From Richard Durrett of ESPN Dallas comes word that the Rangers are skipping Matt Harrison’s scheduled Tuesday start against the Rays in an effort to limit the 25-year-old’s rising innings total. Scott Feldman, a reliever, will take the mound instead.
Harrison threw just 85 2/3 innings last season between the minor and major leagues. This year, he’s already up to 153 total frames.
The young and talented left-hander spoke about the decision with reporters on Saturday afternoon:
“You’re not happy with having to skip a start, especially near the end of the season. But they think that’s what is best for me. I’ll stay active in the bullpen. I understand it. They were honest with me, so I can’t complain.”
Harrison has an impressive 3.59 ERA, 1.31 WHIP and 103/49 K/BB ratio through 25 starts this year.
Twins senior director of communications Dustin Morse announced that the Twins will honor former C/1B Joe Mauer by retiring his uniform number 7. Mauer announced his retirement from baseball on November 9.
Mauer will join Harmon Killebrew (No. 3), Tony Oliva (No. 6), Tom Kelly (No. 10), Kent Hrbek (No. 14), Rod Carew (No. 29), Kirby Pucket (No. 34), and Bert Blyleven (No. 28) as Twins to have their numbers retired.
Mauer, 35, spent 15 seasons in the majors, all with the Twins. He posted a career .306/.388/.439 triple-slash line with 143 home runs and 923 RBI. He won the AL MVP Award in 2009, won the batting title three times, earned three Gold Gloves and five Silver Sluggers, and made the AL All-Star team six times. Sadly, his career was limited due to injuries, including a concussion that caused him to move from catcher to first base.
Five years from now, Mauer will appear on the Hall of Fame ballot. There will certainly be some arguments for and against his candidacy. He retired with 55.1 career Wins Above Replacement, according to Baseball Reference, which definitely puts him in the conversation. But, as always, there’s never a consensus.