After a troubling outing where he surrendered nine runs, Luis Perdomo has been sent down to Triple-A El Paso.
In his stead, Kirby Yates has been reinstated off the 10-day DL and will return to the bullpen after being sidelined with right ankle inflammation.
It is disappointing news for a team that was so high on Perdomo going into the season, but after getting shelled for 15 runs and 26 hits in 14 innings pitched, Perdomo will be sent back to the minors for the first time since 2015.
After being acquired by the Colorado Rockies (who originally picked him up in the 2015 Rule 5 Draft from the St. Louis Cardinals), Perdomo was able to stick in the bullpen, and eventually the rotation, thanks to injuries. He tossed 146.2 innings in his rookie season and had a particular knack for getting ground balls, as his sinker helped him net a 59.0% ground ball rating. While he began the season as a reliever, he was much better in the bullpen as evidenced by his ERA splits (4.85 as a starter and 9.10 as a reliever).
He flourished again as a ground ball specialist in 2017 campaign, as he was able to log 163.2 innings and improve his ground ball rate to 61.8%, a rate that would lead the National League in 2017, with only Marcus Stroman of the Toronto Blue Jays having a better rate (62.1%). The acquisition of defensive wizard Freddy Galvis was made with him in mind, so the Padres could take advantage of the ground balls he threw.
Perdomo struggled early in the season and got hit hard in his starts. While he had a solid showing in Houston, the rest of his starts saw him get hit early. He gained some credit in Colorado for standing up for his teammates, throwing a pitch behind Rockies star Nolan Arenado and subsequently starting a brawl. After serving a five-game suspension, Perdomo returned to only last three innings, giving up nine runs on ten hits as the Los Angeles Dodgers feasted on pitches left up in the zone.
Manager Andy Green noted that Perdomo had to pitch better in the Major Leagues, and this move may serve as a wake-up call to the young hurler, similar to the demotion Hunter Renfroe received last year.
Padres have optioned Luis Perdomo to @epchihuahuas. Kirby Yates will be reinstated from th DL. Padres will need a fifth starter on Tuesday in Colorado.
— Jeff Sanders (@sdutSanders) April 19, 2018
Taking his spot is Kirby Yates, an arrival that will surely be welcomed by a bullpen that has been stretched thin as of late. In just this past series against the Dodgers, the bullpen has thrown 18 innings, after short starts by Perdomo and Robbie Erlin, to go along with an extra inning game.
The Padres have, indeed, been considering Eric Lauer for a promotion. It's worth noting, however, that Tuesday's rotation vacancy comes in Denver — not an ideal place to debut. Erlin may be a likelier candidate to start.
— AJ Cassavell (@AJCassavell) April 20, 2018
The Padres will most likely be going with an eight-man bullpen as they will need a starter for Tuesday’s game in Denver. While it certainly is possible that Eric Lauer could be called upon to make his debut, the Padres may not want to start him in the hitting haven known as Coors Field. Instead, Erlin may slide into the rotation for the time being to fill the gap left by the demotion.