Over the past few days, more and more minor league contracts are starting to be handed out around the league.
With nearly every big fish off the board in free agency, teams have begun to turn their collective attentions toward minor league depth. The Blue Jays are a part of that as well, recently signing right-hander Julian Fernández and re-signing Casey Lawrence.
Three of the most recently-signed minor leaguers around the league are former Toronto Blue Jays players; two have played on the big league club and one is a career-minor leaguer.
Starting things off with the most experienced player of the bunch, former Jays lefty Ryan Borucki signed a minor league deal with the Chicago Cubs.
Borucki, 28, spent parts of five seasons on the Jays, picking up 75 total appearances with 19 of them being starts. He showed brief glimpses of promise throughout his tenure, including a 17-start showing in 2018 with a 3.87 ERA and 110 ERA+ and his 21 relief appearances in 2020 in which he posted an ERA of 2.70.
Borucki's tenure in Toronto will forever be remembered as one of wasted potential. After his strong rookie season in 2018, he missed significant time in 2019 with two trips to the injured list and then missed a large chunk of time in 2021 with another injury.
Ultimately, he was designated for assignment in May of last year and then later traded to the Mariners for infielder Tyler Keenan, who looked promising in a 15-game stint in High-A ball for the Jays last year.
Next up, the Texas Rangers signed longtime Blue Jays minor league catcher/first baseman Ryan Gold.
Gold, 25, joined the Blue Jays organization all the way back in 2016 after he was drafted in the 27th round in the 2016 MLB Draft.
Throughout what wound up being a six-year tenure in the Jays system, Gold never did enough to jump off the page either offensively or defensively. His best season at the plate came last year where he hit 10 home runs and drove in 29 in a 59-game stint in Double-A New Hampshire.
Lastly, there's left-handed pitcher Anthony Banda, who made a whopping seven appearances for the Jays last season, primarily out of the bullpen.
Banda, 29, was drafted by the Milwaukee Brewers back in the 10th round of the 2012 MLB Draft. Since then, he has made appearances in each of the following organizations:
Milwaukee Brewers, Arizona Diamondbacks, Tampa Bay Rays, San Francisco Giants, New York Mets, Pittsburgh Pirates, Toronto Blue Jays, Seattle Mariners, New York Yankees.
Now, Banda is going to add the Washington Nationals to the list, as the club has reportedly signed him to a minor league deal with an invite to big league Spring Training.
Banda has struggled to find consistent playing time with any club throughout his career. He's been a below-average journeyman and has problems with his control. The rebuilding Nationals are the perfect team for someone like him as he will not have to deal with any pressure on the big stage.