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A.J. Griffin leaves in second inning with injury

A left intercostal strain knocked A.J. Griffin from his start today in the second inning

Texas Rangers v Detroit Tigers Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images

Texas Rangers starting pitcher A.J. Griffin was lifted from his start today against the Toronto Blue Jays in the second inning of today’s game.

Griffin left the game after 1.1 IP down 4-1, having given up a grand slam home run to Devon Travis in the bottom of the second. Austin Bibens-Dirkx came into the game, and will be asked to try to absorb as many innings as possible to try to save a rather bedraggled bullpen.

A d.l. stint for Griffin appears to be an inevitability, in part because the new 10 day d.l. means he would only miss one start if the injury is mild, and in part because the Rangers are going to need a 25 man roster spot open to get a fresh arm in the bullpen for tomorrow’s game. Knuckleballer Eddie Gamboa is already on the 40 man roster and last pitched on May 22, so he would seem to be the best fit for the Rangers if they want to bring someone up who can pitch multiple innings out of the bullpen for the next few days.

The more interesting question is who would make Griffin’s next start, which would be Wednesday at home against the Rays. Yohander Mendez is currently scheduled to start for Frisco tomorrow, and Texas could opt to have him go just a couple of innings, then come back Wednesday on short rest. Or they could tap Connor Sadzeck, who pitched for Frisco on May 24. Anthony Bass, Dillon Gee and Clayton Blackburn are all guys who are also on the 40 man roster, and who could be a spot start option.

Tyson Ross is due back from the d.l. soon, so the Rangers may simply need to find someone to fill in for a start or two before he’s ready to return. That would mean Nick Martinez sticks in the rotation for the time being, as well.