The Blue Jays, via Twitter and news release, have announced a few minor roster moves:
#BlueJays DFA RHP Marcus Walden to make room for Munenori Kawasaki on 40-man roster. Jeremy Jeffress clears waivers, outrighted to Buffalo— Shi Davidi (@ShiDavidi) April 15, 2014
Maicer Izturis has also been placed on the 15-day DL with an LCL strain that could very well keep him out all year.
The Jays now have a three-man bench and an eight-man bullpen yet again.
The three-man bench is a bit of a concern, especially against lefties, as the only three middle infielders on this team are Munenori Kawasaki, Ryan Goins, and Jonathan Diaz. You ideally would not want either Kawasaki or Goins to face lefties, but...now one or both will have to. You also have Moises Sierra on the bench to platoon with Adam Lind...hopefully - which means no fourth outfielder when facing lefties.
When facing lefties, the Blue Jays' bench will feature Josh Thole, one of Kawasaki/Goins/Diaz, and Adam Lind. That's uh...not good.
Last year with the Blue Jays, Kawasaki hit .229/.326/.308, good for a 78 wRC+ and 0.8 WAR in parts of 96 games. The thing Kawasaki will do well, from a non-wow-he's-so-fun standpoint, is take walks and show nice plate discipline - last year he had an 11.1 BB%! That's good!
Additionally, the bullpen now has Todd Redmond, JA Happ, and Esmil Rogers - all essentially long men. Not sure I see the point of having all three of them.
Alas, baseball is hard, and gets harder when players get hurt. Let's just hope Jose Reyes gets back soon, for the sake of the middle infield.