(8:00 PM update) After a trip to Philadelphia for an appointment with core muscle specialist Dr. William Meyers, the Tampa Bay Rays have placed Chris Archer on the 10-day disabled list with a left abdominal strain, retroactive to June 3. In his place, they have promoted right-hander Diego Castillo.
We have placed RH Chris Archer on the 10-day DL (retro to June 3) with a left abdominal strain.
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) June 5, 2018
After a dismal first month of play, Archer became a much more effective pitcher in May, posting a 2.47 ERA and 3.35 FIP.
He was frustrated on Sunday, saying that he knew a stint on the DL might be in the cards after he had pitched with tightness in his groin.
…And obviously it hurts because the only thing I take pride in and have an ego about is pitching once every five days, said Archer. Regardless of the results, I want to be there for my team. I’m going to do everything I can to be out there but not do anything silly to over-exert myself.
The loss of Archer is yet another blow to the Rays, who have scrambled for arms all season long due to injuries and their unique usage of regular bullpen days. Still, both Archer and manager Kevin Cash told Marc Topkin (Tampa Bay Times) the report was good news and the hope is that Archer will only miss a couple starts. He can be reinstated as early as June 13.
Cash also posited that Matt Andriese will get the opportunity to pitch more innings starting Friday, when Archer was scheduled to make his next start. Yet Cash has not decided whether Andriese would start the game or they would use an “opener.”
Castillo, 24, has performed to a 1.03 ERA in 19 appearances for Triple-A Durham, with 32 punch outs to seven walks over 26-1/3 innings (4.57 K/BB). The big right-hander is the prototypical fastball/slider pitcher that boasts an upper 90’s four-seamer (that has touched 101 mph) that generates a lot of ground balls, and a devastating slider. Castillo tends to give up a fair number of hits when hitters time him up, and he does have the propensity to get into trouble when he overthrows his pitches, rendering them flat. He, however, has good overall control and command of his pitches. Baseball America ranked him the Rays’ 29th best prospect, and has been the closer at every level thus far.
Castillo is expected to pitch at the “back of the bullpen” and in high leverage situations.