Seven years after his last major-league appearance, Cesar Valdez is finally back in "The Show". Valdez got the call to start the A's game on Thursday night against the Seattle Mariners. Valdez takes Kendall Graveman's turn in the rotation. Graveman landed on the 10-day DL on Monday.
Valdez has pitched professionally since 2006, when he signed with the Arizona Diamondbacks' organization. He reached the big leagues with the D-Backs briefly in 2010, allowing 17 runs in 20 innings over nine appearances. After the 2010 season, Valdez began a nomad journey through professional baseball. He pitched at the Triple-A level for the Pirates and the Mets in 2011 before moving to the Mexican Summer League for the next four seasons. In 2016, he returned to affiliated baseball with the Houston Astros and was a big part of the Astros' Fresno squad. In 138.1 innings, Valdez had a 3.12 ERA and a 114:13 K:BB.
After a strong spring that kept him in big league camp for the entire spring training schedule, Valdez joined the Triple-A Nashville rotation. Through two starts, he has allowed three runs on eight hits in 10 innings. He has struck-out 12 and hasn't walked a batter.
Valdez takes Bruce Maxwell's spot on the A's 25-man roster. Maxwell had two hits in five at-bats for the A's this week. Marcus Semien (wrist) has been moved to the 60-day DL to make room for Valdez on the 40-man roster.
Corey Walter has joined the Nashville rotation and will make his first Triple-A start on Thursday in Valdez's place. The A's have yet to replace Walter in the Double-A Midland rotation. With the RockHounds' off-day on Wednesday and the uncertainty about when Graveman and rehabbing A's starter Sonny Gray will return to the Oakland rotation, the A's are a little bit in flux with their starting rotations at the Triple-A and Double-A levels. Walter has allowed just one run on six hits in 11 innings for Midland this season. He had a 2.15 ERA in 100.1 innings for the RockHounds last season.
Boomer Biegalski made his High-A debut on Wednesday night for Stockton. Biegalski, who joined the Ports' rotation from Beloit after Daulton Jefferies was placed on the disabled list, worked four hitless innings and earned the win as the second-half of the Ports' tandem start. Biegalski struck-out one and didn't walk a batter. A.J. Puk got the start in that game and he allowed just two unearned runs on one hit in his four frames. The lefty struck-out seven and walked two and now has 20 strike-outs and only three walks over his first 12 innings for the Ports. Mitchell Jordan took Biegalski's place in the Beloit tandem rotation. Jordan's first outing for the Snappers was cut short by a rain delay on Tuesday, however.