The Mariners officially announced that right-hander Erasmo Ramirez will make Sunday’s start in the series finale against the Chicago White Sox.
Ramirez was at Safeco Field on Saturday night and worked out pregame. The team will need to make a roster move to make room for him. Lefty reliever Lucas Luetge, who was called up two days ago, will likely be optioned to Class AAA Tacoma.
Ramirez’s stay will also be short. He will also be optioned back to the Rainiers postgame since the Mariners won’t need a fifth starter until the series in Philadelphia, which starts on Aug. 18. A position player — most likely James Jones — will be called up to take his place on the roster.
This isn’t the first time Ramirez made a spot start for Seattle and was sent back to Tacoma. This will actually be the third time he’s had this duty. He has no complaints.
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“I’m always happy to come back up here,” Ramirez said. “They gave me an opportunity and I need to just keep doing what I’m doing. Every time they call me, I just need to be ready. I just need to continue to be myself.”
In his last spot start against the Mets on July 22 at Safeco Field, Ramirez pitched seven innings, giving up two runs on five hits with two walks and a season-high 10 strikeouts.
“He threw the ball good, and hopefully he has that type of command again,” said manager Lloyd McClendon. “If he does, we have a good chance of winning the game. He’s thrown pretty good down (with Tacoma). Not great, but he’s held his own.”
Bloomquist on the mend
Willie Bloomquist worked his way into the Mariners’ clubhouse on his new mode of transportation – crutches.
The veteran utility infielder was a day removed from having major surgery on his right knee. Clad in a pair of basketball shorts, teammates could see the greenish purple swelling and the incision marks.
Bloomquist was in decent spirits despite the season-ending procedure and the need for crutches for four to six weeks.
“All things considered, I’m in less pain than I was prior to going in,” he said. “Obviously, it’s swollen and sore, but hopefully they’ve got everything they need to fix, fixed.”
What hurts is being forced to watch his team compete for a playoff spot from the disabled list.
“It’s been a tough pill to swallow,” he said. “I’ve wanted to be here in Seattle for a long time and to be in a playoff race. For me, that stings a little bit. I’d be lying if I said it didn’t. But I’m certainly not going to let my personal sorrows bring down what’s going on in here. We have a chance to do something special. The situation is what it is. Obviously I’m not going to be available, but I can still be here and support these guys. That’s all I can do.”
Technically, he didn’t have a complete microfracture surgery, like he had on his left knee five years ago when he played with the Royals. Team physician Dr. Edward Khalfayan performed a combination procedure, according to Bloomquist.
“They did a little bit of that in this one, but they also did a little different procedure where they took some cartilage from a different spot in my knee and kind of patched up the spot where I tore the cartilage and smoothed it over,” Bloomquist said.
“He (Khalfayan) said he’s had good success with this type of procedure, although he did have to drill a few microfracture holes in a different spot. So I kind of got the buffet of it all.”