Top pitching prospect Blake Snell will make his first major league appearance on Saturday for the Tampa Bay Rays, according to Mark Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.
Originally, Erasmo Ramirez was slated to start on Saturday against the Yankees, but yesterday's crazy series finale in Boston forced manager Kevin Cash to abandon his plans and use Erasmo out of the bullpen, throwing off the proposed schedule.
Many assumed that Matt Andriese would get the call from Durham, as Andriese's, who already has major league experience, was scheduled to start for Durham on Saturday. But the Rays have made the call to instead promote Snell, who was supposed to start for Durham today.
Snell, just 23, was ranked by Baseball America as the twelfth-best prospect in baseball, and the top prospect in the Rays organization. He was Baseball America's minor league player of the year. Baseball Prospectus ranked him as the #21 prospect in baseball.
During the offseason, our Bradley Neveu broke down Blake Snell's approach, results, and outlook, summing him up thush:
Pretty much everyone agrees that Snell has at least 3 above average pitches, with the fastball leading the pack by a good margin. They also agree that his control still needs work.
We all expected the Rays to call up their most exciting pitching prospect at some point this season, but the Rays have tended to advance prospects slowly. The baseball gods had other ideas, however and the situation forced the Rays to move at a Snell's pace.
This is likely just a spot start, but Blake Snell is here now. Enjoy it.
Update: Kevin Cash has confirmed the obvious. Snell will make one start to fill the hole in the rotation and then head back to Triple-A.
#Rays Cash said plan is for Snell to make 1 start and go back to Durham— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) April 22, 2016