D-backs reinstate Merrill Kelly from IL after blood clot, Jose Ruiz gets DFA’d

Jul 25, 2023, 2:33 PM

Merrill Kelly...

Merrill Kelly #29 of the Arizona Diamondbacks pitches against the St. Louis Cardinals in the first inning at Busch Stadium on April 17, 2023 in St Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Joe Puetz/Getty Images)

(Photo by Joe Puetz/Getty Images)

The Arizona Diamondbacks reinstated starting pitcher Merrill Kelly from the 15-day injured list ahead of his start Tuesday against the St. Louis Cardinals.

The team designated reliever Jose Ruiz for assignment, leaving the roster at 39 players. Ruiz appeared in 34 games with a 5.89 ERA and 1.65 WHIP, allowing two homers and three earned runs in his last outing of relief Sunday in a loss to the Cincinnati Reds.

Kelly went on the IL on June 27 after the team discovered a small blood clot in his right calf following a start in San Francisco against the Giants.

Manager Torey Lovullo said last week Kelly was most likely going to pitch against the Cardinals so long as he checked the right boxes. He threw 85 pitches in the Arizona Complex League on Thursday, according to’s Steve Gilbert.

Kelly put up an argument to make the MLB All-Star Game in the first half of the season with a 3.22 ERA in 16 starts, as Arizona went 10-6 in those games. He has a 1.14 WHIP and career-high 9.3 strikeouts per nine innings.

He said he felt discomfort ahead of his start on June 24 but felt normal during the game. He woke up the next day with swelling in his lower right leg and went to a hospital in San Francisco to receive an ultrasound.

“My main priority is obviously to make sure that this is taken care of and gone first and foremost,” Kelly said after going on the IL.

Lovullo at the time was optimistic Kelly could return sooner than later based on when they found the clot.

The D-backs pieced together starts in his absence, utilizing two bullpen games and MLB stints from prospect Brandon Pfaadt while getting help from the All-Star break.

However, Kelly’s presence in the rotation as a stabilizer behind ace Zac Gallen has been missed during a difficult time for Arizona. The D-backs are 8-15 since Kelly’s last outing.

They also lost starter Zach Davies to the IL with a back issue last week and have three youngsters in the rotation as they did in May when Davies missed time.

Kelly is tied on the team for sixth in terms of wins above replacement (Baseball Reference) this year at 1.8 even with the missed time.

Arizona Diamondbacks

Merrill Kelly...

Stephen Gugliociello

Diamondbacks clinching scenarios: Two ways Arizona can go to the postseason Saturday

The Diamondbacks are on the brink of the postseason for the first time since 2017, and it's so close, you can almost taste the champagne.

4 hours ago

Jace Peterson...

Alex Weiner

Astros hold on vs. D-backs after Peña’s diving play, Arizona can clinch wild card on Saturday

The Diamondbacks came up short of clinching a playoff spot on Friday against the Astros but will get another chance on Saturday.

14 hours ago

Ketel Marte...

Arizona Sports

NL Wild Card standings: Diamondbacks fight for postseason berth

The Arizona Diamondbacks are in a playoff hunt for the first time in years. After a cold July and early August, they are back in the race.

14 hours ago

Elly De La Cruz #44 and Jonathan India #6 of the Cincinnati Reds celebrate their team's 19-2 victor...

Associated Press

Reds clobber Cardinals to keep pressure on D-backs in postseason race

Cincinnati hit six home runs in a 19-2 rout of the St. Louis Cardinals to stay alive in the National League Wild Card race.

16 hours ago

Felisa Cardenas/Arizona Sports...

Alex Weiner

D-backs surprise Greg Schulte by dedicating radio booth to longtime broadcaster

The Diamondbacks surprised longtime broadcaster Greg Schulte by naming the radio booth after him before his final regular season series.

18 hours ago

Jake McCarthy...

Alex Weiner

Preview: D-backs host Astros with chance to clinch postseason berth

The Diamondbacks can clinch a playoff spot on Friday against the Astros which would allow them to match up their starters in the playoffs.

20 hours ago

D-backs reinstate Merrill Kelly from IL after blood clot, Jose Ruiz gets DFA’d