Texas Rangers: Injuries, Shutouts, MLB Draft, and Newcomer Justin Grimm


The Texas Rangers’ roster has been in flux over the past month with injuries to three starting pitchers, the newest being Alexi Ogando starter turned reliever, turned starter again.  Ogando was placed on the 15-day DL after he suffered a groin injury on a bunt single after pitching 3 perfect innings in San Francisco last Saturday. Its uncertain if Ogando will need to miss more than the two weeks or so, but groin injuries don’t often heal quickly and easily. This is the very reason I hate interleague games: Ogando wouldn’t have been hurt if he was playing at the Ballpark in Arlington. Hopefully one day the NL will switch to a DH format instead of guaranteeing 3-5 outs per game in the pitcher spot; it would also end pitchers from getting injured while running the bases.

 Pitching Coming Through

Despite losing even more starting pitchers to injury, the Rangers have pitched 3 shoutouts in the past 3 series’. Two of the shutouts came from Matt Harrison, who is now 8-3 with a 3.54 ERA. Harrison pitched a complete game shutout against San Francisco, and he pitched 7.1 scoreless innings in a no decision against Arizona. The Rangers starters have been impressive over the past two weeks when most people thought they would struggle with injuries. Over that span they are 9th in all of baseball in ERA, and they lead the league with 3 complete games.

Roy Oswalt made his 3rd start in the minors for the Rangers on Tuesday and was not very good. In 3 starts, he has a 7.71 ERA in 9.1 innings pitched.  He will make his 4th and possibly final start Sunday for AAA Round Rock, and he may be starting for the Rangers by the last week of the month.

Justin Grimm will be called up Saturday to start in the spot vacated by Neftali Feliz and Alexi Ogando. Grimm is a 23 year old righty who has never started above AA.  In AA Frisco this year, he is 8-3 with a 1.87 ERA. He has dominated at that level, yet he probably isn’t ready to start in the Majors. The decision to bring Grimm up to MLB makes it clear that the Rangers’ organization is running out of starting pitchers, and they have no one but Grimm to fill in for Felix and Ogando until Oswalt is ready. Grimm is untested at any level even close to the majors, but General Manager Jon Daniels told ESPN Dallas:

"“We’re going to put our best guys out there if they’re ready to help us win. We feel Justin is. We’re trying to win ball games. We wouldn’t call up Justin if we didn’t think he could help us.”"

Texas Rangers’ Draft

The Rangers finished the first year player draft last week. Thanks to the MLB’s new draft budget system, they have already signed all but 1 of their picks in the first 10 rounds. All of the young players will begin their careers as Texas Rangers soon.  In the past, top picks would often negotiate with teams until close to the deadline in mid August, but the new system gets players signed quickly so they can begin their careers immediately. Keith Law of ESPN has a short summary about the Rangers here.  The top picks of the Rangers draft are high school players and are very raw, but they mainly drafted players with speed and athleticism, qualities that can translate into the Rangers style of play.

 Upcoming Schedule

Over the next week the Rangers will continue to play an interleague schedule.  They face the Astros, Padres, and Rockies. The Texas Rangers are 6-3 in interleague play so far this season and will look to keep up that success. If I had to guess when we will see Roy Oswalt in the a Rangers uniform for the first time, I would say it will be Friday or Saturday at home against the Colorado Rockies.

Do you like pitchers hitting? do you think the NL should adopt the DH rule? How do you think Justin Grimm will do? Are you worried that Roy Oswalt is struggling in AAA?

If you would like to submit a question to be included in one of my articles you can email me at Wildcatsj25@gmail.com or DM on twitter: @justinbrumit

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