MESA, Ariz. -- Reliever Evan Meek was an All-Star for the Pirates in 2010, but he was among six pitchers who were sent to the Minor Leagues on Tuesday. Also sent down were right-handers Wilmer Font, Yoshinori Tateyama and Collin Balester, and left-handers Neal Cotts and Jeff Beliveau.
Meek was sent down with a 10.57 ERA while opponents hit .351 off him. He had been pitching better lately but the Rangers still didn't see enough, especially with his velocity.
"He used to throw 95-96," manager Ron Washington said. "That wasn't there. We like the way he competed, but we made the decision right now that he doesn't fit."
Cotts almost made the Rangers out of spring in 2012 ,but never was able to mount the same serious challenge this time around. He was sent down with a 7.11 ERA and opponents hitting .469 off him.
"I thought he threw the ball with better velocity, he just didn't get results," Washington said.
Neither player has the contractual ability to become a free agent if he does not make a Major League roster by the end of Spring Training, but the Rangers have told Meek that they will not stand in his way if he can find a Major League job.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.