KC Royals call up dominant Triple-A pitcher for 2024 debut

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With pitcher Alec Marsh sitting on the 15-day IL, the KC Royals needed a starting solution for Monday. The team has one with righty Jonathan Bowlan, first reported by Kansas City Star's Jaylon Thompson. Bally Sports Kansas City's Joel Goldberg reported Bowlan was already with the team in Detroit Sunday, ahead of traveling to Toronto.

The Royals have not announced an official corresponding move to elevate Bowlan. Kansas City promoted reliever Will Klein when Marsh went on the IL, so he may be demoted again for Bowlan's promotion.

The KC Royals reward Jonathan Bowlan's strong start with MLB promotion.

The Tennessee native made his MLB debut with the Royals on Sept. 27, 2023, in Detroit, becoming the 58th different player to appear in a game for the 2023 Royals. That mark matched the franchise record set back in 2004. He allowed one run in two innings as the opener, the lone run being the 511th HR of Miguel Cabrera’s career.

The righty had an outside shot of breaking camp with the big-league club but fell short. Bowlan has been Triple-A Omaha's best pitcher so far this season, pitching 21 innings across four starts. His 2.57 ERA leads all Storm Chasers starters and ranks sixth among all Royals minor-league starters as well. Bowlan has a cool 21 strikeouts so far this year, helping maintain a 1.00 WHIP so far. His 2024 season has been a revelation as he continues to bounce back from Tommy John surgery.

"I'm just kind of attacking guys, trying to eat innings and do what I can to get them out as quick as I can," Bowlan said after the news broke. "It's kind of been my goal this year, and that's what I'm going to continue to do and kind of just go from there."

Bowlan went under the knife in June 2021 for the surgery. He made his return 12 months later on June 17, 2022. He made 17 total starts in affiliated ball but struggled with walks for Double-A Northwest Arkansas. That continued into 2023, but Bowlan's 24 appearances, 21 starts, and 102 innings pitcher were all his most since 2019, his last full season.

The Royals kick off a three-game series against the Toronto Blue Jays on Monday. Bowlan will duel fellow righty Yariel Rodríguez in the Rogers Centre. The first pitch is at 6:07 PM Kauffman Standard Time.

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