The Blue Jays announced that they’ve designated right-hander David Paulino for assignment. His spot on the roster will go to right-hander Zack Godley, who has been claimed off outright waivers from the Diamondbacks (as previously reported by Nick Piecoro).
Paulino, 25, was once considered to be among baseball’s 100 best prospects but has seen his star dim in recent seasons — beginning with an 80-game PED suspension issued back in July 2017. Since that half-season ban, Paulino has also undergone surgery to remove bone spurs from his pitching elbow and generally performed at diminished levels. Toronto acquired him alongside Ken Giles in the 2018 trade that sent Roberto Osuna to Houston.
Paulino pitched 6 2/3 innings of one-run ball with the Jays late in the 2018 season but has been limited to 28 2/3 innings in Triple-A Buffalo in 2019. He’s currently on the minor league injured list, meaning that Toronto’s only course of action with Paulino will be to release him. Clubs can no longer trade players who’ve been on 40-man rosters under the league’s new August trade restrictions, and teams are also unable to pass injured players through outright waivers. Another club could claim Paulino off release waivers, and he’ll have the opportunity to sign with a new organization if he clears. However, it’s also fairly common in these situations for the released player to sign a new minor league deal with his former club.