Vertigo is a condition that brings on dizziness spells and causes the victim to lose balance. Reds president Dick Williams told reporters recently that the club is “being very cautious” with their top-ranked prospect, and at the moment there isn’t a clear timetable for when he’ll be able to resume playing. The club has been playing Senzel at both second and third base this season in hopes of increasing his versatility and finding him a spot at the big league level.
    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Rangers Activate Rougned Odor, Designate Renato Nunez]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=122068 2018-05-12T00:22:53Z 2018-05-11T20:16:31Z The Rangers have activated second baseman Rougned Odor from the 10-day DL, the club announced. To create an opening, the club has designated infielder/outfielder Renato Nunez for assignment.

    Odor has missed much of the still-young season with a hamstring injury. The 24-year-old is still looking to get back on track after a miserable 2017 campaign. It’s promising, at least, that he showed much-improved plate discipline (seven strikeouts and four walks) in his 41 plate appearances, though he wasn’t delivering much of his trademark power.

    Clearly, it’s too soon to read much into that brief showing. Odor’s struggles in the on-base department are not new. Even when he swatted 33 home runs with an above-average overall batting output in 2016, he sported a sub-.300 OBP. But he reached base at a piddling .252 rate last year, which left him as one of the league’s least-useful regular hitters despite the fact that he put the ball over the fence thirty times.

    Texas has plenty riding on the outcome. He’s owed $43.5MM from 2019 through 2022 (including the buyout on a 2023 option) under the extension he signed before the 2017 seas. Odor only recently turned 24 and the club is not contending at the moment, so there’s ample reason to exercise patience and allow him to continue getting reps.

    As for Nunez, also 24, he was claimed last month off waivers from the Athletics. He has received brief MLB time in each of the past three seasons. In total, Nunez carries only a .167/.222/.273 slash in 72 plate appearances at the game’s highest level, though he was productive (.249/.319/.518 with 32 home runs) last year at Triple-A.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Rangers Activate Adrian Beltre]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=121870 2018-05-09T03:41:35Z 2018-05-08T22:09:13Z The Rangers announced this afternoon that they’ve activated Adrian Beltre from the disabled list. Beltre is in the lineup tonight, hitting cleanup and playing his customary third base. Infielder Eliezer Alvarez was optioned to Double-A Frisco to open a roster spot for Beltre’s return from a hamstring strain that sidelined him for roughly two weeks. The injury initially served as cause for greater concern within the organization, as Beltre was reportedly visibly frustrated and was not optimistic after initially sustaining the injury. Beltre was hitting .310/.366/.437 through 101 plate appearances when he laced a would-be double to the gap in right-center field but came up lame and hobbled into first base before exiting a late-April game.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Outrighted: Centeno, Ngoepe, Enns]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=121839 2018-05-08T14:05:21Z 2018-05-08T14:05:21Z Let’s run through a few recently-designated players who have cleared waivers and been outrighted:

    • Rangers backstop Juan Centeno could have elected free agency but chose instead to take an assignment to Triple-A Round Rock, the club announced. The 28-year-old, a relatively rare left-handed-hitting catcher, has seen action in each of the past six MLB campaigns. He also has not shown much at the plate, with a cumulative .227/.278/.331 batting line.
    • Also clearing waivers was Blue Jays infielder Gift Ngoepe. This is the first time he has been outrighted; without significant MLB service time on his record, he had no choice but to head to Buffalo. Not unlike Centeno, Ngoepe is a useful fielder who perhaps will never fully come around with the bat. He had a particularly rough run in limited action this year in Toronto, striking out a dozen times in just 19 plate appearances.
    • Finally, the Twins will hang onto reliever Dietrich Enns after he, too, cleared waivers under the same essential circumstances as Ngoepe. Soon to turn 27, Enns is off to a poor start this year at Triple-A, where he has given out 11 free passes to go with 11 strikeouts in twenty innings. If he can get back on track, though, perhaps he’ll eventually present a depth option for the Minnesota organization. In his six prior professional seasons, Enns has never finished with an earned run average of over 2.94. In 136 Triple-A innings, he carries a sparkling 2.25 ERA with a more pedestrian combination of 7.1 K/9 and 3.4 BB/9.
    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Rangers Acquire Emmanuel Clase From Padres]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=121817 2018-05-07T23:33:00Z 2018-05-07T23:33:00Z The Rangers have acquired righty Emmanuel Clase from the Padres, per club announcements. He’ll represent the player to be named later from the recent deal that sent catcher Brett Nicholas to San Diego.

    Clase, 20, has yet to appear in the present campaign. He has pitched in several different rookie leagues over the past three seasons. In 118 total innings, Clase carries a 3.74 ERA with 9.0 K/9 against 4.2 BB/9. (Oddly, he has allowed a whopping 34 unearned runs in addition to the 49 earned runs that have crossed the plate against him in his career.)

    As for Nicholas, he has yet to see the majors with San Diego. But he’s certainly making a case for a promotion. In 117 plate appearances at Triple-A, Nicholas carries a .314/.393/.627 slash with eight long balls.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Latest On Matt Harvey]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=121788 2018-05-08T01:20:04Z 2018-05-07T22:42:36Z 5:40pm: While the Rangers have discussed pursuit of Harvey, per MLB.com’s TR Sullivan (via Twitter), the organization won’t trade for him. Indeed, GM Jon Daniels confirmed as much in an appearance on 105.3 The Fan (Twitter link). Of course, it still seems possible the organization could be involved if Harvey reaches the open market.

    2:36pm: The Giants have also discussed taking a flyer on Harvey, tweets ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick. San Francisco learned today that Johnny Cueto will miss the next six to eight weeks, and Madison Bumgarner remains on the disabled list until late May. They’ve been plugging in a struggling Derek Holland in the fifth spot in their rotation, though it’s not clear at all if Harvey would represent an upgrade.

    12:51pm: Following one of the most high-profile DFAs in recent memory, the Mets appear to be generating some interest in former ace Matt Harvey. Andy Martino of SNY reports that that the Rangers and Mariners both have some degree of interest in acquiring the righty. MLB.com’s Jon Morosi wrote this morning that Texas’ interest is “mild,” while Martino indicates that Rangers assistant pitching coach Dan Warthen is pushing the organization to roll the dice on Harvey. Warthen was his pitching coach with the Mets prior to 2018.

    While Morosi speculates about the possibility of the Orioles and Mets lining up on a deal, Martino hears that the O’s don’t have much in the way of interest. Baltimore did check in on Harvey over the winter, but Martino reports that the Mets circled back to the O’s prior to designating Harvey for assignment and found “little interest” despite the disastrous results of the Baltimore rotation thus far in 2018.

