The Rockies announced they’ve designated reliever Jordan Sheffield for assignment. The move frees a spot on the 40-man roster for outfielder Wynton Bernard, whose previously-reported contract selection has been made official. Colorado placed center fielder Yonathan Daza (separated left shoulder) and catcher Elias Díaz (left wrist sprain) on the 10-day injured list, recalling Dom Nuñez to take Díaz’s spot behind the dish.
Sheffield, a former supplemental first-round pick of the Dodgers, landed in Colorado over the 2020-21 offseason via the Rule 5 draft. He spent all of last season in the majors, as required for a team to retain a Rule 5 pick’s rights. Sheffield worked as a low-leverage arm for skipper Bud Black, pitching to a 3.38 ERA across 29 1/3 innings. His strikeout and walk rates (17.2% and 11.2%, respectively) didn’t align with that quality run prevention. Nevertheless, Sheffield averaged 96.4 MPH with top-of-the-scale raw spin on his four-seam fastball, making him an interesting long-term relief option for the Rox.
Things have fallen apart during the Vanderbilt product’s second year in the organization. He’s made only two big league appearances, with his fastball velocity sitting at a diminished 93.7 MPH. He’s been blasted over 21 appearances with Triple-A Albuquerque, posting an 11.21 ERA with just a 16.3% strikeout rate and a huge 19.6% walk percentage. He’s also surrendered eight home runs in only 17 2/3 innings.
The Rockies will place Sheffield on waivers over the next few days. He’s never previously been outrighted, meaning the organization could keep him around without requiring a 40-man roster spot if he goes unclaimed. That seems likely, given the extent of his struggles in Triple-A this season.