The Blue Jays have selected the contract of right-hander Casey Lawrence and designated infielder Gosuke Katoh for assignment. In another corresponding move, left-hander Andrew Vasquez was optioned to Triple-A Buffalo.
Lawrence is now on the verge of his first appearance in The Show since the 2018 season. The righty posted a 6.64 ERA over 78 2/3 innings with the Blue Jays and Mariners in 2017-18, and after being let go by the Mariners following that 2018 campaign, Lawrence pitched in Japan in 2019 and inked a minors deal with the Twins prior to the 2020 season, but ended up not pitching at all due to the canceled minor league season.
Lawrence returned to the Jays on another minors deal in 2021 and he has posted some solid numbers with Triple-A Buffalo as a starter and reliever for the last two seasons. He’ll most likely work out of Toronto’s bullpen as a long man, though he could provide some extra depth behind Ross Stripling and Yusei Kikuchi. Normally a swingman, Stripling has been filling in for the injured Hyun Jin Ryu, while Kikuchi has been inconsistent thus far in the 2022 season.
A longtime member of the Yankees farm system, Katoh bounced around to the Marlins, Padres, and Blue Jays on minor league contracts over the last three seasons before finally getting his first MLB opportunity this season with Toronto. Katoh had only one hit over 11 PA but he also walked three times and scored two runs while playing some first base and second base.