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Detroit — Earlier in the day Wednesday, the Tigers released right-handed pitching prospect Gerson Moreno, who will undergo Tommy John surgery.

To replace him on the 40-man roster, they purchased the contract of utility man Ronny Rodriguez from Toledo and called him up after the game.

"It's time for him to come up," manager Ron Gardenhire said. "There is some stipulation with him (an opt-out on June 1) where if we don't make a move we could lose him. But it's time. He's been playing his tail off.

"He's been recommended by the whole staff. He deserve a chance and we're going to do that."

Rodriguez, who spent the last seven seasons in the Indians organization, was hitting .318 with a .341 on-base percentage and slugging .540. On Wednesday, Rodriguez hit for the cycle, went 5 for 5 with a pair of home runs.

"That's good enough for me," Gardenhire said.

The move was not directly related to shortstop Jose Iglesias' right hip contusion, which he suffered sliding into home plate in the sixth inning against the Angels. Iglesias said he was sore, but didn't think the injury would keep him out long-term.

Catcher Grayson Greiner was sent back to Toledo.

"Grayson did a wonderful job," Gardenhire said. "He's been fantastic. But we have two catchers and we're still waiting on Miggy (Cabrera) and in the next day or two we may be activating him.

"So, there are a lot of things going on here."

This is the first big-league call up for Rodriguez. 

chris.mccosky@detroitnews.com

twitter.com/cmccosky

 

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