The Rays have promoted pitcher Enny Romero to the major league club, and have optioned slugging prospect Richie Shaffer back to Durham, despite the fact that Shaffer, as a right-hander, was likely to play against lefties Scott Kazmir and Dallas Keuchel, who the Rays will face in the first and third game of their upcoming series in Houston.
The move was made because of the recent taxing of the bullpen. Alex Colome pitched three innings on Sunday, rendering him unavailable, and both Brandon Gomes and Xavier Cedeno have been heavily used lately as well. That left the Rays 'pen ill-prepared if Erasmo Ramirez were to be unable to pitch deep into the game tonight.
Once considered a likely starter, Romero has gotten most of his work in long relief for Durham this year. He hasn't started a game since May 19th. Since then, working out of the bullpen, he's struck out 23.1% of the batters he's faced while walking 8.8%.
Mark Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times reported on the move:
Without making a move #Rays were looking at having only 5 relievers available tonight and possibly Tues given how much Colome threw Sunday— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) August 17, 2015
Shaffer is not eligible to return for ten days, unless an injury occurs, and while he's gone we're in for some sub-optimal lineups against lefties.
So with no Shaffer, #Rays have Nava at 1B vs. Kazmir tonight— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) August 17, 2015
Make this move worth it, Enny.