One of my former favorite Blue Jays prospects is free for the taking:
The #Braves will DFA Tyler Pastornicky to create a spot on their 40-man roster for today's three signings.— Mark Bowman (@mlbbowman) January 7, 2015
Tyler Pastornicky was a 5th round Blue Jays draft pick in 2007. He was in the Blue Jays system until July 14, 2010, when he, Tim Collins and Alex Gonzalez were all traded to the Braves for Yunel Escobar and Jo-Jo Reyes.
He was number 9 on our 2010 Top Prospects list. I wrote this:
9. Tyler Pastornicky, SS: I'll admit, I probably like him better than he deserves, but then I'm not the only one. He just turned 20 in December. He stole 57 bases and hit 9 triples between Lansing and Dunedin last year so he's got speed. He knows how to take a walk (8.6% walk rate). Doesn't strikeout a lot. Tyler doesn't have any power but is still very young, so a little power could appear yet, but he's not going to be a middle of the order type. He has the arm for short, but his range is average, we'll see how he progresses, he might end up at second. His 269/.331/.342 batting line might not look that good but he does enough things well that he should be able to improve on that as he moves up. A 5th round draft pick from 2008 out of high school, he could be a top of the order type hitter in the majors. But we do have a few good SS prospects at the moment. He is a level behind Jackson and just ahead of Gustavo Pierre and Ryan Goins, the next few years will be interesting to see which ones turn out and which don't.
As to that last line.....none have them have really 'turned out' yet. Justin Jackson switched over to pitching and signed a minor league contract with the Braves, after putting up a 4.66 ERA in 58 innings, walking 25, with 45 strikeouts, split between Dunedin and New Hampshire in 2014. Gustavo Pierre hit .263/.285/.390 in 107 games at Dunedin last year (with a bunch of error. And Ryan Goins, well you know about him.
As a Brave, playing part time in the majors over the last three seasons, he hit .243/.295/.314 in 124 games. What surprises me is he only had 2 stolen bases in his 124 MLB games. In the minors, over 7 seasons, he had 165 steals (with 50 times caught). In 2009, splitting time between Lansing and Dunedin, he stole 57 bases.
Last year he hit .290/.330/.347 in 47 games for the Braves Triple-A team in Gwinnett.
He is a right-handed bat, still just 25. I'd still love Alex to pick him up and give him a shot to take the second base job in spring training. I don't think he has options left, so he'd have to win a role on the team or exposed to waivers.
I don't think he would be great, but he might be a nice stopgap at second, playing there until Devon Travis is ready. If he doesn't win the job at second, he could be a utility infielder. If he has a bad spring, let him go.