Rockies recall Lyles for 'pen role; Bergman to DL

Club hoping former starter can return to form in relief stint

May 20th, 2016

PITTSBURGH -- Short a right-handed long reliever, the Rockies summoned onetime starting rotation member Jordan Lyles from Triple-A Albuquerque on Friday.

The left oblique injury that righty Christian Bergman suffered Thursday night in St. Louis -- which resulted in his placement on the 15-day disabled list -- made the move necessary. But what Lyles does in the new role will determine whether his presence is temporary or if it will lead to greater opportunity.

Lyles, 25, after seeing 2014 curtailed by a broken left (non-throwing) hand and 2015 shortened by a torn ligament in his left big toe, returned to the rotation with much promise but went 1-1 with a 7.64 ERA in four starts before being sent down. Lyles went 1-1 with a 5.40 ERA for Albuquerque in four starts, three of them solid.

Lyles, who joined the Rockies before Friday night's game against the Pirates, had not appeared in relief in the Majors since Aug. 26, 2013, when he struck out the only batter he faced in a save for the Astros against the White Sox. He was used in relief as a rookie late in 2011, when the Astros were trying to control his innings.

"I don't know … we'll find out," Lyles said when asked if relief work could get him back on track at the Major League level. "I'm excited about it. I'm happy to be around these guys. I haven't really thought about it. I found out last night. They told me I was coming. I'll go with it and have a positive attitude. At the end of the day it's about the Colorado Rockies and winning ballgames."

Lyles' opportunity depends on how Rockies starters perform. A good run of starting pitching meant Bergman didn't appear in a game for eight days before his injury Thursday.

The Rockies also called up righty Miguel Castro, who had a 1.50 ERA in six outings before experiencing right shoulder inflammation earlier this season, and optioned righty Scott Oberg to Albuquerque. A lot of the movement had to do with factors that arose during Thursday's 13-7 loss to the Cardinals, specifically Bergman's injury and Oberg throwing 49 pitches in two innings.

Additionally, the Rockies expect to determine this weekend whether they will activate lefty starter Jorge De La Rosa, who is on the disabled list with a groin strain, after De La Rosa threw 94 pitches in seven solid innings Thursday for Albuquerque. Righty Jason Motte (right shoulder strain) could be activated in the coming days, as well.