The Rangers announced tonight that they’ll select the contract of right-hander Austin Bibens-Dirkx from Triple-A Round Rock, and he’ll start Thursday’s game against the Royals. Texas has an open spot on the 40-man roster, so they’ll only need to make a 25-man move to accommodate the promotion of Bibens-Dirkx.
The 33-year-old Bibens-Dirkx made his big league debut last season after a 12-year minor league odyssey that began as a 16th-round pick of the Mariners back in 2006. He appeared in 24 games with Texas last year and totaled 69 1/3 innings of 4.67 ERA ball, averaging 4.9 K/9, 2.6 BB/9 and 1.82 HR/9 with a 39.9 percent ground-ball rate.
Though only six of those 24 appearances were starts, Bibens-Dirkx has worked primarily out of the rotation since joining the Rangers organization prior to the 2017 season. That’s been his role with Round Rock this year, too, where he’s made eight starts with a 3.72 ERA and a 32-to-8 K/BB ratio in 38 2/3 innings.
[Related: Texas Rangers depth chart]
Bibens-Dirkx will step into a rotation spot that has been vacated due to injuries incurred by both Matt Moore and Martin Perez. It’s not clear whether he’ll simply be making a one-off spot start or if he’ll get multiple opportunities while Perez and Moore work their way back, though both of those injured lefties have struggled substantially in 2018. Cole Hamels, Doug Fister, Mike Minor and Bartolo Colon round out manager Jeff Banister’s rotation at present, though that group’s composition figures to change in the coming months as the Rangers begin to field trade interest on their short-term veteran assets.