Note: USA TODAY Sports' Paul White, via car, causeway, plane and rail, will eventually reach every major league camp this spring. Follow his exploits on Twitter - @PBJWhite - as he makes his way through the Cactus and Grapefruit leagues before imparting all you didn't know about every team right here.
SURPRISE, Ariz. – Rangers assistant general manager Thad Levine gives an injury update to the media every morning during spring training.
The briefing simply is designed to disseminate accurate, up-to-date information. Though no other team does it quite so formally, there might also be no team with as many physical questions as the Rangers this spring.
And the subject matter suddenly has graduated from nagging and annoying inconveniences to potentially season-changing news.
First, it was Sunday's word that second baseman Jurickson Profar may miss half the season with a muscle tear in his throwing shoulder.
JURICKSON'S OUT: Big hole at second base for Rangers
Then, Monday's dark cloud: Starting catcher Geovany Soto suffered a torn meniscus in his right knee and will be out 10 to 12 weeks after he undergoes surgery on Wednesday.
"You can't sugarcoat it. It was a tough day for the medical side," GM Jon Daniels said Monday.
He also noted the club will aim to "fortify its depth," a plight the club couldn't have imagined just 48 hours earlier.
The revelation on Profar, who wasn't even part of Levine's report Sunday, overwhelmed everything else in Rangers camp by the end of that day.
It turns out Profar felt some discomfort after a relay throw on a double play attempt Saturday, but stayed in that game. He originally was in Sunday's lineup but revealed the soreness before the game and a subsequent MRI found the tear.
As potentially devastating as it is to lose the emerging star the Rangers traded Ian Kinsler to make room for, there's at least some certainty about his situation.
"All of it is unfortunate but we're a big league club and this just gives someone else an opportunity to show what they can do," says manager Ron Washington. "Our job is to keep that clubhouse in order and do the best we can to help them to continue to believe.
"Believe me, we're going to be OK," Washington says. "We're going to miss Profar but we're going to move on and we're still going to win some ballgames."
GALLERY: Players shelved for Opening Day
The rest of what's been going on around Rangers camp this spring is, if nothing else, instructive of what a manager and front office goes through.
As Levine describes it, "We have to look at our team getting healthy in waves over the course of the season."
Consider the rest of the Rangers' current state of physical affairs culled from a combination of Levine's report and Washington's take:
The catcher left Sunday's game when his right knee locked up with in the crouch behind home plate. After the medical staff helped him up, the knee suddenly released, but he was scheduled for an MRI, which confirmed an almost worst-case scenario.
Now, the Rangers will be left with J.P. Arencibia and Robinson Chirinos behidn the plate, probably for three months.
That's not an enviable position. Arencibia batted .227 with a staggering 148 strikeouts last season for Toronto, a K rate that hardly justifies his 21 home runs. And Arencibia has not looked particularly good this spring. Chirinos, 29, has 55 career major league at-bats.
Little wonder Daniels will engage in some depth fortification.
The staff ace's Opening Day start is increasingly in question.
"He's not going to start that game if he has something wrong, no matter how small," Washington says.
Neck stiffness that caused Darvish to miss his most recent scheduled start has improved but persists.
"Until they tell us there's cause for concern, we're going to trust he'll be on the mound for Opening Day," Levine says.
But the preparation factor is becoming an issue. Washington says he and pitching coach Mike Maddux want Darvish to throw before that start. His normal day to pitch would be Wednesday but he's not likely to be ready for a game, so the alternative would be to come up with some combination of a bullpen session and maybe an inning of game action later in the week.
"We have to wait and see how this issue progresses," Washington says. "If it stays around, we'll go to our contingency plan."
"I'm not giving that out yet because I don't want to get anyone else excited," Washington says.
Colby Lewis, who hasn't pitched in a regular season game in 20 months, will pitch Wednesday. That would put him on track for the Monday opener but he's still coming back from hip replacement and arm surgeries.
Still, Lewis is part of the wide-open competition for the final two spots in the rotation behind Darvish, Tanner Scheppers and Martin Perez. The two most veteran candidates for those spots – Tommy Hanson and Joe Saunders, both were hit hard this weekend. Robbie Ross, who relieved for the Rangers last year, is another possibility.
The free-agent left fielder has been dealing with an elbow issue that had limited him to DH duty for two weeks.
As Levine was giving his update Sunday – "Throwing out to 120 feet, which is as far as we'd have a guy throw to be game ready" – Choo walked by, bat in hand, and said, "I'm OK. See you Opening Day."
Actually, a few hours later, he was switched from DH to left field for Sunday's game and played without a problem. Now, all that's ailing is his .146 spring batting average.
"I'm really not worried about Choo," Washington says. "He's not getting the results, but he's seeing pitches. He'll have a good at-bat, he'll have a couple of bad at-bats. We just to keep him seeing pitches and trust that things are going to be OK."
The former closer learned this week he'd lost out on that job to Joakim Soria. And Feliz still isn't a lock for the roster because his velocity remains in the 91-92 mph range, well below the flirting with triple digits he did before Tommy John surgery.
"The guy's just had his arm operated on," Washington says. But wants clearer messages from Feliz whether some subpar games are the result of fatigue or injury.
"Feliz's issue is more communication than anything else," Washington says. "We understand that his velocity is going to take some time to get where we would like to have it. If it's at his pace, then it's at his pace. But we need to know what's going on."
Feliz says he feels fine and is confident the velocity will come back gradually.
The outfielder is swinging the bat in minor league games as he comes back from a strained oblique, but isn't quite ready to play the field in games, though he's getting in defensive work before games.
It still could be touch-and-go to avoid starting the year on the disabled list.
A sore shoulder had kept the Texas shortstop from getting much work with double play partner Profar this spring but that point is far less relevant today.
Andrus remains on a throwing program mandated by the medical staff that runs through most of this week. He's throwing 90 feet but isn't in games. He still hasn't been ruled out for Opening Day.
As for second base...
Washington says the best remaining second baseman – at least defensively -- in camp is Josh Wilson, once nicknamed Paper Boy by Ken Griffey Jr. because of his youthful look.
Wilson, who turns 33 Wednesday, has played 386 games with seven major league teams and has been filling in for Andrus. He's also a career .225 hitter.
Others with major league experience in camp are Adam Rosales, a .219 hitter over parts of six seasons and having a particularly difficult spring offensively and defensively, according to Washington; Brent Lillibridge, a .205 hitter with six teams over six seasons; and Kensuke Tanaka, a 32-year-old who played briefly last year after 12 seasons in Japan but was ruled out of contention for utility job in Texas because he doesn't play shortstop.
The most intriguing possibility is 20-year-old Rougned Odor, the top offensive prospect in the Rangers system. But he's played only 30 games as high as Class AA.
"He's a kid," Washington said. "He's still getting an education in baseball."
That education included five hits in 17 spring at-bats (.294) but Washington said, "I didn't see the offense in his bat that I was told about."
Nobody has ruled out going outside the organization for the solution, though Levine says, "We always look first internally."
As Washington says, "We're reviewing everyone's status. Everybody we feel can help us is an option, everyone."
GALLERY: The Cactus League, in pictures