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Tampa Bay Rays: Andriese Placed on DL Among Roster Moves

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May 30, 2017; Arlington, TX, USA; Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Matt Andriese (35) throws a pitch in the first inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
May 30, 2017; Arlington, TX, USA; Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Matt Andriese (35) throws a pitch in the first inning against the Texas Rangers at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports
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The Tampa Bay Rays have made a handful of roster moves, to address their needs for the bullpen and bench plus placing starter Matt Andriese on the disabled list.

The injury bug has taken another bite out of the Tampa Bay Rays roster, as pitcher Matt Andriese is has been placed on the 10-day DL with a groin strain, sustained during Tuesday night’s game against the Rangers as reported by Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times.

With three openings on the roster (two pitchers/bench player), pitchers Austin Pruitt and Ryan Garton along with outfielder Mallex Smith have been recalled from Triple-A Durham and will be available for Wednesday night’s game against Texas.

Smith who opened the season with the Rays was optioned to Durham after his stay on the DL when the Rays activated Colby Rasmus the end of April. Smith was a key cog to the Rays success during the opening weeks of the season hitting .273/.360/.318 with three stolen bases in eight games.

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In 24 games with Durham, Smith is batting .306/.330/.472 with 12 stolen bases, with three home runs and eight RBIs in 108 at-bats. He has played the majority of his games in center (23) logging over 300-innings error free (50 chances).

Pruitt, like Smith had made the opening day roster and had a very bumpy start to his MLB career allowing 11 runs in five of his first six appearances, which included an astronomical ERA of 15.88.

Despite his poor showings, manager Kevin Cash stood by him. Although Pruitt did redeem himself with a couple of solid appearances, he would soon would revert to his early problems pitching his way back to Durham.

At the time of his demotion, Pruitt’s line stood at 3-1 with a 7.52 ERA (12 appearances, 1-start) with 18 strikeouts and five walks in 20.1 innings. In five games (8.2-IP) with Durham, Pruitt’s line is 0-0 with a 1.04 ERA. He has given up just one run (earned) on four hits with 10 strikeouts, no walks and one save.

Garton’s recall was permitted since Andriese was put on the DL, even though he was sent back following his appearance in Sunday’s game. Garton has pitched in four games (0-1, 14.73) covering 3.2 innings. He has given up six runs on six hits with one strikeout and three walks.

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This season with Durham, Garton has been lights out going 2-0 with a 0.59 ERA in 12 games (15.1-IP) with 24 strikeouts, seven walks holding opposing batters to a .140 average.

Since the bullpen was once again used heavily on Monday, the need for fresh arms for Tuesday was the Tampa Bay Rays priority and called up pitchers Chih-Wei Hu from Triple-A Durham and Hunter Wood from Double-A Montgomery.

This was despite being down a positional player when the Rays had placed Peter Bourjos on the 10-day DL on Tuesday with what the Rays are calling “tennis elbow.”

With Andriese removed after 1.2 innings, the bullpen was taxed again as five relievers followed, including Chih-Wei Hu and Hunter Wood, who would make his MLB debut in the bottom of the eighth inning.

In the Rays last three games, (Sunday, Monday and Tuesday) the Rays bullpen has logged over 24-innings, which has included Jose De Leon, Hu, Ryan Garton, and Wood who were all called up in the past three days. Jose De Leon, Hu, Garton, and Wood would all be optioned back to their respective clubs following their appearances.

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In all likelihood, Andriese will miss his next start as dealing with a groin strain, especially for a pitcher is difficult at times to recover in such a short time frame. If that is the case, the Rays will need to address that situation and reach down to the minors for another starter.

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