Texas Rangers transactions: Todd Frazier and Robinson Chirinos were officially signed by the Texas Rangers today. To make room for them on the 40 man roster, the Rangers designated lefthanded relief pitchers Kyle Bird and Jeffrey Springs for assignment.
The fact that Frazier and Chirinos were signed is no surprise, as the deal for Frazier was reported on Sunday, and the deal for Chirinos was over a week ago, with the delay presumably being coordinating getting physicals for each player. Frazier will, per Jon Daniels, be the team’s starting third baseman, and Chirinos will, per Daniels, split time with Jeff Mathis behind the plate, which presumably means Jose Trevino will go to AAA.
Kyle Bird being designated for assignment is not a surprise. The 26 year old lefty, who came over to Texas from Tampa Bay in the three-way Jurickson Profar trade last winter, did good work in AAA in 2019 but struggled with his command in the majors, putting up a 7.82 ERA with 15 walks and 5 home runs allowed against 10 Ks while facing just 65 batters. Bird has two options remaining, but he was on the 40 man roster bubble, and he will likely be claimed if the Rangers don’t work out a deal to trade him somewhere.
Jeffrey Springs being designated for assignment is a surprise. Springs had a quality 2018 to put himself on the map, but struggled with injuries and consistency in 2019, and ended up being non-tendered at the arbitration deadline. Springs then ended up being re-signed to a major league deal, putting him back on the 40 man roster, but now is off the 40 man again. I am wondering if the Rangers gave him an especially lucrative split for the minor league portion of his deal, which might scare teams off, or if they just changed their mind about wanting him on the 40 man, but it seems weird to drop him, add him, then drop him again in six weeks.