APRIL 12: Manager Charlie Montoyo told reporters (including Kaitlyn McGrath of the Athletic) this evening that Jansen could be out for multiple weeks.
APRIL 11: The Blue Jays announced this evening they’ve selected catcher Tyler Heineman onto the big league club. Starting backstop Danny Jansen has been placed on the 10-day injured list after dealing with some left side soreness. To create space on the 40-man roster for Heineman, outfielder Josh Palacios has been designated for assignment. Toronto also recalled southpaw Anthony Kay from Triple-A Buffalo while optioning reliever Tayler Saucedo.
Heineman returns to the bigs for the first time since 2020. He played with the Marlins and Giants between 2019-20, picking up 62 cumulative plate appearances in 20 games. The switch-hitting backstop only hit .208/.288/.302 in that very brief action, but he owns a solid .284/.352/.415 line in parts of six Triple-A campaigns. Heineman managed a .264/.345/.310 showing in 41 games with the Cardinals’ and Phillies’ top affiliates last season. The UCLA product signed a minor league deal with the Jays this offseason and quickly winds up back in the majors.
Unfortunately for the Jays, that comes as a result of an injury to their primary catcher. An MRI revealed an oblique strain for Jansen, tweets Scott Mitchell of TSN Sports. The Jays didn’t provide an indication of the severity of the strain or a timetable for his return, but it’s not uncommon for oblique issues to keep a player out of action for multiple weeks.
Jansen has had an up-and-down showing offensively in the majors. The right-handed hitter popped 11 homers in just 205 plate appearances last season, finishing the year on a .310/.365/.707 tear in the final month. Jansen had been off to a hot start, collecting four hits (including a pair of homers) during last weekend’s series with the Rangers. That’ll be put on hold for the time being.
Toronto now looks set to rely on some combination of Alejandro Kirk, Zack Collins and Heineman behind the dish. All three players are currently on the active roster, but Kirk and Collins are bat-first options who could also pick up some time at designated hitter. The Jays have top prospect Gabriel Moreno at Buffalo, but he has just three games of experience there. Moreno is already on the 40-man roster, but Toronto elected to go with the veteran Heineman while giving the talented 22-year-old more regular run in the minors.
Palacios, 26, is a former fourth-round pick who was selected onto the 40-man over the 2020-21 offseason. He reached the majors for the first time last year but only appeared in 13 games after spending much of the season on the minor league injured list. Thanks to the canceled 2020 minor league campaign, Palacios hasn’t gotten extended game action since 2019 with Double-A New Hampshire.
To his credit, the lefty-hitting Palacios had a nice showing in a pitcher-friendly environment that year. He hit .266/.371/.416 with 15 stolen bases, drawing walks at a robust 13.2% clip while punching out 20.5% of the time. Palacios hit just seven home runs, though, and that lack of power has kept him from emerging as one of the top prospects in the system.
Baseball America slotted Palacios 30th in the organization this winter, writing he has enough contact skills and athleticism to function as a reserve outfield type. The Jays acquired Raimel Tapia from the Rockies in Spring Training to fill that role, seemingly pushing Palacios to the bottom of the depth chart. Nevertheless, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see another team swing a minor trade or waiver claim for the Brooklyn native. He still has a pair of option years remaining and could add some outfield depth to another organization.
I know it’s expanded rosters but unsure the desire to carry 3 catchers.
Also don’t love the Palacios DFA
Who’s the third catcher? Kirk, this dude, and?
Curly Was The Smart Stooge
Bummer, 2 hrs already
Oh right. Thank you!
Hey! Pirates have 2 All-Star caliber catchers if your looking for a 4th catcher! Hahahaha Don’t take this comment seriously. It was a joke
I’m fine with it if Kirk is going to regularly DH. If we’re going to see Raimel Tapia carrying the lumber then it’s pointless.
Palacioses are a dime a dozen. Personally I prefer Nathan Lukes.
I’d rather go to two catchers though, especially now that 2 of the 3 catchers have no bat. Kirk should catch most days, and probably better if he rests the other days instead of DHing, but who cares if they might lose the DH for half a game because Kirk is DH and there’s an injury.
do they need JP with Tapia and Zimmer?
It doesn’t seem to me like they think of Collins as a catcher. Maybe an emergency catcher because Kirk is likely to see a lot of time at DH. But with Jansen down, you’d think 2 catchers is enough if they think Collins can actually catch. Kirk’s going to get his at bats now as a catcher as opposed to primarily DHing. You don’t need a 3rd in that scenario.
There is no harm in having Kirk DH with only 2 catchers up.
The likelihood of your catcher getting hurt in game is small and absolute worst case scenario is you lose your DH for one game and have to pinch hint a few times.
But having a no bat bench piece seems like poor roster management.
I agree on most points, though I do think a versatile defensive bench piece like Katoh is fine. I also think you really do need at least one catcher who can catch.
If you are referring to Collins as the no bat bench piece, I don’t think they see him that way. He’s DHing tonight. I think they see him as all bat.
