Blue Jays Roster Moves: Saunders to DL, Tolleson Back


Firstly, let me start by wishing all mothers out there a very happy Mother’s Day! To celebrate the special day, the Toronto Blue Jays will sport various pink pieces of equipment. The players take this opportunity to celebrate their mothers. But, the players who will be celebrating today may look a bit different. The club announced a few roster moves today.

The first thing to come out of this is that Michael Saunders will require time on the disabled list. After injuring himself on a sprinkler in spring training, he removed 60% of his meniscus in an attempt to speed his recovery and join the Blue Jays as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, it hasn’t turned out as planned for the Canadian outfielder who came over from Seattle for J.A. Happ.

Saunders has only managed to get into 9 games this season. He collected 6 singles, 3 RBI to go with 10K. After joining the team late, he was still trying to get himself everyday ready. This was slowed by fluid building up in his knee recently. It got to the point where he was visibly impacted by his knee. Hopefully, the trip to the DL will provide opportunity for rest and healing.

The move will allow the Blue Jays to bring back recently waived Steve Tolleson. The Blue Jays were forced to make a series of moves earlier on and in bringing Saunders to the active roster meant that the club had to choose someone to send down out of a group with very few options. Tolleson was the odd one out. And, in doing so exposed him to waivers. Due to having his contract optioned previously, he was in the position to elect free agency, which he did rather than simply being outrighted. 

Toronto Blue Jays
Toronto Blue Jays /

Toronto Blue Jays

He then signed a minor league deal with the Blue Jays. This allowed him to rejoin the club without having to wait the requisite amount of time before being called back up. It was actually quite the move that showed foresight that this club would need him soon. And, he was right. But, in bringing him up, the club was forced to make room on the 40 man roster.

This is where Preston Guilmet comes in. In order to make room for Tolleson, Guilmet has been designated for assignment. It seems a tad odd that Guilmet is the guy pushed off the bubble. In AAA so far, he’s pitched 10 appearances and managed a 1.26 ERA with 7.5 K/9 and 1.9 BB/9. And, given the need for bullpen reinforcements in Toronto, you would think he’d be an arm they’d like to hold on to. Time will tell if this will be a move the club regrets.

Though, at the moment, Tolleson brings an ability to play the outfield as well as the infield and he’s healthy. This is a skill set that makes him very valuable in Toronto right now. With Saunders on the DL and Jose Bautista still unable to take the field, this club needs stopgap types. Tolleson provides just that. Oh, and should the need arise, he can also pitch an inning. So, there’s that.

Next: Jays' Nest Podcast Episode #18