Citing a source Monday, Jon Heyman of Today’s Knuckleball reported the Texas Rangers “would be more than willing to trade” starting pitcher Derek Holland before the 2017 season.

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Holland’s Contract Driving Factor in Trade Talks

Monday, Oct. 31

Although the Rangers own an $11 million club option for 2017 and an $11.5 million club option for 2018, Heyman noted they would like to trade Holland “in order to avoid keeping him on the books going forward.”

Heyman also pointed out the Rangers and Holland agreed to a $1.5 million buyout for 2017 and a $1 million buyout for 2018 if the team doesn’t want to keep the left-hander around but can’t find a trade partner.

Holland, who has been a member of the Rangers for his entire career, made 22 appearances in 2016 with a 4.95 ERA, a 1.41 WHIP and 67 strikeouts in 107.1 innings. However, Heyman called the southpaw “oft-injured,” and he made just 10 appearances in 2015 and six in 2014.

Holland was a reliable innings-eater from 2011 to 2013. He was particularly impressive in 2013, when he posted a 3.42 ERA in a career-high 213 innings:

He hasn’t been the same durable pitcher since, though he is only 30 years old and should have a couple of years remaining in his prime if he can rediscover his form. The fact that he has proved to be an effective left-handed starter should generate some interest on the trade market.

The Rangers have plenty of firepower in their starting rotation with Cole Hamels and Yu Darvish and likely wouldn’t feel much of an impact if they trade Holland. Texas managed to finish with the best record in the American League this year (95-67) without a formidable season from the lefty and would get something in return if it decides to trade him.

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