Frank Francisco becomes cheerleader

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Reliever Frank Francisco is in Tropicana Field tonight, but he's not an option for manager Ron Washington. Francisco was left off the postseason roster with side muscle inflammation and said Tuesday that he won't be able to pitch in the ALCS should the Rangers win.

Francisco said he got on a mound about 4 days ago and threw, but the club decided to shut things down when the pain surfaced again.

"We tried to rush it and it didn't work," Francisco said.

Francisco is not doing anything right now, but hopes to start throwing again in a few days. He's keeping up hopes that he could possibly return for the World Series if things improve. But he was clearly disappointed by the fact that he hasn't been able to get healthy.

Not having Francisco's power right arm in the late innings does make things tougher on Washington as he tries to make things work late in games. We'll see if it impact anything in Game 5.