Rangers hope for Napoli’s return in September

ARLINGTON, Texas – Texas catcher Mike Napoli is eligible to come off the disabled list Sunday but it’s not going to happen.

Napoli, who is on the DL with a strained left quad, still isn’t running the bases. Texas manager Ron Washington is hoping to have Napoli available around Sept. 1, which is also when the rosters expand.

“We won’t write that in stone,” Texas manager Ron Washington said. “We hope to have him back by then. He might be playing somewhere by then, but I don’t expect him back here.”

Napoli is hitting and throwing but his running has been limited to the treadmill. Before the Rangers will send him on a rehab assignment, they want to see him run the bases as well as squat behind the plate. That’s where Napoli felt the pain.

Napoli said the quad is feeling better but it’s still not 100 percent. He’s visiting with team doctor Keith Meister Friday.

“I don’t think I’m far away out but I’m not going to be there when I’m ready to come off the DL when my time’s up,” said Napoli, who went on the DL Aug. 11. “I won’t be ready. We’ll see how I feel tomorrow. I had a pretty tough day in the gym and we’ll see how I respond.”

Napoli’s hitting .223 in 92 games this season with 17 home runs and 40 RBI. Geovany Soto has picked up the slack with Napoli out. He went into Thursday’s game riding a four-game hitting streak that’s included a homer, double and five RBIs.