Texas Rangers

New calf issue puts Beltre’s return to Rangers lineup on hold

Adrian Beltre’s right calf continues to be bothersome to the point that his 2017 debut for the Texas Rangers is on hold indefinitely.

The third baseman said on Tuesday that he is dealing with a new strain in his right calf after feeling something grab Saturday while running the bases, and an MRI exam showed that he has another Grade 1 strain.

He is already on the 10-day disabled list with a different strain in the right calf, but he was eligible for reinstatement Sunday. When he didn’t play in the finale of a six-game season-opening homestand, the general assumption was that he would debut Tuesday to begin a three-game series against the Los Angeles Angels.

However, a May 1 return from the DL, or later, doesn’t seem far-fetched after the Rangers said they will take a conservative approach to Beltre’s rehab.

“I’ve been better,” Beltre said. “I’m disappointed more than anything. I expected to be playing Sunday, and it’s not going to happen. We’ll see what happens.”

Beltre said that he was testing the original calf strain, in what he expected to be his final workout before being activated, when he felt discomfort in a new location in the calf. He underwent an MRI exam Monday after there was no improvement Sunday.

He first felt an issue in the right calf March 27, only three days before spring camp broke, and the Rangers decided April 1 that he would begin the season on the DL with the potential to miss only the first five games.

“That’s why we put no timetable on anything,” manager Jeff Banister said. “Obviously, we’d like to have him out there, but, again, it’s a purely day-to-day process.”

Beltre, who spoke before the diagnosis, was hopeful that he would need only a few more days, but he made it seem like his absence would be extended by more than that. He wasn’t able to say if the new strain is as significant or worse than the initial one, but he also gave a fairly direct assessment of what he’s feeling.

He isn’t confident that it’s something he can manage, as he has done so many other times with other strains in his legs.

“It’s not just tightness,” said Beltre, who missed time at the start of spring training because of a strain in his left calf. “My whole body is tight. This is something that is not right, so that’s why I’m trying to figure out what it is and that’s why we went to doctors who know about that.

“I can’t tell you what it is, if it’s good or bad or something that is going to be ready in a few days or longer than that.”

The Rangers entered the beginning of a nine-game road trip against American League West rivals batting only .215 but tied for the MLB lead in home runs (11). They were also ranked third in the AL in runs, RBI and slugging percentage.

Joey Gallo started the first six games of the season at third base and was there again Tuesday in a late game at Angel Stadium. Though batting only .200, Gallo has two homers and seven RBI, five of which came Sunday.

The left-handed hitting slugger will not platoon with Jurickson Profar, Banister said.

“He has earned the opportunity to play,” he said. “The qualifier to that is there are going to be days, like everybody else, that’s he’s going to need a day.”

Beltre will need multiple days. He could use some good news after toiling with being out of the lineup far longer than he ever expected.

Unfortunately for him, it he will be out indefinitely.

“Any way that I’m not on the field is difficult for me,” said Beltre, who is 58 hits shy of 3,000. “I hate this process of being on the bench and being a contributor and not able to help our ballclub and not know when I’m going to be back.

“It’s disappointing. I’m not a patient man, but I’m trying to be patient with this and try to find a way to understand what’s going on.”

Rangers at Angels

9:07 p.m. Wednesday, FSSW

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