ARLINGTON -- Rangers pitcher Derek Holland, who has been sidelined since undergoing offseason surgery on his left knee, is expected to return to Arizona on Friday to continue his throwing program.
Holland is scheduled to be in Arizona for 10 days and throw at least three live batting practice sessions. After that he will be re-evaluated and possibly begin a medical rehabilitation assignment with Double-A Frisco. His first outing is tentatively scheduled for July 28 with Frisco.
The Rangers will take a conservative approach with Holland. Even though he has been throwing up to 80 pitches in his bullpen and live batting practice sessions, he will start out at two innings and 35 pitches. There is a possibility that Holland may not be ready for the Major Leagues until the end of August or the beginning of September.
"That is the way we planned it right now," pitching coach Mike Maddux said. "When you put stuff on paper, you're conservative. If he accelerates it, that's good. But we don't want to do too much too soon and have a setback. There is a difference between throwing on the side and throwing in game conditions. You can't simulate game conditions."
Outfielder Engel Beltre was removed from his rehab assignment to work on agility and making his first step quicker. There was no weakness or pain. Beltre fractured his right tibia after he was hit by a pitch in winter ball.
"The guy got a pipe in his leg, whatever they put in there," Rangers manager Ron Washington said. "Next few days we'll see if we can try to help him work some of the kinks out."
Soto gives emotional apology to teammates
ARLINGTON -- Rangers catcher Geovany Soto delivered an emotional apology to his teammates in a clubhouse meeting prior to Saturday's game with the Angels.
Soto, who has been on the disabled list since undergoing surgery on his right knee at the end of Spring Training, was arrested Wednesday night during a traffic stop in Grapevine and charged with misdemeanor possession of marijuana.
Soto released a public apology through the Rangers on Friday but spoke in front of the team on Saturday afternoon.
"He was great," manager Ron Washington said. "I think it should just be for the ears inside the clubhouse but he was great. He's a pro. I hope he's ready to get past this."
Soto is currently assigned to Double-A Frisco on a medical rehabilitation assignment. The Rangers were planning on him being activated on Friday at the start of the second half, but there has been no word on how this will impact that plan.
Soto's situation will be forwarded to a treatment board consisting of representatives from Major League Baseball and the Players Association.
Sunday's starter still unknown
ARLINGTON -- The Rangers have purchased the contract of left-handed pitcher Ryan Feierabend from Triple-A Round Rock and optioned left-hander Aaron Poreda.
Feierabend and long reliever Scott Baker are the two candidates to get the start against the Angels Sunday, but as of Saturday afternoon, Rangers manager Ron Washington said he didn't know which one of them it would be. He said the decision would be made after Saturday's game with the Angels.
"I don't know," Washington said. "If we decide to go to Baker, [Feierabend] could be our long guy in the bullpen. If we decide to go with [Feierabend], then Baker stays in the bullpen."
Feierabend will become the 50th player used by the Rangers this season, which is a Major League record prior to the All-Star break. The Royals used 48 in 2004. He will become the 30th pitcher used this season by the Rangers, which is a single-season club record.
The left-handed pitcher had signed contracts with Seattle, Cincinnati and Philadelphia before the Rangers acquired him in January 2013. Feierabend had Tommy John surgery in 2009 and admitted that there was a time he wondered if he'd make it back to the Majors.
"After coming back from surgery, everyone expects that things are going to be just like they were before," Feierabend said. "Going from being a prospect with Seattle to basically a nobody finding myself in independent ball two years ago -- sure, I had times where I thought I was going to have to retire being 26 years old. But I'm glad I stuck with it, and I'm glad that the Rangers took a chance on me."
Washington said that Feierabend has been throwing the ball well, and has a strong slider.
Baker has appeared in 14 games for the Rangers this season, and has started three. He's been Washington's go-to long reliever, and the manager has praised Baker on more than one occasion for saving a busy bullpen.
Smolinski ready to go
ARLINGTON -- After leaving Friday's game against the Angels with a left elbow contusion, Rangers outfielder Jake Smolinski is back in the lineup Saturday.
Smolinski exited during the second inning after he was hit by a pitch. He hit sixth and played left field Saturday.
"Good to go. A little sore, but he can do it," Rangers manger Ron Washington said. "He wanted to stay in the game, but I knew he didn't want to stay in the game, so I took it out of his hands. I thought it was best he come get the treatment right now and he could be good for today, and it worked."
• Pitcher Nick Martinez, on the disabled list with a strained muscle in his left side, threw long toss in the outfield on Saturday without any issues. His next step will be a bullpen in Toronto next weekend.
• The Rangers purchased right-handed pitcher Erik Hamren from South Maryland of the Atlantic League. He was scheduled to be active in Double-A Frisco Saturday.
• Outfielder Jim Adduci began a medical rehab assignment with Frisco Saturday night. He has been on the disabled list since April 19 with a broken pinkie.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. Grace Raynor is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.