A.J. Griffin was brought in by Texas this winter as one of their annual low-risk, high-reward fliers, and it's starting to look more and more like the former A's pitcher will have a chance to earn a spot in the Rangers' rotation from the get-go.
Griffin, who's recovered from Tommy John surgery in 2014 and will be ready to roll with no limitations this spring, has a chance to compete for a rotation spot out of spring training with Yu Darvish on the mend until at least mid-May and Colby Lewis behind schedule on his rehab from knee surgery following the 2015 season.
Griffin was designated for assignment by Oakland in November, a bit of a surprise given his age (28) and the fact he put up a 200-inning season in 2013 with a 14-10 record and 3.83 ERA. He's missed the past two seasons.
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"The way the Rangers perceived me really made me feel good," Griffin told the Dallas Morning News. "They indicated they thought I could come here and potentially contribute right away. There were spots open for me to compete. They were aggressive."
Griffin said the A's had no interest in bringing him back at any level, and added the same guy that threw 200 innings in 2013 is still there, it's just now he's in a Rangers uniform.
"I think I tried to come back too come back to quickly and it when it got tight, I got frustrated and shut it down," Griffin said. "But that [200-inning] guy is still in there. I'm driven. I just want to be out there and compete. The last two years have been terrible. You want to be out there and able to help your guys."