Beltre to DL, will miss 1st opener since 2001

Gallo will start at third base; prospect Robinson makes club

Beltre to DL, will miss 1st opener since 2001

ARLINGTON -- Rangers third baseman Adrian Beltre is going on the disabled list with a tight right calf muscle and will miss Opening Day for the first time since 2001.

Beltre was placed on the 10-day DL on Sunday, retroactive to Thursday, which means the first day he is eligible to return is April 9.

The 37-year-old went hitless in 12 at-bats in the Cactus League and 1-for-15 in the Classic for the Dominican Republic.

Banister on Beltre to DL

"We felt it was best for all parties involved," Rangers manager Jeff Banister said. "This is more about how his Spring Training has gone, being able to get on the field, the work time, the treatment time. We all want Adrian on the field as much as possible … but we took in all the factors and made the proper decision."

Banister said Joey Gallo will be the Rangers' third baseman on Opening Day in Beltre's absence. Gallo hit .208 this spring (11-for-53) with four home runs. Banister said Gallo has made significant progress in his approach at the plate and the way he has handled himself.

"I've got to give the credit to our coaching staff and Joey Gallo, what he has done and how he has handled Spring Training," Banister said. "We talk about Joey going about his work, the process and the maturity level. … We feel Joey will be able to handle this situation and give us what we need with Adrian out."

Gallo's solo home run

Gallo has been with the Rangers for parts of the last two seasons, but this will mark the first time he has been on the Opening Day roster.

"It's great, I'm excited for it," Gallo said. "It's nice to break camp with the team. I might have to go back to the Minors, but I have been here before. I feel more comfortable. I feel I belong here."

Banister also announced Drew Robinson, ranked as the organization's No. 23 prospect per MLBPipeline.com, will make the team as a utility infielder. He will look to make his Major League debut but also had an impressive camp with his ability to bat left-handed.

"I just had a quiet confidence," Robinson said. "With my versatility, I brought a lot to the table. I knew I had a good chance if I could do what I can on the field."

Robinson's two-run homer

Beltre is one of nine Rangers who will be on the DL at the start of the season. Prince Fielder and Jake Diekman are on the 60-day list, and Chi Chi Gonzalez will join them.

Pitchers Andrew Cashner, Tyson Ross and Tanner Scheppers, catcher Brett Nicholas and infielder Hanser Alberto will all be placed on the 10-day DL.

T.R. Sullivan has covered the Rangers since 1989, and for MLB.com since 2006. Follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.