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Chi Chi Gonzalez sent to minor league camp

Rangers pitcher Chi Chi Gonzalez, who had been fighting for a major league rotation spot, has been re-assigned to the minor league camp

Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Texas Rangers pitcher Alex "Chi Chi" Gonzalez has been assigned to the minor league camp today, per the usual suspects on Twitter.

Gonzalez, the Rangers' 2013 1st round draft pick, has been one of the fast risers in the system, and after finishing the 2014 season in AA, there was talk that he could win a spot in the Opening Day rotation with a strong camp.  Gonzalez impressed in his five inning outing last night, and it was enough to get some (including me) talking about him being on the 25 man roster to start the season.

However, that's apparently not going to be the case.  Instead, Gonzalez will likely start the year in AAA, and Nick Martinez, Nick Tepesch or Anthony Ranaudo will break camp as the #5 starter, barring a trade.

While that's a little disappointing from the standpoint of wanting to see Chi Chi perform in the majors right away, he still has some work to do on his command, and getting the opportunity to face the more advanced hitters at AAA will probably be good for his development.  In addition, if Gonzalez were to come up to the majors after April and stay in the majors, it would mean he's not a free agent until after 2021, rather than 2020.

Also today, the Rangers optioned Hanser Alberto to AAA Round Rock, and sent Ross Wolf to the minor league camp.