Originally a 19th-round draft pick for the Rays in 2011, Ramsey finally made his Major League debut earlier this season, tossing a perfect inning of work to finish off an 11-5 Angels win over the Yankees on April 25. After that cup of coffee in the bigs, Ramsey was optioned back to Triple-A, where he has struggled to a 5.27 ERA and 5.3 BB/9 over 13 2/3 innings in 2019, albeit with a 9.9 K/9. Those numbers are a big step down from the otherwise solid work Ramsey has delivered in his minor league career — a 2.82 ERA, 10.8 K/9, and a 2.83 K/BB rate over 264 2/3 innings in five different organizations’ farm systems.
The Angels have selected the contract of reliever John Curtiss. He’ll take the roster spot of fellow righty Matt Ramsey, who was designated for assignment. To create an active roster opening, the club optioned down Jake Jewell.
Curtiss, 26, came up to the majors for a single appearance earlier this year and was promptly designated. He has also seen limited MLB action in each of the prior two campaigns. He was carrying a 5.91 ERA in 21 1/3 innings over 13 outings to open the year at Triple-A, recording 29 strikeouts but also issuing 13 walks.
Ramsey is following the course of Curtiss’s first look. He spun a scoreless frame of work after being summoned for his first trip to the majors, but now finds himself ticketed for a return to Triple-A on outright assignment — unless another team puts in a claim. Like Curtiss, Ramsey has been charged with more than five earned per nine during his time this year at the offensively charged environment of Salt Lake City. He posted a 15:8 K/BB ratio in 13 2/3 innings there and does have a history of racking up swings and misses in the upper minors.
The Angels have placed reliever Cody Allen on the 10-day injured list, Jeff Fletcher of the Orange County Register was among those to cover on Twitter. He’s said to be dealing with a lumbar spine strain, though details remain scant.
Allen’s health trouble comes amidst an exceedingly rough stretch on the mound. He has issued ten walks and three home runs in nine innings thus far. In light of those figures, his 6.00 ERA actually represents a merciful series of outcomes to date.
The risks were well known to the Halos when they signed Allen to a $8.5MM contract over the winter. Long a quality closer for the Indians, Allen exhibited newfound walk and long ball issues in his final season of arbitration eligibility.
Allen will take a step back and try to sort things out. His average fastball velocity is down to 93.1 mph thus far, the fifth-straight season of year-over-year decline. He has responded by going to his curve more than ever before (48.0%), but is out of the zone more than ever before (34.9% zone%) and generating only a 10.1% swinging-strike rate (his lowest level since his debut campaign).
The Angels announced that they’ve selected the contract of right-hander Matt Ramsey from Triple-A Salt Lake and designated veteran left-hander Sam Freeman for assignment in order to open spot on the 25-man and 40-man roster.
It’ll be the MLB debut for Ramsey, 29, who is in his first year in the Angels’ system. The journeyman minor league hurler spent the 2018 campaign in the Astros organization, where he pitched to a 2.04 ERA with a 63-to-16 K/BB ratio in 53 innings of relief between Triple-A (47 innings) and a quick stint with Houston’s Rookie-level affiliate (six innings). He’s off to a shaky start in Salt Lake, having allowed seven runs (three earned) on 11 hits and four walks with nine strikeouts in 8 2/3 innings of relief.
Freeman, 31, just made his Angels debut last night, allowing a run on three hits and two walks in two innings of relief. He spent the 2017-18 seasons in the Braves’ bullpen, pitching to a combined 3.34 ERA in 110 1/3 innings. Freeman’s numbers deteriorated across the board in 2018, however, and Atlanta cut him loose during Spring Training. He latched on with the Halos on a minor league deal and posted a 3.00 ERA in nine Triple-A innings, though his 7-to-6 K/BB ratio wasn’t particularly encouraging.
If Freeman clears waivers, he has enough service time to elect free agency, so it’s possible that today’s DFA could spell the end of his time with the organization after just a few weeks.