The Texas Rangers have released left-handed relief pitcher Michael Kirkman.
Kirkman was selected in the 5th round of the 2005 draft by the Texas Rangers and was entering camp as a non-roster invitee for the first time since 2009. He made the 2013 Opening Day Roster for the first time in his 11-year career with Texas.
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If you recall, Michael Kirkman spent only the first two months with Rangers before being placed on the disabled list. Although he returned to Arlington in September, he did not play a game and was once again placed on the DL and remained there for the season. Kirkman had a reoccurrence of cutaneous lymphoma (skin cancer) in his right triceps. He was first diagnosed with skin cancer in 2012.
I’m not overly surprised by the Texas Rangers decision to release Kirkman. The last time he was dominant came in 2010 after he was called up in August. He finished the season with an ERA of 1.65 and allowing only one extra-base hit over 16.1 innings pitched.
In Spring Training, Kirkman has a 5.40 ERA permitting one hit with one earned run, two walks over 1.2 innings pitched.
Given the fact the Rangers need all the relief they can get in the bullpen, I am inclined to think that either Mike Maddux or Jon Daniels or both felt that they don’t see Michael Kirkman getting back to his 2010 form. I’m just hoping they have seen a potential lefty to replace him before Opening Day.