Jeremy Jeffress is back! The flame-throwing right-hander, drafted by the Brewers in the first round of the 2006 draft, has been called up from Triple-A Nashville after absolutely dominating the competition in the Pacific Coast League. To make room for him on the roster, Rob Wooten was optioned to Triple-A.
In 30 appearances for the Sounds, Jeffress has a 1.51 ERA and 9.7 K/9. He has not given up a run in his last nine outings as he has held opponents to just a 585 OPS over that span.
Jeffress rejoined the organization in April of this year. He had been traded away as part of the package that saw Yuniesky Betancourt come over from the Royals. Zack Greinke was also thrown into the deal as part of the return for Milwaukee. Jeffress had couple poor years with Kansas City before moving to Toronto. All in all, he was pretty good with the Blue Jays' organization, but struggled with the big league club early this year and was DFA'd. That allowed the Brewers to pick him up.
He's still just 26 years old and has always had a boatload of potential. He was originally tried out as a starting pitcher, but seems to have found more of a niche in the bullpen. Jeffress' biggest problem has historically been his control, both on the field and off. On the field, he's dealt with absurdly high walk rates at times (6.5 BB/9 in over 52 Major League innings). Off the field, he has been suspended multiple times for marijuana use. It was later discovered that he had been using the drug as self-medication for juvenile epilepsy, which he has been dealing with for some time.
Though Jeffress faces a lifetime ban if he once again tests positive for marijuana, players on the 40-man roster are not tested for such substances. It's also worth noting that he has gone since 2009 facing a lifetime ban, so it seems like that whole thing is under control.
Wooten, meanwhile, gave up the game-winning run in the ninth inning of the series' finale against the Nationals Sunday. He had appeared in 37 games for the Brewers with a 4.36 ERA and 1.36 WHIP.
Jeffress needed to be added to the 40-man roster to be called up. To make room there, Jim Henderson was moved to the 60-day DL. Henderson is in the middle of a minor league rehab stint and should return soon, meaning another move to open a 40-man spot will need to be made in the coming weeks.