Blue Jays claim RHP Oliver Drake off waivers from Los Angeles Angels
Oliver Drake, a former Cleveland Indian, will report to the major league team in Chicago tomorrow evening, reports say.
According to multiple sources, including Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi and Baseball Toronto’s Keegan Matheson, the Blue Jays have claimed right-handed pitcher Oliver Drake off waivers from the Los Angeles Angels. In an official team release, the team said Drake would report to the major league roster.
Drake, a 31-year-old from Worcester, Massachusetts, was designated for assignment by the Angels last week after pitching to a 5.19 ERA in 8.2 major league innings. Prior to his short stint with the Angels, Drake also spent parts of this season with the Milwaukee Brewers and the Cleveland Indians, both of whom designated him for assignment.
A 43rd round pick by the Orioles in 2008, Drake has logged innings with the Norfolk Tides (Orioles AAA) and Salt Lake Bees (Angels AAA) over the past two seasons.
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Formerly a member of the Baltimore Orioles, Drake’s most successful season came in 2015, when he pitched to a 2.87 ERA with the Orioles, appearing in 13 games and striking out 17 over 15.2 innings. For his career, he owns a record of 5-6 with an ERA of 4.84 in 115.1 innings, striking out 127 and walking 51.
Under team control until the 2023 season, Drake owns a marvelous 1.80 career ERA at the Triple-A level, tossing 110.0 frames and striking out 155 at the highest minor league level. In elongated stints at the Double-A and High-A levels, he’s also excelled, pitching solid innings and striking out batters with decent efficiency.
Quite evidently, Drake appears to be a short-term replacement for recently traded reliever Seunghwan Oh. A righty, Drake has routinely been a middle reliever at the major league level, and for the relatively cheap price, he appears to be worth it.
As mentioned above, he will join the team in Chicago, and will likely get into a game in his first series with the club. From there, skipper John Gibbons will try him out in different situations and ultimately decide his role on the team.