8/17/2013 9:02 P.M. ET
Bullpen not overworked, says Washington
By Master Tesfatsion / MLB.com
ARLINGTON -- The Rangers' rotation entered Saturday with a 2.94 ERA over the last 19 games (125 1/3 innings), so manager Ron Washington won't buy that his bullpen is overworked.
"They shouldn't be," Washington said. "I don't think they've been used a whole lot lately. Since we came out of the break, I think the load has been spread around pretty good. I think if anything becomes of them not getting something done, I think it's somebody making an excuse."
Neal Cotts and Tanner Scheppers each allowed a home run each after Derek Holland threw seven shutout innings Friday against the Mariners. It was the first time since July 30 the bullpen allowed multiple runs.
Kyle Seager's two-run homer off Cotts in the eighth was just the second time the left-handed reliever has allowed multiple runs this season. Justin Smoak's solo shot was just the fifth home run allowed by Scheppers this season.
"Cotts has been nails," Washington said. "He gave up one [Friday] night. Overused? No. He threw a ball in the wrong spot. Schep? He hasn't been used a whole lot in the second half. Overused because he gave up a bomb? He threw the ball in the wrong spot. I'm not going with that one."
The bullpen had the fourth lowest ERA in the American League (3.04) entering Saturday's contest. The relievers didn't allow a run in 21 of their last 33 innings with a 2.27 ERA in that span.
Ogando to miss start with shoulder inflammation
ARLINGTON -- Rangers right-hander Alexi Ogando will not make his start Monday due to inflammation around a nerve in his right shoulder. He received an injection Saturday to help deal with the issue.
Matt Garza, scheduled to start Tuesday, will now pitch Monday on regular rest due to Thursday's off-day, and the Rangers have not announced a starter for Tuesday. Rangers manager Ron Washington said the club has "three or four possible options" to make the spot start, including long reliever Ross Wolf.
"We'll see who gives us the best option where we don't hurt ourselves," Washington said.
The Rangers hope Ogando will miss just one start. He's already been on the disabled list twice this season with triceps tendinitis and shoulder inflammation in his right arm. He's 1-2 with a 4.68 ERA in five starts since he returned from the DL on July 23. Washington said it would be premature to pencil Ogando back into the rotation or as a reliever when he returns.
"We'll discuss it today and see what we have to do going into [Sunday], because he won't be starting," Washington said. "We'll see what type of decision we'll have to make."
Tepesch pleased with first bullpen session
ARLINGTON -- Nick Tepesch had his first bullpen session while on the disabled list before Friday's game. The Rangers right-hander said he felt good about the 25-pitch session, which featured fastballs and changeups.
He'll have his next bullpen session Monday, where he plans to "bump it up" past 25 pitches. Tepesch has been on the disabled list since July 7 with right elbow inflammation.
Rangers general manager Jon Daniels hopes to get Tepesch back around early September.
Washington pleased with plan to expand replay
ARLINGTON -- Major League Baseball plans to expand the usage of instant replay next year. It would allow managers three challenges a game, one challenge for the first six innings and two after that point, similar to the NFL's model. Rangers manager Ron Washington doesn't see the league incorporating a coach in the press box or access with replay to help guide his decision to challenge a call like the NFL does.
"I don't think so," Washington said. "It may happen. ... I think it's going to be nice because there's some plays you see where you know for a fact the guy was safe or out. The base coaches are going to come into play a lot. They're going to have to come in there and see what happens and give the manager a heads up on what they think. I'll take their opinion."
Washington said by the time that system happens in baseball, he'll be retired. The Rangers skipper might've challenged a few plays from Friday's game if the system was already in place. He argued three close calls against the Mariners, two at second base and one at home plate. A.J. Pierzynski and Elvis Andrus were thrown out at second and home plate and Ian Kinsler received an error when he failed to touch second base on a possible double play opportunity.
Washington went back to look at the plays after the game and felt second-base umpire Angel Hernandez and home-plate umpire Doug Eddings made the right calls.
"They were in good position," Washington said. "As long as they're getting good position, you can deal with them being where they're supposed to be and maybe making a bad call, but it irritates you when they're out of position and make a bad call.
"Not only is it giving you as the manager an opportunity to do some challenging, but it also gives the umpires the chance to focus on their job a little harder, too. Will they be wrong sometimes? Yes, but I guarantee you most of the time they'll be right because now they've got to fight to get in the right position because they're being scrutinized."
• Rangers right-hander Neftali Feliz was scheduled to continue his medical rehabilitation assignment Saturday, pitching an inning for Triple-A Round Rock.
• Friday's game was just the third this season the Rangers didn't win after holding a lead through seven innings.
• Adrian Beltre and Mariners ace Felix Hernandez continued their friendly rivalry Saturday night. Beltre was 8-of-25 with a home run and seven strikeouts against his former teammate entering the game.
Master Tesfatsion is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.