Perez pumped to pitch out of Rangers' bullpen

Perez pumped to pitch out of Rangers' bullpen

ARLINGTON -- For the first time this year, Martin Perez will be coming out of the bullpen. And he couldn't be happier.

"Of course I am very happy," Perez said. "I've been working hard and it's finally paid off for me. I'm here to help the team as much as I can and stay here."

Perez was called up from Triple-A Round Rock on Tuesday, replacing an injured Colby Lewis on the Rangers' roster. With Lewis on the 15-day disabled list with tendinitis in his right forearm, Scott Feldman returns to the Rangers' rotation. Perez takes over for Feldman as the team's long reliever, but could go into the rotation on Saturday.

"I was trying to call my fans in Venezuela over there, but it was late," Perez said. "After that, I called my wife and she answered. Then I called my agent, who has done a lot for me."

Perez, who last made an appearance as a reliever in 2011 with Double-A Frisco, said he won't change his routine much despite the transition from the rotation to the bullpen.

In his last two starts, Perez, the Rangers' No. 2 prospect, according to MLB.com, went 2-0 with a 1.13 ERA. He was 3-5 with a 5.40 ERA in his previous 13 starts this season.

"The thing that I changed is my long toss," Perez said. "I've also been doing extra in the bullpen, getting control of my pitches is what's been helping out."