Troncoso optioned to work on mechanics

Troncoso optioned to work on mechanics

PHOENIX -- Reliever Ramon Troncoso was sent down to Triple-A Albuquerque before Saturday's game with the D-backs. Rookie Travis Schlichting was called up from Albuquerque to replace him.

Troncoso has struggled for much of this season. He has a 5.15 ERA while allowing six home runs in 36 2/3 innings, compared to just three for all of last year.

Tronscoso's prior two appearances have been scoreless, including two perfect innings Friday night. The move caught Troncoso by surprise, but he handled it like a pro.

"I know it's going to make me be better," Troncoso said. "Everybody wants to be here. I'll go there and throw more innings."

Although Hiroki Kuroda's 1 2/3-inning start Friday night required Dodgers manager Joe Torre to burn through his bullpen -- and Troncoso was the only middle reliever that had options remaining -- Torre said the club had been considering the move for the past 10 days to give Troncoso a chance to "get organized."

"We told him this wasn't punishment, but to work on his mechanics and release point so he gets consistency," the skipper said. "We needed to know when we call his number, what are we getting?

"His role is coming out and minimizing damage. He's allowed six home runs. That's a lot. He can't lose sight that he's a sinkerball pitcher. He can't go up and in."

One goal is for Troncoso to pitch more innings, and pitching coach Rick Honeycutt said starting Troncoso would be considered. This is Schlichting's third callup, having taken the place of Scott Elbert and Chad Billingsley earlier in the year.