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Rays option Robertson to give him fresh start

Glasnow continues making progress, throws off mound
@juanctoribio
June 15, 2019

ST. PETERSBURG -- After using five relievers in Friday’s 9-4 win over the Angels, the Rays recalled right-hander Jake Faria to give the club another fresh arm in the bullpen. In order to make room for Faria on the active roster, the Rays optioned infielder Daniel Robertson to Triple-A Durham.

ST. PETERSBURG -- After using five relievers in Friday’s 9-4 win over the Angels, the Rays recalled right-hander Jake Faria to give the club another fresh arm in the bullpen. In order to make room for Faria on the active roster, the Rays optioned infielder Daniel Robertson to Triple-A Durham.

“Obviously it has been a frustrating year to date, but [Robertson] is a good player,” said Rays manager Kevin Cash. “We kind of gave him the message that we continue to believe in him, want him to go down there, relax a little bit and let’s work on some things at the plate.”

Cash said that Robertson could benefit from getting consistent at-bats down in Triple-A to work on some of the things that have hurt the Rays infielder.

“It’s a little better atmosphere to work and try some things out to get him in some better comfort, rhythm and timing at the plate,” Cash said. “And then let’s get him back up here, because we know we’re a better team when Daniel Robertson is helping us win games at this level.”

Robertson was one of the young players who helped the Rays win 90 games in 2018. The versatile infielder played in 87 games last season and played second base, third, shortstop and left field. He finished with nine home runs and a .797 OPS before left thumb surgery in August forced him to miss the remainder of the season.

The Rays went 47-40 when Robertson played in 2018 and the infielder led the team in Wins Above Replacement (2.6) at the time of his injury. This season, Robertson has just two home runs and a .594 OPS.

“At this time last year we’re talking about him potentially being the MVP of the club with the versatility,” Cash said. “Before the thumb injury came up, he was just doing so many good things for us.

“Talking to him over the last couple of weeks, when things aren’t going your way it can snowball on you and that’s probably what took place. He wants to help this club really, really badly and I think he added pressure on himself and we just need him to be the guy he’s always been, nothing more. And I think this will help him get back to doing that.”

With Robertson gone, you can expect Joey Wendle and Yandy Diaz to play the majority of the games at third base. Brandon Lowe will continue to play second base and first base, depending on the matchups.

Faria made his second appearance with the Rays in the club's 5-3 loss on Saturday, allowing one run and striking out a pair in two innings of work. The right-hander now has a 2.25 ERA in four innings pitched this season.

Glasnow throws off the mound

Tyler Glasnow took another positive step in his rehab process. The Rays right-hander, who is recovering from a right forearm strain that has sidelined him since May 10, threw off the mound for the first time since suffering the injury. However, it wasn’t full distance as the catcher was standing a few feet in front of the mound. He threw just fastballs.

The next step for Glasnow will be throwing a bullpen session either on Tuesday or Wednesday, which would be another big step for the Rays right-hander.

“Very encouraging,” Cash said. “I think he threw 10-12 pitches and let it go. He was excited about it. So now Tuesday will be another step, but believe me, we’re all counting down the days, but we want to do it smart and not rush anything.”

Juan Toribio covers the Rays for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @juanctoribio.