Rangers starting pitcher Martin Perez is going to miss at least one turn in the rotation following an MRI on his left elbow, the club told reporters Sunday (via star-telegram.com). Perez has informed the club that he has discomfort in his pitching elbow, which triggered the MRI.
With Perez at least temporarily out, the Rangers will recall Nick Tepesch to join the rotation for the time being.
Perez, 23, looked like one of the best pitchers in baseball through five starts, as he was 4-0 with a 1.42 ERA. He threw back-to-back shutouts to round out that outstanding start to the season. Since then, though, he's been awful. It has been three starts since those back-to-back shutouts and he's 0-3 with a 12.83 ERA. He's walked 10 batters in just 13 1/3 innings while also being hammered for an opposing batting line of .393/.486/.721.
He was efficient in those two shutouts (109 pitches in each game), so it's not like manager Ron Washington should be blamed for overworking the youngster. I'd call it a coincidence. It is pretty easy to see that something changed, though, and it's worth noting that Perez didn't specify when his elbow started hurting. It's possible these last three starts are the product of some issue in Perez's elbow.
Tepesch, 25, was 4-6 with a 4.84 ERA and 1.37 WHIP last season. He's been stellar in Triple-A to this point in 2014, though, going 6-1 with a 1.58 ERA, 0.99 WHIP and 41 strikeouts in 45 2/3 innings.