The Braves have designated lefty Donnie Veal for assignment, David O’Brien of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports on Twitter. Veal, 30, has given up four earned runs in just 3 1/3 innings pitched this year, striking out and walking two batters. Over parts of five years in the big leagues, he owns a 5.16 ERA with 9.5 K/9 against 6.5 BB/9. Atlanta hopes that Veal will make it through outright waivers and accept an assignment in Triple-A, per O’Brien. The southpaw would have the ability to decline an assignment and elect free agency, however, as he has previously been outrighted.
The Blue Jays have designated lefty Jayson Aquino for assignment, Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet.ca reports on Twitter. His 40-man spot will go to Chris Colabello, with Jonathan Diaz being optioned to open a place on the active roster. Aquino, 22, was acquired from the Rockies this winter in exchange for fellow southpaw Tyler Ybarra. Previously rated as one of Colorado’s ten best prospects, the youngster had something of a rough 2014. Sent to repeat the High-A level with Toronto, Aquino was off to a solid start. Over 25 2/3 innings, he owns a 2.81 ERA with 5.6 K/9 against 2.1 BB/9.
Miami has announced the release of struggling catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia. The Marlins were not able to find a trade partner for the recently-designated backstop, as Ken Rosenthal of FOX Sports reported on Twitter. He will hit the open market after clearing release waivers. The news rates as at least a mild surprise. Miami had hoped to find a team to pick up at least some of the approximately $6MM left on his 2015 salary, to say nothing of the $8MM owed next year. Several clubs were reported to be in talks with the Fish, but apparently none were willing to offer enough value to warrant a deal. Salty is a virtual certainty to clear release waivers and reach free agency, given that any claiming team would need to take on his contract. That will afford the clubs with prior interest an opportunity to add him at a pro-rated portion of the league minimum salary. It has been a swift fall from grace for Saltalamacchia, who like several recent free agents before him simply never panned out in Miami
The Angels have designated catcher Drew Butera for assignment, director of communications Eric Kay announced on Twitter. Carlos Perez will be brought up to take his spot.
Rule 5 Draft pick Logan Verrett, who was designated for assignment by the Rangers in late April, has cleared waivers and been returned to the Mets, according to a press release from the Mets. Texas has also confirmed the move. The 24-year-old Verrett was originally selected by the Orioles in the most recent Rule 5 Draft. When Baltimore couldn’t find a spot for him and fellow Rule 5 pick Jason Garcia in Spring Training, it was Verrett who the O’s tried to sneak through waivers.
The Blue Jays have announced that they’ve traded first baseman Andy Wilkins to the Dodgers for cash considerations. The Jays designated Wilkins for assignment this weekend. The Dodgers also formally announced that they have designated Scott Baker for assignment.
The Brewers have announced that they’ve designated infielder Luis Jimenez for assignment.
The Red Sox will promote top prospect Blake Swihart, Sean McAdam of CSNNE.com reports on Twitter. Swihart will fill in for Ryan Hanigan, who went down tonight with a broken finger. Boston will continue to look for external candidates behind the plate with both of its top two options (Hanigan and Christian Vazquez) now out for the foreseeable future. The team is still not interested in bringing back Jarrod Saltalamacchia, however, McAdam says. It remains unclear, then, whether Swihart will end up sticking in the bigs for the rest of the year. But he’ll certainly have a chance to do so; certainly, the club could add another catcher and chose to move Sandy Leon rather than Swihart. If he can avoid an optional assignment, Swihart will line up to qualify for Super Two status down the road. Things probably hinge on the 23-year-old’s defense, the main limiting factor coming into the year. It isn’t that Swihart lacks athleticism or promise; it’s that he is still working out the finer points after converting to the position late in his high school career. His offensive upside for an up-the-middle bat is undisputed, and is the cause for his consensus top-20 prospect rating.