According to Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News, the Rangers are considering moving Alexi Ogando back to the bullpen for the rest of the regular season and a potential playoff run.
The recent struggles of relievers Yoshinori Tateyama and Koji Uehara are forcing the Rangers’ hand, but Ogando has seemingly hit the wall as a result of a career-high workload. The 27-year-old right-hander has a 5.20 ERA over 55 1/3 innings since the All-Star break and has completed seven innings in a start just twice.
Ogando thrived in a relief role as a rookie with the Rangers last season, posting a 1.30 ERA and 39/16 K/BB ratio over 41 2/3 innings, so this might be the best way to utilize him the rest of the way.
If Ogando is indeed bumped to the bullpen, the Rangers would likely go with C.J. Wilson, Colby Lewis, Matt Harrison and Derek Holland as probable starters for the postseason.
ESPN’s Jerry Crasnick reported on Monday that the Angels have received inquiries from multiple teams concerning starter Hector Santiago. He adds that the club is willing to listen to offers. Jon Morosi of FOX Sports and MLB Network reports that the Marlins are among the teams that have inquired.
Santiago, 28, has pitched to a 4.32 ERA with 96 strikeouts and 47 walks in 110 1/3 innings. Sabermetric statistics such as FIP, xFIP, and SIERA think the lefty has pitched even worse than his ERA indicates however, pitting 2016 as his worst performance to date.
Santiago is earning $5 million this season and will enter his third and final year of arbitration eligibility going into 2017.
We also learned earlier that, in an effort to bolster their starting rotation, the Marlins have also shown interest in Wade Miley of the Mariners and Jeremy Hellickson of the Phillies.
The Rangers placed DH Prince Fielder on the disabled list last week due to more neck discomfort. On Friday, Fielder met with Dr. Drew Dossett, who performed spinal fusion surgery on Fielder in 2014 for a herniated disk in his neck. Dossett has recommended another procedure, so Fielder will undergo season-ending surgery this week, Jeff Wilson of the Fort-Worth Star Telegram reports.
Fielder was having a rough season, batting .212/.292/.334 with eight home runs and 44 RBI in 370 plate appearances. He played in only 42 games in 2014, but returned in 2015 looking more like his old self. Unfortunately, neck and back issues are notoriously difficult to fix. Hopefully, this upcoming procedure does the trick for Fielder.
Fielder is owed $24 million per season through 2020, with the Tigers paying $6 million of it per season.