<
>

Ross hopes to return to Rangers' rotation

Robbie Ross, who's 4-3 with a 4.97 ERA at Round Rock, hopes to return to the majors. Rodger Mallison/Fort Worth Star-Telegram/MCT via Getty Images

ROUND ROCK, Texas -- Left handed pitcher Robbie Ross was the 93rd move of the Round Rock Express on June 18.

The Texas Rangers were done with Ross.

Ross had an ERA of 5.61 and was 1-4 as a starter. He was moved from the starter’s role to the bullpen and became more of a mess.

In nine relief appearances, Ross gave up 12 earned runs in 12 innings.

He was sent to Triple-A to fix some things with his control and mechanics.

Ross found a resurgence and most likely deserves a call back to the big club soon.

He’s become one of the recent bright spots of the pitchers that have been moved around in the Rangers organization within the last month or so.

He’s 4-3 with a 4.97 ERA at Round Rock and in the midst of a three-game win streak. On Aug. 2, he pitched a complete game in a victory over Memphis.

“I hope so,” Ross said on a possible return. “Obviously I want to go back. I want to be back on the big league team. It all depends on how well it keeps going. I’m just trying to work on what I can control and do whatever I have to do and get back, obviously try to play as best as I can so they have to make a decision, so I can get back.”

Ross said he returned to the basics to solve his problems. He had to command his pitches more and get ahead of hitters. In his last two starts at Round Rock, he has seven strikeouts and zero walks. When he’s ahead of the count, hitters are batting .234 against him with 14 strikeouts in 13 1/3 innings.

With the Rangers, Ross struggled with his control and mechanics. When hitters were ahead of the count, they hit .397 against Ross and .298 with the count even. Even when Ross was ahead, hitters still had success hitting .300.

Most young pitchers struggle at times, but when Ross was moved to the bullpen, he failed to make adjustments on a consistent basis.

“It was everything,” Ross said. “A mind thing where you have to overcome the bad stuff that’s been going on and going out there and work as hard as you can to not make it so hard. It was a thing like you try and get an out every day and you pressure yourself into doing good. It’s actually hard to work under that type of pressure.”

Ross is relaxed now and as he works on his game, he notices the big club continues to have its own inconsistencies on the mound.

When and if Ross returns, he wants to become a starter again, where he’s the strongest.

“I like to be a starter,” he said. “I love to go back and start and help the team that way. I feel like I can help and maybe I can get out there and get an opportunity and maybe I can progress from there.”