ARLINGTON, TX - Derek Holland #45 of the Texas Rangers delivers a pitch at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on April 5, 2013 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Rick Yeatts/Getty Images)
Derek Holland was hoping to be back on a big-league mound on June 1. It was probably an unrealistic goal all along after his January microfracture surgery on his knee, but give him credit, it was an ambitious one.
It's looking more and more like Holland's return will come on the timeline set forth by the Rangers all along and he could be ready to go after the all-star break.
On Monday, he'll take another step in that process when he tests his knee in pitcher's fielding practice at Globe Life Park. If that goes well, the Rangers could set forth a rehab assignment plan for Holland, who was projected as the Rangers' No. 2 starter behind Yu Darvish this season before he tripped over his dog, fell down some stairs and tore up his knee, setting off a chain reaction of huge injuries this season for the Rangers.
The bonus for Holland is that his arm is fine, so once he gets going you can expect him to pretty much pick up where he left off last season, when he threw 213 innings with a 3.42 ERA and had two shutouts. But given the fact Holland had no spring training, you'd have to think he'd need at least five rehab starts, and if he started that soon, it'd put him on track for that mid-July return.