Keone Kela just needed a break.
The 22-year-old took a demotion to Frisco to recharge his batteries after 49 appearances through the end of July — the most in baseball by a rookie pitcher. By the time he went sent down, he had a 3.30 ERA and a huge workload on his young arm.
The Rangers wisely sent Kela down, giving him 11 days off from the grind of the big-league season. In the meantime, Kela threw just two innings before returning to the Rangers on Aug. 11 in Minnesota.
Since then, he's appeared in three games for the Rangers, working 3 1/3 innings while allowing two hits (both in one game) and no runs with three strikeouts.
Now, the Rangers hope Kela is fresh for the stretch run and that he can be a positive contribution to this suddenly effective bullpen with the additions of Jake Diekman and Sam Dyson. So far, so good.