Ramirez will be joined imminently by fellow lefty Gregory Soto. As Tom Reisenweber of the Erie Times-News first reported on Twitter, the 24-year-old is slated for a call-up. He’s expected to start tomorrow.
It has been a long and winding road to this point for Ramirez, who reaches the majors for the first time just before his 30th birthday. A fourth-round pick in the 2011 draft, the Cal State Fullerton product had to switch from hitting to pitching in order to finally break through.
Though Ramirez’s move to the mound showed promise at times with the Brewers, his original organization, he didn’t show enough of a spark to force his way up. He ended up landing in the Detroit organization on a minors pact over the offseason.
Ramirez has had an intriguing start to the season. He’s working as a starter for the first time and showing newfound strikeout potential. Through 23 1/3 innings (covering two Triple-A and three Double-A starts), Ramirez carries a 2.31 ERA with 11.6 K/9 against 1.9 BB/9.
As for Soto, he has thrown just three games above the High-A level, all coming this year at Double-A. He’s a power pitcher who needs to hone his command, which he has done in the early going this year. Soto is hardly the class of this farm system’s impressive crop of hurlers, but he did get top-30 organizational billing from MLB.com. Since he’s on the 40-man roster already, the Tigers will make use of him for a spot start, though it seems likely he’ll be sent back down thereafter.