Rangers setup man Darren O’Day is on the verge of coming off the disabled list two months after undergoing surgery to repair a torn labrum in his hip.
O’Day isn’t exactly a household name, but his returning healthy would be a huge boost to the Rangers’ bullpen. In parts of three seasons in Texas the side-arming right-hander has a 2.02 ERA and 104/33 K/BB ratio in 125 innings.
He’s scheduled to pitch tonight at Triple-A in what could be his final minor-league rehab appearance before coming off the DL.
Texas ranked second in bullpen ERA last season at 3.38, but Rangers relievers have combined for a 4.53 ERA this season that ranks second-worst in the league ahead of only the Twins.
Free agent right-hander Henderson Alvarez signed a deal with the Tigres de Quintana Roo of the Mexican Baseball League earlier this week, FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Friday. The righty wasn’t necessarily too fringey a player to hack it in the big leagues, but there were no MLB takers in attendance during his showcase in Venezuela last month and he clearly felt it best to try his luck elsewhere.
The 27-year-old’s last major league gig came with the Phillies, for whom he delivered a 4.30 ERA, 6.8 BB/9 and 3.7 SO/9 over 14 2/3 innings in 2017. While he’s not too far removed from his first and only All-Star bid in 2014, he was besieged by shoulder issues in 2015 and 2016 and underwent season-ending surgeries as a result.
That added injury risk, coupled with the fact that he hasn’t pitched more than 22 innings in a single season since 2014, may have been too much for major league teams to take on this spring. Assuming he steers clear of further injuries, however, a return to the majors may not be entirely out of the question in years to come.