Rangers not worried about Yu Darvish's durability

PHOENIX – Yu Darvish is the ace to the Texas Rangers pitching staff. He’s a man who has proven he can make at least 30 starts per season.

In his first season with the Rangers, he took North Texas by storm with 29 starts, then 32 the following season pitching in 209.2 innings.

Last season, he missed Opening Day with neck issues and then finished the season with inflammation in his right elbow. He pitched 144.1 innings, and you want more from your starter.

Darvish has spent time on the disabled list every season of his career with the Rangers and to say he’s a durable pitcher is debatable just based on his time on the DL.

Darvish is an excellent pitcher, you could say one of the Top 10 in the business.

Rangers GM Jon Daniels said he's not worried about Darvish's durability.

“He’s on a pretty good maintenance program as far as the neck is concerned,” Daniels said. “He takes as good of care of himself as anybody. That part is not a concern.”

There were two veteran pitchers, Derek Holland and Colby Lewis, who were praised for battling back from serious ailments. Holland rebounded from microfracture surgery and was praised for not giving up on the season. Lewis was praised for returning from elbow and hip surgeries. This was a man who pitched with a replacement hip and tied Darvish in wins at 10.

The Rangers made the right decision in shutting Darvish down in a bad season because what’s the point of pitching through pain when it could lead to a more serious injury.

If the Rangers contend, the pitching staff needs a healthy Darvish. So when Darvish comes to the States next Thursday for a checkup and a chat with the new manager, Jeff Banister, the expectations given to him are he not only needs to pitch like an ace, which he’s done, but stay injury-free for 2015.