MLB Rumors: Kyle Funkerhouser is joining the Texas Rangers on a minor league deal, per multiple reports. The 28 year old righthander spent the 2020 and 2021 seasons in the Detroit Tigers’ bullpen, but missed all of 2022 due to a shoulder issue, and was non-tendered by the Tigers in November.
If Funkhouser’s name sounds familiar, he was someone who was at certain times discussed as a possible selection by the Texas Rangers at #4 in the 2015 MLB Draft after his junior year at Louisville. He ended up sliding to the Los Angeles Dodgers at #35 despite being projected as a mid-first round pick, and after turning down $1.75 million from L.A., returned to school for his senior year. He had a disappointing campaign, however, and ended up going to the Detroit Tigers in the fourth round in the 2016 draft.
Funkhouser worked primarily as a starter through the 2019 season, and had success at the lower levels of the minors, but got lit up in AAA — in 20 starts for Toledo between 2018 and 2019, Funkhouser had an 8.25 ERA in 72 innings, with a 72/64 K/BB ratio. In 85.2 major league innings, spanning 70 games, he has a 4.20 ERA and a 4.61 FIP.
Funkhouser throws hard and can get swings and misses with his slider, but his command has not been good. He will presumably come to camp as bullpen depth rather than someone likely to make the opening day roster.