Texas Rangers

August 24, 2014

Rangers trade Soto to Oakland for cash

Geovany Soto appeared in only 10 games this season, batting .237 with one home run and three RBIs.

The Rangers finalized a trade Sunday, sending catcher Geovany Soto to Oakland for cash considerations.

The contract of Triple A Round Rock catcher Tomas Telis will be purchased Monday.

“The biggest reason was to give us an opportunity to take an added look at Robinson Chirinos” and also Telis up close over the last five weeks of the season, general manager Jon Daniels said.

Telis hit .345 in 139 at-bats in the Pacific Coast League.

“He’s really taken a step forward. Plus, it gives Geo a chance to win.”

Soto was acquired in 2012 for cash considerations from the Chicago Cubs to fortify the Rangers’ catching depth. He was slated to be the team’s Opening Day starter before two surgical procedures sent him to the sidelines.

The most significant setback was right knee surgery to repair torn cartilage that caused him to miss three and a half months. Soto returned to the team July 16.

He returned to the disabled list a week later with a right groin strain.

Soto also had a brush with the law in July after being picked up by Grapevine police and put under arrest and charged with misdemeanor possession of marijuana of less than two ounces.

The catcher took responsibility and pleaded for forgiveness from teammates in an emotional team meeting days after the arrest.

Ultimately, Soto appeared in only 10 games this season, batting .237 with one home run and three RBIs.

The trade also sent away the personal catcher of pitcher Yu Darvish, whose return this season remains questionable while he deals with right elbow inflammation. The Rangers traded Darvish’s other preferred catcher, Chris Gimenez, the day before to Cleveland.

No consideration was given to that, Daniels said, though if Darvish had been active, perhaps.

“I’m a pretty strong believer that Yu can succeed regardless of who’s behind the plate,” Daniels said.

Holland back on

General manager Jon Daniels said he expects Derek Holland to make a sixth and perhaps last minor league rehabilitation start Thursday at Triple A Round Rock.

Holland, out all season recovering from knee surgery, was scratched from Sunday’s rehab start because of back spasms, which he said he initially felt while bending down in the dugout on Friday.

He pronounced himself healed before Sunday’s game.

“It’s been frustrating. We’re really close” to returning, Holland said.

Frasor returns

Former Texas reliever Jason Frasor, traded last month to Kansas City for Triple A pitcher Spencer Patton, worked a scoreless inning against his former team on Sunday.

“It’s been a real easy transition,” said Frasor, who is 2-0 with a 1.97 ERA in 14 games covering 9 1/3 innings. “And back-to-back years I’ve been in a pennant race.”

“The first nine years … no meaningful baseball in August and September, now back-to-back years. That’s what it’s all about.”

Miles from where he started

Miles Mikolas’ on-the-job training as a big-league starting pitcher continues Monday in the opener of a three-game series at Seattle.

Mikolas makes his 10th start of 2014 on an extended five days’ rest of taking a no-decision against Miami last week. The right-hander had made only six starts in the minors in the last four seasons, all with Round Rock this season.

“You can still see the inexperience,” manager Ron Washington said. “The guy has been a reliever all his career. You’re going to see some steps forward and steps back.

“But he shows you some stuff out there that you can get excited about.”


• Shin-Soo Choo was out of the Rangers’ lineup on Sunday because he was, Washington said, “a little bit under the weather.” His status will be reevaluated Monday.
• Jake Smolinski said he expects the protective boot helping heal the cracked bone in his foot to be removed soon.

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