Dream come true: Schimpf reaches big leagues

Dream come true: Schimpf reaches big leagues

SAN DIEGO -- After spending nine seasons in the Minor Leagues, 28-year-old Ryan Schimpf made his Major League debut with the Padres on Tuesday night.

San Diego selected Schimpf's contract from Triple-A El Paso, where he hit .355/.432/.729 with 15 home runs and led the Pacific Coast League in OPS. Catcher Hector Sanchez was designated for assignment.

"Ryan Schimpf has more than earned his right to be here," said Padres manager Andy Green. "He's done everything possible to put himself into consideration to be on this big league club and he's going to get an opportunity to play."

Schimpf was in the starting lineup at third base and batting sixth in his first big league game, but he'll likely split time at second base as well. He played a majority of his games at third base with El Paso, but has played second, shortstop and the two corner outfield positions.

Schimpf found out about his promotion late Monday night.

"We had a late game last night and [I] just starting to doze off to bed," Schimpf said. "I don't even remember what time it was ... our manager, Rod Barajas, called us and [I] immediately just woke the wife up, woke our little baby up.

"Luckily my parents were there too. [I] went and told them the news, said, 'You better book a flight and come with us.' It was definitely a fun moment that I'll never forget."

This has easily been the best season of Schimpf's professional career, and comes in stark contrast to the .200 batting average he compiled in 31 games for Triple-A Buffalo last season. The success has stemmed from an aggressive approach that he has become comfortable with.

"It was definitely kind of surreal, crazy, emotional -- it's kind of hard to describe to be honest with you," Schimpf said of the promotion. "I've waited a long time for this and I'm grateful for the opportunity."

Sanchez hit .261 (6-for-23) in his time with the Padres this season, but there wasn't enough playing time available on the roster with both Derek Norris and Christian Bethancourt in the clubhouse. Sanchez was claimed off of waivers from the White Sox on May 11 and will have to clear waivers before being sent to a San Diego Minor League affiliate.

"He was great for us while he was here," Green said. "Didn't receive much opportunity from a catching perspective, but gave us good at-bats. And [we] wanted to get back to a little bit more of a flexible roster."

Jankowski, Solarte on the mend

• After exiting Monday's game with a strained right ankle, outfielder Travis Jankowski was already running again Tuesday. Green said that depending on how he feels today, Jankowski wouldn't be out "more than a day or two."

• Green said that Yangervis Solarte wasn't in the lineup today in order to give him another day to recover from a left thumb contusion. He should be back on a full-time basis starting Wednesday.

Carlos Collazo is a reporter for MLB.com based in San Diego. Follow him on Twitter @CarlosACollazo. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.