Martin Perez AP

Report: Martin Perez will have Tommy John surgery

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The Rangers announced yesterday that left-hander Martin Perez was diagnosed with a partially-torn ulnar collateral ligament in his throwing elbow. According to Gerry Fraley of the Dallas Morning News, Martin told Venezuelan publication Lavinotinto that he will join the long list of pitchers to have Tommy John surgery this year:

According to Marcus Grunfeld of the publication, Perez said he and his agent will decide on Friday when to have the surgery to repair a partially torn ligament.

Perez also had the option of trying to return after a rehabilitation period of 10 to 12 weeks.

“Having an operation is the most convenient thing,” Perez said, according to Lavinotinto.

Perez, who signed a four-year, $12.5 million extension over the winter, figures to be sidelined through the early part of the 2015 season. Matt Harrison has a displacement of a verterba in his back and is no sure thing to even pitch again, so the Rangers continue to face big challenges in their starting rotation. On the positive side of things, Nick Tepesch pitched well yesterday against the Astros and Derek Holland is getting closer to returning from knee surgery.

Twins’ minor league pitcher Landa dies in Venezuela

FORT MYERS, FL - MARCH 05:  Yorman Landa #81 of the Minnesota Twins makes a throw to first base during the fourth inning of a spring training game against the Baltimore Orioles at Hammond Stadium on March 5, 2016 in Fort Myers, Florida.  (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images)
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MINNEAPOLIS — The Minnesota Twins say minor league pitcher Yorman Landa has died in Venezuela. He was 22.

The club said in a statement that the Twins are “deeply saddened by the heartbreaking loss.” The team did not say how he died.

Landa pitched in the 2016 season with the Fort Meyers Miracle, going 2-2 with 7 saves and a 3.24 ERA in 41 2/3 innings pitched. His career minor-league ERA was 2.66.

Landa had been on the Twins’ 40-man roster, but was dropped after the season. The organization signed him to a minor-league contract last week.

Landa was signed by the Twins in 2010 as a 16-year old from Santa Teresa, Venezuela.

Orioles are eying Welington Castillo as their primary catcher target

BALTIMORE, MD - SEPTEMBER 25: Welington Castillo #7 of the Arizona Diamondbacks warms up prior to taking an at bat against the Baltimore Orioles in the second inning at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on September 25, 2016 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Matt Hazlett/Getty Images)
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A report from the Baltimore Sun’s Dan Connolly suggests that free agent catcher Welington Castillo currently tops the Orioles’ list of potential backstop targets for the 2017 season. With Matt Wieters on the market, the Orioles lack a suitable platoon partner for Caleb Joseph behind the dish, and Connolly adds that the club has been discussing a multi-year deal with Castillo’s representatives since the Winter Meetings.

Castillo batted .264/.322/.423 with the Diamondbacks in 2016, racking up 14 home runs and driving in a career-high 68 RBI in 457 PA. His bat provides much of his upside, and Connolly quoted an anonymous National League scout who believes that the 29-year-old’s defensive profile has fallen short of his potential in recent years.

For better or worse, both the Orioles and Castillo appear far from locking in a deal for 2017. Both the Rays and Braves have expressed interest in the veteran catcher during the past week, while the Orioles are reportedly considering Wieters, Nick Hundley and Chris Iannetta as alternatives behind the plate.