Gomez activated from DL; Gallo close behind

Rangers hoping to get slugger back on Tuesday

August 26th, 2017

OAKLAND -- was activated off the disabled list on Saturday, and Joey Gallo could be right behind. By Tuesday, the Rangers could be at full strength as far as their position players.

The question is if Gomez is still the Rangers everyday center fielder.

"He is today," Rangers manager Jeff Banister said.

Gomez, who has been sidelined with a cyst on the back of his right shoulder, was in center field on Saturday and was at designated hitter with a left-hander on the mound for the Athletics. When everybody is healthy, DeShields has been limited to starting against left-handed pitching.

But he has played well in 13 straight starts while Gomez has been down, hitting .308 with eight walks, 10 runs scored and six stolen bases. That's hard to ignore.

"Delino has played extremely well and made a case to play every day," Banister said. "We'll see if we can't find the right mix … we need to get Gomez out there and get him going."

Gallo is on the seven-day concussion disabled list, the result of his collision with pitcher Matt Bush chasing a pop up last Sunday. He is eligible to be activated on Tuesday, and it appears he is going to be ready.

"I've been on the field the past two days, hitting in batting practice and getting into baseball shape," Gallo said. "I feel healthy. I feel normal. That's a good sign."

Entering Saturday, Gallo was tied for third in the American League with 35 home runs. He is also hitting .235 with 14 home runs and 24 RBIs in 32 games since the All-Star break with a .370 on-base percentage and a .694 slugging percentage.

The question with Gallo is how fast he can get back into a groove.

"We'll see," Gallo said. "It will take a little bit to get back, working in the cage and on the field, trying to get the feel, rhythm and timing. It won't take long, it may take a game or two seeing pitching."

Banister said the Rangers miss Gallo's on-base and ability to take a walk as much as they do his power.

"It's on-base and the slugging … instant offense," Banister said. "The idea is to get as many baserunners on as you can, and he has been really good at connecting at-bats, giving guys behind him a chance to drive him in. That's huge.

"Think about that. We wouldn't say that last year. That's how much Joey has matured. There is some comfort in that, drawing walks and understanding the needs of the team."