Buzz: Mike Napoli, Robbie Ross work toward return

ARLINGTON, Texas – The Texas Rangers are hoping a couple of injured players return to the active roster in the next week.

Catcher Mike Napoli will start a rehab assignment with Double-A Frisco as part of the Texas League Championship Series. Frisco is in Springfield for Games 1 and 2 tonight and Wednesday. The series returns home Friday.

Manager Ron Washington said the “intention” is for Napoli to play in three games. He’d catch seven innings tonight, nine innings Wednesday and DH on Friday. But Washington didn’t rule out that Napoli could return before that third game if all goes well. We’ll see.

Washington added that he plans on sharing the catching duties between Napoli and Geovany Soto when Napoli returns, making it about an equal split.

Meanwhile, Robbie Ross threw from 175 feet on Tuesday with no problems and is expected to throw off a mound on Thursday. If all goes well, he could return on Friday, the first day he's eligible.

Other notes:

* Washington wants to get Adrian Beltre a day off and several of his other regulars another one, as well.

* Washington is pleased with Leonys Martin's progress, saying he's "180 degrees" from where he was last year. The club has worked with him on running the bases, having better instincts to read balls and take an extra bag when he can and his ability to make the right decisions when he's in the field (throwing to the right base, cutoff man).