ARLINGTON -- Pitcher Tanner Scheppers was activated off the disabled list on Thursday after being sidelined since April 18 with inflammation in his right elbow. To make room, the Rangers optioned pitcher Aaron Poreda back to Triple-A Round Rock.
Scheppers, who was the Rangers' Opening Day starter, will be used out of the bullpen. He was the Rangers' primary eighth-inning setup reliever last season, but Texas will ease him back into that role. Jason Frasor and Shawn Tolleson will be the club's primary right-handed setup relievers.
"We're not bringing him back to be the closer, and we're not bringing him back in the eighth inning," manager Ron Washington said. "He could be big. We know what he is capable of, but he's been shut down. … He has to get in shape. In time he'll let us know where he belongs."
Scheppers made four starts out of the rotation before going on the disabled list and later a rehabilitation assignment through Double-A and Triple-A.
"Everything feels good," Scheppers said. "Throughout the whole process, we've been headed in the right direction. It's nice to feel pain free. I'm ready to go. I'm happy with any role; I'm happy to be throwing. I can't wait to get out there in a game."
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less