The Los Angeles Dodgers recalled Edwin Rios from Triple-A Oklahoma City on Tuesday, bringing their active roster to 33 players. The move comes as a bit of a surprise given manager Dave Roberts‘ recent comments that the club would not promote from OKC after adding Austin Barnes.
With a slew of players returning from the injured list this month, Roberts explained the Dodgers were going to remain mindful of providing them with at-bats and avoid potentially overcrowding the clubhouse. Thus, the likes of Rios and Kyle Garlick were believed to have had their season come to an end.
“Those guys did a great job for us, but the September call-up is always a difficult one in the sense of rewarding guys who have earned the opportunity to get a September call-up,” Roberts said last week.
“Kyle and Eddie are just tremendous teammates and guys, but I think we’re very cognizant of keeping the group to as much of a minimum as possible to keep the focus on the playoffs. Sometimes, unfortunately, there’s some casualties. I can’t say enough about Kyle and Edwin and what they did for us.”
It’s unclear what may have led to the Dodgers reversing course. It’s plausible playing in an American League ballpark this week and therefore having a designated hitter spot to fill for three games against the Baltimore Orioles was a factor.
So too could be Alex Verdugo suffering a setback while on rehab assignment and his return this season now appearing to be in question. Furthermore, Justin Turner is dealing with a sore ankle.
Rios hit .270/.340/.575 with 31 home runs and 91 RBI in 104 games for OKC this season. He became the first Oklahoma City player to hit 30 homers in a season and first Triple-A Dodger since Joc Pederson slugged 33 homers for the Albuquerque Isotopes in 2014
Rios and Garlick were among eight players to make their MLB debut with the Dodgers this season. Rios showed flashes of his big power over his two previous stints in the Majors earlier this year, batting .286/.419/.571 with two home runs and four RBI in 17 games.
His first career longball came in a multi-homer performance against the Miami Marlins. The memorable performance saw him go 3-for-4 in what was a homecoming at Marlins Park, which is not far from where Rios starred at Florida Atlantic University.