The Twins have claimed right-hander Ralph Garza Jr. off waivers from the Astros, per a club announcement. Garza has been assigned to Triple-A St. Paul for the time being. A corresponding 40-man roster move isn’t necessary, as Minnesota already had an open spot. Their 40-man roster is now full.
Garza was designated for assignment by the Astros over the weekend when they activated Josh James from the 60-day injured list. The 27-year-old Garza made his MLB debut earlier this season, totaling 11 innings out of the Houston bullpen and allowing five runs on 11 hits and seven walks with 14 punchouts. The righty sat at an average of 92.6 mph with his four-seamer and 90.6 mph with his sinker, also logging a 12.4 percent swinging-strike rate and a 30.9 percent opponents’ chase rate.
A 26th-round pick back in 2015, Garza has never ranked among Houston’s top tier of farmhands but has delivered decent results in the upper minors. He’s appeared in parts of four seasons in a very hitter-friendly Triple-A environment, working to a 3.72 ERA with a solid 25.8 percent strikeout rate and an 11.3 percent walk rate he’ll want to improve upon. Garza’s contract was only selected to the MLB roster this season, meaning he can be optioned freely for the remainder of the year and still carry another pair of option years down the road.