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The Tampa Bay Rays have placed right-handed reliever Pete Fairbanks on the 15-day injured list, retroactive to April 19, due to a "nerve-related issue," the team announced Monday afternoon. Right-handed pitcher Kevin Kelly has been recalled to take the roster spot. 

Fairbanks, 30, has looked like one of the better relievers in baseball in recent years, but he's had a few meltdowns this season. Through eight outings, he sits with a 9.00 ERA and 2.29 WHIP. He's struck out 10 in his seven innings, but has also issued seven unintentional walks. 

Though the Rays didn't specify the nerve issue, Fairbanks has Raynaud's syndrome, which has caused numbness in his fingers in the past. Obviously, a pitcher not being able to feel his fingers presents a significant problem. 

Fairbanks has also dealt with hip, forearm, lat and shoulder injuries in the last three seasons, all of which have held him to no more than 49 appearances in a season (2023). His career high in innings in a season was also achieved last season with 45 1/3. 

When he's healthy and locked in, though, Fairbanks is great. From 2020-23, he worked 138 2/3 innings, striking out 201 batters with a 2.66 ERA and 1.15 WHIP.

Without Fairbanks in the late innings, the Rays can lean on righty Jason Adam and lefty Colin Poche for their highest-leverage situations. The bullpen so far has been worrisome, with relievers combining for a 5.34 ERA, good for 27th in MLB.

The Rays enter the week 12-11 and 3 1/2 games out in the uber-competitive AL East. Despite that winning record and being pretty close to first place, they are actually in last. 

They open a home series against the Tigers Monday night.