ARLINGTON, Texas — RHP Roy Oswalt expects he will need four starts in the minors before joining the Rangers.
"For the last six weeks I've been throwing bullpens every other day. I wanted to make sure I had plenty of throwing in before I stepped out on the field," Oswalt, 34, said Wednesday on a conference call. "My arm feels great. My body feels great."
Oswalt agreed to a minor-league deal with the AL West-leading Rangers and is scheduled to make his first start for Triple-A Round Rock on Saturday.
The former Astros and Phillies pitcher said the Dodgers were among other teams interested in signing him. But his relationship with Rangers president Nolan Ryan and pitching coach Mike Maddux played a big part in his decision, along with playing close to his home in Mississippi.
Oswalt had two stints on the DL last season because of lower back inflammation, but the Rangers don't have significant concerns since Oswalt's back doctor also worked with the team.
He is scheduled to be in Arlington, Texas, today for his physical.
Marlins roof miscue: Rain washed out batting practice at Marlins Park, the $634 million facility with a retractable roof. The roof was open when a rain cell developed nearly four hours before the start of the game against the Nationals. Showers fell for nearly 15 minutes before the roof began to close. The grounds crew scrambled to cover the infield with a tarp. Puddles accumulated on warning track. "The fish are laughing at us," said a security guard, referring to the residents of the aquarium behind home plate. Team vice president Claude Delomme said there was a delay in closing the roof because of safety issues.
Dodgers investigation: A federal grand jury is investigating possible criminal financial misconduct of the team and related entities during the ownership of Frank and Jamie McCourt, the Los Angeles Daily Journal reported. The probe started early last year and appears to be focused on the accounting and propriety of Dodgers spending.
Moyer Limbo: LHP Jamie Moyer was designated for assignment by the Rockies, about six weeks after he became the oldest starting pitcher to win a game in the majors. Moyer, 49, said he hopes to continue his career elsewhere. "It's a tough pill to swallow but it's part of the business," said Moyer, who was 2-5 with a 5.70 ERA in 10 starts. The Rockies have 10 days to trade him or release him.
Clemens trial: Former journeyman C Charlie O'Brien testified at Roger Clemens' perjury trial, saying mastery of a new pitch was what prolonged the 11-time All-Star's career. O'Brien, who caught Clemens in 1997, said, "That pitch right there — the split-finger fastball" was why Clemens continued after age 34, and added, "I don't think he'd cheat," in reference to performance-enhancing drugs.
Dodgers: In his second game back from the DL, CF Matt Kemp apparently reinjured the left hamstring that kept him out for two weeks and left the game against the Brewers.
Mets: The team is in no rush to sign 3B David Wright to a new contract. "He's under contract this year ($15.25 million), we have an option for next year ($16 million), there's no gun to anybody's head," chief operating officer Jeff Wilpon said. After 2013, Wright can become a free agent. GM Sandy Alderson said the team will speak to Wright's agents this season, but that does not mean an offer is imminent.
Meanwhile, Ronny Cedeno (strained left calf) joined the team's list of injured shortstops, so Omar Quintanilla was in the lineup. Cedeno was subbing Justin Turner (sprained right ankle), who was in for Ruben Tejada (strained right quad).
Red Sox: 2B Dustin Pedroia hopes to avoid the DL but was out of the lineup and is day to day with a slightly torn muscle in his right thumb.