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St. Louis Cardinals demote Tyler Lyons, promote Michael Blazek

Following his terrible start Friday night, the St. Louis Cardinals have returned left handed pitcher Tyler Lyons to Class AAA Memphis.

Righty reliever Michael Blazek, who was up with the Cardinals previously but didn't manage to make it into game action, has been summoned to take Lyons' place on the big league roster.

Blazek, 24, had no record with a 2.31 ERA at Memphis before the call-up. He struck out 19 Class AAA hitters and walked three in 11 innings of work there. Before his previous stay in St. Louis, Blazek was in Class AA Springfield where he had an 0.92 ERA in 19 2/3 innings with 25 strikeouts and 10 walks.

Lyons got off to a hot start with the Cardinals after being called up as an injury replacement. But he struggled his last four starts and saw his ERA balloon to 5.51 thanks in large part to a flurry of walks. He dealt 11 free passes in 32 1/3 innings while striking out 20. In his last appearance Friday the Texas native couldn't get out of the second inning, surrendering four runs.

Joe Kelly relieved and pitched five scoreless frames. That would seem to make Kelly the obvious choice to replace Lyons in the rotation with Blazek going to the bullpen. But the Cardinals have several days off between now and the All-Star Game which would allow the club to go without a fifth starter for a while if it so chooses.