Rockies To Select Jose Urena

The Rockies are planning to select right-hander José Ureña to start tomorrow night’s game against the Dodgers, tweets Danielle Allentuck of the Colorado Springs Gazette. Ureña, who signed a minor league contract in May, is not yet on the 40-man roster.

Since joining the organization, the 30-year-old has made five starts with Triple-A Albuquerque. Ureña has been tagged for a 7.29 ERA through 21 innings with the Isotopes, only striking out 13.9% of batters faced while walking more than 11% of opponents. The Rox’s front office clearly doesn’t believe that rough showing is representative of Ureña’s current form. Albuquerque is one of affiliated ball’s most hitter-friendly environments, which no doubt hasn’t helped his cause.

Ureña has struggled of late at the big league level as well. A former Marlin and Tiger, he posted an ERA above 5.00 in each season from 2019-21. He broke camp this season with the Brewers in a relief role and allowed five runs (three earned) in 7 2/3 frames, walking five while striking out three. Milwaukee fairly quickly cut bait, designating him for assignment a few weeks into the season. Ureña has remained adept at keeping the ball on the ground, though, and he posted a pair of sub-4.00 ERA seasons in Miami in 2017-18.

The Rockies lost Antonio Senzatela to the 15-day injured list last week, as the righty is dealing with shoulder inflammation. Ryan Feltner has been the top depth option behind the club’s primary starting five, but he’s been on the minor league injured list over the past week while dealing with a rhomboid strain. Patrick Saunders of the Denver Post writes that Feltner is expected to pitch for the Isotopes this weekend after a successful simulated game today, but he won’t be an option for tomorrow’s contest.

Colorado’s 40-man roster is full, so they’ll need to make a corresponding transaction to accommodate Ureña’s promotion. The Rox have just two players on the major league 10-day or 15-day IL: Senzatela and first baseman Sean Bouchard, who went on the shelf with an oblique strain last week. The Rockies could bring up Colton Welker from the minors and put him on the major league 60-day IL to free a spot on the 40-man roster, as Welker underwent season-ending shoulder surgery last month. Doing so would require paying him at the MLB minimum rate, however.

In other Rockies news, the team informed reporters that reliever Tyler Kinley underwent successful elbow surgery recently (Allentuck link). He’s expected to be sidelined roughly one calendar year. Colorado announced that Kinley would require a season-ending procedure in mid-June, but the team didn’t specify whether he’d need a full Tommy John procedure or a less invasive surgery. The one-year timeline would seem to point towards the latter outcome, although he’s apparently still unlikely to be back on an MLB mound much before next season’s All-Star Break.

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