Update: Andro has some further clarification, saying Holland iced the knee and is wearing a black sleeve on it. He will have an MRI on Monday, if needed, but the young pitcher doesn’t think it is anything serious.
1:40 PM: Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News reports that Holland can’t get an MRI on his right knee this weekend. The current diagnosis is a mild sprain. If he feels better on Monday, the test could be scratched. Sounds like good news.
1:08 PM: According to Anthony Andro of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Derek Holland injured his right knee during agility drills on Saturday. After being examined by team doctor Keith Meister, the Rangers sent him for an MRI.
We’re currently awaiting results, but it would be a real shame to see his development slowed for a second straight season. The Rangers jerked Holland around last season between the bullpen and the starting rotation and he understandably struggle with an uncertain role, finishing 8-13 with a 6.12 ERA in 138 1/3 innings.
Oft-injured pitcher Josh Johnson is retiring from baseball, ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick is reporting.
Johnson, 32, hasn’t pitched in the majors since 2013. The right-hander underwent his third Tommy John surgery in September 2015 but wasn’t able to bounce back.
Johnson spent most of his career with the Marlins, but also pitched for the Blue Jays in the big leagues, as well as the Padres in the minors. He retires with a career 3.40 ERA, 915 strikeouts across 998 innings in the majors, and two All-Star nominations. Johnson led the National League with a 2.30 ERA in 2010, finishing fifth in NL Cy Young Award balloting. One wonders what he could have accomplished if he was able to stay healthy.
The Angels are nearing a multi-year deal with free agent third baseman Luis Valbuena, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register reports. It’s believed to be a two-year contract with a third-year option.
Valbuena, 31, hit .260/.357/.459 with 13 home runs and 40 RBI in 342 plate appearances in 2016. He missed most of the second half with a hamstring injury, for which he underwent surgery in late August.
Valbuena has played a majority of his career at third base, but also has extensive experience at second base and has racked up innings at first base and shortstop as well. He won’t play every day for the Angels, as Yunel Escobar lays claim to third base and C.J. Cron first base, but he will give them flexibility and a left-handed bat off the bench.