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Marshall activated, Partch optioned to Triple-A

CHICAGO -- The Reds reinstated left-handed reliever Sean Marshall from the 15-day disabled list and optioned righty Curtis Partch to Triple-A Louisville, the team announced Saturday morning.

Marshall was hampered in Spring Training by a sore left shoulder and was placed on the DL on March 21. He made a pair of rehab appearances this week for Louisville, allowing one earned run on two hits with a pair of strikeouts and one walk in two innings, and he joined the team on Friday for the start of the series with the Cubs.

Cincinnati did not send Partch down because of poor performance. Reds manager Bryan Price stressed the most important thing for Partch right now was to pitch on a consistent basis. He, like several other members of the bullpen, were used sparingly over the past week and a half because of a pair of off-days and effective starting pitching.

In 4 1/3 innings this season, the 27-year-old righty didn't surrender a run, while allowing just one hit with three walks and three strikeouts.

"Yeah, it's always disappointing," Price said of sending down someone who has been playing well. "You don't have guys up here that you don't want to have here. But the one thing about Curtis, is of all the guys that we have here, he's the guy that needs to pitch the most consistently, because he's really right on that edge of defining himself as a true Major League pitcher. He certainly has the stuff, but the consistency isn't going to come without pitching, and he's not pitching much."

Getting Marshall back returns one of the National League's premier setup men to an already solid bullpen. It also balances the 'pen, which in Marshall's absence had just one lefty, Manny Parra. The situation was a tricky one for Price, who had to weigh using Parra in high-leverage situations with burning his only lefty too early in a game.

Now, he'll no longer have to use another right-handed reliever to do the "dirty work" against left-handers in late innings.

"Just having Manny, we really had to be particular on when we used him, and there were going to be those times where, hey, if we can get to the ninth with the lead, Manny would be the best guy to match up with that particular section of the lineup, yet you might need him in the seventh or the sixth," Price said. "And Marshall -- It's not just having two lefties, it's having Sean Marshall back. He's really good."

Joe Popely is an associate reporter for
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