The Diamondbacks announced Friday that they’ve selected the contracts of utilityman Cooper Hummel, outfielder Kristian Robinson and righty Ryan Weiss to the 40-man roster. In a trio of corresponding moves, the D-backs passed lefty Miguel Aguilar, righty Kevin Ginkel and right-hander Riley Smith through waivers and outrighted them to Triple-A Reno.
The 26-year-old Hummel came over to Arizona from Milwaukee in this summer’s Eduardo Escobar trade and has done nothing but rake in his new organization. In 92 Triple-A games, split at 46 apiece between both teams, Hummel mashed for to the tune of .311/.432/.546 with 12 home runs. Perhaps most impressively, Hummel managed that level of production while walking (63) more times than he struck out (61). The 18th-rounder has gradually started to cede playing time behind the plate due to subpar receiving abilities, but after seeing action at both infield and outfield corners this past season he should have plenty of avenues to crack the Major League roster soon.
Kristian Robinson’s selection to the team’s roster has more to do with the 20-year-old’s top prospect status than it does with any recent performance. Coming into the season, the young outfielder was ranked as high as the 15th best prospect in the game by Baseball Prospectus, achieving that distinction without the benefit of a full season of A-level ball.
However, Robinson’s status is complicated by legal issues that could impact his visa status. In August, Robinson — a native of the Bahamas — pled guilty to an assault charge that could impact his ability to renew his work visa in the United States. Zach Buchanan of the Athletic covers Robinson’s situation in a detailed piece that’s well worth a read in full. Both the organization and Robinson’s attorney remain hopeful that his immigration status will be resolved in his favor now that he’s completed the community service to which he’d been sentenced as part of his plea agreement.
Robinson did not play in 2021. Now that he’s been added to the roster to keep him from selection in the Rule 5 draft, he’ll revert to the major league restricted list, general manager Mike Hazen told reporters (including Buchanan). He won’t count against the 40-man roster while he’s on the restricted list.
A 4th-rounder back in 2018, Ryan Weiss made his Double-A and Triple-A debuts this season. Across 78 innings between the two levels Weiss pitched to a 4.60 ERA, seeing action out of both the rotation and bullpen. The 24-year-old struck out roughly 27% of opposing batters but will need to tamp down on the number of baserunners he allowed in Triple-A before Arizona can count on him as a member of their pitching staff.
After a layoff in 202o the left-handed Aguilar struggled in his first Triple-A and big league look, posting ERAs north of 5 at both levels. Right-hander Kevin Ginkel wasn’t able to replicate the success he found in Arizona’s 2019 pen, pitching to a 6.35 ERA in 28 innings. It was a similar story for the right-handed Riley Smith, who spun 18+ innings of 1.47 ERA ball last season before struggling to the tune of a 6.01 ERA in 67 innings this year.