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Brandon Beachy in no hurry to sign
The link above goes to the first in a series of tweets from FOX Sports’ Ken Rosenthal, relaying a statement from Rob Martin, who represents Brandon Beachy. To save you the trip to Rosenthal’s timeline, here is the quoted statement in its entirety:

“Brandon has decided not to sign a contract at this time. With each day his arm is getting stronger and he’s feeling even more confident about his progress. Thus, he is going to continue with his throwing program and make a decision closer to spring training.”

Beachy’s throwing program, of course, is an attempt to rehab from his second Tommy John surgery, which took place on March 21st, 2014. His first surgery was on June 21st, 2012.

Based on Martin’s statement, we might infer that the 28-year-old Beachy is a bit behind former teammate Kris Medlen—a fellow two-time UCL tear victim—in his recovery, or is considered less of a sure thing to rediscover his old form. Medlen went under the knife three days before Beachy last March, though his first Tommy John procedure took place back in August of 2010.

The Royals nabbed Medlen on a two-year, $8.5 million contract on December 14th, eager to buy low on a pitcher who’s demonstrated mid-rotation ability. Medlen amassed 3.1 WARP in a swingman role in 2012 and 2.1 WARP in full-time rotation duty the following year; Beachy is more of a back-end type whose best season to date was a 1.9 WARP effort in 2011.

In any case, assuming Beachy is done kicking the can down the road, we shouldn’t have to wait long to find out his landing spot. Pitchers and catchers are due to report in about three weeks, so assuming Beachy intends to stay on schedule, he has some 20 days left to make up his mind.

The delay might reflect a struggle on Martin’s part to secure a major-league guarantee, considering that Beachy was said to be soliciting final offers after a slew of throwing sessions earlier this month. Stay tuned to see if further progress convinces a team to pony up in the next few weeks.

MRI on Jurickson Profar’s shoulder looks promising
We’re stretching the definition of “rumor” even further here, from agent’s statement to player’s medicals, but such is life at the end of January. On the bright side, it could be big news for the Rangers.

A lost season for Texas’ erstwhile top prospect, who suffered a partial tear of the teres major muscle in his right shoulder, is giving way to a much better offseason, with the latest headlines from Arlington suggesting that his recovery is on track. Profar, who turns 22 on February 20th, is expected to take the next step in his rehab during the coming week after an MRI showed the requisite healing.

Anthony Andro of FOX Sports Southwest noted that Profar will extend his throwing sessions from 60 feet to 75 feet and begin to take dry swings. Obviously, there are still multiple hurdles for the infielder to clear between now and Opening Day, but those who are sitting on Profar as a post-injury sleeper for 2015 and beyond can only be encouraged by this news.

The Rangers’ 2014 campaign went down the tubes along with Profar’s, as the injury bug never let up, dismantling the roster from spring training through September. They could make do with Elvis Andrus at shortstop and Rougned Odor—who sits right on Profar’s tail as the no. 2 under-25 player in the organization—at second base, but bringing their best young asset back into the fold would advance their attempt to rebound from a calamitous 67-95 finish.

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fawcettb
1/30
I'm not at all clear what role Profar will have if he is okay, because of the presence of Odor. Basically, the Rangers have two high-talent players at the same position, unless they're able to pawn Elvis Andrus and his truly dumb contract off on somebody (which seems unlikely, since they're been try to do that for more than a year.

I hear talk of starting Profar off at AAA, but that just delays the problem. Is the plan to keep him at AAA until he proves he's okay and then trade him (or Odor) off for something valuable? It seems likely that Profar will go because he can also play shortstop, and thus will be more attractive to other teams.

What's your take on this?
statsrath
2/02
Sorry about the delay in replying to this, fawcettb.

My guess is they'll go Andrus at SS, Odor at 2B, and Profar in Triple-A to continue his development but also to see whether he still has the arm to play SS or is limited to 2B. The secondary benefit of this is it gives them another shot to see if Andrus can progress offensively or get himself into better shape than he was in for 2014 (http://hardballtalk.nbcsports.com/2014/10/17/elvis-andrus-has-lost-10-pounds-plans-to-lose-10-more/).

It seems like a perennial question, but this might be an issue they'd be most apt to decide in a year, especially having already traded Luis Sardinas, who would've been a nice utility option. Profar's value seems likelier to go up than down, so I can't say I see any rush to move either him or Odor at this point. They should also have a better idea of what Michael de Leon can contribute a year from now.