Blue Jays announce pair of roster moves ahead of Apr. 5 matchup

Mar 9, 2024; Clearwater, Florida, USA;  Toronto Blue Jays relief pitcher Wes Parsons (46) throws a
Mar 9, 2024; Clearwater, Florida, USA; Toronto Blue Jays relief pitcher Wes Parsons (46) throws a / Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

As the Toronto Blue Jays prepare to take on the division rival New York Yankees, the club took to social media (X link) to announce a pair of roster moves.

Gone is Wes Parsons, who now has three big league outings under his belt as a member of the Blue Jays and has yet to look like a big league-caliber pitcher. He has been DFA'd in favor of 37-year-old Paolo Espino, who had a strong spring training showing after joining the organization via minor league contract.

Blue Jays make pair of roster moves ahead of Yankees series

Parsons, 31, made the Opening Day roster as a feel-good story, but the expectation all along has been that he'd be the first to go once the likes of Jordan Romano and Erik Swanson return from the injured list. However, he won't quite make it that far, as his time with the organization has likely come to an end.

This season, the right-hander has made just two appearances, each of the multi-inning variety, but failed to get out of them cleanly. In a total of five innings of work, Parsons surrendered six earned runs on six hits, including two home runs. He struck out and walked two batters apiece as well.

The Blue Jays are essentially swapping one long-man for another. Parsons hasn't successfully gotten the job done so now it's Espino's turn. Espino, a veteran of five big league seasons and 18 in his professional career, most recently saw time in the majors in the form of a four-year stint with the Nationals.

Signed to a minors contract this spring, the 37-year-old made six appearances (three starts) and had an impressive 2.65 ERA with 24 strikeouts and just two walks in 17 spring innings. He impressed the Blue Jays quite a bit, but lost out on a spot on the Opening Day roster since Parsons was already on the 40-man.

It remains to be seen how long Espino sticks on the big league roster. Instead of Parsons, it will be him at the bottom of the relief-pitching totem pole. He will provide a much-needed ability to go multiple innings and can hopefully continue to limit the free passes like he did during spring.