June 04, 2012; Kansas City, MO, USA; Minnesota Twins manager Ron Gardenhire (35) walks to the mound to relieve relief pitcher Jeff Gray (60) in the ninth inning of the game against the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium. The Twins won 10-7. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-US PRESSWIRE
For a while, just a little while, Jeff Gray looked like he was going to be okay. Through his first 17 appearances he owned a 2.00 ERA in 18 innings, holding batters to a .217/.308/.333 line. That's the magic of small sample sizes: a guy whose addition to the 40-man roster was a mystery in the first place had a hot streak, and for a flicker in time we thought he might work out.
It turns out that the unexpected bullpen magic went to other players this season. Since that 17th game, Gray has thrown 34 innings of 7.68 ERA baseball where hitters hit .307/.380/.550. Every batter looked like Josh Hamilton. Now Gray has been outrighted off the 40-man roster, like Nick Blackburn and Tsuyoshi Nishioka before him.
In his place the Twins are once again beefing their bench up to four players by recalling Chris Parmelee. This will be Parmelee's fourth stint with the big league club, and he joins Liam Hendriks in gaining enough frequent flyer miles for a free trip to Paris.
Parmelee has nothing left to prove at Triple-A, where he batted .338/.457/.645 with 17 home runs, 17 doubles, 51 walks, 52 strikeouts, and what I'm sure was a hard-earned stolen base. He's 24, but this was his first season seeing the competition in Triple-A, and he absolutely demolished it. Here's hoping that, this time, some of that confidence and production sticks with the Twins.
The Twins now have 37 players on their 40-man roster.