The Rangers introduced Wednesday that they’ve positioned right-hander Ian Kennedy on the 10-day injured listing as a consequence of a “delicate” hamstring pressure and chosen the contract of right-hander Spencer Patton from Triple-A Spherical Rock in his place. Texas already had an open spot on the 40-man roster, so an extra corresponding transfer shouldn’t be needed. Patton will probably be within the membership’s bullpen for in the present day’s recreation.
Kennedy, 36, has confirmed to be among the best minor league signings in all of baseball this season. He inked a non-guaranteed pact with an invitation to Spring Coaching and parlayed a robust displaying there right into a $2.15MM base wage. He’s not solely justified that modest funding, he’s thrived as one of many recreation’s simpler late-inning relievers. Kennedy has pitched 21 1/3 innings and racked up 12 saves to associate with a 2.53 ERA, a hefty 29.8 % strikeout price and a tidy 8.3 % stroll price.
That standout efficiency, coupled with a typically poor efficiency from the staff as an entire, makes Kennedy some of the apparent commerce candidates on this summer season’s market. Texas has dropped 9 of its previous ten video games, falling to 16 video games south of the .500 mark and 13 video games again of the division-leading Athletics. As such, it’s excellent news for the Rangers that Kennedy is coping with solely a “delicate” pressure. Whereas a timeline for his return wasn’t supplied, the delicate nature of the harm ought to permit him to return lengthy earlier than the July 30 commerce deadline.
As for Patton, in the present day’s promotion will mark the end result of a virtually five-year journey again to the large leagues. A Twenty fourth-round decide of the Royals again in 2011, Patton made his MLB debut as a Ranger in 2014 and spent elements of the following three seasons as an up-and-down member of the bullpen for each the Rangers and Cubs.
From there, Patton went on to spend 4 seasons pitching with the Yokohama DeNA BayStars of Japan’s Nippon Skilled Baseball. The righty was one in all NPB’s greatest relievers in 2017-18 earlier than struggling, partially as a consequence of harm, in 2019-20. Even with the downturn in his closing two years in Japan, nonetheless, Patton’s total NPB monitor document was sturdy: 205 2/3 innings of three.68 ERA ball with a 27.4 % strikeout price in opposition to a 9.5 % stroll price.
Patton returned to the Rangers on a minor league deal of his personal this winter, and he’s fired off 12 scoreless innings to start his season in Spherical Rock. He’s walked six hitters, which clearly isn’t superb, however has additionally yielded solely six hits and whiffed a dozen of the 45 batters he’s confronted. He’ll now get the prospect to show that the beneficial properties he appeared to make in NPB are sustainable right here on the recreation’s prime stage in North America. Patton turned 33 again in February, so if he’s certainly in a position to replicate his NPB success right here in MLB, he might have a number of years remaining as a productive, late-inning reliever — be it with the Rangers or with one other membership.