After announcing last night that left-handed starter Tom Gorzelanny had been placed on the 15-Day DL (retroactive to May 24) with inflammation in his left elbow, the Washington Nationals announced this morning that right-hander Collin Balester will come up to throw out of the bullpen today and according to MLB.com's Bill Ladson (@washingnats) RHP Yunesky Maya will take Gorzelanny's place in the rotation, starting Sunday against the visiting San Diego Padres. Please note, however, that as of this morning's pregame press conference with Nats' Skipper Jim Riggleman, the Nationals haven't officially announced who would take Gorzelanny's place.
Gorzelanny, acquired from the Cubs this winter for a package of prospects, had struggled recently, giving up 24 hits, 13 runs and six HR's over 15.1 IP in his last three starts. Yunesky Maya, who D.C. GM Mike Rizzo admitted this Winter might have been rushed to the Majors last season after signing as an international free agent, is (1-4) in nine starts for the Nats' top affiliate, the Triple-A Syracuse Chiefs, posting a 3.79 ERA, 3.72 FIP, 6.83 K/9 and 1.82 BB/9 over 59.1 IP.
Collin Balester, who's already had a brief stint with the Nats this season when he was called up to replace Todd Coffey when Coffey was DL'd with a left calf strain, is (2-0) in 13 games and 17.0 IP with Syracuse, striking out 18 (9.53 K/9) and walking seven (3.71 BB/9) while holding opponents to a .262 BAA.