As expected, the Rays reinstated first baseman Ji-Man Choi from the injured list before Monday’s game against the White Sox in Chicago. Unexpectedly, they sent down infielder Mike Brosseau to make room on the 26-man active roster.
Choi has been out 12 days with a left groin strain, which many have been related to his return in mid-May from spring surgery on his right knee. He played in 15 games between the injured list stints, hitting .304 with two homers, 11 RBIs and a .970 OPS.
Brosseau had been struggling at the plate, hitting .184 with 49 strikeouts in 139 plate appearances, but his defense had been good and his versatility to play all four infield positions, as well as the corner outfield spots, made him a valuable asset off the bench.
Without him, the Rays will have Yandy Diaz, Brandon Lowe, Taylor Walls and Joey Wendle to cover the other three infield spots with one available off the bench, which could limit some of the in-game moves they like to make.
The other option would have been to send down a pitcher, though due to option limits and roles, those choices were also restricted, with Jeffrey Springs, the only lefty in the bullpen, potentially the most likely choice.
Manager Kevin Cash said the decision on Brosseau was a tough one, but they saw a benefit in staying with 14 pitchers and also that Brosseau should benefit from playing regularly at Triple-A Durham and get back on track.
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