Notes: Woodward on Deadline; Andrus close

August 30th, 2020

ARLINGTON -- Rangers manager Chris Woodward said he is hoping will be with the club after Monday’s Trade Deadline.

Woodward admitted that may be wishful thinking. But he also suggested the Rangers are asking much in return for a guy who is signed next season at a comparatively reasonable $8 million.

“Like I said before, if I was an opposing team that was in contention to win a World Series, that would be a guy I target,” Woodward said. “But it might be a heavy ask. I don’t know. He still has another year, pretty low price, this should be a pretty high asking price for us. I don’t know if somebody is willing to step up and do it.”

Jon Paul Morosi of MLB Network said it is “increasingly likely” Lynn will be traded by Monday. Just about every contending team has touched base with the Rangers, including the Yankees, Dodgers, Athletics, White Sox, Blue Jays, Padres and Twins.

Rangers general manager Jon Daniels and his assistants have no doubt canvassed every possible team that might have the slightest interest in Lynn.

“There are a ton of things being said and going on,” Woodward said.

The Rangers will know by Monday afternoon. They have other veterans who might be of interest, including pitchers and , infielder and outfielder .

The Rangers are willing to consider all options, but it is clear they would welcome more young talent into the system to complement the players they have brought up or added in the past few years.

“Especially if they fit our mold,” Woodward said. “They are hungry and want to get better, improve and are competitive on the field … absolutely. As long as they are somewhat close. It’s tough sometimes to get the 18- and 19-year-olds who are five years away. But if some of these guys are close and can help us, absolutely.”

Andrus nearing return
Shortstop went through a heavy pregame workout on Sunday and is expected to be activated when the Rangers open a three-game series against the Astros on Tuesday.

Andrus, sidelined since Aug. 19 with a strained lower back, is hitting .184 on the season. has been starting at shortstop in his absence. But Woodward said Andrus will be back at shortstop when he is activated.

“I've gotten a good look at Kiner,” Woodward said. “I love the way he plays, but Elvis has been our starting shortstop. I think we owe it to him to see how he looks and feels. He should be 100 percent. That's what I imagine and expect. I want to see him go out there and help us win games."

Frazier-Guzmán squeeze
When Andrus returns, Kiner-Falefa will go back to third base. That should mean Frazier goes back to first base, but the Rangers are also intrigued by the improvements made at the alternate training site.

Guzmán has been trying for three seasons to seize the Rangers' first-base job and it has been an elusive pursuit. He was back in the lineup on Sunday after a three-hit game, including a home run, on Saturday night. The Rangers appear to be leaning toward taking another look at Guzmán, which could squeeze Frazier’s playing time.

“It’s a tough balance,” Woodward said. “We're trying to win games, but at the same time, knowing there's going to be certain times when you may place a younger player in a situation where he hasn't been before or maybe hasn't had success in before, they may have to deal with some adversity there. We have to get some of these guys involved and get them in games and see what they got.”

Cody ready to step in
Right-hander has emerged as the leading candidate to step into the rotation if the Rangers trade Lynn or Minor. He pitched 2 1/3 scoreless innings against the Dodgers on Saturday, walking two and striking out three.

He also threw 39 pitches, putting him in position to begin getting stretched out for a heavier workload.

“The way Kyle Cody threw the ball last night, that’s something I’ve kind of wanted to see,” Woodward said. “A little more length and seeing him go through the Dodgers' lineup that way, was pretty impressive. That kind of transitions into three or four innings, or maybe building him up even more as we get closer to the end, to maybe 80, 90 pitches.”

Cody, 26, worked as a starter through three seasons in the Minors.

Eickhoff signs with Rangers
The Rangers have signed right-handed pitcher to a Minor League contract and assigned him to the alternate training site. Eickhoff is a former Rangers prospect, one of six who were traded to the Phillies in 2015 for Cole Hamels.

Eickhoff gives the Rangers an experienced big league starter in reserve, and he could be needed, depending on who gets traded in the next 24 hours.

Eickhoff was an 11-game winner for the Phillies in 2016, with a 3.65 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP over 197 1/3 innings. But he has been battling injuries over the past three years.

He signed a Minor League deal with the Padres last winter -- spurning an offer from the Rangers -- and was on their Summer Camp roster. He spent two days on the active roster in August without pitching in a game and was granted his release last Tuesday.