    It’s not a huge surprise to see the Rangers connected to Harvey, given not only Warthen’s presence in the organization but also the team’s general approach to adding arms this offseason. The Rangers shopped for volume this winter, stockpiling veteran arms on low-cost deals (in many instances on minor league contracts) in an effort to bolster their organizational depth. Payroll was a factor in Texas’ approach, so it seems unlikely that they’d take on the full chunk of Harvey’s remaining contract — about $4.43MM — but the Mets will almost certainly be willing to include cash in any deal. The alternative, after all, is to release Harvey and simply pay him the money is owed anyway.

    As for the Mariners, they’ve endured plenty of rotation struggles of their own. James Paxton’s 4.19 ERA leads Seattle starters, and their rotation as a whole has pitched to a 5.30 earned run average. There’s likely been some poor fortune at play — both xFIP and SIERA peg Mariners starters at 4.05 as a group — but the bottom-line results have not been encouraging. Erasmo Ramirez just went back on the disabled list as well, prompting the Mariners to move veteran Wade LeBlanc from a long relief role into the fifth starter’s slot.

    It seems decidedly unlikely that the Mets would receive much in the way of a significant return for Harvey, whose struggles date back to Opening Day 2017. He’s earning $5.6MM this season, is a free agent in November and has undergone both Tommy John and thoracic outlet surgery — both of which (especially the latter) have contributed to his rapid decline.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Rangers Could Be A Fit For Matt Harvey]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=121651 2018-05-05T22:03:51Z 2018-05-05T22:03:41Z
  • If Harvey does indeed depart New York, it’s possible he’ll find a home in Texas, T.R. Sullivan of MLB.com writes. Rangers pitching coach Dan Warthen previously served in the same role with the Mets, and he formed a good relationship with Harvey during their time together from 2012-17. Warthen is of the belief that he can help fix the struggling Harvey, reports Sullivan, who adds that the Rangers will at least discuss adding the 29-year-old. If Harvey clears waivers and becomes a free agent, it could be worthwhile for Texas to take a low-cost flyer on him, given that its rotation ranks 24th in the majors in ERA (5.15) and 27th in fWAR (0.6).
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    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Rangers Designate Juan Centeno]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=121519 2018-05-03T23:22:42Z 2018-05-03T23:22:42Z The Rangers have designated catcher Juan Centeno for assignment, per a club announcement. His roster spot will go to just-claimed backstop Carlos Perez.

    Texas had already cleared a 40-man spot when they claimed Perez, but needed a place on the active roster. The moves, taken together, create an additional opening on the 40-man.

    Centeno, a 28-year-old who hits from the left side, has played at the MLB level with five different organizations over the past six years. In 353 career plate appearances at the game’s highest level, he’s a .227/.278/.331 hitter.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Rangers Claim Carlos Perez From Braves]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=121425 2018-05-02T20:36:21Z 2018-05-02T20:27:07Z The Rangers announced that they’ve claimed catcher Carlos Perez off waivers from the Braves. Texas has opened a 40-man roster spot by transferring injured shortstop Elvis Andrus from the 10-day DL to the 60-day DL. That move seemingly carries little impact on Andrus’ timetable for a return from an elbow fracture, as he was widely expected to miss around eight weeks with the injury anyhow. As Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram tweets, Andrus can be activated on June 11.

    Texas didn’t immediately reveal a corresponding 25-man roster move, as executive VP of communications John Blake indicated that said move will be announced tomorrow. However, it seems unlikely that the Rangers would carry three catchers on the big league roster, and Perez is out of minor league options, so it’s fair to speculate that current backup catcher Juan Centeno’s spot could be in jeopardy. It’s also possible, of course, that one of Centeno or Robinson Chirinos is dealing with a yet-undisclosed injury and could land on the disabled list, thus prompting the Texas organization to pick up some additional depth behind the dish.

    Perez, 27, was traded from the Angels to the Braves on March 31 in the wake of an injury to Atlanta catcher Tyler Flowers. He appeared in eight games with the Braves but went just 3-for-21 with a walk and six strikeouts in 22 trips to the plate. That lack of production mirrors Perez’s meager output from a near-identical sample of 21 plate appearances in 2017 with the Halos. Overall, he’s hit just .122/.163/.195 over the past two seasons and .221/.264/.325 in a total of 617 big league plate appearances.

    Of course, Perez’s calling card is his glovework behind the dish. The Venezuelan-born backstop has successfully halted 38 percent of stolen-base attempts against him at the big league level and has drawn generally positive marks for both his pitch-framing and pitch-blocking skills, per Baseball Prospectus.

    It’s been an ugly start to the season for the season for the 28-year-old Centeno, which only makes it easier to speculate on his potential dismissal. He’s posted a tepid .147/.171/.176 slash in 35 plate appearances as the backup to Chirinos, and while he’s yet to have an opponent attempt a steal against him, Centeno has just a 13 percent caught-stealing rate as a Major League catcher.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Rangers Notes: Calhoun, Daniels, Martin]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=121395 2018-05-02T16:16:01Z 2018-05-02T15:14:07Z The Rangers are not totally buried in the American League postseason hunt, but have already fallen eight games back of the division-leading Astros. Particularly with a variety of notable players on the DL, it’s increasingly difficult to see the Rangers contending in 2018. Here’s the latest from Texas:

    • Some Rangers fans are displeased with the fact that top prospect Willie Calhoun is plying his trade at Round Rock rather than with the Rangers. GM Jon Daniels bristled at the notion that Calhoun was being held down due to service-time considerations, as Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram writes. Rather, says Daniels, Calhoun is still at Triple-A because “he’s still working on his defense.” It probably does not help that Calhoun isn’t off to the best start at the plate, though nobody doubts his bat is ready for the majors. Daniels says he’s “really encouraged” by what he has heard about Calhoun’s defensive work thus far, but indicated that it will need to get up to snuff before the call is made.
    • More broadly, Daniels certainly sounds like a man who’s well aware of the uphill climb facing his team this year. As Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News reports, the team’s top baseball exec acknowledges that “injuries have certainly eroded what depth there was.” That’s obviously sub-optimal, but he does say there are still benefits to the situation. “The upside is that a lot of guys are getting valuable experience they wouldn’t otherwise get,” Daniels said. “That doesn’t do a whole lot for the fans who want to see immediate returns, but long-term we’re going to benefit from experiences [young players] are getting.”
    • The Rangers have placed righty Chris Martin on the 10-day DL, per a club announcement. He’s dealing with irritation in his right forearm. Fellow right-hander Nick Gardewine will take his spot on the active roster. That represents another blow to the team’s MLB roster. Though Martin owns a 5.14 ERA on the year, that’s due mostly to the disastrous recent outing that came in advance of the DL placement. Otherwise, he has generally been effective, carrying a solid combination of 8.4 K/9 against 1.9 BB/9 while showing a mid-nineties fastball.
    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Martin Perez Placed On 10-Day DL]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=121211 2018-05-01T01:59:19Z 2018-05-01T01:59:24Z 8:57pm: For the time being, Perez has been diagnosed only with inflation, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News was among those to tweet.

