The Royals announced that right-hander Tyler Zuber has been claimed off waivers by the Diamondbacks. Zuber has been on the 60-day injured list all season and won’t require a 40-man roster spot for the time being. Additionally, the Royals also announced that right-hander Ryan Weiss has cleared waivers and been outrighted to Triple-A Omaha.
Zuber, 28 in June, missed the entirety of the 2022 due to a shoulder impingement, though he was recently able to resume throwing. He appeared in the majors in 2020 and 2021, though without much success. In 49 1/3 career innings, he has a 5.29 ERA, with a strong 24.8% strikeout rate but a ghastly 16.7% walk rate.
He still has one option year remaining and has yet to reach arbitration eligibility, but the Royals are evidently doing some roster cleanup at the moment. Most teams have roster crunches upcoming since there’s no injured list between the World Series and Spring Training. That means players on the 60-day IL, who don’t count against a club’s 40-man count, will soon be returning to their respective rosters. In anticipation of that, the Royals have cut Zuber, Weiss and Luke Weaver from their roster, with Weaver having been lost to the Mariners on a separate waiver claim.
For the D-Backs, they don’t need a roster spot for Zuber just yet but will soon. They are likely looking past his major league results and focusing on his work in the minors thus far. Last year, Zuber threw 28 2/3 Triple-A innings with a 2.83 ERA while striking out 37.1% of batters faced. The control problems were still there, however, as Zuber walked 13.8% of those who stepped to the plate. If he can hang onto his 40-man roster spot through the winter, he could serve as optionable depth for Arizona in 2023 while they try to iron out that command.
As for Weiss, 26 in December, he’s yet to make his MLB debut. He was drafted by the Diamondbacks and was added to their 40-man roster in November of last year, eventually going to the Royals on a midseason waiver claim. Between the two organizations, he registered a 6.93 ERA over 62 1/3 innings in 2022. This is his first career outright and he doesn’t have the three years of MLB service time or seven years of minor league experience necessary to have the right to reject it. He’ll stick with the Royals as depth but without occupying a 40-man roster spot.