The Texas Rangers have recalled righthanded pitcher Luke Jackson from AAA Round Rock. To make room on the active roster, the Rangers have optioned righthanded pitcher Tom Wilhelmsen.
This is a shuffling of righthanded middle reliever/setup man types, with Wilhelmsen, expected to be a key cog in the bullpen after being acquired in the Leonys Martin trade this past offseason, having pitched poorly enough that the team couldn't justify continuing to put him into close games. Wilhelmsen has a 9.98 ERA, with more walks (8) and as many home runs (6) as strikeouts, and his fastball has been down a couple of ticks from prior years. Whether the issue is mechanical, mental, injury-related, or something else, Wilhelmsen just hasn't been the guy that he was with Seattle, and he will apparently try to figure it out in Round Rock.
The promotion of Jackson is a bit surprising...the 2010 first round draft pick hasn't had a great 2016, as he showed up for camp heavier than would be expected, started the season on the disabled list due to back issues, and has put up just a 3.86 ERA so far this year, with 19 Ks and 10 walks in 14.1 IP. On the positive side, Jackson has allowed runs in just two of his last eight outings, and with the Ranger pen in a state of flux, he has a chance to establish himself as a contributing piece.