O'Day good to go for Rangers
Righty reliever feels good after throwing in simulated game
ARLINGTON -- The Rangers' Opening Day roster should be complete. Right-hander Darren O'Day should be ready to be a part of their bullpen.O'Day, who has been sidelined with inflammation in the back of his right elbow, threw 26 pitches in a simulated game on Friday and everything went well. "Everything felt awesome," O'Day said. "I was much more in control than in [Wednesday's] Minor League appearance." Manager Ron Washington watched from behind the batting cage and said, "I saw him hitting the glove and the ball coming out of his hand really well. Everything he wanted to do, he did. He was hitting the glove with consistency and it was crisp." The Rangers had contingency plans ready in case O'Day was not ready for Opening Day. But that is not going to be the case. "We've got until tomorrow to see how he feels," general manager Jon Daniels said. "But he looks good and says he feels good. Barring something unforeseen, he should be ready." O'Day pitched in 64 games for the Rangers in 2009 and was 2-1 with a 1.94 ERA.
Andrus to miss final two exhibition games
ARLINGTON -- Shortstop Elvis Andrus will miss the Rangers' final two exhibition games with inflammation in his left wrist. The Rangers do not believe the injury is serious and they expect him to be ready for Opening Day.Andrus received a cortisone injection in the wrist that is expected to knock out the inflammation, but he will not play on Saturday in Frisco. "Apparently he had this one time last year," assistant general manager Thad Levine said. "He got an injection, and with an off-day, didn't miss any games. Apparently he rebounds quickly." Andrus is hitting .211 with a .273 on-base percentage this spring.
Cruz scratched from Friday's lineup
ARLINGTON -- The Rangers scratched right fielder Nelson Cruz from Friday's game against the Royals with a bruised right thumb, but they expect him to be ready for Opening Day.Cruz sustained the injury hitting a ball off the end of the bat during Thursday's game against the Reds. He took batting practice on Friday and was scratched when he experienced further discomfort. Manager Ron Washington decided not to take any chances and pulled Cruz from the lineup. Cruz had X-rays taken and the results were negative. David Murphy started in right field on Friday. The Rangers have one final exhibition game on Saturday against the Royals before opening the season on Monday against the Blue Jays. Cruz might play Saturday. Cruz went into Friday's game hitting .344 with a .688 slugging percentage this spring. In 64 at-bats, he has 22 hits, 15 runs scored, seven doubles and five home runs. His 19 RBIs were the most by an American League player in Spring Training.
Kinsler takes a couple of days off
ARLINGTON -- Second baseman Ian Kinsler, who will start the season on the disabled list with a sprained right ankle, has been shut down for a couple of days.Kinsler has been limited to light baseball activities the past week while trying to get ready for Opening Day. Now that that's not a possibility, the Rangers want to slow down the process so he doesn't aggravate the injury trying to come back too fast. It still seems that Kinsler could be out a couple of weeks to start the season while he works to get the ankle to 100 percent. "Let's not get too carried away," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "When he comes back, we want him to come back one time. We want to be cautious. When we get him back, he'll be back for 150 games, although we're going to do our best to monitor him."
Garko joins Rangers
ARLINGTON -- First baseman Ryan Garko joined the Rangers on Friday and was one of the hitters who stepped in against Darren O'Day in a simulated game. O'Day is a sidearming right-handed pitcher. Garko, a right-handed hitter, was acquired mainly to give left-handed-hitting first baseman Chris Davis a day off if needed against left-handed pitchers.Davis hit .189 against left-handers in 2009 after hitting .289 against them as a rookie in '08. Garko hit .308 against left-handers while playing for the Indians and Giants last year and is hitting .313 against them in his career. "Chris handled them pretty good in Spring Training," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "He's going to get his chances against lefties. Ryan will get starts at first base. I don't have the numbers."
Mendoza sold to Royals
ARLINGTON -- Pitcher Luis Mendoza, who had a 4.50 ERA in Spring Training, was sold to the Royals for $200,000 on Friday. Mendoza was out of options and could not be sent to the Minors without going through waivers. The Rangers expected him to be claimed.Mendoza was 4-8 with a 7.73 ERA in 14 starts and 18 relief appearances for the Rangers in parts of the past three seasons. He was in their rotation at the start of the 2008 season. "We saw this spring exactly what we have been seeing in the past," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "He had moments where he lit things up, but he didn't make our bullpen. I'm very happy that the opportunity has been presented for him to go to somebody else. He's always been a great kid who always showed up and showed flashes of brilliance. He's a lucky guy, now he has to take advantage of that." The Rangers originally acquired Mendoza from the Red Sox for pitcher Bryan Corey on July 30, 2006.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.