Rangers make 'easy' call giving Gallardo offer
Right-hander Lewis, catcher Wilson become free agents
ARLINGTON -- The Rangers extended a $15.8 million qualifying offer to free-agent pitcher Yovani Gallardo, the club announced on Friday.
Gallardo has until 3 p.m. CT on Nov. 13 to accept the offer. Bobby Witt, Gallardo's agent, said the right-hander will use the full week to make a decision.
If Gallardo accepts, he is signed to a one-year deal and can be a free agent after the season. If he rejects the offer, the Rangers will get a 2016 Draft pick as compensation should Gallardo sign with another team.
"As far as offseason calls go, this was a fairly easy one," Rangers general manager Jon Daniels said. "Yovani gave us exactly what we were looking for when we acquired him last winter. We would welcome him back, but in the case he gets a better opportunity elsewhere, this offer allows us to recoup a Draft pick."
The Rangers did not make a qualifying offer to Colby Lewis, who is also a free agent. They have expressed interest in re-signing Lewis, but they have yet to pursue that seriously during their exclusive negotiating period, which expires at 11:01 p.m. CT tonight.
The Rangers are in the market for one more veteran starting pitcher to go with left-handers Cole Hamels, Derek Holland and Martin Perez. Texas has right-handers Nick Martinez, Chi Chi Gonzalez and Anthony Ranaudo to compete for a spot and also expects Yu Darvish to return from his Tommy John surgery this past May.
Gallardo, who turns 30 in February and lives in Tarrant County, was 13-11 with a 3.42 ERA in 33 starts and 184 1/3 innings this season for the Rangers. He averaged 5.9 strikeouts per nine innings and had a 1.42 WHIP. The Rangers acquired him from the Brewers in a trade last offseason, and he ended up being their Opening Day pitcher.
Lewis, 36, was 17-9 with a 4.66 ERA in 33 starts and 204 2/3 innings. He averaged 6.24 strikeouts per nine innings and had a 1.24 WHIP. Lewis has been with the Rangers since 2010 and was one their top three starters in 2010-11 when they won two American League pennants and went to two World Series.
Lewis missed 18 months in 2012-13 while recovering from flexor tendon and hip replacement surgery, but he returned to the rotation and made 29 starts for the Rangers in 2014. He was a free agent after last season and ended up signing a one-year, $4 million contract with Texas, but not until Dec. 16.
Pitcher Ross Ohlendorf, first baseman Mike Napoli and outfielders Will Venable and Drew Stubbs are also free agents, but they were not with the Rangers the entire season, so they were not eligible to receive a qualifying offer.
• Catcher Bobby Wilson has refused outright assignment and become a free agent.
• The Rangers reinstated pitchers Darvish, Nick Tepesch and Alex Claudio off the 60-man disabled list and added them to their 40-man roster.
• Minor League infielder Evan Van Hoosier has been suspended 50 games for testing positive for amphetamines. He was playing in the Arizona Fall League and will be replaced on Surprise's roster by outfielder Jairo Beras.