    2:26pm: The Rangers announced Monday that left-hander Martin Perez has been placed on the 10-day disabled list due to “continued discomfort in his right elbow” and has left the team to travel back to Texas for a more in-depth exam with Dr. Keith Meister. Righty Jose Leclerc was recalled in his place.

    While the loss of Perez for the time being thins out the rotation, the silver lining for the organization is likely that the issue is confined to Perez’s non-pitching elbow. That certainly doesn’t preclude an extended absence, particularly given that Perez underwent offseason surgery to repair a fracture in that right elbow and opened the year on the disabled list as a result.

    It’s been a nightmarish start to the 2018 campaign for Perez; the 27-year-old lefty has been tattooed for a 9.67 ERA in 22 2/3 innings through five starts while posting a career-worst 4.8 BB/9 rate and watching his fastball velocity drop from 93.1 mph in 2017 to 91.8 mph in 2018. While the injury obviously isn’t in his throwing elbow — Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News tweets that Rangers officials say Perez’s left elbow is not a concern — it’s still possible that the discomfort in his right elbow is impacting his mechanics and effectiveness. (Whether it’s related or not, Perez’s release point in 2018 is notably out of line with his career norms, per Brooks Baseball.)

    Perez becomes the latest in a long line of Rangers regulars to land on the disabled list, where he’ll join Adrian Beltre, Rougned Odor and Elvis Andrus. (Right-hander Doug Fister also missed some time on the DL but was recently activated.) With Perez on the shelf, Texas will utilize Cole Hamels, Mike Minor, Matt Moore, Bartolo Colon and Fister in the starting rotation.

    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Poll: What Last-Place AL Team Is Likeliest To Turn Its Season Around?]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=121171 2018-04-30T03:38:50Z 2018-04-30T03:38:50Z With one day left in April, we’ve already seen a wide gulf emerge within the American League standings.  Three clubs (the Red Sox, Yankees, and Astros) are on pace to surpass 105 wins, while six teams are also currently on pace to win fewer than 70 games.  By comparison, only six teams in all of baseball failed to surpass the 70-win plateau in 2017.

    Obviously, it’s still very early, and there’s plenty of baseball still to be played for these struggling teams.  Three teams, however, will head into May in the basement of their respective divisions, and in those cases, a slower start could be much harder to overcome.  The Rangers, Royals, and Orioles all faced rather tricky paths to contention even in the best of circumstances, and their poor April records may force them to make some hard decisions about how long they’re willing to go before considering selling pieces at the trade deadline.

    Let’s check in on the three last-place teams to see which has the most potential to make April simply a “slow start” en route to a respectable or even a contending season…

    Rangers (11-18): With Adrian Beltre, Elvis Andrus, and Rougned Odor all on the disabled list, Texas fans are beginning to have some unpleasant flashbacks to the team’s disastrously injury-plagued 2014 campaign.  Still, while the injury bug explains the lack of offensive production, the Rangers’ pitching situation has looked as shaky as it appeared to be heading into the season.  Other than the surprise continuation of Bartolo Colon’s late-career renaissance, it’s been mostly bad news for both the rotation and the bullpen, with Martin Perez, Matt Moore, Matt Bush, Alex Claudio, and Kevin Jepsen all getting off to particularly tough starts.

    The team’s big infield trio may not all be back until June, so can the Rangers at least tread water until then?  It doesn’t help that the rest of the AL West teams are all at the .500 mark or better, though the Angels (+5), Mariners (-2), and A’s (+3) are all nothing special in terms of run differential.  (Of course, Texas is a miserable -39 in that department.)  The Rangers will need more arms to step up if they are to turn their season around, plus some internal reinforcements have already come in the form of Delino DeShields and Tony Barnette, who are both back after lengthy DL stints of their own.  Top prospect Willie Calhoun could also provide more help for the lineup, though Calhoun is off to a quiet start at Triple-A this year.

    Orioles (8-20): The Orioles and Rangers share pretty similar tales of woe.  Baltimore has also been hurt by a tough division, a lack of quality starting or relief pitching, plus several key injuries — Zach Britton and Mark Trumbo have yet to play a game, while Jonathan Schoop, Tim Beckham, and Colby Rasmus are all on the DL.  Manny Machado’s individual brilliance has been tempered by a lack of hitting from almost everyone else on roster, with Chris Davis standing out as the single worst position player by fWAR (-0.6) in baseball so far this season.

    Dan Duquette unofficially cited Memorial Day as the date when teams begin to evaluate where they really stand in a season, so the O’s therefore have just under a month to get on track.  That might be enough time to get at least some of the injured parties back, plus it’ll give time for Alex Cobb to hopefully start rounding into form given that the late-to-sign righty has a 13.11 ERA over his first three starts.  On paper, Baltimore has too much hitting talent to be as bad as they are at the plate, so you figure that at least some type of positive correction is in store.

    Royals (7-20): The Royals held off on a full-fledged rebuild over the winter, though their decision about whether to try for another playoff run may have been made for them by their lousy April.  The Royals entered Sunday’s play with the fewest runs in the majors, as only Mike Moustakas and Jorge Soler were putting up good numbers at the plate, and some quality returns by the starting rotation have been undermined by arguably baseball’s worst bullpen.  Even with closer Kelvin Herrera still boasting a perfect 0.00 ERA through 9 2/3 innings, the road to Herrera has been plagued by potholes, as the relief corps is collectively at or near the bottom of the list in just about every major statistic.

    One bright side for the Royals?  Their competition.  The AL Central has been baseball’s worst division through the first month, with the first-place Indians holding just a 14-12 record.  As bad as Kansas City has been, the Royals are still just 4.5 games back of the second-place Tigers.  Since the White Sox and Tigers are rebuilding and the Twins are struggling to recapture their 2017 form, there is some opportunity for the Royals to regain some ground if they can beat up on their division foes.

    Which of the AL’s last-place squads do you think has the best chance of recovering from its shaky April? (Link for app users)

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Rangers Activate Tony Barnette]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=120986 2018-04-28T04:15:48Z 2018-04-28T03:57:36Z
  • A number of other players are already coming off of the DL. The Reds have activated righty David Hernandez and the Mariners have brought back first baseman Ryon Healy. Both were relatively significant offseason acquisitions for their organizations. Meanwhile, the Rays activated infielder Matt Duffy and the Rangers did the same with righty Tony Barnette.
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    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Adrian Beltre Placed On 10-Day DL With Hamstring Strain]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=120794 2018-04-25T20:15:41Z 2018-04-25T20:15:48Z TODAY: Beltre is indeed going to the DL, per a club announcement. The team activated righty Doug Fister and called up Ryan Rua.

    Those moves required an additional roster spot , which was created by optioning reliever Matt Bush. That’s obviously a disappointing turn of events for Bush, who needs to iron things out after allowing nine walks in his 11 1/3 innings thus far in 2018.

    YESTERDAY: The injury-plagued Rangers took yet another hit on Tuesday, as third baseman Adrian Beltre exited the team’s game against the A’s with a strained left hamstring (Twitter link via Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News). A trip to the disabled list seems likely but is not official yet, Grant notes.