That way one of them can DH and they’ll still have a backup. Because if the DH moves to a fielding position, his team loses the DH and the pitcher has to hit. Collins has also played a little 1B before, so that’s an option too if they want to give Vladdy a DH break.
So many inane comments.
Maaaan Collins isn’t even #3
Sure he is. That’s why he’s on the roster.
He’s a switch hitter
Weak bench. It will change. Rosters are fluid. Obliques can linger. A few Aaa AB and hello Gabby
I wanted to see Jansen carry that 500 OPS+ for a full 162 games.
Hopefully he will keep it up for 150 at least.
losing a decent depth guy to add a fifth C to your 40 is…interesting.
Losing a “prospect” who’s soon to turn 27 who was a slightly above average hitter in AA and hasn’t established himself in AAA yet. He’s never hit double digits in home runs, never stolen 20 bases, no outstanding tools, has the ceiling of a 5th outfielder.
At the beginning of the season, Toronto had too much catching on their roster; now they are dipping into the minor leagues to add a re-tread behind the plate. It’s funny how quickly things change.
Toronto really should consider bringing up Moreno sooner than later. The lack of AAA experience doesn’t mean much at all as a lot of the best prospects come directly from AA, with perhaps a 5-10 game stint in AAA. Moreno could have easily been called up here and help avoid a 40 man roster move. Even if he’s only up until Jansen gets healthy, it would be great exposure for him to learn what he needs to work on to be successful at the major league level. Even if he floundered, it’s highly unlikely he would have cost them a game by himself as his defense is superb.
Moreno arrived to camp late because of visa issues, didn’t get in any spring training games.
Don’t think he was an option to be brought up at this point
Thank you Johnny Superscout
Best Screenname Ever
You mock our man but you neglect how lucky we are here at MLBTR to have experts more capable than the FO’s to judge player talent and make important career moves. Dude claims to know what will be a “great exposure” as opposed to just a regular one, and even if he’s wrong, turns out it doesn’t matter. Front offices are unable to acquire top-notch advice like this. You can only get it on the internet.
Yea seems the don’t see Collins as a C, when Jansen comes back Heineman is DFA’d and if they even need another C it’s Moreno’s time to shine
Collins has an option, no need to DFA. It’s why they traded McGuire to get him.
They don’t see Collins as a catcher because he needs time to learn the pitching staff. They’ve brought Heineman up because at least he was around during the spring to spend some time learning the staff. McGuire should have been kept. No doubt Ross is drinking tonight trying to forget the mistake he has made.
This injury highlights why McGuire should of been kept. They were taking 3 catchers anyway and they had a guy with Reese who knew the pitching staff and could fill in on Danny’s end. Such a careless move for a competing team. Now we have scrub backups who don’t know the pitching staff and will have to learn on the fly while competing for a championship.
Also just as a side note, Manoah is the ace of this staff. Time he gets the respect he deserves from Charlie. Alek is an absolute stud and will anchor this rotation for years and compete for CY Young awards annually. Him being number one makes Berrios and Gausman even more lethal from the 2-3 spots. Also Espinal is the starting second baseman. It’s time for Ross etc to stop hyping Biggio. His minors numbers and mlb numbers scream fringe player. It’s time to wake up and let’s field our best team possible. Go Jays!
First off, kirk is not a scrub catcher, he has improved very well behind the plate. Outside of the hot start for Jansen, kirk is probably the better catcher moving forward.
Second off the number in the rotation that a pitcher starts in makes zero difference . What exactly would improve on Berrios or Gausman if they started exactly one game after
Kirk is now the starting catcher and not the backup. Collins and Heinemen are the scrubs. Also if placement doesn’t matter then why does Gerrit Cole or every other ace start opening day every year.
Your #1 starter gets 1 or 2 more starts by being the first out of the gate in the first and second half. That’s all. It may affect the caliber of pitcher they’re matched up against 2 or 3 times, but otherwise differing off days and differing rests / spot starts make it random.
Starting one day later allows these two pitchers to face opposing pitchers of a lesser caliber. Manoah is the only starting pitcher on our staff who can hang with anyone in this league. He should have started the season number one in my opinion but as long as he’s number 1 for our first playoff game I’ll be happy.
Peart of the game
Espinal is a fine utility piece as his career .361 babip is just plain unsustainable going forwards and he only has two MLB home runs in his entire career while Biggio has 31 in 994 plate appearances while also going 23/24 in stolen base attempts. They have similar ops (.766 for Espinal .759 for Biggio with a .302 babip)
Let’s wait and see how Espy’s new weight improves his power. It could be just enough to make him sustainable as a starting player.
Best Screenname Ever
Reading our man’s post I’m guessing ‘should of’ is common on the hockey comment boards.
It’s sad that trading away their third string catcher has come back to bite them so quickly.
Deal away Reese looks even stupider now than when it happened.
The jays currently have three catchers on the big league roster that can’t hit, what a time to be alive.