Rangers notes: Alexi Ogando could miss Monday start against Astros

Posted Friday, Aug. 16, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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Pitcher Alexi Ogando’s availability for his scheduled start Monday is in jeopardy while he deals with inflammation around a nerve in his right shoulder, Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said Friday.

A scan of the shoulder uncovered the issue. Ogando has been on medication and his symptoms have improved, Daniels said.

The diagnosis was made by Rangers team doctor Keith Meister, though the scan was also sent to Dr. James Andrews, the renowned orthopedic surgeon based in Birmingham, Ala., for an opinion, Daniels said.

Ogando, who has had two stints this season on the disabled list for unrelated arm injuries, has not been ruled out for Monday against the Houston Astros at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington, but “it’s headed that way,” Daniels said.

“There’s a possibility he could get an injection over the weekend,” Daniels said. “If he does, he would miss his start against Houston.”

Beyond that immediate time frame, Daniels said, it’s too early to make any firm conclusions.

Triple-A Round Rock starter Josh Lindblom or Rangers reliever Ross Wolf would likely make the start Monday in Ogando’s absence, but because of an off-day Thursday, Matt Garza could work Monday on his four days of rest.

That would merely move the spot start back a day.

Another possibility, manager Ron Washington said, is newly acquired lefty Travis Blackley.

Blackley, who made 42 relief appearances before being acquired Wednesday in a trade with Houston, hasn’t thrown more than 40 pitches in a game this season. Washington believed that Blackley could throw 60-70.

Ogando, whose stints on the DL this season were for biceps tendinitis and shoulder inflammation, is 1-2 with a 4.68 ERA in five starts since returning from the disabled list last month.

Berkman update

The Rangers still aren’t sure what to do with designated hitter Lance Berkman, who was back in Arlington on Friday after playing four games during a rehabilitation stint in the minors.

He missed his 35th game Friday since going on the disabled list with hip inflammation in early July. He’s also had a lingering knee issue. Berkman continues to feel pain in both areas, though he was able to run the bases in his minor-league games.

There’s a possibility that Berkman will remain inactive until Sept. 1.

At issue at this point is not Berkman’s return to full health. That’s almost certainly not going to happen.

Rather, what role can he play down the stretch with a bum knee and an aggravated hip?

The kids of Caracas

Elation probably doesn’t adequately describe the emotion of Martin Perez, whose 12th start of the season Saturday will be no ordinary outing for the youthful Venezuelan lefty.

He’ll go opposite compatriot Felix Hernandez, Seattle’s right-hander who, along with Johan Santana, is the guy all Venezuelan tenderfoots yearn to be.

“To me, he’s the best pitcher in the big leagues,” said Perez, who will be seeking his sixth victory. “He doesn’t care if he’s losing or winning. He’s always competing. That’s what I like.”

Perez is 2-0 with a 1.62 ERA in his past three starts, including a complete game-victory in his last outing against Houston.

Feliz update

Rangers right-handed pitcher Neftali Feliz, who is battling triceps tendinitis after missing all of the last year recovering from Tommy John surgery, successfully completed a bullpen workout Thursday and reported no issues, Jon Daniels said.

He’ll likely begin a rehabilitation stint in the minors soon, Daniels said.

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