    Beltre incurred the injury after lacing a would-be double the gap in right-center field, but he pulled up a few steps out of the batter’s box and hobbled into first base (video link via MLB.com). He walked off the field and headed to the clubhouse immediately.

    As Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram details, Beltre seemed dejected after the game and said he’s set for an MRI tomorrow morning. “It’s not feeling great,” he told Rangers reporters. The 39-year-old was partially spiked by former teammate Jonathan Lucroy earlier in the game but made certain to not only tell the media that his injury had nothing to do with that incident but to also take the blame for being poorly positioned: “I was standing right in the middle. It was my fault.”

    A trip to the DL for Beltre would put 75 percent of the Rangers’ starting infield on the shelf. Elvis Andrus is likely to miss around eight weeks with a fracture in his right elbow after being hit by a pitch last week, and Rougned Odor is still on the disabled list with a hamstring strain of his own.

    [Related: Texas Rangers depth chart]

    Texas isn’t without options, of course. First baseman/left fielder Joey Gallo is a natural third baseman and could slide across the diamond, thus opening the door for regular at-bats for well-regarded prospect Ronald Guzman at first base. Renato Nunez was recently claimed off waivers from the A’s and brings a few thousand innings of minor league experience at third base to the table. Wilson speculates that perhaps a DL trip for Beltre could push Gallo to the hot corner and create an opening in left field for top prospect Willie Calhoun; in that scenario, the Rangers would be getting full-time looks at a number of important young options in Gallo, Calhoun, Guzman and Jurickson Profar.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Rangers Activate Delino DeShields ]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=120563 2018-04-22T19:51:19Z 2018-04-22T19:45:10Z The Rangers activated center fielder Delino DeShields from the DL prior to their game Sunday and sent fellow center fielder Carlos Tocci to the DL with a bruised left hip. This represents a quick return for DeShields, who suffered a broken left hamate bone March 31 and was expected to miss four to six weeks. Neither Tocci, a Rule 5 pick, nor Drew Robinson effectively grabbed the reins in center during DeShields’ absence. Rangers center fielders have hit a league-worst .148/.242/.193 in 100 trips to the plate, 92 of which have come from Robinson and Tocci.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Rangers Release Steve Delabar]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=120460 2018-04-20T23:34:48Z 2018-04-20T23:34:48Z The Rangers have released right-hander Steve Delabar from his minor-league contract, per a club announcement. In a corresponding move, the team’s top affiliate has added recently signed righty Yovani Gallardo to its active roster.

    Delabar, 34, has not pitched much in recent seasons. He didn’t last long with the Reds in 2016 and only turned in a short stint later that season with Japan’s Hiroshima Carp. Then, he sat out all of 2017 following a PED suspension.

    The Rangers gave Delabar another shot in hopes that he might boost the bullpen depth, but obviously were not that optimistic. He had issued five walks in his 5 2/3 innings thus far at Round Rock after handing out ten free passes in nine spring frames.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Rangers Sign Julio Pablo Martinez]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=116399 2018-04-19T20:39:47Z 2018-04-19T20:39:22Z APRIL 19: Texas has formally announced the signing. 

    MARCH 6: The Rangers have agreed to terms with Cuban outfielder Julio Pablo Martinez, reports Ben Badler of Baseball America. The touted 21-year-old prospect, who became eligible to sign today, will receive a $2.8MM signing bonus, which will fully deplete the remainder of Texas’ 2017-18 international bonus pool.

    Due to his age and lack of professional experience, Martinez was not eligible to sign as a professional. He’ll receive a minor league contract in addition to that $2.8MM bonus and join the Rangers as one of the game’s more touted prospects. Badler notes that Martinez will slot in at No. 60 overall on BA’s updated Top 100 prospect list. That places him two spots behind countryman Luis Robert, who in the final season of the 2012-16 collective bargaining agreement signed with the White Sox for a reported $26MM bonus that came with a 100 percent luxury tax under the previous international signing rules.

    The discrepancy between the cost of acquisition for two somewhat comparable prospects is fairly staggering and also underscores the manner in which the latest CBA has restricted clubs from spending on amateur talent. Under the previous agreement, teams could make the tactical decision to exceed their league-allotted bonus pools by more than 15 percent in exchange for a two-year ban from signing international amateurs for anything more than $300K apiece. Many teams, including the Cubs, Rangers, Rays, Red Sox, Yankees, Reds, Dodgers and Padres, among others, were willing to make that trade-off in exchange for signing splurges that completely shattered their pools but also provided an immediate talent infusion to their respective prospect pipelines.

    Now, the league and union have agreed to a hard cap on international amateurs, and no club is allotted more than $5.75MM at the onset of a given international signing period. While teams can trade for up to an additional 75 percent of their initial pool allotment, the strategy of aggressive spending on the international front is not one that teams can employ anymore — at least not with the previously acceptable levels of vigor. The now-finite level of resources teams can utilize on the international market only makes those funds more coveted — particularly among rebuilding/retooling clubs.

    Digression aside, the Rangers will add an athletic young center fielder to their ranks when the deal is finalized. Martinez will become the team’s third-ranked prospect, Badler notes, trailing only Willie Calhoun and Leody Taveras. The left-handed-hitting, left-handed-throwing Martinez hit .333/.469/.498 with six homers, 11 doubles, two triples and 24 steals (in 29 attempts) during his most recent professional effort in Cuba. More impressively, he drew 52 walks that season against just 30 strikeouts in 264 plate appearances. He also appeared in 57 games and tallied 255 plate appearances in the 2017 Can-Am Association — the same independent league that was previously home to big leaguers Chris ColabelloAndrew AlbersCraig BreslowSteve Delabar and Tim Adleman, among others — where he hit .297/.345/.449 with seven homers and 20 steals.

    Badler notes in today’s piece that Martinez’s present level of development should allow him to head to Class-A Advanced or Double-A. He’s also expanded on the talented young outfielder in a pair of prior columns — both of which those looking to learn more about Martinez will want to check out.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Rangers Place Tony Barnette On 10-Day DL]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=120272 2018-04-18T03:34:44Z 2018-04-18T02:20:18Z
  • Rangers reliever Tony Barnette has been placed on the 10-day DL with what the team is calling right shoulder inflammation. His open roster spot will go to outfielder Ryan Rua, who was just optioned down but can come back before the usual ten-day minimum stay since he’s replacing an injured player. Barnette has endured a few minor maladies early in the year and has only appeared in two games thus far.
  • ]]>
    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Profar Enters Concussion Protocol Following Collision]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=120221 2018-04-17T16:05:47Z 2018-04-17T16:05:47Z
  • Jurickson Profar exited Monday night’s game after a rough landing upon being upended by a sliding Mallex Smith at second base and is currently in MLB’s concussion protocol, as Gerry Fraley of the Dallas Morning News writes. Even a short-term absence for Profar would further devastate the Rangers’ middle infield depth, as both Rougned Odor and Elvis Andrus are currently on the shelf. As Fraley points out, Eliezer Alvarez is the only middle infielder in the minors that’s on Texas’ 40-man roster, but he’s primarily a second baseman. Hanser Alberto could see his contract selected if Profar needs to go on the disabled list, though that’d require a corresponding 40-man move. Andrus is the only player who presently stands out as a potential 60-day DL candidate to make that move, but the initial prognosis on him called for a recovery of six to eight weeks. If the Rangers are optimistic that he can return on the shorter end of that window, they won’t want to lock him into a 60-day absence, creating the possibility that they’ll need to designate someone for assignment.
  • ]]>
    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Rangers Acquire Tony Sanchez]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=120185 2018-04-17T00:03:26Z 2018-04-16T21:26:16Z The Rangers have acquired backstop Tony Sanchez from the Reds, both teams announced. Cash or a player to be named later will head back in return.

