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Takahashi called up as 'pen shuffle continues

@SteveGilbertMLB
August 18, 2019

PHOENIX -- After another short outing by a starting pitcher Saturday, the D-backs made a roster move to bolster the bullpen Sunday by calling up Bo Takahashi from Double-A Jackson. This is Takahashi’s first callup and he will be the first player born in Brazil to appear in a game

PHOENIX -- After another short outing by a starting pitcher Saturday, the D-backs made a roster move to bolster the bullpen Sunday by calling up Bo Takahashi from Double-A Jackson.

This is Takahashi’s first callup and he will be the first player born in Brazil to appear in a game for the D-backs and the sixth overall to reach the Majors.

The 22-year-old was 8-6 with a 3.87 ERA for Jackson.

The D-backs have been shuffling pitchers between the Minors and their bullpen recently as the starters have struggled. Taylor Clarke lasted just 1 2/3 innings Saturday night.

Takahashi takes the place of Stefan Crichton, who tossed 1 1/3 innings in Saturday’s 11-6 loss.

Crichton had been called up Thursday, along with Jon Duplantier, to provide fresh arms after a three-game series in Denver taxed the bullpen. Duplantier was optioned to Triple-A Tucson before Saturday’s game after having to pitch a pair of innings Friday.

Joel Payamps was called up to replace Duplantier as the bullpen shuffle continued.

“[Friday was] not fun for anybody and it cost people their jobs,” D-backs manager Torey Lovullo said. “The chips fall behind them, so I put it on the starting pitchers. The state of it is, obviously, not great right now, and we need these guys to step up. It’s up to them to execute the game plan and hand it over to the bullpen when it’s the right time, and the bullpen then needs to take it over.”

Marte still out

All-Star Ketel Marte was out of the lineup for a second straight day with a sore lower back.

Marte said he first felt the back discomfort during the team’s series with the Dodgers on Aug. 9-11, but was able to play through it.

“I’m OK,” he said. “My back is just tight. I might be ready for [Monday]. We’ll see. It’s kind of sore a little bit, but nothing crazy. Just trying to be healthy and trying to finish this season. I don’t want to be out for the rest of the season, so I’m going to take treatment and wait one more day and see how it feels.”

The D-backs can ill afford to lose Marte for any extended period of time as he has been their best player this year.

“I don’t think it was one swing, one particular moment, it was just a bunch of swings that added up,” Lovullo said. “That’s how the medical team explained it to me.”

Steve Gilbert has covered the D-backs for MLB.com since 2001. Follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB.