ARLINGTON, Texas — The Texas Rangers are getting healthier, which means the roster carousel is cranking up.
The Rangers activated left-handed reliever Joely Rodríguez prior to Friday night's game against the Baltimore Orioles. To make room for Rodríguez, the Rangers optioned right-handed pitcher Josh Sborz to the alternate training site in Round Rock.
Rodríguez had an ankle injury slow him down before spring training began, which pushed his throwing program further behind than initially anticipated. On his rehab assignment at Round Rock, he threw two scoreless innings with one hit, one walk, and three strikeouts in relief appearances on Monday and Tuesday against the Astros' alternate site squad in Corpus Christi.
Rodríguez gives Texas a valuable option in high-leverage innings, considering the losses of Jonathan Hernández, José Leclerc, and Matt Bush.
It won't be long until the Rangers make their next set of roster moves. Both Willie Calhoun and Brock Holt are eligible to be activated from the Injured List on Saturday. The Rangers have given every indication that Holt will be activated, and Calhoun is on his making his way from Round Rock to Arlington on Friday night.
Per Major League Baseball's COVID-19 protocols, Calhoun already went through his intake testing at the alternate training site. Therefore, additional testing is not required.
While the Rangers are sticking with 14 pitchers on their 26-man roster after the move to activate Rodríguez, manager Chris Woodward indicated they could go back to an even 13/13 split if both Calhoun and Holt are activated on Saturday. That would mean one pitcher and one position player would have to be taken off the active roster.
In pure conjecture, Kolby Allard could be in danger of being sent down to the alternate training site since the Rangers have already exercised his option for 2021 and can move him back and forth at will.
On the position player side, Anderson Tejeda would be one of the likely candidates to be sent down as well. While the Rangers really like his ability, it's clear he could used more development on the farm. He's also had his 2021 option exercised.