ST. PETERSBURG - The Tampa Bay Rays will recall infielder Tim Beckham on Wednesday and bring right-hander Jake Odorizzi back Friday in time for their four-game series with the visiting Baltimore Orioles.
Beckham, the top pick in the 2008 draft, has spent the last six seasons in the Rays' farm system, including the past two full seasons at Triple-A Durham. He hit .276 with a .342 on-base percentage for the Bulls this year while helping them to the International League title.
Beckham, drafted as a shortstop, could have reached the big leagues last season when the Rays desperately needed infield help. But a 50-game suspension for failing minor league baseball's drug policy after testing positive for marijuana use delayed his development.
Beckham won't be used much during the final 12 days of the season. The fact the Rays added OF Freddy Guzman to the roster Tuesday to be their late-inning pinch-runner/base stealer eliminates that role.
The Rays mostly want Beckham as added infield depth and to allow him a chance to experience life in the big leagues while not being asked to do too much during the playoff chase. They believe that can be the final piece of his development.
Meanwhile, Odorizzi is back for his third stint with the big club. He has pitched in five games, making four starts. He is 0-1 with a 5.09 ERA.
Odorizzi started the Triple-A national championship game Tuesday. He allowed one run over four innings with eight strikeouts in the Bulls' 2-1 loss to Omaha.
Beckham singled in the seventh for the Bulls' first hit of the game.
To make room on the 40-man roster for Guzman, the Rays transferred outfielder Brandon Guyer to the 60-day disabled list.