    Once a highly-regarded prospect with the Pirates, the 29-year-old Sanchez has settled in as an upper-level depth piece. He’ll head to the Rangers’ top affiliate to take the place of Brett Nicholas, who was recently dealt to the Padres.

    Sanchez has just 156 total plate appearances at the MLB level in four seasons of action, over which he carries a .257/.301/.375 batting line. He spent the bulk of 2017 at the Triple-A level with the Angels organization, where he posted a .272/.355/.374 slash with four long balls in 284 trips to the plate.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Rangers Claim Renato Nunez, Move Tim Lincecum To 60-Day DL]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=120089 2018-04-15T21:38:23Z 2018-04-15T20:20:23Z The Rangers have claimed infielder/outfielder Renato Nunez from the Athletics and transferred right-hander Tim Lincecum from the 10-day disabled list to the 60-day DL, Texas executive vice president of communications John Blake announced.

    Given that he’s out of options, the 24-year-old Nunez entered spring training in a do-or-die position, but he wasn’t able to seriously vie for a roster spot after suffering a left hamstring strain early in camp. It wouldn’t have helped his cause, anyway, that the Athletics are set at his two main positions with first baseman Matt Olson and third baseman Matt Chapman.

    Nunez also has some major league experience at second base and in the outfield, though he has only collected 38 plate appearances in MLB. The majority of his time has been spent at the Triple-A level, where he has batted .241/.301/.461 in 1,110 PAs. Nunez seems unlikely to garner much playing time with his new team, which has Joey Gallo at first and Adrian Beltre at third, though second baseman Rougned Odor is on the disabled list.

    Meanwhile, Texas’ pitching staff will continue to go without Lincecum, who has been dealing with blister issues since March. The Giants icon and two-time Cy Young winner, who signed a $1MM deal with the Rangers just over a month ago, could be a bullpen piece for Texas when he’s ready to take the mound again. He last pitched in the majors on Aug. 5, 2016, as a member of the Angels.

    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Delino DeShields Could Return April 23]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=120032 2018-04-15T03:17:59Z 2018-04-15T03:17:44Z
  • Rangers center fielder Delino DeShields could come back earlier than expected from the broken left hamate bone he suffered March 31, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News relays. DeShields was slated to miss four to six weeks at the time of the injury, but he’s aiming for an April 23 return – which would be three weeks. The Rangers’ reserve options, Drew Robinson and Carlos Tocci, haven’t exactly stepped up during DeShields’ absence. Robinson has hit a meek .167/.255/.262 in 47 plate appearances, while Tocci has collected only one hit in 10 trips to the plate.
  • ]]>
    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Rangers Sign Nick Noonan To Minors Deal]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119991 2018-04-14T20:52:45Z 2018-04-14T20:49:35Z
  • The Rangers signed infielder Nick Noonan to a minor league deal, according to team executive VP of communication John Blake (Twitter link).  Noonan has been assigned to Triple-A Round Rock.  Noonan was selected 32nd overall in the 2007 draft by the Giants and has appeared in 83 Major League games (with San Francisco and San Diego) as he begins his 12th pro season.  The 28-year-old has a .267/.319/.373 slash line over 4497 minor league PA, plus extensive playing time as a second baseman, third baseman, and shortstop, so he’ll provide some extra depth for a Texas club that has lost Elvis Andrus and Rougned Odor to the disabled list.
  • ]]>
    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Rangers Interested In Int'l Prospect Luisangel Acuna]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119967 2018-04-14T14:59:13Z 2018-04-14T14:59:13Z
  • Shortstop Luisangel Acuna, the younger brother of star Braves prospect Ronald Acuna, will be a sought-after name in the next July 2 international signing period, Heyman writes in a separate piece.  The Rangers are one of multiple teams interested in the younger Acuna, who could receive a bonus as high as $500K.  This estimated price tag will keep the Braves out of the running, as they are limited to spending no more than $300K on any single international prospect for the next July 2 period.  MLB.com’s Jesse Sanchez writes that some scouts feel Acuna will eventually have to move to second base, and he “has shown some power and has the potential to be an average-or-better hitter with proper instruction, but he’ll have to grow” beyond his current 5’9″, 160-pound frame.
  • ]]>
    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Rangers Sign Yovani Gallardo]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119929 2018-04-13T20:18:58Z 2018-04-13T20:12:52Z The Rangers have signed righty Yovani Gallardo to a minor-league deal, per a club announcement. He’ll report to Triple-A to begin his second stint with the Texas organization.

    Gallardo has already spent time with the Brewers and Reds organizations this year. He was cut loose by each, though, after a middling spring with Milwaukee and then a messy three-appearance stint with the Cincinnati organization.

    Now, the 32-year-old hurler will become the latest notable pitcher to seek a bounce back in Texas. He was acquired by the organization before the 2015 season in a swap that cost the Rangers future closer Corey Knebel. Gallardo originally launched his professional career after being drafted from a Texas high school, so there are multiple connections at play here.

    That ’15 campaign is the last in which Gallardo has been effective. He worked to a 3.42 ERA in 184 1/3 innings for the Rangers, wrapping up an impressive run of success dating back to his debut season of 2007. Since, though, he has managed only 251 frames of 5.81 ERA ball with 6.5 K/9 and 4.5 BB/9.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Offseason In Review: Texas Rangers]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119815 2018-04-12T23:53:50Z 2018-04-12T23:53:50Z After a 78-84 finish to their 2017 season, the Rangers came out of the gates in aggressive fashion but ultimately wound up with a series of low-risk, buy-low pickups that leave the club in limbo.

    Major League Signings

    Trades and Claims

    Notable Minor League Signings

    Notable Losses

    Needs Addressed

    The Rangers entered the 2017-18 offseason with holes up and down their roster –particularly on the pitching staff — and a sizable gap between their overall talent level and that of the division-winning, World Series champion Astros. Rather than spend aggressively in what could largely have been a futile effort to return to the top of the AL West, Texas instead spread out a modest array of investments across multiple budget-friendly assets.

