Aug 17, 2014; Arlington, TX, USA; Texas Rangers starting pitcher Yu Darvish (far right) looks on during the game against the Los Angeles Angels at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Texas won 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Texas Rangers: Did Yu Darvish quit on his team?

The Texas Rangers recently place their ace Yu Darvish on the 15-day disabled list.  When he was first placed on the disabled list he was sent to a specialist to have his arm and elbow checked out.

The main worry for every Texas Rangers fan and probably some in the front office that the dreaded phase Tommy John surgery could be suggested.

But, the results from his MRI only showed mild inflammation in his right elbow and was told that the injury wasn’t long-term.  He was told he could return once the symptoms subsided.  This was great news for everyone and meant that he would likely only miss about 3 starts and would be on pace to return on August 25th.

After the MRI results Yu Darvish commented about the results.

“I’m not too concerned,” Darvish said through his interpreter before Thursday night’s game against Tampa Bay. “I’m just taking a precautionary measure. I’m competitive. I want to go out there and compete but at the same time, I’m thinking about my long-term situation. I don’t want to go out there and risk my future. I don’t want my elbow to aggravate. I think it’s a good decision that I’m making right now.” (Calvin Watkins – ESPN Dallas)

Over this past week manager Ron Washington has been carefully discussing when Yu Darvish will return from the disabled list.  Currently there isn’t a real time-table for his return.  Mainly because he hasn’t even begun a pitching program to work his way back to the rotation.

Even though the MRI came back basically clean, that doesn’t mean that Yu Darvish doesn’t still feel some discomfort.

“He knows his body, and when you talk about the elbow, we really don’t know what he’s feeling other than what he tells us,” Washington said. “The diagnosis says [one thing], but we actually don’t know what he’s feeling.” (Calvin Watkins – ESPN  Dallas )

It is true that only Darvish truly knows how his arm is feeling and if he is able to pitch.  But, the puzzling piece of the puzzle is that prior to him going on the disabled list Jon Daniels said that if the Rangers were in a position to make the playoffs Yu Darvish would be pitching through the discomfort.

“Yu expressed he could pitch if we were in a different spot,” Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said. “If we were in a more meaningful spot [in the standings], Yu would be good to go. But he agreed and we agreed to be cautious and smart about it.” (T.R. Sullivan – MLB.com)

So what is really going on with Yu Darvish?  Is it coming down to the point that he just doesn’t want to pitch for a team that is going to lose over 100 games in a season?

Manager Ron Washington recently made an odd comment about Darvish’s commitment to the team when asked if Darvish was done for the season.  He was asked if Darvish is able to return should he return.

The Texas Rangers will host the Kansas City Royals for a short 3-game homestand then head out for a 10-game road trip.  Currently they do not expect Yu Darvish to make the trip with the team.

Currently everything that is being said by the Rangers seems that Darvish might have bailed on his team.  Starting from day one of his elbow issues it was stated if the team was in the playoff hunt then he’d be in the rotation.   It might truly be that he does still have some discomfort in his elbow and is taking some extra precautions also.  The way the season gone for everyone else who can blame him.  Everyone that puts on a Rangers uniform has to walk on eggshells and how they don’t land on the 60-day disabled list.

When it comes down to the question of should he return to the rotation the answer is easy, yes he should.  He should do it to do everything he can to prepare for next season.  Also, he should do it to support his team.  When he is on the mound he gives them the best chance to win.

Darvish also doesn’t want his teammates thinking he quit on them.  That’s the worst thing a pitcher can do.  A pitcher relies on the guys behind him to field the ball and record the outs.  Without the full support from his teammates, Darvish will ever throw a perfect game or no-hitter.

His 15-days aren’t up yet on the disabled list, but that day is quickly approaching.  Did Yu Darvish quit?  I personally don’t think so, I hope he didn’t.  I think he’s a very competitive person and takes pride in his work.   I think he’ll do everything in his power to rejoin the team once he thinks he’s healthy and ready.

Hopefully sometime during the 10-game road trip Darvish will re-join the team.  If he wants to be part of a winning team he should and needs to.

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