Rangers will wait until July 7 to decide what to do with Derek Holland

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Derek Holland threw a 67-pitch simulated game on Saturday in which he fielded multiple bunts to test his surgically-repaired knee. Although manager Ron Washington said “there was progress made,” the Rangers will wait until the team returns from a seven-game road trip on July 7 to decide if Holland will begin a rehab assignment, Anthony Andro of FOX Sports Southwest reports.

Holland underwent microfracture surgery on his left knee in January. Holland was hoping to begin his rehab, but will live with the Rangers’ decision to play it safe. “Obviously it’s up to them what they decide,” Holland said. “I’ve got to respect their decision and go from there.”

Holland, 27, had the best season of his career in 2013, finishing with a 3.42 ERA and a 189/64 K/BB ratio in 213 innings.

Pirates hire Ben Cherington as their new general manager

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The Pittsburgh Pirates have hired Ben Cherington as the team’s new general manager. They do so after the general manager meetings ended, but better late than never.

Cherington served as GM of the Boston Red Sox for four years, winning the World Series in 2013, but resigned during the 2015 season after Dave Dombrowski was named Boston’s new president of baseball operations. Which was a defacto demotionn for Cherington who, until then, had the final say in baseball decisions. Dombrowski, of course, was fired late in the season this year. Cherington went on to work for the Toronto Blue Jays as a vice president, but was seen as biding his time for another GM position. Now he has one.

Cherington takes over in Pittsburgh for executive vice president and general manager Neal Huntington, who was fired after a 12 years at the helm. Also fired was team president Frank Coonelly. Travis Williams replaced Coonelly recently. While the Pirates experienced a few years of contention under Huntington and Coonelly, they have slid out of contention in recent years as the club has traded away promising players for little return, all while cutting payroll. There’s a very big rebuilding job ahead of Cherington.

The first move he’ll have to make: hire a manager, as the team still hasn’t replaced Clint Hurdle since he was dismissed in the final weekend of the regular season.