The Athletics announced on Monday that they’ve designated catcher Dustin Garneau for assignment. His roster spot will go to fellow catcher Bruce Maxwell, who has been reinstated from the restricted list. Josh Phegley was optioned to Triple-A Nashville to open an active roster spot for Maxwell’s return.
Maxwell had been on the restricted list over the weekend due to the fact that his ongoing legal issues prevented him from traveling out of the country for the Athletics’ series in Toronto. In essence, however, Garneau’s DFA is largely a corresponding move for yesterday’s waiver claim of reliever Carlos Ramirez (also from Toronto). Had the Jays been playing in another location, they’d likely have designated Garneau to facilitate the claim anyhow in more direct fashion.
[Related: Oakland Athletics depth chart]
The 30-year-old Garneau has had a rough start to the season in Nashville, batting just .206/.253/.338 over the life of 75 plate appearances. That’s a departure from an otherwise strong (albeit Pacific Coast League-aided) track record in Triple-A for the former Rockies farmhand, as Garneau boasts a career .263/.331/.499 slash line at the minors’ top level. In the Majors, however, he’s mustered a meager .192/.264/.320 batting line in 277 trips to the plate. The A’s will now have seven days to trade Garneau or place him on either outright or release waivers.
With Maxwell back on the roster, he’ll continue to serve as the primary backup to starter Jonathan Lucroy. Phegley will head back to Triple-A, where he’s hitting .224/.320/.412 in 100 plate appearances. He’d be next in line in the event of another absence for either of the Athletics’ current top two catchers.