Texas Rangers left-hander Derek Holland is scheduled to pitch two innings at Double-A Frisco on Wednesday.
Holland has been out with a knee injury since January. He’s scheduled to go through pitcher’s fielding practice on Sunday and will pitch two innings with Frisco if his body responds well.
Holland echoed the sentiments of general manager Jon Daniels who said more than a week ago in Toronto that Holland would likely be pitching if the club was involved in a pennant race. Holland, more than anything, wants to rejoin his teammates on a day-to-day basis.
“Being on the DL makes you realize a lot of things aren’t going your way and makes me feel like I’m not a part of the team,” he said. “The struggles they’ve been having I haven’t really been a part of it but that’s why I want to get out there as much as I can. If we go down I want to go down with them.”
Holland said he respects the club’s decision to take his return slow to ward off reinjuring his knee. But it’s been hard for him, he said.
“It’s been one of those things where I can’t sleep at night because you want to get out there,” Holland said. “Overall, it’s just been a frustrating experience being on the DL. I’ve never had something like this, something this long. In my mind, I’m ready to go. Their mindset and what they see is different than mine. I’m an athlete, I’m trying to get out there and play. They’re the trainers and they’re there to make sure I don’t do anything stupid to hurt myself so I have to respect what they say.”
If he’s feeling good, Holland said the plan is for him to gradually increase his pitch count with outings every five days, beginning on Wednesday in Frisco.
“We’ll see how it goes. My main focus is just to get out there and show them that I’m ready to go,” he said.