The return to the big leagues is complete for Texas Rangers RHP Brett Tomko. He and catcher Taylor Teagarden were both called up from Triple-A Round Rock on Wednesday.
The move was necessary after the team put rookie RHP Mason Tobin on the 60-day disabled list and optioned LHP Michael Kirkman to Round Rock. Tobin, who had Tommy John surgery in 2009, left Tuesday's game against the Angels with pain in his elbow and an MRI indicates he has inflammation in the ligament.
Tomko joins the Rangers pitching staff as one of the club's long relievers. He hadn't pitched in the majors since 2009, when, while with the A's, he felt a pop in his arm while throwing a fastball to Chris Davis in a game Oakland won 9-0.
"Driving back in here, it was strange, it was surreal," Tomko said. "It's been an interesting journey to get back here over the last year and a half."
Tomko has a nerve injury in his right forearm and surgery isn't an option. He just has to wait for the nerve to fully heal on it's own. That's something he has patiently been working on for the last two years as sensation, ever so slowly, returns to his all of arm.
That time has been an emotional one for Tomko, who told Ron Washington that "I want to be there as much as I think I ever have, probably more than I ever wanted to get to the big leagues in the first place."
In Round Rock, Tomko was 0-2 with a 6.35 ERA in 11 1/3 innings. Prior to the injury in 2009, when he last pitched for the A's, he was 4-1 in six games with a 2.95 ERA and a 1.01 WHIP.