Mulvey gets call to join big league bullpen
Righty could end up in rotation depending on use in relief
CHICAGO -- Kevin Mulvey did not recognize the number on his caller ID, so he let it go to voice mail.
When the same number came up a fourth time, one right after the other, he figured he'd better pick up.
It was fortunate that he did answer, because it wasn't a call, it was the call, with Triple-A Reno manager Brett Butler on the other end letting Mulvey know he was being called up to the big leagues.
"Glad I answered that one," Mulvey said.
A starter with Reno, Mulvey was slated to start Thursday's game for the Aces, but instead, he will find himself initially in the Arizona bullpen. With a taxed group of relievers, the D-backs wanted to add someone like Mulvey, who could pitch multiple innings if needed.
Mulvey arrived in Chicago very early Thursday morning. It capped a busy couple of days for him. He had taken a red-eye flight from Reno to New Jersey on Tuesday to visit his girlfriend. Flight delays kept him from arriving in New Jersey on time, and then he got the call from Butler, so he spent only 18 hours there.
In four starts for Reno, he was 0-1 with a 4.05 ERA.
"I've been throwing the ball well," Mulvey said. "I haven't been walking many guys. That's what I was trying to do, throw strikes down in the zone and get ground-ball outs. Hopefully I can continue to do that up here."
Mulvey is a candidate to take over injured righty Kris Benson's spot in the rotation, which comes up again Monday, depending on how much he is needed in the bullpen beforehand.
Hinch not ready to name rotation fill-in
CHICAGO -- The D-backs will need a starter to fill injured Kris Benson's spot in the rotation come Monday, but on Thursday, manager A.J. Hinch had more important things to worry about.
After watching his starting pitchers fail to get out of the third inning in back-to-back games, Hinch was focused on his bullpen.
The club called up right-handers Kevin Mulvey and Dan Stange from Triple-A Reno on Thursday to take the place of Benson and injured reliever Leo Rosales. While Mulvey has been a starter in the Minors, he will pitch out of the bullpen for the next few days if needed.
That neither rules Mulvey in or out for Monday's start. Hinch said Reno pitchers Cesar Valdez, Billy Buckner and Bryan Augenstein would also be considered.
"We'll see how the next few days go," Hinch said. "[Mulvey's] in the mix -- really, right now everyone is. We need to get through the next few days before we worry about Monday."
Benson, Rosales placed on 15-day DL
CHICAGO -- The D-backs placed pitchers Kris Benson and Leo Rosales on the 15-day disabled list on Thursday and recalled pitchers Kevin Mulvey and Dan Stange.
Benson was forced to leave Wednesday's game when he experienced discomfort in his right shoulder, and the club is calling his injury a shoulder strain.
"Hopefully it is nothing major and we can get him back in the mix for the rotation," D-backs manager A.J. Hinch said.
Rosales had been experiencing pain in his left foot since the team's series in San Diego, but had been attempting to pitch through it while having his foot wrapped. He has been diagnosed with a foot sprain.
Rosales had been pitching well before allowing seven runs in 1 1/3 innings Wednesday.
"He was getting better, but then he took a step back yesterday," Hinch said.
After finally getting a chance to pitch in the big leagues and have success, Rosales had been reluctant to go on the disabled list. When a reporter noticed he had his ankle wrapped earlier this week and asked him about it, he said, "I'm not coming out, I'm not going on the DL. No way. I just want to keep pitching."
Stange called up from Triple-A Reno
CHICAGO -- Dan Stange was relaxing at home Wednesday, an off-day for the Triple-A Reno Aces.
"I was hanging out on the couch watching the Giants-Phillies game," Stange said.
A phone call from his manager changed that, as Stange found out he was headed to the big leagues for the first time to take the place of injured reliever Leo Rosales.
"Stange was available, on the 40-man [roster] and pitching well, so he earned the opportunity to fill in for Rosales," D-backs manager A.J. Hinch said.
In eight relief appearances for Reno, he was 3-1 with a 2.89 ERA.
A seventh-round pick in the 2006 First-Year Player Draft, Stange was rising through the organization before having Tommy John surgery in October 2007, which caused him to miss half of 2008.
"Stange is a good development story," Hinch said. "He's had to get back on track and he's doing that. He brings a lot of intensity, he's got a good focus. He really is competitive on the mound and he's got good stuff."
Stange, who throws a fastball, slider and occasional changeup, has benefitted from a change in mechanics made during Spring Training.
Stange didn't have to wait long to get his first taste of the Majors, as he was called on to work the ninth inning on Thursday with the D-backs holding a 13-5 lead.
"It was obviously exciting," said Stange, who retired the Cubs in order. "Little bit [of nerves]. Obviously, now it's all done and over with, and now it's just basically back to baseball, so that's good."
Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.