Rangers recall RHP Roman Mendez, purchase contract of outfielder Jake Smolinski

Arlington, Texas - The Texas Rangers today announced the following four roster moves:

  • Right-handed pitcher Roman Mendez (#55) recalled from Triple-A Round Rock
  • Outfielder Jake Smolinski (#20) contract purchased from Triple-A Round Rock
  • Outfielder Michael Choice optioned to Triple-A Round Rock
  • Infielder Donnie Murphy designated for assignment

Mendez, 23, will be in uniform tonight seeking his major league debut. He has gone 0-1 with 3 saves and a 4.02 ERA (14 ER/31.1 IP) in 25 relief appearances for Round Rock this season in his first career Triple-A action. He has posted 30 strikeouts against 12 walks. Mendez was primarily a starting pitcher to begin his career, but has pitched exclusively in relief since a promotion to Double-A in August 2012. He missed most of last season following surgery on May 31, 2013 to treat a stress fracture in his right elbow. Originally acquired from Boston in the July 31, 2010 trade involving Jarrod Saltalamacchia, Mendez has averaged 9.1 strikeouts per 9 innings in his minor league career.

Smolinski, 25, will also be looking to make his major league debut. He has hit safely in 7 of 8 games with Round Rock, batting .267 (8-30) with 6 doubles and 6 RBI since a promotion from Double-A Frisco on June 25. He was selected to the Texas League All-Star Game after batting .267 (71-266) with 15 doubles, 10 home runs, and 35 RBI in 72 games with Frisco. Signed as a minor league free agent over the offseason, Smolinski previously split his professional career between the Nationals (2007-08) and Marlins (2009-13) since being drafted by Washington in the second round of the 2007 June draft. He was a part of a November 11, 2008 trade involving Josh Willingham and Scott Olsen.

Choice was on the Rangers' Opening Day roster and has batted .177 (35-198) with 8 home runs and 28 RBI for Texas this season. His 8 homers rank fourth on the club.

The Rangers have 10 days to trade, release, or outright Murphy to the minor leagues. Murphy batted .196 (22-112) with 4 home runs and 14 RBI over 45 games with Texas this season, and was also on the disabled list from May 8-22 with a neck strain.

After today's moves, the Rangers still have 39 players on the club's 40-man roster.