Roger Mooney covers the Tampa Bay Rays for The Tampa Tribune, TBO.com and News Channel 8. He has covered the Rays since their first season in 1998, including 11 years for the Bradenton Herald. Roger has also covered Florida, South Florida and Florida State football, the Bucs and the Lightning.
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Perez recalled in interesting move
Posted Aug 31, 2008 by Marc Lancaster
Updated Aug 31, 2008 at 09:43 PM
The Rays have recalled Fernando Perez in a creative bit of roster gymnastics before the midnight deadline tonight to make players eligible for postseason rosters.
This is how it will go, technically speaking:
Following the game today, the Rays optioned Juan Salas to Montgomery. They also recalled Jae Kuk Ryu from Durham and placed him on the 15-day disabled list (he’s been out since July after undergoing elbow surgery). That DL move gave them room to recall Perez, and also gives them another spot to play with when it comes to adding a guy to the postseason roster who is not on the active roster before tonight’s deadline.
I believe they’ll be able to bring Salas right back on Tuesday becuase Montgomery’s season is over, but we’ll check that on an upcoming conference call with Andrew Friedman.
Updating, 9:20: Friedman said the Rays do indeed expect Salas to be back Tuesday (along with Troy Percival), and they also will recall catcher John Jaso from Durham that day. That will be the end of the call-ups until Durham is done unless someone else is needed because of an injury in the meantime.
One more update, 9:30: The Rays have released catcher Mike DiFelice. Shows what I know, eh? The explanation, by the way, for why Jaso over DiFelice was the Rays really don’t anticipate using the third catcher much at all, and most likely as an extra bat off the bench as much as anything…
Updating again, 9:40: Why Perez over, say, Jonny Gomes? Sounds like defense might have been the overriding factor.
“We felt like he’s got a unique skill set that if we wanted to go that way would help diversify us a little bit,” Friedman said of Perez. “Obviously with injuries and anything else, we still have the ability to replace different guys, and with two guys on the DL in Orvella and Ryu, that will give us, in our opinion, all the roster flexibility we would need if we wanted to add anyone else.”
To recap on the rules there, the Rays would be able to add anyone who was in the organization as of midnight tonight to their postseason roster to replace an injured player. With both Orvella and Ryu now on the big-league DL, they essentially have two free spots to use on players who aren’t active right now—such as David Price—if they want to use them in the playoffs.
So, here’s where it stands right now: For Tuesday’s game, the Rays expect to have Perez, Salas and Jaso all active in addition to Troy Percival, who will come off the 15-day DL. Any other moves will wait until Durham is done unless an injury or a particularly tough stretch for the bullpen warrants reinforcements.