General manager Jon Daniels continues to add depth to the Texas Rangers roster. Two more pitchers were added to the roster, but what kind of value do they bring into Arlington?
The Texas Rangers reunited with reliever Shawn Tolleson, but he might not pitch in 2018. He was the Rangers’ 2015 Pitcher of the Year, but is recovering from Tommy John elbow surgery, and was signed to a Minor League contract.
The 29-year-old underwent the surgery in May of last season, and did not pitch the rest of year. He refused a Minor League assignment and was released by the Tampa Bay Rays. This is the second time that Tolleson has undergone Tommy John surgery.
Tolleson went 3-1 with a 2.76 ERA in 64 games during his first season in Arlington. The 2015 season was even better as Tolleson went 6-4 with a 2.99 ERA in 73 games and 35 saves. Sadly, Tolleson’s career hit a bit of a decline after that.
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During the 2016 season, Tolleson went 2-2 with a 7.68 ERA in 37 games with 11 saves. He was replaced by Sam Dyson, and that was the last time Rangers fans saw Tolleson. He hasn’t pitched in the Major Leagues since then.
The Rangers don’t expect Tolleson to be able to pitch until August of 2018. He could be an interesting bullpen piece later in the season. The team also added Paolo Espino, who will compete for a starting spot in Spring Training.
Espino went 0-0 with a 6.00 ERA in 12 games (two starts) with the Milwaukee Brewers last season. He posted a 4.22 ERA in 23 games (20 starts) in the minors during 2017. He’s likely going to be pitching depth, but should get a chance during the spring.