The Royals have announced they have optioned rookie left-hander Daniel Lynch to Triple-A Omaha and have recalled right-handed reliever Jake Newberry. Catcher Cam Gallagher was also activated off the Injured List and Sebastian Rivero was optioned to Triple-A.
Lynch struggled in his three starts with the Royals, giving up 15 runs (14 earned) in just eight innings with five walks and seven strikeouts. It is the second-most runs given up in a Royals pitcher’s first three MLB games behind only Dan Reichert giving up 20 runs in his first three games in 1999. Lynch is ranked by many publications as the top pitching prospect in the Royals organization after being the 34th overall pick in the 2018 draft. Jakob Junis will start the evening game of Friday’s doubleheader against the White Sox, and would presumably replace Lynch in the rotation.
Mike Matheny didn’t say it directly, but sure sounds like part of what they want Daniel Lynch to work on in Omaha is pitch tipping.— Sam Mellinger (@mellinger) May 14, 2021
Jake Newberry has already been up with the Royals this season, giving up eight runs in 4 1⁄3 innings. The 26-year old right-hander has pitched in parts of the last four seasons with the Royals, putting up a 4.84 ERA in 70 2⁄3 innings with 8.8 strikeouts-per-nine innings but 5.1 walks.
Gallagher had gone on the 7-day Injured List on May 3 for concussion protocol. Rivero went 0-for-6 in his first two MLB games this week.
The Royals also called up right-handed pitcher Ronald Bolaños to serve as the “27th man” for the doubleheader today. The 24-year old was acquired last summer from the Padres with Franchy Cordero for reliever Tim Hill. In 23 1⁄3 big league innings, he has a 6.94 ERA with 21 strikeouts and 15 walks. He made one start for Triple-A Omaha this year, giving up just two runs in five innings with three strikeouts and three walks.
The Royals initially bumped Lynch to the big leagues in order to move Jakob Junis to the bullpen to add depth, a move that was a bit head-scratching but had some logic to it. The move has blown up in their face as Lynch did not seem ready at all for big league hitters, and Junis has been disastrous in the pen. To have the move coincide with a double-digit losing streak only makes it look worse. Hopefully Junis can get his career back on track in the rotation and Lynch can get some sorely needed seasoning in Omaha.