Derek Holland has to feel pretty bad about the Texas Rangers' pitching situation heading into the 2014 season, which begins two weeks from today.
Holland was set to be the Rangers' No. 2 starter this season before a run-in with his dog, Wrigley, ended poorly at his home. It's not like Holland's knee injury was the result of something cool — motorcycle accident, dunk attempt gone wrong, knife fight, etc. — it happened when he reportedly tripped over his dog and fell down some stairs.
The initial prognosis from the Rangers was that Holland would return sometime around the all-star — early- to mid-July — after undergoing microfracture surgery to help regrow cartilage in his knee. Holland's prognosis on himself has always been different.
“As far as I’m concerned, I’m going to be back before the All-Star break,” he told the Star-Telegram. “That’s almost as good as guaranteed. I feel like I’ll be back the first week of June.
“And once I get back, I want to make a statement. I want people to see how serious I really take this, and how I really feel about being here and being a part of this team.”
That's some determination right there, folks. And it's good to hear from Holland, who seems dead-set on proving he's not just interested in playing Lloyd Christmas or Harry Caray on TV.
Holland's early return would be a really nice lift to a starting rotation full of question marks beyond ace Yu Darvish, and it would make the mess appear a lot tidier.