Updated: Rockies Add Bullpen Depth for A Day; Veteran Help on the Way
The Rockies made a move to add bullpen depth for Thursday's series finale with the Mets with the call up of Yency Almonte, and by this time next week will be in position to restock the bullpen with established veterans.
Left-hander Mike Dunn and right-hander Scott Oberg, currently on the disabled list, will go on a rehab assignment this weekend, pitching for Triple-A Albuquerque at Fresno on Saturday, and High-A Lancaster at Modesto on Monday.
They can then join the Rockies in San Francisco, where they open a three-game series on Tuesday, to be evaluated, and, if all goes well, be activated for the two-city, six-game road trip. The Rockies play the Dodgers in Los Angeles following the series with the Giants.
To make room for Almonte on the 25-man roster the Rockies sent first baseman Ryan McMahon to Albuquerque .
That left the Rockies with only three position players on the bench.
That, however, figures to change on Friday.
The need on Thursday was an extra arm. The bullpen has carried a heavy workload in recent days, including Wade Davis, Adam Ottavino, Chris Rusin and Bryan Shaw worked both Tuesday and Wednesday. The four of them, plus Jake McGee, have worked in three of the last four games.
Given that Almonte has been starting at Albuquerque, he was in position to work multiple innings if needed. McMahon was sent down the day after delivering the three-run, pinch-hit home run that was a key to the Rockies 10-8 victory on Wednesday.
McMahon, however, is a rookie and has had limited playing time. The Rockies saw this as a chance to get him in the lineup with the Isotopes to get at-bats and stay sharp.
Almonte, most likely, will be sent out on Friday, and a position player will be recalled to add the extra bat off the bench.
Almonte, 24, made nine starts with Albuquerque this season, going 1-4 with a 6.27 ERA. He has never been on the active big-league roster, although last winter he was placed on the 40-man roster.
He was acquired by the Rockies from the White Sox in exchange for right-handed pitcher Tommy Kahnle, Nov. 24, 2015. Almonte was originally drafted by the Angels in the 17th round of the 2012 draft.
McMahon, 23, has batted .211 (20-for-95) with four doubles, one triple, two home runs and nine RBI in 47 games across two stints with the Rockies this season.