Texas Rangers right-hander Chi Chi Gonzalez has a partial tear in his right ulnar collateral ligament and will be shut down for six weeks.
The Rangers are hoping Gonzalez will be able to recover without surgery but won’t know until he is re-scanned in six weeks. He’ll receive a stem cell injection on Monday. Team physician Dr. Keith Meister examined Gonzalez on Friday morning in Arizona after Gonzalez expressed discomfort.
Gonzalez, who was in the hunt to earn the fifth starter job in the pitching rotation, struggled in his last two spring outings, allowing a combined 8earned runs in 5 2/3 innings.
He probably will miss at least the first three months of the season.
“I know the doctors feel good about it,” Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. “Last time I saw him [pitch] I was encouraged. It’s something that flared up on him. Everybody is in agreement to treat him conservatively and see if we can get him right.”
Rangers assistant general manager Josh Boyd said the club is hoping a conservative approach will work for Gonzalez and they’ll avoid Tommy John surgery, which means an absence of more than a year.
“Any time we have a six-week no-throw it’s not ideal,” Boyd said.