Hector Neris' sojourn to the minor leagues came to an earlier-than-expected end on Monday as the Phillies were forced to recall the struggling reliever when Edubray Ramos went to the disabled list with a sore shoulder.
Ramos was tested in Philadelphia after feeling discomfort on Sunday night in Washington. The Phillies are not concerned and Ramos thinks he could return from his "right shoulder impingement" in just 10 days.
The Phillies sent Neris to triple A to clear his head and work on his splitter after a stretch of rough outings. He pitched just two innings with the IronPigs. General manager Matt Klentak said last week that the Phillies sent Neris to Lehigh Valley "to get him right." Surely the Phillies intended to keep him there longer than a week.
"He did have an opportunity to work with pitching coach Dave Lundquist down there and Lundy reported some improvements in the delivery," manager Gabe Kapler said. "We watched his last outing. His fastball looked relatively sharp and his split was good as well. Does that translate to a whole bunch of success at the major- league level? We'll have to wait and see. But certainly, it's encouraging. Ideally, you have a chance to let these things play out, but given the fact that we're playing the Yankees, it's nice to have Hector back."The loss of Ramos, who becomes the seventh Phillies reliever to spend time on the disabled list this season, is significant. Before struggling on Sunday, he had logged 15 straight scoreless appearances and was being trusted by Kapler in high-leverage situations.
"We want him healthy for the long haul," Kapler said. "He actually said that he could pitch if we needed him too and it didn't seem like the right thing to do for him."
Pat Neshek will pitch Tuesday for double-A Reading in his second rehab appearance but is unsure how many outings he will need before he can return from his forearm injury.
"I had tears in my arm. It's a process," Neshek said. "Before when I had tears in my shoulder, I ended up tearing that trying to rush and come back quick. I want to get back here as soon as I can."
Neshek pitched in a game for the first time since spring training on Saturday, when he threw an inning for high-A Clearwater. The Phillies bullpen, which blew a four-run lead on Sunday night, could use Neshek.
"Maybe I'll feel good after the next one," said Neshek. "It's going to be more about how my rhythm is, how my stamina is. I felt really good arm wise but when you come in, you get into a routine and I need to get into that routine again. It might be one more, it might be a couple more, it might be four more."