A few minutes ago Brewer Media Relations Director Mike Vassallo posted the following on Twitter:
I think we were all expecting Estrada to hit the DL, especially after Doug Melvin said this morning that he's expected to miss 3-4 starts. The decision to call up Mike McClendon, however, is interesting. By replacing Estrada on the roster with a reliever the Brewers are effectively acknowledging that they're planning to use Manny Parra to fill Estrada's spot in the rotation (barring another roster move). Parra pitched the second and third inning in place of Estrada yesterday, but hasn't started a major league game since August 22, 2010. Since leaving the rotation he's never thrown more than 47 pitches in a game.
Furthermore, Parra was removed from the starting rotation in 2010 for a good reason. Over the course of his career he's been much more effective as a reliever:
|As a starter||74||392.1||5.44||8.1||4.7|
|As a reliever||55||86.1||3.34||9.6||3.2|
For the time being the Brewers appear to be choosing Parra over the likes of Wily Peralta, Mike Fiers or Tyler Thornburg to make this start. It remains to be seen if Parra will pitch well enough to keep one of them from taking the spot out of his hands before Estrada returns.
McClendon, by the way, has appeared in eight games and posted a 5.40 ERA with six strikeouts and eight walks over 11.2 innings since the Brewers sent him back to Nashville on May 1.