8/13/2014 11:45 P.M. ET
Arencibia makes it trio of position players to pitch
Rangers catcher/first baseman tosses scoreless ninth inning in 10-1 loss
By T.R. Sullivan / MLB.com
ARLINGTON -- Rangers manager Ron Washington hates bringing in position players to pitch in blowout games. It may say something about the Rangers' season that he has now done it three times this year.
J.P. Arencibia was the latest position player to take the mound, pitching a scoreless ninth in the Rangers 10-1 loss to the Rays on Wednesday night.
"It's just been an experience," Washington said. "You take it on and you know for the most part it's not a normal deal. It has been a necessity."
Arencibia, throwing 69-73 miles per hour, started his inning by getting Matt Joyce on a foul popup. Logan Forsythe beat out an infield single but James Loney flied out to center and Sean Rodriguez flied out to left. Arencibia was done after just 10 pitches.
Arencibia, not wanting to make light of the Rangers' pitching plight, declined to discuss his outing, saying he was just doing what he could to help the team.
Those were not knuckle balls just super slow gravity pitches... At 73 mph they have to drop.. #ThatWasFun- jp arencibia (@jparencibia9) August 14, 2014
Mitch Moreland pitched a scoreless inning in a 12-1 loss to the Rockies on May 6 and Chris Gimenez did the same in a 15-6 loss to the Angels on July 10.
Arencibia was the second Rangers pitcher to make his Major League pitching debut. Alex Claudio retired all three hitters he faced in the eighth inning after getting called up from Triple-A Round Rock earlier in the day.
"Claudio did a heck of a job," Washington said. "He came in and threw strikes and got three quick outs."
The Rangers have now used 35 pitchers this season. That's two short of the Major League record held by the 2002 Padres. The Rangers are still hoping Derek Holland will pitch for them this season and they have a couple of potential September callups in Spencer Patton and Corey Knebel. Both were acquired in trades last month and currently pitching at Round Rock.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.