FRISCO, Texas (AP) -Rangers closer Eric Gagne threw 17 pitches in another minor league game Saturday night, the first time in nearly two years the former Cy Young Award winner pitched in games on consecutive days.
Starting for Double-A Frisco for the second night in a row, Gagne faced five Arkansas batters and threw 12 strikes while throwing mostly off-speed pitches. He allowed a solo home run and a single, and took the loss.
“There was a little stiffness, but it felt good the first time throwing back to back in two years,” Gagne said. “I was trying to work everything. The curveball and changeup was not as good as (Friday). I hit some spots and I missed some spots. These were positive outings.”
While the Rangers insisted he was healthy, Gagne started the season on the disabled list to get more time to come back from elbow and back operations that limited him to 15 1-3 innings the past two seasons. Part of their plan was to have him pitch on consecutive days.
Gagne threw 15 pitches to three Arkansas batters on Friday night.
The right-hander hadn’t pitched on consecutive days since May 26-27, 2005, for the Los Angeles Dodgers. His only two appearances last season were four days apart in June.
Gagne is scheduled to pitch again Tuesday for Frisco. If all goes well, he’ll then travel with the Rangers on Thursday and be activated before they begin their weekend series Friday night in Seattle.
“If things go well and we get him in there Friday, if he doesn’t overexert himself and an opportunity comes up Saturday, I’ll put him in there (again),” Rangers manager Ron Washington said Saturday before the Rangers played Boston.
Gagne became a free agent when the Dodgers declined to pick up his $12 million option. The Rangers signed him to a one-year deal for $6 million with a chance to earn about $5 million in performance bonuses.
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