Rays acquire righty Ramirez in trade with Mariners

Tampa Bay sends over left-hander Montgomery in exchange

Rays acquire righty Ramirez in trade with Mariners

PORT CHARLOTTE, Fla. -- The Rays addressed their starting pitching depth -- or lack thereof -- Tuesday night when they acquired right-hander Erasmo Ramirez from the Mariners in exchange for left-handed pitcher Mike Montgomery.

Starters Alex Colome (pneumonia), Alex Cobb (right-forearm tendinitis) and Drew Smyly (left-shoulder tendinitis) will not be in the rotation for the first few weeks of the season, which prompted the move to find a starter to help bridge the gap.

Ramirez, 24, made the Mariners' Opening Day roster in 2014 and started their second game of the season. Over seven stints with Seattle last season, he went 1-6 with a 5.26 ERA in 17 games.

In the Minors, he pitched in 16 games between Triple-A Tacoma and Class A Advanced High Desert, going 6-6 with a 3.91 ERA. Following the season, he pitched for Cardenales de Lara in the Venezuelan Winter League, going 2-0 with a 0.30 ERA and 22 strikeouts in five starts.

He is 1-2 with a 6.23 ERA in five appearances this spring. Over parts of three Major League seasons, he is 7-12 with a 4.62 ERA in 47 games (35 starts). He was originally signed by the Mariners as a non-drafted free agent in 2007 from Nicaragua and could become the first Nicaraguan-born player to appear in a game for the Rays.

Montgomery, 25, pitched in six games out of the bullpen this spring, recording a 2.38 ERA with one save. He spent the 2014 season with Triple-A Durham, where he went 10-5 with a 4.29 ERA and was named an International League midseason All-Star. Over seven Minor League seasons, he has compiled a 42-47 record and 4.28 ERA in 155 games (150 starts).

He was acquired from the Royals on Dec. 9, 2012, as part of a seven-player trade involving James Shields.

Bill Chastain is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.