Texas in pitching scramble with Holland injury
OAKLAND, Calif. — The Texas Rangers have lost a second member of their Opening Day rotation due to injury as left-hander Derek Holland has been put on the 15-day disabled list with left shoulder fatigue.
The club has purchased the contract of right-hander Tanner Scheppers from Round Rock. To clear room on the 40-man roster, the club designated John Gaub for assignment. The Holland move is retroactive to Wednesday.
Right-hander Alexi Ogando, who made the All-Star team last year as a starter, will take Holland's rotation spot for Sunday's game against San Francisco.
Holland, who pitched 5 1/3 innings Tuesday before leaving in part because of general fatigue, flew back to the Metroplex. He'll be examined by team doctor Keith Meister and have tests run. Holland has been bothered by a stomach virus for more than two weeks and there's a chance the shoulder fatigue is related to that. Holland has lost 15 pounds since the team made a May 21-23 trip to Seattle and has needed to get intravenous fluids twice on days that's he's pitched since the trip.
The Rangers didn't want to take a risk with Holland, who is 5-4 with a 5.10 ERA.
"We want him full strength," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "We send him back, get an evaluation and move forward from there. We just want to make sure of what is and make sure he can recover fully."
Ogando hasn't pitched more than two innings in a game this year but believes he can throw up to 70 pitches even though he hasn't thrown more than 39 in a game yet this year.
While he's not happy about the circumstances surrounding his return to the rotation, Ogando is looking forward to the opportunity.
"The transition's not a big deal," said Ogando, who made 29 starts in 2011. "I'm getting the opportunity to start, which is something I like to do."
Washington said moving Ogando to the rotation made the most sense because of his experience level. Left-hander Robbie Ross was a starter in the minors but he hasn't started in the majors and is the lone left-hander in the Texas bullpen.
Washington doesn't think the injury changes anything with Roy Oswalt either. Oswalt is slated to make his second minor-league start today for Round Rock and will likely need four or five starts before being able to help the Rangers.
"My intent is for him to do what he has to do to come here ready to pitch," Washington said. "I don't know if that will change but I'm thinking he's going to stay on schedule."
The Holland move also forces the Rangers to alter their bullpen. Right-hander Koji Uehara moves into Ogando's seventh-inning role and Scheppers should be able to give the Rangers multiple innings.
Scheppers, a supplemental pick in the 2009 draft, had been the closer for Round Rock. He had nine saves and 3.72 ERA before he got the news Wednesday that he was getting called up for the first time.
The California native will have his father and wife in the stands today.
"It's unfortunate that I'm up here taking someone's spot due to injury," said Scheppers, who played collegiately at Fresno State. "But it's definitely a dream come true. I had a couple of rough outings but for the most part I've been doing pretty well. I've got stay with what I've been doing and have faith in my stuff and go out there and throw."
Holland's the second member of the Texas Opening Day rotation to go on the disabled list.
The Rangers put right-hander Neftali Feliz on the disabled list last month with a sprained right UCL. Scott Feldman replaced him in the rotation but is winless in his three starts since the move. Feldman is slated to start Saturday against the Giants.