Arizona Diamondbacks: Another comeback attempt for Rubby De La Rosa

Rubby De La Rosa was recalled from minors on June 23. (Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports)
Rubby De La Rosa was recalled from minors on June 23. (Jennifer Stewart-USA TODAY Sports) /

Right-hander Rubby Del Rosa of the Arizona Diamondbacks is attempting to come back from stem cell injection.

At this point, the transaction may be viewed as another footnote in another protracted baseball season. For right-hander Rubby De La Rosa of the Arizona Diamondbacks, this is more a chance at redemption and recovery and then a note in the media guide.

From Tommy John surgery after the 2011-12 off-season to stem cell injection in his right elbow last September 27, De La Rosa has experienced, it seems, more medical procedures than major league victories. Exhibiting several of manager Torey Lovullo’s core characteristics of resiliency and hard work, De La Rosa refuses to go quietly in the night.

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Reporting to spring training as a non-roster invitee, the 28-year old native of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic worked his way back into favor. Starting the current season with Advanced-A Visalia, De La Rosa turned in three, straight scoreless outings from May 1 through the 7. Promoted to Triple-A Reno, De La Rosa continued his comeback with eight scoreless innings, at one point, and held opponents scoreless in 11 of 14 appearances.

When right-hander J. J. Hoover experienced right shoulder inflammation and the reliever was placed on the 10-day disabled list Friday, De La Rosa was activated. Explaining the move, Lovullo told Venom Strikes the time for De La Rosa will be measured.

"“Everything for Rubby was moving in the right direction,” he said. “Going forward, we’ll put him in a low-level situations. We will not rush him along nor ask that he do things at any great pace. We want his introduction back as seamless as possible.”"

When De La Rosa arrived in the desert from Boston in a trade for Wade Miley on Dec. 12, 2014, he came off 4-8 record with the Sox. Showing an electric fast ball in spring training and a respectable level of durability, then manager Chip Hale inserted De La Rosa into the starting rotation. Responding with a 14-9 campaign in 2015, Del La Rosa then experienced right elbow inflammation at the start of the 2016 and eventually had that stem cell injection.

Rotation change

Prior to Friday’s game, Lovullo announced that right-hander Taijuan Walker will sit out his next start. Citing no medical reasoning, Lovullo merely told Venom Strikes that Randall Delgado will get a start Sunday after against the Phillies. That sets up Robbie Ray on Saturday, Delgado on Sunday and Zack Grienke on Monday for the rest of the Phillies series. Beyond Monday, Lovullo pointed out to Venom Strikes that decisions will be decided.

“I can say yes and no that Walker will get back in the rotation,” he said. “For now, it’s Randall on Sunday and Zack for Monday. Beyond that, we’ll continue to explore options.”

Roster moves

After placing Hoover on the DL and recalling De La Rosa on Friday, the Diamondbacks decided to give up on catcher Oscar Hernandez. On Friday, the club designated Hernandez for assignment.

"Arizona Diamondbacks: Team remains focused, disciplined"

A former Rule 5 selection form the Tampa Bay Rays, Hernandez was on the Jackson Generals Double-AA roster. Now, the Diamondbacks have 10 days to decide to trade Hernandez or send him outright to the minors. If there is no movement in that period of time, he becomes a free agent.