Yang allowed one earned run on four hits and one walk while striking out eight across 3.1 innings Wednesday against the Twins. He did not factor into the decision. Yang started in place of Kohei Arihara (finger) and was effective across 66 total pitches. He generated 15 swinging strikes to back up his eight punchouts and has now allowed only three earned runs across 12 innings to begin his first campaign stateside. It's unclear whether Ariahara will be available for his next turn through the rotation, though his status should decide whether Yang will pitch as a starter or reliever moving forward.
Yang will start in place of Kohei Arihara (finger) on Wednesday, Kevin Sherrington of the Dallas Morning News reports. Arihara will miss his next start after receiving an injection in the middle finger of his right hand to relieve pain under a callus. Yang has made two appearances since having his contract selected last week. Both of his outings lasted 4.1 innings, and the 33-year-old lefty allowed two runs on six hits and one walk with five strikeouts.
Texas manager Chris Woodward said Yang will be evaluated for the rotation, Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News reports. Yang made his second straight bullpen-saving appearance of the week Friday, shutting down the Red Sox for 4.1 innings after the Rangers fell behind 6-1. He made his Rangers debut Monday when starter Jordan Lyles was chased after 2.2 innings, and Friday he took over for Kohei Arihara, who allowed four home runs in 2.2 innings. Of those two starters, Arihara prompts the most concern. The Rangers already suspected he was tipping pitches, but the new worry that emerged Friday was diminished velocity.
Yang allowed two runs on five hits and struck out one over 4.1 innings in Monday's 9-4 loss to the Angels. Yang's contract was purchased by the Rangers on Monday, and he was put to work immediately when starter Jordan Lyles was bounced after just 2.2 innings. The timing of the transaction was fortuitous; the 33-year-old lefty was added because the bullpen had pitched a lot of innings over the weekend, and the Rangers just began a stretch of 19 consecutive days with a game. A starter in Korea, where he played for 14 seasons, Yang is expected to serve in a low-leverage role.
Yang's contract was selected by the Rangers on Monday. Yang was among the Rangers' final round of cuts this spring after he posted a 5.40 ERA and 1.50 WHIP in 10 innings during Cactus League play. The left-hander will now be available to make his major-league debut, but he'll likely serve as a low-leverage reliever for Texas.
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