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Blue Jays Designate Yosver Zulueta For Assignment

Blue Jays Designate Yosver Zulueta For Assignment

The Blue Jays announced a series of roster moves today, selecting the contracts of catcher Brian Serven and designated hitter Daniel Vogelbach. They had previously opened one roster spot by trading Santiago Espinal to the Reds and opened another today by designating right-hander Yosver Zulueta for assignment. The moves for Serven and Vogelbach were previously reported.

Zulueta, 26, came up as a starter but significant control problems got him moved to the bullpen in recent years. The switch to a relief role didn’t help him rein in his stuff and now has contributed to bumping him off the roster entirely.

In 2022, he tossed 55 2/3 innings across four different levels with an earned run average of 3.72. He struck out 33.9% of batters faced that year but also gave out free passes at a 12.9% clip, starting 12 of his 21 appearances.

The Jays moved him more firmly into a relief role in 2023, as he started just seven of his 45 appearances at Triple-A. Even those seven starts were mostly two or three innings as an opener, leading to a tally of 64 innings on the year. He had a 4.08 ERA in that time while striking out 25.4% of batters faced and keeping 51.3% of balls in play on the ground, but also walked 15.7% of batters that came to the plate against him. Here in the spring, he tossed five innings, notching just two strikeouts but giving out four walks.

The Jays will now have one week to trade Zulueta or try to pass him through waivers. Despite his wildness, he has strikeout stuff and still has a couple of options remaining, which could make him appealing for a club with an open roster spot and a need for pitching depth. If he were to pass through waivers unclaimed, he would stick with the Jays in a non-roster capacity.

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