5:02pm: San Diego has now announced the waiver claim. In order to open a spot on the 40-man roster, they’ve transferred Jankowski to the 60-day injured list.
12:42pm: The Padres have claimed outfielder Socrates Brito off waivers from the Diamondbacks, per Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic (Twitter link). Brito will join an already crowed outfield mix with the San Diego organization.
It’s possible that the Friars see Brito as a fill-in for Travis Jankowski, who’s sidelined for an extended stretch to open the year. Brito is a left-handed hitter who’s capable of playing center and runs the bases well, not unlike Jankowski. But other options abound in the San Diego outfield. The club may even open the year with six outfielders on its active roster, MLB.com’s AJ Cassavell tweets, though that would assuredly not last long into the season.
Instead, as Piecoro notes, the San Diego club may have other intentions. The Padres may simply put the out-of-options 26-year-old back on waivers in hopes he’ll clear in the midst of the pre-season roster turmoil, or they could flip him on to another organization with a lower waiver priority. Any number of other roster machinations could conceivably be related, though claiming Brito hardly shows the club’s hand.