Making official what was assumed, Rays manager Kevin Cash announced that right-hander Chris Archer will start Opening Day for the second straight season.
Archer was an All-Star for the first time last season, throwing 212 innings with a 3.23 ERA and 252/66 K/BB ratio. Through age 26 his career ERA is 3.33 and he’s whiffed 562 batters in 565 innings.
Not bad for a pitcher who was traded from the Indians to the Cubs for Mark DeRosa and from the Cubs to the Rays for Matt Garza. And thanks to a long-term contract signed in April of 2014 he’s under the Rays’ control through 2021, when he’ll be 32 years old.
The Rangers made a handful of roster moves on Monday, per the club’s executive VP of communications John Blake. Shortstop Elvis Andrus has been activated from the 60-day disabled list, pitcher Ricardo Rodriguez was recalled from Triple-A Round Rock. Catcher Jose Trevino was optioned to Double-A Frisco. And yesterday, outfielder Ryan Rua was optioned to Round Rock.
The big news, of course, is the return of Andrus. He missed over two months of action after suffering a fractured right elbow on April 11 when he was hit by a 97 MPH fastball. Andrus had gotten off to a good start, batting .327/.426/.500 in 61 plate appearances.
Jurickson Profar handled shortstop while Andrus was out and did an adequate job. While his defense was subpar according to the metrics, he hit .243/.315/.456 across 267 trips to the plate. With Andrus back, Profar will likely slide back into a utility role for the Rangers.