Austin Bibens-Dirkx will start for the Texas Rangers on Thursday against the Kansas City Royals, the team announced today. Bibens-Dirkx is currently with the Round Rock Express, and is not on the 40 man roster, so the team will be purchasing his contract to add him to the 40 man roster. With Kevin Jepsen having been designated for assignment earlier this week, the 40 man roster has a vacancy, so the Rangers won’t have to make a 40 man roster move to make room for Bibens-Dirkx.
Bibens-Dirkx is filling in for starter Matt Moore, who was put on the disabled list with a “sore knee” after his last start. The Rangers are in the midst of a 20 game stretch with no offdays, and will have 10 games of that stretch remaining after Thursday, so the team will have that spot in the rotation come up two more times before they could skip it with an off day. Presumably, either Bibens-Dirkx will stay up and continue to fill that spot in the rotation, or Moore will be activated when that slot comes back up.
The Rangers are currently carrying a 13 man pitching staff that includes 8 relievers, so one of them will go down tomorrow. The most likely option would be lefty Brandon Mann, the 34 year old rookie who made his major league debut earlier this month. The bullpen math will start getting trickier when Tim Lincecum is ready to be activated, as there is no obvious candidate to be shipped out to make room for Lincecum on the active roster.