PHOENIX -- Right-hander Braden Shipley was celebrating the Reno Aces' 10-1 win on Friday night with his teammates, complete with music blaring in the clubhouse. He then got dinner and sat down to eat.That's when he received the news that he'd be joining the D-backs on Saturday."I was just thrilled,"
PHOENIX -- Right-hander Braden Shipley was celebrating the Reno Aces' 10-1 win on Friday night with his teammates, complete with music blaring in the clubhouse. He then got dinner and sat down to eat.
That's when he received the news that he'd be joining the D-backs on Saturday.
"I was just thrilled," Shipley said before Saturday's game against the Astros. "Called my wife and she was crying because she was so happy. It's been tough because she's been [in Phoenix] all year, whereas in years past, she's been with me all year."
Kris Medlen, who allowed seven runs in four innings on Friday, was sent back down to Triple-A in a corresponding move.
Drafted by the D-backs in 2013, Shipley pitched 70 innings and made 11 starts in 2016 and started three games last season.
He just wants to be a regular in the Majors, and with the D-backs down two starting pitchers, now is the perfect time for him to make a case.
"I've been working hard down in Reno," Shipley said. "I've had a couple bad outings down there, but nothing alarming. I've just stuck with my preparation and my routine and my last start was actually pretty good."
Through six starts in Reno, Shipley has a 6.40 ERA. However, he has 28 strikeouts to eight walks, which he said is a sign that his stuff is working.
Now it's time for results. He thinks they will come.
Pitching in relief of Medlen on Friday, T.J. McFarland threw 59 pitches over 4 1/3 innings of one-run ball. He's unavailable to pitch on Saturday, so the D-backs needed another long reliever.
"It just makes sense to get somebody in here to protect us in case of an unforeseen situation with our starter," D-backs manager Torey Lovullo said.
After Saturday, Shipley said his role will be decided on a day-to-day basis. Lovullo said the club hasn't made any decisions about who will fill the void left by Robbie Ray (oblique strain). That spot comes up next Thursday, when the D-backs host the Nationals.
Shipley, who said each new callup is just as exciting as the last, doesn't want to look past Saturday.
"This is a special place to be," Shipley said. "You never want to be anywhere else. I feel like I've finally started to reach that point where the consistency is there, and hopefully I'm going to stay full-time now."
D-backs ink Buchholz
D-backs general manager Mike Hazen and Lovullo welcomed a familiar face to the organization by signing two-time All-Star Clay Buchholz to a Minor League deal on Friday.
Hazen and Lovullo, who knew Buchholz from their time with the Red Sox organization, saw an opportunity to add pitching depth when Buchholz was released by the Royals earlier this week. Lovullo said Buchholz was at Salt River Fields on Saturday and threw a bullpen session.
He will begin his D-backs tenure with Triple-A Reno.
"He's a tremendous competitor," Lovullo said. "He's got a three- or four-pitch mix that, when it's right, can be a very productive combination. I've seen him get on some really great runs."
Buchholz pitched in the Majors in 2017, when he threw 7 1/3 innings over two starts for the Phillies. He gave up 10 earned runs.
But Lovullo said he still remembers Buchholz in his prime. In 2013, he went 12-1 with a 1.74 ERA over 16 starts as the Red Sox went on to win the World Series.
Buchholz is a big-time name, but Lovullo said it's too early to assume Buchholz could fill Ray's spot in the rotation. That remains up in the air.
"Obviously, as everybody is when they're throwing and throwing well, they become an option," Lovullo said. "That's the challenge for everybody."
Miller getting closer
Lovullo said pitcher Shelby Miller, who is recovering from Tommy John surgery, will throw a bullpen session next Tuesday and then will pitch in an extended spring training game on Friday. Miller threw two innings of live batting practice and tossed 31 total pitches yesterday.
"I think it's a big jump, exciting jump and a jump that he's prepared for," Lovullo said.
Justin Toscano is a reporter for MLB.com.