The Toronto Blue Jays made a handful of roster moves in preparation for the start of the season.
The Blue Jays will welcome a familiar face back into the fold after claiming Breyvic Valera from the San Diego Padres and adding him to their eligible player pool. Valera played five games with the Blue Jays last season after the team plucked him from the Yankees on September 20th.
In addition to the Valera move, the Blue Jays also added pitcher Bryan Baker, infielder Patrick Kivlehan and outfielder Josh Palacios to their 60-man player pool. In a flurry of corresponding moves, the Jays placed Elvis Luciano, Brandon Drury, Jonathan Davis, and Hector Perez on the 10-day injured list retroactive to June 30th.
It is being speculated that the four injured players could have tested positive for COVID-19 and will eventually be transferred to the appropriate injured list at a later date. There were rumblings a number of players contracted the virus in Florida, however, no names had officially been released by the organization.
Baker spent last season with the New Hampshire Fisher Cats and Buffalo Bisons pitching in 49 games for the Blue Jays affiliates. The 25-year old sported a respectable 3.17 earned run average with 12 saves while fanning 71 batters in 54 innings of work. Baker could get a look for a role in the bullpen at some point this season.
The 30-year old Kivlehan hasn’t appeared in the majors since 2018 where he spent nine games with the Diamondbacks. The infielder has 132 games under his belt including 115 games with the Reds in 2017. Kivlehan is an insurance depth piece for the team.
Palacios has not advanced past Double-A thus far in his career, the 24-year old hit .266 with seven homers and 15 stolen bases in 82 games for New Hampshire last season. The outfielder is pretty far down the depth chart in terms of seeing any major league action this year.
The Jays still have yet to sign Austin Martin who is also speculated to also be added to the 60-man roster once the two sides can come to terms on a contract agreement.