    Mike Minor was the lone big-ticket item signed by GM Jon Daniels & Co. — if one can refer to a $28MM guarantee as “big ticket.” (Although, certainly this offseason, that was no small amount as clubs veered away from free agency at unprecedented rates.) Minor shined as a dominant reliever in the Kansas City bullpen last season, but the Rangers are plugging him into their rotation to see if he can sustain some of that magic in the larger role that originally got him to the Majors with Atlanta. If the experiment doesn’t pan out, then the three-year, $28MM term isn’t exactly a bargain for a reliever, but it’s also more or less commensurate with the going rate for top-notch setup men in 2018.

    Doug Fister and Matt Moore were the other primary additions to the starting mix, as the Rangers will be paying that duo a combined $13MM in hopes of receiving something resembling 25 to 33 serviceable starts out of each. Moore is coming off far and away the worst season of his career, while Fister posted an ugly 2017 ERA but more intriguing secondary metrics thanks in large part to some restored velocity. They’ll be part of a patchwork rotation in Arlington that is fronted by 34-year-old Cole Hamels and also includes southpaw Martin Perez. The addition of veterans like Colon and Chavez were made in the name of creating some depth, but it was clear to see even before a tough start to the season that this piecemeal approach to the staff could be problematic.

    Of course, that’s not to say that the Rangers didn’t pursue more meaningful rotation upgrades. Texas was one of seven finalists in the Shohei Ohtani sweepstakes. They not only came up short, though, but also had to suffer the additional frustration of watching the 23-year-old sensation sign with the division-rival Angels. Texas also remained on the periphery of the Yu Darvish market all offseason long, though it seemed clear for the bulk of his free agency that the Rangers would only bring him back at a discounted rate as they sought to scale back the payroll.

    Texas has had good success in the past in tapping into the NPB market, and their signing of righty Chris Martin to a two-year big league deal was the latest attempt to strike gold. Martin didn’t distinguish himself in his first few attempts at the big league level, but he was a dominant late-inning arm overseas. At a $2MM annual rate, if he’s even a serviceable middle reliever, the Rangers will come out ahead. If he’s anything more, it’s a massive bargain, and if not, there’s little fiscal risk at play here. The reunion with Barnette and the roll of the dice on Lincecum give skipper Jeff Banister another pair of arms to shuffle around the late-inning mix, provided Lincecum builds up strength and overcomes the blister issue he’s currently facing.

    Questions Remaining

    As alluded to above, the pitching staff looked shaky, at best, heading into the 2018 season. Hamels’ velocity is down early in the year, while Fister is on the DL with what the club hopes will be a short-term injury. Even if all of Hamels, Perez, Fister, Minor and Moore were healthy, the Rangers would’ve needed some significant rebounds to field a competitive starting unit.

    The fact that they’re being backed by a bullpen which cycled through four closers last season and struggled for much of the 2017 season doesn’t create much additional optimism. Granted, the Ranger relief corps will be significantly better in 2018 if Jake Diekman and Keone Kela can stay healthy, but Texas added nothing in the way of established bullpen help this winter. The Rangers will have to lean heavily on Kela, Diekman, Matt Bush and Alex Claudio. If any of that bunch falters and/or Martin can’t approach his NPB success to some extent, it could be a long year for the Texas bullpen.

    The catcher position was also a question for Texas for much of the offseason and remains as such. Robinson Chirinos undeniably had a nice season last year when he hit .255/.350/.506 with a career-high 17 home runs, but he’s never tallied more than 338 plate appearances in a season. The 33-year-old has dealt with concussion, shoulder and forearm issues in previous seasons. Backup Juan Centeno has never reached 200 PAs in a season and has only logged more than 10 MLB games in a season twice. Texas seemed like a logical fit for a backstop like Alex Avila or Chris Iannetta, who each signed for about $4MM annually, but they passed to stick with in-house options and dealt away one minor league depth piece (Brett Nicholas) shortly after Opening Day.

    With Joey Gallo, Rougned Odor, Elvis Andrus and Adrian Beltre lined up around the infield and Jurickson Profar on hand as a utility option, the Rangers looked to be set there. (The depth will now be tested after early-season injuries to Odor and Andrus.) The outfield, though, was perhaps a different story, but the Rangers elected to primarily stick with in-house options. Nomar Mazara, Delino DeShields, Shin-Soo Choo, Ryan Rua and Willie Calhoun were expected to be leaned upon heavily in the outfield/DH carousel, with Drew Robinson and the aforementioned Rule 5 pickup, Tocci, serving as additional depth. Mazara’s ceiling is enormous, but there again seemed to be an opportunity to capitalize on a stagnant market for outfielders which the Rangers forewent. Choosing not to break the bank is understandable, but it was a bit of a surprise to see players such as Jon Jay and Carlos Gomez come off the board for just $3MM and $4MM, respectively, when so many teams, the Rangers included, seemed like clear fits.

    That’s perhaps the most glaring oddity of the entire offseason for the Rangers. While they elected to patch together a pitching staff of buy-low candidates and spare-part depth options, Texas decision-makers wholly avoided making any meaningful additions on the position-player side of the equation despite some fairly evident openings to do so behind the plate and in the outfield.

    It’d be one thing to see the Rangers sit out in terms of additions if they were among the league’s many tanking teams, but they still spent nearly $40MM on the pitching staff. If the goal was to try to piece together a team with a chance at contending in a stacked division, then why not take advantage of a buyers’ market for position players? And if the 2018 season is to be more of a transitional campaign in which the club aims to pare back its payroll, was a $28MM investment in Minor a shrewd move? It’s possible that Minor could lead a surprising pitching staff in Arlington or turn into an appealing trade asset if things go south for the rest of the roster, but the manner in which the Rangers approached the construction of their pitching staff and their lineup/bench seem to be somewhat contradictory in nature.

    Texas looked like a plausible midseason seller even before the season began, but with a 4-10 start and several key injuries already having unfolded, those rumblings will only intensify. Any of the shorter-term pickups they made this offseason could become available if the Rangers are out of contention. The same is true of Hamels, though they may have a hard time acquiring much in return given his age, the $22MM he’s owed this season (plus at least the $6MM buyout he’s owed on next year’s $20MM option). The more interesting question, if Texas is out of the race, will be whether they send franchise icon and future Hall of Famer Adrian Beltre to another organization.


    The Rangers came out of the gates in fairly aggressive fashion this offseason. Before the Winter Meetings had even kicked off, Texas had added some depth to the rotation by acquiring Herrera from the Yankees and quickly signing both Fister and Minor by Dec. 4. All of that, of course, coincided with a spirited pursuit of Ohtani that ultimately fell short, and the Rangers curbed their activity from that point forth.

    Perhaps the offseason would’ve played out differently had Texas been able to add Ohtani to the mix, but in retrospect, the maneuverings add up to a fairly puzzling half-measure. Texas doesn’t look like a team that’s built to contend, but they also didn’t place an emphasis on restocking the farm this offseason. At a time when teams seem increasingly reluctant to be caught in the middle, the Rangers find themselves precisely there.

