The Blue Jays and left-hander Wade LeBlanc have reached agreement on a minor league pact, according to Jerry Crasnick of ESPN.com (on Twitter). The deal includes an invite to major league spring training. LeBlanc, 31, spent the 2015 season pitching in Japan for the Seibu Lions. Back in November, the hurler joined Jeff Todd on the MLB Trade Rumors podcast to talk about his experience in Asia and his desire to return to Major League Baseball. The former Padres/Angels/Marlins/Yankees/Astros lefty has a lifetime 4.47 ERA with 6.1 K/9 against 3.2 BB/9 in 446 2/3 big league innings — most of which came as a starter. However, LeBlanc has worked primarily as a reliever since 2012 and probably has an easier path to the Toronto roster in the bullpen.
Here’s a look at some more minor moves of note:
- The Athletics confirmed that they have released first baseman Nate Freiman, as was first reported by Athetics Farm (h/t: CSN Bay Area’s Joe Stiglich, on Twitter). The 2012 Rule 5 pick spent the 2013 season with Oakland, batting a respectable .274/.327/.389 while working largely in a platoon capacity. His average and OBP dipped in 2014, and he spent the entire 2015 campaign in the minors where he struggled greatly in Triple-A. The 28-year-old batted just .220/.279/.321 this season at Nashville, prompting Oakland to designate him for assignment and outright him off the 40-man roster this summer. He’ll look to latch on with a new club and, considering the fact that he was a highly productive Triple-A bat as recently as 2014, should be able to do so.