TODAY: The Jays officially added Godley to the active roster, optioning right-hander Brock Stewart to Triple-A in a corresponding move.
YESTERDAY: The Blue Jays have claimed righty Zack Godley off waivers from the Diamondbacks, according to Nick Piecoro of the Arizona Republic (via Twitter). Toronto will owe Godley the remainder of his $609K salary.
It’s easy to see why the Jays took a shot on the 29-year-old Godley. In need of some additional arms to finish out the season, there’s no harm in giving him an opportunity. And the club could tender Godley a contract for 2020 if he manages to bounce back.
Make no mistake, though: it has been a rough campaign to this point for Godley. His strikeout rate has plummeted to just 6.9 K/9 after sitting at better than a batter-per-inning in the prior two seasons. Godley is giving up more homers than he had in those immediately preceding campaigns as well. The result: a 6.39 ERA over 76 innings.
A mid-season move to a multi-inning relief role did help, as Godley’s velocity turned up a bit. He held opposing hitters to a .218/.297/.414 batting line and posted an improved 28:13 K/BB ratio. But he was also tagged for seven long balls and a 4.62 ERA in his 37 relief frames.
Godley is just two years removed from an excellent 2017 campaign and also posted reasonably promising peripherals last year. But he’ll have to figure some things out if he’s to get back on an upward trajectory. Rediscovering some of the lost velo would help. He’s generating swinging-strikes at a significantly lower rate than he did in his ’17 effort (10.1% vs. 13.3%), with the difference residing almost entirely in the fact that hitters have made way more contact on pitches out of the zone. His groundball rate has sagged from 55.3% at its peak to to just 43.0% this year.