Texas Rangers

Rangers Reaction: A connection to Harvey, but how much would be gained by adding him?

Matt Harvey will be designated for assignment Saturday by the New York Mets, whose former pitching coach in his first season as the Rangers' assistant pitching coach.
Matt Harvey will be designated for assignment Saturday by the New York Mets, whose former pitching coach in his first season as the Rangers' assistant pitching coach. The Associated Press

Rougned Odor is scheduled to head to Double A Frisco on Saturday to begin a rehab assignment after his strained left hamstring cleared all the final tests with the Texas Rangers' medical people.

He is expected to serve as the designated hitter in his first game before manning second base. Odor could be back in the Rangers' lineup by Monday to open a three-game series against the Detroit Tigers.

Adrian Beltre might not be too far away, and his return will really put the Rangers in a tough spot when deciding what to do with Isiah Kiner-Falefa, who continues to look the part of a major-leaguer.

By why look that far ahead? Who knows what could happen with these Rangers.

Here's some Rangers Reaction to a 5-1 loss to the Boston Red Sox.

1. Mike Minor is very likely to pitch next on four days' rest, with the Rangers without Martin Perez and without an off day before Minor's turn in the rotation comes up again.

Manager Jeff Banister didn't commit 100 percent to it Friday, but him saying it's likely is like a full-on commitment.

There are always alternatives, like dropping rookie left-hander Yohander Mendez into the rotation or giving right-hander Jesse Chavez a spot start.

And there's Matt Harvey.

The New York Mets plan to designate him for assignment Saturday after he refused an assignment to the minor leagues. This comes after he very begrudgingly accepted a demotion to the bullpen.

It all comes amid his past transgressions, like violating team rules. Yeah, he was caught out partying recently, but that's not wildly unusual for a baseball player.

Yet, there are many in the game who would be interested in taking a chance on Harvey. One of them is Rangers assistant pitching coach Dan Warthen, who oversaw Harvey during his best Mets days.

The Rangers are really thin on starting pitching depth, and after Matt Moore's trials Wednesday at Cleveland, perhaps the Rangers might want to give him time to figure things out.

Harvey would allow them to do that.

Sounds like a match. Well ...

The Rangers certainly aren't going to trade for Harvey and agree to pay the remainder of his nearly $6 million contract. Even if the Mets agree to eat much of what's left, the Rangers aren't going to want to part with a minor-leaguer.

Maybe there's a possibility that a team would trade for him.

The more likely route is for teams to wait for Harvey to clear waivers and become a free agent. At that point, a team that signs him is on the hook only for the prorated league minimum of $545,000.

That's right up the Rangers' financial alley.

But if Harvey is indeed a bad dude, the kind of influence a team wouldn't want around young players, he's not a fit for the Rangers. Harvey can be a free agent at the end of the season, and were he to flourish if the Rangers were to sign him, what are the chances that he would re-sign with the Rangers?

Signing Harvey because Moore has been bad isn't a good reason. This isn't the 2015 Matt Harvey.

The Rangers have been a home to strays throughout the years, most recently with Carlos Gomez. That was need-based, as Shin-Soo Choo broke his arm.

The Rangers don't need Harvey, the potential headaches or the mediocre pitching he has posted the past few seasons.

It's probably best to take a pass here.

2. Right-handed starting pitchers were 1-13 this season against the Boston Red Sox, which is pretty astonishing. Maybe it's a good thing the Rangers have so many left-handed pitchers.

Bartolo Colon got them Friday, and "Big Sexy" was game. He didn't win the game, of course, but he lasted seven innings and allowed only five hits.

The problem is that four of the hits were solo home runs, including two by Rafael Devers. His pair would have been enough against Rick Porcello and the big arms the Red Sox have in their bullpen.

Colon, though, continues to give the Rangers a chance every time out. Not even Cole Hamels has done that.

The Rangers could have won all five of Colon's starts, but have won only two. He hasn't gone fewer than 5 2/3 innings in any of his starts and three times has gone seven.

All of this from a pitcher the Rangers really weren't sure they wanted on their roster for more than one start. They made him renegotiate his minor-league deal, for crying out loud.

The only complaint here is that he doesn't talk to the media more, though that is his prerogative and he doesn't seem to be doing it out of spite. He's always professional and gracious when he does, but there's more there that, selfishly, the media is missing the chance to tell readers, viewers and listeners (but most importantly readers).

3. The Rangers' are 1-2 in the past three games against three former Cy Young winners.

Corey Kluber (2014, 2017) limited them Wednesday, they rocked (again) David Price (2012) on Thursday and were silenced Friday by Rick Porcello (2016).

"You've got to take your hat off to Porcello," manager Jeff Banister said Friday. "It seemed like he had all his stuff working."

The only one who had sustained success was Nomar Mazara, who doubled in the second and accounted for the Rangers' lone run with a homer in the fourth. Mazara has homered in a career-high four straight games, a streak that is three shy of the club record held by Kevin Mench (2006).

Mazara has taken the team lead in RBIs (23) from Joey Gallo while pushing his average to .291 thanks to a 12-for-35 stretch (.343) the past eight games.

The season is only 34 games old, but Mazara looks to be realizing his full potential. The left-handed hitter is hitting left-handed pitchers for the first time in his career, and that was the missing piece to his offense.

He had one homer against lefties in each of his first two seasons. He has matched that already this season.

His current hot streak includes homers off two of the Cy Young winners and extra-base hits against all three.

"I'm feeling pretty good," Mazara said. "I was telling the hitting coaches this is one of the best times I've felt hitting because I don't feel like my bat is jumping. I'm just really using my hands, and I just go up there and if they throw me a good pitch early I just try to put the ball in play."