LAKELAND, Fla. — Detroit Tigers ace Justin Verlander says he threw about 20 pitches off a mound on Monday.
Verlander spoke with reporters Tuesday and said he didn’t have any pain in his groin and hip. The right-hander had surgery on Jan. 9.
The 30-year-old Verlander says he hurt his groin doing squats, and that he also had what was believed to be a pre-existing abdominal problem.
Verlander says he would like to pitch in five spring training games, if possible, but there is also a plan for if he is unable to do that.
Verlander went 13-12 with a 3.46 ERA last year for the AL Central champions.
Oswalt retiring after 13 seasons
Right-hander Roy Oswalt is retiring after 13 major league seasons.
Oswalt’s agent, Bob Garber, confirmed Oswalt’s retirement Tuesday and said the pitcher would come to work for his agency.
Oswalt, 36, had a 163-102 career record with a 3.36 ERA. His best season came with Houston in 2004, when he went 20-10 with a 3.49 ERA. The durable righty — a three-time All-Star and 2006 NL championship series MVP — went over 200 innings seven times in his career but dealt with injuries in recent years.
He was 0-6 with an 8.63 ERA in nine outings and six starts for Colorado last year. He signed a minor league deal with the Rockies in May 2013 and missed time with a strained left hamstring.
A 23rd-round pick by Houston in the 1996 amateur draft, Oswalt pitched his first nine-plus seasons for the Astros and then played for Philadelphia, Texas and the Rockies.
Ryan to rejoin Astros as executive advisor
HOUSTON — Hall of Fame pitcher Nolan Ryan has rejoined the Houston Astros as the team’s executive advisor.
Ryan worked as a special assistant to the general manager in Houston from 2004 until he became president of the Texas Rangers in 2008. He added CEO to his title with the Rangers in 2011 and remained in that position until he stepped down in October.
Ryan will serve as an advisor to owner Jim Crane, general manager Jeff Luhnow and his son and president of business operations Reid Ryan.
The elder Ryan, who played for the Astros for nine seasons, is major league baseball’s all-time strikeout leader and was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1999. The team says Ryan will join the team at spring training in the next few weeks.
Girardi says MLB ready for gay player
NEW YORK — Yankees manager Joe Girardi says Major League Baseball would accept an openly gay player.
Michael Sam, a former defensive end for Missouri’s football team, came out publicly in interviews over the weekend and could become the first openly gay player in the NFL.
Speaking Tuesday at Yankee Stadium, Girardi says “I think our world has adjusted to that.” He thinks players just want to win and he says “whoever the best players are in that clubhouse, get them in there.”