Daniel McCutchen makes 8th big league camp just in time for Rangers

03/25/2014 5:50 PM

03/25/2014 5:52 PM

Looking for a chance

Daniel McCutchen will only be in the Texas Rangers’ big league camp for two days, but he’ll take it.

“Better late than never,” McCutchen said. “I had seven big league camps in a row and I’m counting this as No. 8 because I barely snuck in there.”

McCutchen not only finds himself on the big league side, but also with an outside chance of making the team. The Rangers’ bullpen is in flux with three spots remaining and the team is looking at who could fill a multi-inning role.

The 31-year-old McCutchen, who was born in McKinney, has that opportunity after beginning his career as a starter and turning into a reliever who spent parts of four seasons in the big leagues with the Pirates from 2009-12. He is 8-11 with a career 4.77 ERA in 108 games.

McCutchen spent last season in the Orioles’ organization, but made the wrong headlines last April when he was slapped with a 50-game suspension for using performance-enhancing drugs.

But he found an opportunity to prolong his career with the Rangers this off-season, when he was signed in December to a minor league contract without an invitation to big league camp.

“I don’t know who has spots, who doesn’t,” McCutchen said. “I’m just going to keep doing what I’m doing and we’ll see what happens.”

Telling number

0 Pitchers from the 2012 Opening Day rotation in the 2014 Opening Day rotation. The 2012 group featured Colby Lewis, Matt Harrison, Derek Holland, Yu Darvish and Neftali Feliz. All five are still in the organization, but none of them are expected to be on the Opening Day roster.

Words of Wash

“Mentally, I’m strong. You can’t break me down mentally. I might get hurt a little bit physically. I’m not the physical specimen I used to be, but mentally I’m good.” — on his mental state despite the daily injury news

Injury report

RHP Yu Darvish (stiff neck): Will not make his Opening Day start and is being further evaluated by neck and back specialist Drew Dossett.

2B Jurickson Profar (torn muscle in right shoulder): Will miss first 10-12 weeks of season.

C Geovany Soto (torn meniscus in right knee): Will have surgery Wednesday and will miss 10-12 weeks.

OF Engel Beltre (fractured right tibia): Will undergo surgery and begin season on disabled list.

SS Elvis Andrus (soreness right forearm): Turned double plays Tuesday and is progressing well. Expected to play in the field Friday or Saturday.

LHP Matt Harrison (lower back stiffness): Scheduled to throw three innings in exhibition game Friday.

LHP Derek Holland (microfracture surgery on left knee): Scheduled for bullpen session April 2.

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