ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) The struggling Texas Rangers, beset by injuries, recalled catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia from Triple-A Oklahoma and activated left-handed reliever Eddie Guardado from the disabled list on Friday.

They replace right-hander Luis Mendoza, who went on the 15-day disabled list with an inflamed shoulder, and catcher Adam Melhuse, who broke a bone in the back of his right hand during Thursday's game in Detroit and was given his release.

Saltalamacchia was batting .291 with two home runs and 13 RBIs for Oklahoma. The 22-year-old will share catching duties with Gerald Laird, allowing the Rangers to release the 36-year-old Melhuse instead of putting him on the DL.

"There probably won't be a spot for (Melhuse) when his hand heals," GM Jon Daniels said.

His release also clears a spot on the Rangers' 40-man roster for right-hander Sidney Ponson, who was 1-2 with a 3.47 ERA at Oklahoma. Ponson has a clause in his contract that would allow him to become a free agent if he isn't promoted to the majors by May 1.

Daniels said Ponson "most likely" would be brought up to start Saturday against Minnesota.

Guardado, a 15-year veteran, pitched 1 1-3 scoreless innings before going on the disabled list, retroactive to April 6, with a sore shoulder.

Mendoza left Wednesday's game in the second inning, when he said his arm "shut down" while resting between innings.

He joins fellow starters Kason Gabbard and Brandon McCarthy on the disabled list. Also on the DL are starting outfielder Marlon Byrd and three reserves.

Copyright 2008 The Associated Press.