Saturday, July 20, 2013
Buzz: Berkman will balk at rehab assignment
By Todd Wills
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Lance Berkman planned to hit again in the batting cages Saturday as he tries to return quickly from a strained left hip that has him on the 15-day disabled list.
One thing Berkman doesn't plan on doing: a medical rehabilitation assignment when he has completed all the baseball activities he needs to do to play in a game again.
"I'm not going on a rehab assignment," the 37-year old veteran said. "I don't need to do it, and I'm not going to do it."
Berkman has the right to refuse a rehab assignment with five years of service time in the big leagues. The Rangers will certainly encourage him to play a few days for Triple-A Round Rock or Double-A Frisco.
"I'm not commenting," manager Ron Washington said. "When he's ready, we'll deal with it."
Berkman says he can get the at-bats he needs against major league hitters, even though he hasn't played in two weeks and was hitting .176 (13-for-74) in his last 20 games.
"It's not like my timing has been great all year," Berkman said. "So maybe it will work in reverse."
Cruz shakes migraine: Right fielder Nelson Cruz said that the migraine headache that kept him out of Friday night's game finally went away Saturday around noon. It's the first migraine he's suffered as a player.
"When I was a kid, I would get that feeling but I didn't know what it was," Cruz said. "It never stayed long."
Cruz was sent home during Friday's 3-1 loss to Baltimore and was not available to pinch hit in the ninth inning.
Lewis throws bullpen: Right-hander Colby Lewis threw a bullpen session Friday and is all ready to go for his rehab start on Monday.
Lewis expects to throw 60-65 pitches for Double-A Frisco in the second of what will likely be four rehab starts before the Rangers know if he is ready to take the next step and pitch in a big league game. His demeanor continues to be very much on the optimistic side.
"This is the best I've felt," Lewis said. "There's no atypical soreness."
Lewis is a week shy of a year since he had surgery to repair a torn flexor tendon in his right elbow.
Grimm is fine: Rookie right-hander Justin Grimm threw a bullpen and said everything is fine with the forearm issue that forced him out of his last start on July 12 in Detroit.
"I was a little rusty," Grimm said. "I worked on my mechanics on a couple of my pitches. My delivery was a little off."
Grimm will not go back into the rotation but rather pitch out of the bullpen. The Rangers are going with a nine-man bullpen until they have to activate Yu Darvish and Alexi Ogando on Monday and Tuesday.
Minor matters: The Rangers announced their monthly minor league awards on Saturday.
• Class A Hickory left-hander Luis Parra was the pitcher of the month after going 3-1 with a 1.16 ERA.
• Hickory infielder Ryan Rua was the player of the month after batting .298 with 10 home runs and 23 RBIs.
• Double-A Frisco outfielder Ryan Strausborger was the defender of the month after starting the season with a 92-game errorless streak.
• Double-A Frisco/Triple-A Round Rock right-hander Ben Rowen was the reliever of the month after pitching 12⅓ scoreless innings and saving five games.