PITTSBURGH -- Rockies right-handed prospect Eddie Butler, who suffered a right rotator cuff strain during his Major League debut on June 6, was recalled from his injury rehab assignment on Saturday, then optioned to Double-A Tulsa, where he began the season.
Butler, the Rockies' No. 2 prospect as ranked by MLB.com, has had two rehab starts, one for Class A Advanced Modesto and Friday night for Triple-A Colorado Springs at Memphis -- where he gave up seven runs (six earned) and eight hits in 5 1/3 innings of a 12-1 loss.
"It's just giving him time to get sharp," Rockies manager Walt Weiss said. "He's been out for awhile. He's had a couple of rehab starts, but we're just giving him time to get everything in order, then he'll be ready to come back and help us.
"We want to make sure he's sharp and ready to go into a Major League game and succeed. He's a very young pitcher. He's only made one Major League start. We want to make sure he's in position to succeed."
Butler, a supplemental first-round Draft pick in 2013, was 4-4 with a 2.62 ERA in 11 starts at Tulsa before giving up six runs and 10 hits in 5 1/3 innings of his debut, a 7-2 loss to the Dodgers on June 6.
Weiss said he doesn't see Butler pitching at Colorado Springs -- he has yet to throw at Security Service Field, with greater altitude and more pitcher-unfriendly conditions than Denver -- as necessary before returning Butler to the Majors.
The Rockies also have a start open on Tuesday at home against the Nationals. With that pitcher more likely filling in until righty Jordan Lyles completes his rehab for a broken left hand -- Lyles is eligible to return Aug. 4 -- the starter is expected to be lefty Yohan Flande, who is on the 40-man Major League roster and is a roster-friendly move.
Thomas Harding is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Hardball in the Rockies, and follow him on Twitter @harding_at_mlb. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.