The Texas Rangers sent middle-inning reliever Andrew Faulkner to the team’s Triple-A Round Rock affiliate on Saturday and called up Nick Martinez from the same squad.
Faulkner, 23, was rocked by two home runs and gave up another run to Baltimore on Friday. An inherited runner also scored. Overall this season, he tossed 4.3 innings of relief and gave up four runs on five hits with a 8.31 ERA and 1.846 WHIP.
After an August 31 call up last season, Faulkner appeared in 11 games for Texas and threw 9.2 innings with a 2.79 ERA, 1.138 WHIP, 10 strikeouts and four walks. This season began with much less success for the pitcher, drafted in the 14th round by the team in 2011. Texas manager Jeff Banister said, “He seemed to be a little bit out of rhythm.”
Alex Claudio takes Faulkner’s role in the bullpen.
Martinez, sent to Round Rock during spring training, will be a long reliever and spot starter. He is 1-0 with a 3.38 ERA in two starts at Triple-A.
He’s another 2011 draft pick of the Rangers — an 18th rounder — who played for the team in the past two seasons. In 2014 he started 29 games, going 5-12 with a 4.55 ERA, 1.461 WHIP, 77 strikeouts and 55 walks. Last year he started 24 games, finishing 7-7 with a 3.96 ERA, 1.448 WHIP, 77 strikeouts (again) and 46 walks.