WASHINGTON -- The Nationals made a pair of roster moves on Wednesday, placing right-hander Matt Belisle on the 15-day disabled list and recalling lefty Sammy Solis from Triple-A Syracuse.
Solis allowed one earned run in nine innings at Syracuse this season, as he began his first full year as a reliever. He also struck out 14 of the 34 batters he faced, permitting five hits and issuing three walks. Solis is expected to give the Nationals multiple innings whenever he is in a game.
The 27-year-old southpaw said fastball location was his biggest accomplishment in 2016. After he was optioned in Spring Training, manager Dusty Baker and pitching coach Mike Maddux told Solis he had to keep his pitches down, which he was able to do at Syracuse.
Solis surrendered a solo homer to Carlos Ruiz in 1 2/3 innings in Wednesday's 3-0 loss to the Phillies.
After a few years of being a starter, Solis said he is now comfortable as a reliever. He knows how to get loose quickly and save his bullets until he enters a game.
"The whole thing has come all the way around where I think I'm a reliever now," Solis said. "I'm not shaking in my boots anymore. I'm more comfortable and ready to contribute."
With Solis on the roster, the Nationals have three left-handers -- Oliver Perez and Felipe Rivero are the others -- in their bullpen. The Nationals are facing the Phillies before the Cardinals, Royals and Cubs. All four teams have their share of left-handed hitters that Baker will try to combat.
"We have three left-handers in the bullpen," Baker said. "We are facing a team now that has a bunch of left-handed hitters. Then we are going to face the Cardinals. They have some dangerous left-handed hitters. We are facing the Kansas City Royals. They have a lot of left-handed hitters. The Cubs have a few. We have Solis to take Belisle's place now that he is left-handed."
Belisle was placed on the DL because of a right calf strain he sustained on Tuesday during a 4-3 loss to the Phillies. After getting the first out in the eighth, Belisle left because of the injury. It appeared Belisle wanted to stay in the game, but Baker took him out in favor of Rivero because Belisle could not run to cover first base.
"The injury is bad enough to put him on the DL because he couldn't cover first base," Baker said. "It's not nearly as bad as it was [during Spring Training]. It's a good thing we didn't let him throw any more. We stopped it when we did."
Bill Ladson has covered the Nationals/Expos for MLB.com since 2002.and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the Time. He also can be found on Twitter @WashingNats. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.