Blue Jays roster move roundup: Thole, Travis, September additions, Berry
The Toronto Blue Jays have made a series of roster moves ahead of their weekend series in Tampa Bay.
Catcher Josh Thole, who recently cleared release waivers, signed back with the Blue Jays on Wednesday night. The timing is critical as it comes in before the September 1st cutoff which allows Thole to maintain his playoff eligibility.
In a corresponding move, the Blue Jays optioned second-baseman Devon Travis to the Bluefield Blue Jays.
This strategic transaction means that Travis will be eligible for activation tomorrow and miss no time given that the Bluefield Jays play the final game of their season tonight. While Thole and his counterpart R.A. Dickey are not currently favourite for playoff roster spots, there is still value in having him rostered as an option should injuries hit Toronto’s starters.
September roster expansions
This morning, Shi Davidi of Sportsnet reported that the Blue Jays will be recalling four players in their first instalment of September call-ups.
Dalton Pompey finally gets his first look of 2016 at the Major League level after spending the entire season developing with the Bisons. He’s performed well at the plate while healthy, and should offer the Blue Jays a speed threat late in games. Pompey also brings a very strong defensive profile, and could substitute for Jose Bautista or Michael Saunders in the final innings of games where the Blue Jays lead.
Matt Dermody is an interesting name to see climb the final rung on the ladder after opening the season in Dunedin with the advanced-A Blue Jays. After pitching very well at that level and dominating double-A New Hampshire, he’s struggled somewhat in Buffalo and hasn’t found his strikeout pitch. As a left-hander, though, he’s got value to Toronto’s present bullpen.
Ryan Tepera and Danny Barnes will also be joining the Blue Jays to bolster the relief corps. Davidi adds that the Blue Jays are also expected to add Bo Schultz and Aaron Loup when the triple-A season ends on September 5th.
Berry signs, assigned to Buffalo
Berry was released by the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on August 18th, where he appeared in 100 games with triple-A Salt Lake. The 31-year-old is a base-stealing threat with 35 this season in 45 attempts, and was hitting .270.