The Blue Jays have claimed lefty Aaron Laffey from the New York Mets, who designated him for assignment two days ago, according to a team release. In order to make room on the 40-man roster, the Blue Jays have moved shortstop Jose Reyes from the 15- to the 60-day disabled list.
Laffey is 28 years old and pitched in 22 games for the Blue Jays last season, including 16 starts. In just over 100 innings of work (yay for easy division), he recorded a 4.56 ERA, giving up 100 hits, striking out 48 and walking 37. He was granted free agency after the 2012 season and signed with the Mets to a minor league deal. In four appearances this year with the Mets (two starts), Laffey has a 7.2 ERA and has given up 16 hits and five walks while striking out nine through 10 innings of work (again, yay). He last pitched on Saturday against the Washington Nationals, and gave up three earned on two hits (an Adam LaRoche three-run homer did him in) while only getting two men out.
My thinking is that this is just a depth move. The Blue Jays will either immediately designate Laffey for assignment to try to outright him to Buffalo (where he can play alongside Adam's brother Andy LaRoche), or they would DFA Ramon Ortiz to place Laffey on the 25-man roster. Ortiz, as the last man in the bullpen, pitched 3.1 innings in his only outing with the Blue Jays back on April 17 (that's six days ago) and we haven't seen him since. It would be nice to see Laffey bolster the Bisons rotation, though.
This Aaron Laffey claim has set off alarm bells in Jon Morosi's head and made him phone a "former GM" (Gord Ash? Woody Woodward? Hawk Harrelson? Tony Reagins?):
The Blue Jays’ tinkering continues. Even before latest waiver claim, a former GM told me, "They need to settle their club."— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) April 23, 2013
Of course, I assume that Alex Anthopoulos is making all these waiver claims just to troll Moronsi after this tweet from a couple weeks ago:
On the Jays: It is rare for a World Series contender to tinker this much with waiver claims early in a season.— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) April 10, 2013
Now, most loyal Bluebird Banter readers know that the reason the organization has been so active on the waiver circuit is because it is a cheap way to build major league depth as well as talent for the Buffalo Bisons at $20,000 a claim. Yea, it must suck for the players on a personal level, but does it necessary make the organization look bad?
If you’re a Triple-A player, constantly passed over for promotions, how would you feel? Sends bad message to players in org.— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) April 23, 2013
Issue is more how constant changes are received by other players in room. Hard to develop chemistry amid unnecessary change. @wilnerness590— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) April 23, 2013
Morosi should know better and realize that AAA rosters are constantly in flux anyway. And I don't know how much chemistry is worth: the Bisons are in first place with a 12-4 (.750) record, and have won eight straight.