JUNE 24: The Angels have requested unconditional release waivers on Graterol, per a team announcement. His release will become official in 48 hours if he clears waivers.
JUNE 19: The Angels announced Tuesday that they’ve acquired right-hander Deck McGuire from the Rangers in exchange for cash. In order to clear a spot on the 40-man roster, catcher Juan Graterol has been designated for assignment. McGuire will head to Triple-A Salt Lake, per the Angels’ announcement.
Texas claimed the 28-year-old McGuire from the Blue Jays last Friday, but he appeared in just one game with the Rangers’ Triple-A affiliate before being designated for assignment in order to clear a spot on the roster for the return of Elvis Andrus. Now, McGuire will change organizations for the second time in a span of less than a week.
A former first-round pick (11th overall by the Blue Jays in 2010), McGuire has yet to establish himself as a viable Major League arm. Prior to the 2018 season, in fact, he’s posted largely unsightful numbers at the Triple-A level. However, McGuire enjoyed a strong season with the Reds’ Double-A club in 2017 and carried that success with him back to the Jays organization in 2018, pitching to a 3.22 ERA with 8.1 K/9, 3.8 BB/9, 0.6 HR/9 and a 39.7 percent ground-ball rate in 44 2/3 innings at Triple-A Buffalo.
After making eight promising starts in Buffalo, the Jays summoned him to the Majors, where he was tagged for six runs on nine hits and five walks with seven strikeouts in 8 1/3 innings of relief. But the Rangers and Angels, apparently, both saw enough in his work out of the Buffalo rotation to hold some interest in seeing if the former top prospect can emerge as a late bloomer at the big league level. For the Halos, McGuire will at the very least serve as a spot start/depth option in the upper minors — an important addition following injuries to Shohei Ohtani, Matt Shoemaker, J.C. Ramirez and Nick Tropeano.
Graterol, meanwhile, has made just one plate appearance for the Halos this season, going 1-for-1 with a single. He’s been up and down with the club on multiple occasions dating back to 2016, however, and has now been designated for assignment by the Angels on three different occasions. The first of those instances saw Graterol bounce around the league, briefly landing with the D-backs, Reds and Blue Jays before making his way back to Anaheim. The defensively-sound backstop is a career .222/.225/.283 hitter in 103 MLB plate appearances but carries a more encouraging .290/.318/.349 slash in 449 PAs at the Triple-A level.