After spending the first five months of the season on the disabled list following winter knee surgery Rangers left-hander Derek Holland made his 2014 debut last night … and he was great.
Holland tossed seven innings of one-run ball against the Royals, striking out six and walking zero. He generated a career-high 19 swinging strikes and averaged 94.2 miles per hour with his fastball, compared to 93.3 mph for his career.
Almost everything that could have gone wrong has gone wrong for the Rangers this season, but getting a healthy Holland back in the rotation would be a huge positive heading into 2015 and he looked damn good last night.
The Rangers have activated pitcher Derek Holland from the disabled list, Stefan Stevens of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports. Holland is slated to start on Tuesday in Kansas City against the Royals. Mike Carp has been designated for assignment. Pitcher Nick Tepesch has been optioned to Triple-A Round Rock “for paperwork reasons”; he’s still scheduled to start on Wednesday. Rosters will expand on Monday. The Rangers have also recalled pitcher Robbie Ross.
Holland underwent microfracture knee surgery in January when his dog tripped him on the stairs in his home. When the lefty makes his 2014 debut, he’ll become the 60th player to play for the Rangers this season, which will set a major league record.
Carp struggled in 46 plate appearances for the Rangers after he was picked up on a waiver claim from the Red Sox on August 3. He slashed .125/.217/.125 with zero home runs and four RBI.
Aside from an ugly start against the Royals on August 23, Tepesch has shown improvement in the second half, posting a 3.72 ERA in his last six starts. It would have been odd if the Rangers had demoted him for any other reason.
The Rangers called up 1B/OF Ryan Rua from Triple-A Round Rock earlier today to take the spot of the injured Jim Adduci on the 25-man roster. In doing so, Rua became the 59th player to don a Rangers uniform this season, tying a major league record according to ESPN’s Calvin Watkins. The record has been attained three other times: by the Padres twice in 2002 and 2008, and the Indians in 2002.
The Rangers have been ravaged by injuries all season long to many key players including Prince Fielder, Matt Harrison, Shin-Soo Choo, Derek Holland, Mitch Moreland, Jurickson Profar, and Tanner Scheppers.
It’s likely the record will be broken by the Rangers as starter Derek Holland is close to returning after missing the first five months of the season due to a knee injury suffered in January.
Derek Holland’s minor-league rehab assignment has been a mixed bag, but after allowing four runs in his latest outing the Rangers left-hander proclaimed himself ready to rejoin the rotation.
Holland, who hasn’t pitched this season following knee surgery, told Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star Telegram:
I feel like I’m ready, but that’s up to them. I can’t decide too much. They have to figure out what the call is. I’m ready. The whole thing down there was just making sure I could finish and go as long as I could. I feel good.
Holland threw five innings and 87 pitches Tuesday, but he’s allowed 11 runs in 10 innings at Triple-A spread over three starts. Ready or not, based on manager Ron Washington’s comments it sounds like the Rangers aren’t planning to activate Holland until September.
Rangers left-hander Derek Holland was supposed to throw three innings Monday night in his second minor-league rehab start at Triple-A, but instead he lasted just one inning as he comes back from knee surgery.
Holland allowed four runs, including back-to-back homers, and needed 42 pitches to record three outs. If there’s any good news from the outing it’s that Calvin Watkins of ESPN Dallas says he was clocked in the mid-90s. In fact: “Both home runs came off 94 mph fastballs.”
Holland called it “an upsetting start” on the heels of throwing two scoreless innings in his first rehab appearance last week. Expect the Rangers to use most of the allotted 30-day rehab window for Holland, who last pitched in the majors on September 28, 2013.