Rangers notes: Washington says club has plan if Cruz suspended

Posted Wednesday, Jul. 10, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
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Another report has surfaced saying that that Major League Baseball plans to dole out suspensions to as many as 20 players tied to the Biogenesis of America clinic that reportedly supplied them with performance-enhancing drugs.

The report said that penalties will be imposed after the All-Star break.

Texas Rangers right fielder Nelson Cruz is one of the players involved. He has stopped speaking about the investigation at the advice of his attorneys, but manager Ron Washington had some advice — and praise — for him as he prepares for his second All-Star appearance next week.

“There’s no sense in him thinking about what’s happened,” Washington said. “That’s not going anywhere.

“No matter how he’s handling it, he’s doing a damn good job with it. You have to give him credit for his mental toughness.”

Washington said that he isn’t worrying about it too much, and said that the Rangers have discussed what they will do if Cruz is suspended for 50 games and decides not to appeal or is suspended and an appeal goes against him before the season ends.

“There’s always something for me to worry about, but not this,” Washington said. “I know how I’m going to deal with it. We know how we’re going to deal with it.”

The Rangers’ internal candidates seem limited, though they could survive with an outfield of David Murphy, Craig Gentry and Leonys Martin. Manny Ramirez, who homered Tuesday at Triple A Round Rock, could play his way onto the roster.

A trade is also a possibility, though the Rangers aren’t sure if a difference-making right-handed-hitting outfielder will be available before the July 31 non-waiver trade deadline.

Profar in left again

Jurickson Profar said that he has no fears in left field and no problems playing out there, other than the sunlight at Rangers Ballpark. His manager, though, rates Profar as just “serviceable.”

But Profar has the confidence of outfield coach Gary Pettis, so Ron Washington gave him his second career start in left field Wednesday.

“It’s still an ongoing process,” Washington said. “He certainly makes himself more valuable by making himself serviceable out there.”

Profar knows he isn’t a Gold Glover and he isn’t interesting in playing left field full time. He made a diving catch Saturday in his outfield debut, which he admitted had a great deal to do with luck as he fought the sun.

“I never saw the ball,” he said. “I just dove where I thought the ball was going to be, and it just ended up in my glove.”

Out of mind

Right-hander Joakim Soria said he was ready to pitch after getting his first day off Tuesday since coming off the disabled list Sunday.

He’s asking for regular work because he wants to be of the mindset that he isn’t coming off his second Tommy John surgery. The less he thinks about that, the better he will pitch.

“I have to look at it that way,” he said. “I’m trying to prepare myself for anything. If you don’t do that, you start protecting your arm and then your mind is behind. I’m ready to go, and it’s ready to go.”

Briefly

• Right-hander Alexi Ogando will make his second rehab start Thursday night for Triple A Round Rock. He is likely to need at least one more before coming off the disabled list.

• Utility man Jeff Baker (sprained right thumb) and outfielder Craig Gentry (broken left hand) could be ready shortly after the All-Star break, assistant general manager Thad Levine said.

Jeff Wilson, 817-390-7760 Twitter: @JeffWilson_FWST

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