NEW YORK -- One day after Vicente Padilla made national headlines by plunking Yankees first baseman Mark Teixeira twice, the Rangers apparently took the first step toward parting ways with the veteran right-hander.
Texas has requested outright waivers on Padilla, according to a report by FoxSports.com. The move allows other teams willing to submit a claim on Padilla until noon CT on Friday. That club would absorb his salary of about $8 million.
The decision was not confirmed by the Rangers. Major League rules forbid teams from discussing whether players are or aren't placed on waivers.
Should Padilla go unclaimed, the Rangers would be allowed to attempt to send him to the Minor Leagues. Padilla, 31, would hold the right to refuse the assignment and become a free agent. Eliminating Padilla's salary would potentially allow the Rangers to pursue a major trade later in the season as they continue their playoff push.
Padilla allowed seven runs in 3 2/3 innings and took the loss against the Yankees on Tuesday night, making his first start since going on the disabled list with a strained right shoulder in mid-May. After the game, Padilla said he is fully healthy.
The story, however, was not about his performance, but his two pitches that hit Teixeira, once the Rangers' first baseman. Afterward, Teixeira had choice words about Padilla, claiming the right-hander threw at him intentionally. Padilla has a history of throwing at hitters and has hit at least 10 batters in five seasons during his career. He has already plunked seven batters this season.
This year, Padilla is 3-3 with a 5.57 ERA in nine starts.
Jared Diamond is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.