    How would you rate their offseason? (Link to poll for Trade Rumors app users)

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Elvis Andrus Diagnosed With Elbow Fracture]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119780 2018-04-12T21:27:01Z 2018-04-12T21:26:34Z TODAY: Andrus will not need surgery but will miss approximately six to eight weeks of time, the club announced. It is not fully clear whether that estimate includes any anticipated time spent on a rehab assignment, though it seems the organization can anticipate that its regular shortstop will be back in the majors at some point in the month of June.

    YESTERDAY, 11:35pm: The Rangers issued a press release on Andrus’ injury, indicating that initial X-rays “indicate the probability of a fracture in the elbow.” He’s set to undergo additional X-rays and a CT scan tomorrow, and his elbow has been placed in a splint for the time being.

    10:57pm: Rangers shortstop Elvis Andrus has been diagnosed with a fracture in his right elbow, tweets Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News. Andrus was hit by a pitch late in Wednesday’s contest, and post-game X-rays revealed the break. The extent of the fracture hasn’t been revealed, though it seems clear that a DL stint for Andrus is likely on the horizon. Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram tweets that Andrus will have more tests performed tomorrow and notes that a DL trip would, remarkably, be the first of the shortstop’s career.

    Obviously, the news comes as a blow to a Rangers club that has gotten off to a dreadful 4-10 start to the 2018 season and is currently sporting baseball’s second-worst run differential at -33. The 29-year-old Andrus was off to a torrid, hitting .327/.426/.500 with a pair of homers and three doubles through his first 61 plate appearances as he looked to recreate last season’s career year at the plate.

    Andrus is the latest in a recent string of DL placements for a Rangers club that has also lost Delino DeShields, Rougned Odor and Doug Fister to the disabled list since Opening Day. With both Odor and Andrus on the sidelines, former No. 1 overall prospect Jurickson Profar seems likely to at last be ticketed for regular at-bats with the Rangers for the foreseeable future. Catcher/infielder Isiah Kiner-Falefa is already with the big league club and has experience at second base, and the Rangers also have March trade pickup Eliezer Alvarez on the 40-man roster, though he has only limited experience above A-ball. Versatile Hanser Alberto in Triple-A Round Rock, but he’ll need to be re-added to the 40-man roster after previously being non-tendered and re-signed to a minor league deal.

    One other scenario that could play out would be a move of Drew Robinson from the outfield to the infield, as he comes with experience in both regards at the minor league level. Shifting Profar to shortstop and Robinson to second base could then open the door for top prospect Willie Calhoun to return as a left fielder, although that alignment would likely force Ryan Rua into center field, where he’s played just 14 big league innings. Carlos Tocci remains an option in center as well, though as a Rule 5 pick, asking him to take on regular center field work would be a lot.

    Certainly, the timing of the injury is brutal for Andrus from a personal standpoint as well. The shortstop’s eight-year, $120MM deal was viewed for several seasons as a misstep by the front office, but Andrus’ sensational 2017 season and strong start to the 2018 campaign suddenly made the possibility of him exercising an opt-out clause after the season look entirely possible.

    Andrus has $58MM guaranteed to him over the next four seasons, but with a repeat of his 2017 season he’d almost certainly elect to test the open market in search of a lengthier, more lucrative contract. If he’s able to return in the near future, that may still be the case, but the length of his absence and the degree to which he is able to bounce back from the injury will now carry added significance with the possibility of free agency looming.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Odor, Fister Land On Disabled List]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119692 2018-04-11T02:53:55Z 2018-04-11T02:53:55Z The Rangers announced tonight that second baseman Rougned Odor (left hamstring strain) and right-hander Doug Fister (right hip strain) have both been placed on the 10-day disabled list. In their place, the team has activated reliever Tony Barnette from the DL and recalled catcher/infielder Isiah Kiner-Falefa from Triple-A Round Rock. There’s no indication that either injury is considered to be long-term, with both Odor and Fister eligible to return from the DL on April 20. Kiner-Falefa will be making his big league debut the first time he gets into a game; the former fourth-round pick hit .288/.350/.390 through 569 trips to the plate in Double-A last season.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Rangers Grant Trevor Plouffe His Release]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119690 2018-04-10T23:38:23Z 2018-04-10T23:38:23Z Veteran infielder Trevor Plouffe, who’d been with the Rangers’ Triple-A affiliate, asked for and was granted his release by the organization, the team told reporters (Twitter link via MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan).

    Plouffe, 31, opened the Triple-A season by going 3-for-11 with a homer, a double and six walks in 17 plate appearances — good for a .273/.529/.636 slash in that tiny four-game sample. The longtime Twins third baseman struggled in Spring Training with the Rangers and agreed to head to their Triple-A affiliate in Round Rock to open the season, though clearly his stay there will be short-lived.

    A former first-round pick of the Twins (20th overall, 2004), Plouffe was a bit of a late bloomer but eventually rose to the Majors and claimed Minnesota’s starting third base job as a 26-year-old back in 2012. From 2012-16, Plouffe hit .250/.311/.423 and averaged 17 homers and 124 games played per season with the Twins. While his glovework at the hot corner was initially questionable, he eventually posted solid UZR and DRS marks with the Twins in 2014-15. His 2016 season — Plouffe’s last as a Twin — was marred by a series of intercostal and oblique injuries that limited him to 84 games.

    Plouffe split the 2017 season between the A’s and Rays, struggling at each stop and hitting just .198/.272/.318 in a combined 313 plate appearances. Given that showing and his injury-plagued 2016 season, it seems likely that Plouffe will need to find another minor league opportunity elsewhere — perhaps one with a clearer path to the Majors than he had in Texas, where Adrian Beltre and Joey Gallo are locked in at the infield corners. At his best, Plouffe has been a thorn in the side of left-handed pitching (.263/.346/.469 during that ’12-’16 stretch) who is capable of handing either corner infield slot.

    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Rougned Odor Suffers Hamstring Strain]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119636 2018-04-10T19:02:47Z 2018-04-10T16:29:51Z
  • The Rangers announced that second baseman Rougned Odor left his club’s game today with a left hamstring strain. We’re still awaiting word on a full assessment, but it certainly seems as if the organization is anticipating a DL stint. Likewise, Blue Jays DH Kendrys Morales has received a diagnosis of a grade 1 hammy strain, per a club announcement. That said, skipper John Gibbons struck an optimistic tone after the game, as Gregor Chisholm of MLB.com reports (Twitter link). Cardinals first baseman Jose Martinez also had to depart after a collision with Brewers outfielder Lorenzo Cain. While it seems the latter will be just fine, the former has been diagnosed with a right Achilles tendon contusion, per the club. Hopefully, that ends up representing the extent of the injury.
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    Jeff Todd <![CDATA[Clayton Blackburn To Undergo Tommy John Surgery]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119626 2018-04-10T01:58:57Z 2018-04-10T01:58:57Z Rangers right-hander Clayton Blackburn will undergo Tommy John surgery, as MLB.com’s TR Sullivan was among those to report on Twitter. The news comes after Blackburn dealt with elbow issues all spring long.

