Texas Rangers: Who Will Replace Derek Holland

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When Derek Holland exited the Texas Rangers home opener after throwing only 9 pitches he also took the life from the remaining players. Then, in the third inning Shin-Soo Choo is replaced by Jake Smolinski. Two innings later, Delino DeShields replaces Ryan Rua who left the game due to an injured ankle.

After the game, we would learn Holland has a strain of the subscapularis muscle in his throwing shoulder. Meaning, the Texas Rangers will be without their left-handed ace for at least two months according to the report by Evan Grant of The Dallas Morning News. Now we have to wait and see who gets the replacement call.

I think the Rangers really only have three viable options – right-handers Anthony Bass and Anthony Ranaudo, and 36-year old lefty Wandy Rodriguez.

Texas acquired Ranaudo in the trade with the Boston Red Sox for left-handed pitcher Robbie Ross. He was with the club at Spring Training where he pitched a few good innings, but was ultimately optioned to Triple-A Round Rock. As Jason wrote earlier, there is no need to rush the 25-year old to the majors as he doesn’t reach his arbitration years until 2018.

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The Texas Rangers could bring newly acquired (April 6) left-hander Wandy Rodriguez to Arlington. He started for Round Rock Thursday in their season opener going 5 innings allowing only four hits and no runs. Rodriguez is scheduled to start for the Express tonight. So, if the Rangers are thinking of bringing him up to replace Holland, it will more than likely depend on how well he throws tonight.

Of course, the favorite might already be with the team in Arlington. Anthony Bass earned his way into the rotation as a non-roster invitee to Spring Training. Admittedly, I was puzzled by the Rangers decision to add Bass to the final roster spot. However, after yesterday I have a better understanding of what Jeff Banister saw in him.

Bass was called to pitch in relief after Holland left after just the first inning. He threw 5.0 innings allowing only one run while striking out two. Not too bad for the 27-year old, who isn’t even on the opening week rotation schedule. There was even a hashtag on Twitter for great he was pitching #Basstastic. I hope this is who the club gives a chance to prove himself.

Now, my only concern is how will Yovani Gallardo handle the blow to the starting rotation. I know he was considered the Milwaukee Brewers ace, but he undoubtedly did not expect to come to Texas and find himself as the new ace after only 5 games into the season. I don’t think his first game is indicative of how good of a pitcher he is, but I am curious to see if takes on the leadership role and helps guide the rotation.

NEVER.EVER.QUIT.

Next: How Bad Was Opening Day for the Rangers?

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