ARLINGTON -- The Rangers took utility infielder Luis Hernandez off the 40-man roster as they designated him for assignment Monday. The Rangers did so to make room for the return of Michael Young from paternity leave.
The move also leaves the Rangers without a second utility infielder on their 40-man roster. Alberto Gonzalez, who was their utility infielder for most of the season, was outrighted to Triple-A Round Rock earlier this month.
By designating Hernandez for assignment, the Rangers open up a spot on the 40-man roster. They could use that in one of three ways when the rosters are expanded Saturday.
They could bring back Gonzalez, who is 11-for-29 (.379) in eight games since being sent to Round Rock. He would have been called up Friday when Young went on paternity leave except he had been hit in the hand by a pitch and missed two games over the weekend for Round Rock. He returned to the lineup Sunday.
The Rangers could call up Jurickson Profar, their top Minor League prospect who is currently at Double-A Frisco. The Rangers have discussed the possibility at length. Profar is hitting .284 with 76 runs scored, 14 home runs, 62 RBIs and 16 stolen bases for Frisco. He has a .369 on-base percentage and a .458 slugging percentage.
The Rangers could also acquire an infielder by trade before Saturday. Friday is the next trade deadline; a player must be in the organization by Friday in order to be eligible for postseason.