    Blackburn, who was acquired this time last year from the Giants, was once a highly regarded prospect but has yet to earn his first MLB call-up. That may well have come in the current season, but the 25-year-old will instead spend the year rehabbing.

    A former 16th-round draft pick, Blackburn has spent most of the past three seasons at the highest level of the minors. In his 355 1/3 innings at Triple-A, he owns a 4.00 ERA with 7.1 K/9 and 2.4 BB/9.

    Blackburn still has an option year remaining and won’t burn it in 2018. He is already on the 60-day DL, so there are no immediate 40-man ramifications. But it remains to be seen whether the Rangers will be able to to carry him through next offseason, when there will inevitably be a variety of roster pressures to account for.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Hamels Adjusting To Diminished Velocity]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119579 2018-04-09T18:42:11Z 2018-04-09T18:42:11Z
  • Rangers lefty Cole Hamels is entering a transitional phase of his career, writes Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News, as his significantly diminished velocity now forces him to become more of a finesse lefty than a power pitcher. Hamels has never been a flamethrower, per se, but he averaged 92 mph or better on his fastball for the vast majority of his career, including last season in 2017. Through his first three starts of the 2018 campaign, however, Hamels has averaged just 89.7 mph on his heater. While some pitchers build up velocity over the course of a season, Hamels has never started out a year with this lack of life on his fastball. “I’m in between in terms of identifying what I need to do and going out and doing it,” Hamels tells Grant. “You can’t be in between on those two types of pitches and executing them.” To his credit, Hamels has racked up 23 strikeouts in just 16 innings, but he’s also issued nine walks, served up five homers and is currently toting a cumbersome 5.06 ERA.
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    Connor Byrne <![CDATA[Tim Lincecum Still Dealing With Blister Issue]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119546 2018-04-09T20:17:41Z 2018-04-09T01:18:09Z
  • Rangers right-hander Tim Lincecum’s ongoing blister issues forced him to postpone a bullpen session Sunday, according to TR Sullivan of MLB.com. Given that he didn’t pitch at all last season and then went without a contract until March 7, Lincecum was already behind schedule before the blister on his right middle finger cropped up last month. It’s now unclear whether he’ll be ready by the beginning of May, the Rangers’ target for him entering the season.
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    Mark Polishuk <![CDATA[Rangers Looking For Center Field Depth]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119449 2018-04-07T20:02:39Z 2018-04-07T20:02:39Z
  • With Delino DeShields Jr. on the disabled list due to a broken hamate bone, the Rangers are looking for center field depth.  Drew Robinson and Rule 5 draft pick Carlos Tocci have been platooning in center field with DeShields out, though that may not be a tenable situation given that DeShields could be sidelined into the middle of May.  Jose Cardona and Brett Eibner are available in the minors, but Texas would have to create a 40-man roster spot for either player.

  • ]]>
    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Padres Acquire Brett Nicholas From Rangers]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119379 2018-04-06T18:11:44Z 2018-04-06T18:03:12Z The Padres announced that they’ve acquired catcher Brett Nicholas from the Rangers in exchange for a player to be named later or cash. Nicholas, 29, was outrighted off the Rangers’ 40-man roster late in Spring Training and recently was further displaced by Texas’ signing of Cameron Rupp to a minor league contract. The Padres have assigned him to Triple-A El Paso.

    Nicholas has appeared in 36 games for the Rangers over the past two seasons, tallying 110 plate appearances and hitting .252/.300/.446 with four homers in that brief sample. He’s halted just two of 15 stolen-base attempts against Rangers pitching in that time, though he’s been more effective (27 percent) in parts of eight minor league seasons. Baseball Prospectus doesn’t view his pitch framing in either the Majors or the minors too highly, but Nicholas is a lifetime .283/.333/.427 hitter in 1669 Triple-A plate appearances.

    Padres general manager A.J. Preller is plenty familiar with Nicholas, as he was an assistant GM with the Rangers back in 2010 when Texas drafted Nicholas in the sixth round out of Missouri. The left-handed-hitting Nicholas will give the Friars some additional depth behind catchers Austin Hedges and A.J. Ellis, and he also comes with some experience at first base. It seems likely that Nicholas will team with Raffy Lopez to handle the bulk of the catching duties in Triple-A.

    Steve Adams <![CDATA[Rangers Notes: Hamels, Colon, Rupp]]> https://www.mlbtraderumors.com/?p=119172 2018-04-04T01:50:11Z 2018-04-04T01:50:11Z While we’re still months from the non-waiver trade deadline, MLB.com’s Jon Morosi reports the details on Cole Hamels’ limited no-trade clause (Twitter link). It’s already known that Hamels can block deals to 20 teams, but Morosi adds the nine teams to which Hamels can be traded without his consent: the Mariners, Cardinals, Nationals, Astros, Cubs, Phillies, Royals, Rays and Braves. Obviously, the inclusion of some teams in that list of nine is largely a moot point; the Royals and Rays in particular wouldn’t take on Hamels’ salary, for instance. The 34-year-old Hamels is earning $22.5MM this season and is also guaranteed at least $6MM in the form of a buyout on a $20MM club option for the 2019 season. The four-time All-Star and former NLCS and World Series MVP is looking for a rebound campaign after posting a career-low 6.4 K/9 and the second-highest ERA (4.20) of his career in an injury-shortened 2017 campaign.

    A couple more notes out of Arlington…

    • Rangers GM Jon Daniels tells Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram that he’s “leaning” toward keeping Bartolo Colon on the team’s roster as a means of preserving some rotation depth. Texas needs to open a 25-man roster spot for Martin Perez to come off the 10-day DL on Thursday, but they can’t make that move with Colon unless they designate him for assignment, at which point he’d be exposed to waivers and could reject an outright assignment even if he clears. “This early in the season, I’m more of the mind-set to add to our depth rather than to take it away,” said Daniels. The 44-year-old Colon held the A’s to one earned run on seven hits and a walk with four strikeouts through six innings in his Rangers debut yesterday.
    • Though the Rangers added Cameron Rupp on a minor league deal earlier today, the move wasn’t made due to any concern over the team’s current big league tandem of Robinson Chirinos or Juan Centeno, manager Jeff Banister tells MLB.com’s T.R. Sullivan. Rather, Texas simply felt it was a valuable opportunity to add a depth piece with plenty of big league experience. “I don’t think our catching is an area of concern, but I don’t think you can have enough quality catching,” said Banister. “…We know on any given night, one of these guys can go down.” Banister spoke highly of Rupp’s offensive ability and his throwing arm, citing several first-hand looks at Rupp from his days on the Pirates’ coaching staff.