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Rangers chase pitching history

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CLEVELAND -- Rookie Phil Klein was the 33rd pitcher used by the Rangers this season. They are the fourth team since 1901 to use at least that many pitchers in a season.

But they are four short of the record set by the Padres in 20002. Whether they can match it or not may depend on how they feel about forgotten left-hander Joseph Ortiz.

The Rangers have two excellent candidates to come up at some point in relievers Corey Knebel and Spencer Patton. Both were acquired in trades last month and are currently pitching at Triple-A Round Rock. Derek Holland will also likely pitch for the Rangers this season. He has been out all season because of knee surgery but is currently on medical rehab assignment.

That leaves the Rangers one short of matching the Padres. Knebel, Ortiz and Lisalverto Bonilla are on the only three pitchers on the 40-man roster who have yet to appear in the big leagues. Bonilla has a 4.88 ERA at Round Rock. Ortiz missed most of the season with a broken left foot but has pitched in three games at Double-A Frisco.

Of course the Rangers could make history by using another position player on the mound. Their list of 33 pitchers includes Mitch Moreland and Chris Gimenez.

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.

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