8/1/2013 11:08 P.M. ET
Thatcher excited for opportunity with D-backs
By Dave Sessions / Special to MLB.com
ARLINGTON -- Left-handed reliever Joe Thatcher joined the D-backs in Texas on Thursday, a day after being traded to Arizona from San Diego for starter Ian Kennedy.
Thatcher, 31, pitched in 50 games this season for the Padres with a career-low 2.10 ERA and 29 strikeouts and four walks in 30 innings. He came to Arizona along with relief prospect Matt Stites and a 2014 Comp B Draft pick.
"I'm excited to be here, to jump into a division race is always exciting," Thatcher said. "I've got a lot of respect for this organization. I'm glad to be here, I've been with Kevin Towers before -- he brought me into San Diego. I'm just grateful for the opportunity to be here and help out any way possible."
Manager Kirk Gibson said that, as in San Diego, Thatcher will be used mostly as a situational lefty who will be expected to get "big outs in high-leverage situations."
"He's got more angle than anybody we've had so far, he's tougher on lefties, has more deception," Gibson said. "We'll use him against righties as well -- he can get righties out. If we use him right, he's got a pretty resilient arm."
During his seven-year career, Thatcher has held lefties to a .209 batting average, striking out more than one in three lefties he has faced (136 strikeouts in 387 plate appearances). This season, lefties are hitting .215 and righties are hitting .280 against Thatcher.
"I know my job here is to get lefties out," Thatcher said, "but I've always taken pride in getting right-handers out, too."
Montero to DL; Gosewisch makes big league debut
ARLINGTON -- The D-backs on Thursday placed catcher Miguel Montero on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to July 29, as his sore back continues to ail him.
Montero did not play in the final two games of Arizona's series at San Diego, and he was out of the starting lineup for four consecutive games from July 23-26.
"It's a lower back strain, we're being proactive," manager Kirk Gibson said. "It's been nagging for about a week and we felt this was the best way to resolve it."
Montero will see a back specialist in Arizona on Friday morning and could receive an epidural injection, D-backs GM Kevin Towers said Thursday. Montero had an MRI last week that showed a bulging disk, Towers said.
"It just flared up on him again," Towers said. "I don't think it's anything serious."
Montero has struggled this season, hitting .228 with nine home runs and 34 RBIs in 92 games. However, he hit .303 (10-for-33) with three homers in the past 10 games.
In Montero's absence, 29-year-old Tuffy Gosewisch was in the lineup at catcher, making his Major League debut after hitting .285 with six homers in 66 games for Triple-A Reno this year.
Gosewisch, an 11th-round Draft pick for the Phillies in 2005, had caught Thursday starter Zeke Spruill regularly this season at Reno and said that would help him feel comfortable in his debut.
"That's my first priority, to try to handle the staff as well as I can and play defense as well as I can. Then I'll see what I can do on offense," Gosewisch said.
Gosewisch earned his first career hit with a single up the middle in his third at-bat. Gosewisch was 1-for-3 with a strikeout in the D-backs' 7-1 loss to the Rangers.
"It's really nice to get it out of the way the first game," Gosewisch said of his milestone hit. "That way I don't have to think about it, I'm not grinding on it the next three or four games."
Gosewisch got the news of his call to the bigs on Wednesday night after Reno's game in Oklahoma City.
"I was ecstatic," he said. "I didn't sleep a whole lot. Best feeling I've ever had."
Curacao represented well by Gregorius, Rangers' Profar
ARLINGTON -- The small Caribbean island of Curacao was represented in a big way Thursday as both the D-backs' and Rangers' starting shortstops hailed from the semi-autonomous part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
Arizona's Didi Gregorius, 23, and Texas' Jurickson Profar, 20, have at times this season represented two-thirds of Curacao's entire Major League contingent, though there are nearly three dozen players from the island in the Minors.
"We're trying to put our island on the map," said Gregorius. "We've got a lot of potential down there, a lot of guys trying to come up here and play."
Both players are making an impact this season, but the D-backs' Gregorius has the edge: he entered Thursday hitting .277 in 72 games while Profar is hitting .243 in 46 games.
Gregorius hit .304 (7-for-23) with a double, a homer and two RBIs in eight games prior to Thursday's contest against the Rangers.
• The D-backs optioned right-hander Chaz Roe to Reno to make room for Spruill. Roe has appeared in four MLB games, all this season for Arizona, allowing three earned runs on seven hits and six walks in 4 2/3 innings.
• With a travel schedule better suited for an NBA or NHL team, the D-backs flew from Tampa to Texas on Wednesday night with plans to fly from Dallas/Fort Worth to Boston immediately after Thursday's game. Despite the three-city, three-day whirlwind, Gibson said his team wasn't negatively affected: "We're used to traveling. Everybody else is traveling, too, so it's not like we're the only ones," he said.
Dave Sessions is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.