The 2014 season may be over for the Toronto Blue Jays, but that didn’t stop Alex Anthopoulos and company from making a few minor league moves before the season officially ended.
According to a team press release, issued just minutes after the start of the season finale, the Blue Jays announced that they had claimed right-handed pitcher Cory Burns off waivers from the Tampa Bay Rays, while also selecting the contract of first baseman Matt Hague from Triple-A Buffalo. Both players were added to the 40-man roster.
Burns, 26-years-old, did not appear at the Major League level in 2014, spending his season split between the Rangers Triple-A affiliate in Round Rock and the Rays Double and Triple-A affiliates in Montgomery and Durham respectively. In 43 overall appearances, the results were a bit mixed, with the right-hander posted a 4.95 ERA, which was a bit inflated due to a rough run through the hitter friendly Pacific Coast League, where he was rocked to the tune of 27 earned runs in 32.2 innings of work (7.44 ERA). His performances in the Southern and International Leagues were much better and he posted an respectable overall K/9 ratio of 8.2.
Burns owns a career mark of 1-1 with a 4.95 ERA in 27 career MLB appearances, all for the Texas Rangers.
The interesting selection of Matt Hague is a bit of a curious move, but I imagine it has more to do with protecting him and making sure the team can get a good look at him before risking losing him to waivers themselves. After picking him up on a waiver claim August 18th, the Blue Jays saw Hague in just 13 games, but he made quite the impression with a .377/.411/.566 slash-line in just 57 plate appearances with Triple-A Buffalo.