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07/28/09 8:44 PM ET
Rangers call up Moscoso
Prospect will fill bullpen hole until Francisco gets better
By T.R. Sullivan / MLB.com
ARLINGTON -- The Rangers added Guillermo Moscoso to their bullpen on Tuesday but probably only until they can get closer Frank Francisco back from the disabled list. Moscoso was called up to give the Rangers a long reliever behind Doug Mathis for Tuesday's game. He replaces Willie Eyre, who was optioned back to Triple-A Oklahoma City. Francisco, who has been sidelined with pneumonia, could be activated by the end of the week. He is scheduled to throw batting practice on Wednesday, and that could give the Rangers a better idea of when he'll be ready to return. "I'm all right," Francisco said. "I'm getting better. My strength is fine. It's not like I hurt my shoulder." Francisco hasn't pitched in a game since July 10. He is 2-1 with a 2.28 ERA with 15 saves, but this is the third time he has been on the disabled list. He was sidelined twice earlier this season with a strained right shoulder. "I don't even want to talk about it," Francisco said. "It's been really, really hard but you've got to deal with it." Even without Francisco, Rangers relievers have a 2.14 ERA and a .163 opponents average over their past 20 games. Going into Wednesday's game, they have also converted 29 of 36 save opportunities for an 80.6 percent success rate that is the best in the Majors. They had talked about adding relief help before the Trade Deadline, but that appears unlikely. The addition of Jason Grilli and Darren O'Day earlier in the season proved to be a huge boost for the Rangers, and they have Neftali Feliz ready at Oklahoma City if they need reinforcement. "The bullpen has really settled in," general manager Jon Daniels said. "Darren and Jason stepped in and filled important roles and getting Frankie back will help. We haven't ruled [a trade] out, but with Feliz an option at Triple-A, the bullpen is the thing we feel most confident in." Moscoso was 3-2 with a 1.85 ERA in seven games, including six starts, at Triple-A Oklahoma City. Opponents were hitting .215 with six walks and 32 strikeouts. Eyre had a 4.91 ERA with the Rangers in six relief appearances over three tours.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.