The Tampa Bay Rays have reinstated left-hander David Price from the disabled list, optioning utility infielder Ryan Roberts to Triple-A to make room on the active roster, reports Roger Mooney of the Tampa Tribune.
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Price, who missed a month and a half with a left triceps strain, is wasting no time returning to the hill for the Rays. The left-hander will make his first start back Tuesday night against Astros in Houston.
The 27-year-old admitted that he might be a bit nervous when he takes the mound at Minute Maid Park on Tuesday, but manager Joe Maddon believes that Price's first career DL stint will act as a positive "reset button" for his subpar start to the season.
The 2012 AL Cy Young winner looked more like a no. 5 starter than a rotation ace in his first nine starts of the year. The southpaw put up strikeout and walk numbers comparable to his career norms, but was unable to keep batters from making solid contact, leading to 10.6 hits per nine, 1.3 home runs per nine, and a 5.24 earned-run average through his first 55 innings -- all career-worsts.
Price looked more like himself in his two rehab starts with High-A Charlotte, allowing just one earned run while striking out 12 in eight innings of work. While numbers against low minor-league hitting aren't necessarily indicative of a return to form at the big-league level, they're definitely a step in the right direction.
Roberts, 32, had been in a utility infielder role for the Rays since Opening Day, batting .250/.303/.402 with five home runs in 49 games. The veteran manned second, third, and first base for Tampa Bay over the first three months, but became expendable when Wil Myers' promotion pushed Kelly Johnson back into part-time infield duty.