Rangers right-hander Nick Martinez was optioned to Triple A Round Rock Wednesday afternoon slimming the candidates for the 25-man Opening Day Roster to 29.
Martinez has pitched well this spring, holding opponents to two earned runs in his last 9 1/3 innings. Rangers manager Jeff Banister said recently that he considered Martinez a starter only at the moment, meaning he was unlikely to be used as a middle reliever early in the season. Injuries to starters Andrew Cashner, Tyson Ross and Chi Chi Gonzalez have also limited the club’s options.
Right-hander A.J. Griffin has sewn up the No. 4 starter spot with a solid spring. He had the best April of Rangers’ starters a year ago in his first season since having Tommy John in 2014.