ARLINGTON -- First baseman Mike Napoli joins third baseman Adrian Beltre and center fielder Carlos Gomez as the three Rangers regulars who are dealing with a physical issue down the stretch.Napoli has been diagnosed with a stress reaction in his lower right leg, and was not in the lineup for
ARLINGTON -- First baseman Mike Napoli joins third baseman Adrian Beltre and center fielder Carlos Gomez as the three Rangers regulars who are dealing with a physical issue down the stretch.
Napoli has been diagnosed with a stress reaction in his lower right leg, and was not in the lineup for Wednesday's game against the Mariners. He wants to play, but that will be determined on a game-by-game basis.
"I think I can go out there and deal with the pain," Napoli said. "I said I can play. I'd like to play, because I'm not the type of person who says, 'That's it, I'm done,' without knowing if I can go out and play with it. So I want to go out there and play."
Napoli started feeling the issue last week in Atlanta, and underwent an MRI on both Monday and Tuesday to confirm the diagnosis. General manager Jon Daniels said Napoli could still come off the bench if needed, and may still get some starts in future games.
It will be an issue going down the stretch and possibly in postseason, if the Rangers make it.
"There is some risk in playing on it," Daniels said. "He can play to tolerance. He is not in the lineup today, but can come off the bench. He could come off the bench, and he could start some games. We are going to try and manage it."
Beltre is sidelined with a strained left hamstring and Gomez has a sprained right ankle.
"We check in with all of them, but it's a little different situation [with Napoli]," manager Jeff Banister said. "What I do know about Napoli is he is a grinder. He knows what it's like to play a long season, and what you have to put yourself through. I feel comfortable he'll be ready in any situation."
Daniels said Napoli's situation is why the Rangers decided to call up Willie Calhoun, the club's No. 2 prospect per MLBPipeline.com, to play in left field. That allows the Rangers to use Joey Gallo at either first or third base, pairing him with either Drew Robinson, Will Middlebrooks or Ryan Rua.
Daniels said the Rangers aren't considering any more callups at this point.
T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast.