Right-hander Ryan Jensen went unclaimed on waivers after being designated for assignment by the Twins, tweets Dan Hayes of The Athletic. He’ll remain in the organization but has been sent outright to Triple-A St. Paul and is no longer on the 40-man roster. Jensen will be in big league camp as a non-roster invitee this spring.
The Twins have to be pleased with the manner in which the Jensen sequence played out. Minnesota claimed the former first-rounder off waivers from Miami last month but designated him for assignment last week in order to claim another righty reliever who’d been DFA’ed: Daniel Duarte. Jensen had bounced from the Cubs to the Mariners to the Marlins via waivers since his original DFA back in August, but the Twins succeeded in passing him through waivers and will now be able to retain him as Triple-A depth.
Now 26 years old, Jensen was the No. 27 overall pick in the 2019 draft. In 2023, he split the year between Double-A and Triple-A, working to a combined 5.32 earned run average in 64 1/3 innings of work. He operated primarily out of the bullpen, his first season doing so after spending the first few years of his career as a starting pitcher. He sports an overall 4.42 ERA with an above-average 26% strikeout rate and ugly 14.5% walk rate in his minor league career.
Jensen has a mid-90s heater, plus ground-ball rates, above-average strikeout rates and a pair of minor league options remaining. If the Twins can get him to rein in his command troubles, he has the makings of a quality reliever, but that’s a significant “if” based on how his career has panned out thus far.