Edinson Volquez makes his season debut for the Rangers tonight after being called up from Triple-A Oklahoma. The right-hander is filling in for Kip Wells, who was sent back to Texas to have his sore shoulder examined, forcing him to miss his scheduled start. Volquez was 0-4 with a 14.21 ERA in six appearances for the Rangers last season, including three starts. He is 6-6 with a 3.21 ERA in 21 starts for Oklahoma this season, but has been on the disabled list with a calf injury.
Volquez vs. the A's is troubling on a number of fronts:
First, there is simply that Volquez did not pitch well while he was in the majors briefly last season... factor in health (he hasn't pitched in more than a week because of elbow and calf soreness)... add in the unfavorable matchup of a pitcher who leads his league in walks allowed (72) against a team that loves the excitemnet of the walk (Oakland ranks third in the AL in walks and second in pitches seen per plate appearance) and the matchup gets potentially uglier for Texas... then there's the sweatshop known as the Rangers bullpen, they sure could use some time off, considering they have worked an average of four-plus innings per game over the last week.
If Volquez could put in 5 innings, the Rangers should be ecstatic.
(UPDATE: The Rangers optioned John Koronka to Triple-A Oklahoma to make room on the roster for Edinson Volquez.)