The Texas Rangers announced today that right-handed pitcher Shawn Kelley has been placed on the 10-day injured list, effective Monday, with right biceps muscle soreness.
To replace Kelley on the active roster, the contract of right-handed pitcher Rafael Montero (#48) has been selected from Triple-A Nashville. To make room for Montero on the 40-man roster, outfielder Carlos Tocci has been designated for assignment.
Kelley entered Sunday’s game in Houston in the bottom of the eighth inning but departed after throwing several warmup pitches due to the injury. An MRI performed on Sunday evening indicated no acute injury. Kelley, who had not pitched since July 12, is 5-2 with a 3.00 ERA and 11 saves in 32 relief appearances this season. He was previously on the IL from May 6-21 due to minor neck surgery.
Montero, 28, has combined to go 1-0, 3.44 (18.1 IP, 17 H, 7 R-ER, 2 BB, 31 SO) in 11 games/5 starts for the Rookie AZL Rangers, Double-A Frisco, and Nashville in 2019. He has held opponents to a .239 batting average with a 1.04 WHIP.
Signed as a minor league free agent on January 4, 2019, Montero attended Major League spring training and started the year in the extended spring program as he continued to rehab from “Tommy John” ligament replacement surgery on his right elbow on March 27, 2018.
Montero was sent to the AZL Rangers on injury rehab assignment on June 17 and worked 7.0 scoreless innings over 5 games/3 starts. He was promoted to Frisco on July 3 and had a 7.00 ERA (9.0 IP, 15 H, 7 R-ER, 2 BB, 15 SO) over 5 games/2 starts as opener with the RoughRiders. Montero moved to Nashville on July 19 worked 2.1 hitless innings with 4 strikeouts to earn a relief win in his lone outing on July 20 vs. Iowa. He has issued one run in 7.2 IP overall in his last 4 games between Frisco and Nashville.
Montero had spent his entire eight-year pro career in the New York Mets organization before signing with Texas. He was 6-16, 5.38 in 58 games/30 starts with the Mets from 2014-17, including 5-11, 5.52 in 34 games/18 starts (119.0 IP/114 SO) in 2017. His last Major League appearance was in relief on October 1, 2017 at Philadelphia.
Tocci, who has spent the entire season on option to Nashville, is batting .246 with 4 homers and 31 RBI in 87 games with the Sounds in 2019. The Rangers have seven days to trade, release, or outright Tocci to the minor leagues.
Following these transactions, the Rangers remain at the 40-man limit on the club’s Major League roster, along with five players on the 60-day injured list: RHP Luke Farrell, LHP Taylor Hearn, LHP Yohander Méndez, LHP Jeffrey Springs, and RHP Edinson Vólquez.
From Rangers PR staff reports