The Washington Times - April 17, 2011, 10:49AM

The Nationals announced that they’ve placed right-handed reliever Todd Coffey on the 15-day disabled list with a left calf strain and recalled right-handed reliever Collin Balester from Triple-A Syracuse.

The DL move for Coffey is retroactive to Sunday, April 9. The last time Coffey appeared in a game was Friday, April 8 in New York when he tossed an inning and allowed a hit but no runs.

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Balester was one of the team’s best performers during spring training, consistently getting the job done each time out, but became a victim of a numbers game. Balester had an option remaining on his contract and with two right-handed relievers in Chad Gaudin and Brian Broderick who the team would lose if they weren’t on the major league roster, he became the odd man out. 

He’s performed very well at Triple-A so far this season.

From the Nationals release:

Balester earned the promotion to Washington after working 5.0 scoreless innings of relief for Syracuse this season. Balester fanned six, walked three and allowed four hits. He worked 2.0 one-hit scoreless innings with three strikeouts in his most-recent appearance, Monday at Lehigh Valley (Phillies).

Balester, 24, fashioned a 2.57 ERA and 12.0 strikeouts per 9.0 innings in 17 appearances with the Nationals in 2010, his first season pitching out of the bullpen at the big league level. He is 4-12 with a 5.25 ERA in 39 career games/22 starts spanning three seasons (2008-10) with Washington. 

Coffey is 1-0 with a 6.23 ERA in five appearances with the Nationals this season.