SAN DIEGO -- The Padres added a new member -- but certainly not a newcomer -- to their bullpen before Thursday's game, when they brought up right-handed reliever Blaine Boyer from Triple-A El Paso to take the roster spot of injured starter Robbie Erlin.
Boyer, who hadn't pitched in the big leagues since April 11, 2011, didn't waste any time in getting into the flow of things, as he tossed two scoreless innings of relief in a 5-1 loss to the Cubs.
Prior to joining the Padres, Boyer appeared in 18 games for the Chihuahuas, posting a 3.32 ERA in 21 2/3 innings innings with five walks and 13 strikeouts.
In his big league career, Boyer is 9-14 record with a 4.81 ERA in 233 games across seven seasons. This was Boyer's first callup to the Major Leagues since 2011, when he had a five-game cameo with the Mets. He joined a relieving corps that's ranked second in the Majors in ERA (2.23) and first in batting average against (.214).
Boyer was watching the new "Godzilla" movie Wednesday night when he got a text from Chihuahuas manager Pat Murphy, who went on to tell him that he'd be making his long-awaited return to the big leagues -- but not before toying with Boyer's emotions.
"He just slow-played the whole conversation forever," Boyer said. "Finally at the end he said, 'So, oh, by the way, you're getting called up.'"
Bench coach Dave Roberts was impressed with Boyer's outing.
"That was good, that was a positive," Roberts said. "He was throwing fastball for strikes, velocity was good, going after hitters. For us to get two innings out of him was good."
Boyer, 32, debuted in 2005 with Atlanta, where he was part of the Braves' division-winning squad that year. Boyer bounced around for a couple years before retiring after the 2011 season. After spending 2012 at home, he played in Japan in 2013, then signed a Minor League contract with the Padres in January.
"I wasn't coming back just to play in the Minor Leagues and thumb around," Boyer said. "I made my mind up that I was ready, and here we are."
While pitching in Triple-A, Boyer didn't allow a run in nearly a month, tossing 10 1/3 shutout innings with 12 strikeouts in eight appearances for the Chihuahuas since April 26.
But he'll have to get used to facing big league opponents on a consistent basis again -- even if he isn't familiar with most of the hitters he could face this weekend.
"I was just going over the scouting report looking at them. Half these guys, I don't even know who they are," Boyer said. "It's been a while since I've been back up here."
Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. Keep track of @FollowThePadres on Twitter.Will Laws is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.