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Rangers bide time on Benoit decision

Rangers bide time on Benoit decision

NEW YORK -- The Rangers are discussing the possibility of placing pitcher Joaquin Benoit on the disabled list because of soreness in his right shoulder.

The Rangers will have to make a move on Saturday because they plan on calling up Kason Gabbard to start against the Mets and moving Doug Mathis to the bullpen. The logical move would be to drop middle reliever Robinson Tejeda, who has a 13.50 ERA, but the Rangers don't want to do that until they see if Benoit is healthy.

If he's not, he would go on the disabled list.

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"Right now we just have to wait and see," manager Ron Washington said before Friday's game with the Mets at Shea Stadium.

Benoit said before the game that the shoulder was hurting and he was not ready to pitch in a Major League game. But he wasn't certain if he needs to go on the disabled list.

"That's a decision for whoever is in charge," Benoit said.

Benoit, who is 3-2 with a 5.76 ERA, hasn't been 100 percent since Spring Training and hasn't pitched since last Saturday against the Rays in Arlington. He has allowed six runs in three innings over his last three appearances. The Rangers wanted to give him some time off to let the shoulder settle down and see if they could avoid putting him on the disabled list. They have to make a decision soon.

"He's still pitching and getting people out," pitching coach Mark Connor said. "But he hasn't been what he was last year and we'd like to get him back to where he's normal again."

Benoit was 7-4 with a 2.85 ERA in 70 appearances last year and was named Rangers Pitcher of the Year. That's the pitcher that the Rangers want to see, and really haven't yet this year.

T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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