Earlier today the Milwaukee Brewers made the free agent signings of right-handed pitchers Yovani Gallardo and Jhoulys Chacin official, bringing both into the fold for next season on Major League contracts. The Brewers only had one open 40 man roster spot coming into the day, however, meaning that a corresponding move was needed to clear space for both hurlers. This afternoon, the club announced that Dylan Baker was the casualty:
RHP Dylan Baker has been designated for assignment. The 40-man roster is now at capacity.— Milwaukee Brewers (@Brewers) December 21, 2017
Baker’s stay on Milwaukee’s 40 man roster was a short one, as the 25 year old was only claimed off waivers from the Indians about 3 weeks ago. Baker has yet to appear in the big leagues but was once considered among Cleveland’s top prospects before Tommy John surgery cost him all of 2015 and 2016. He returned to the mound in 2017 and tossed 16.2 innings between rookie ball and AA with a 2.70 ERA and sterling 16:1 K/BB ratio.
Baker does have a minor league option remaining, so at first glance it’s a bit curious that he got axed off the roster instead of someone like, say, Oliver Drake or Taylor Jungmann. But it’s worth keeping in mind that thanks to their 86-win season in 2017, the Brewers are pretty far down the order of waiver wire priority. If Baker made it all the way to Milwaukee on waivers once already this winter, perhaps there’s a chance that he’ll sneak through unclaimed and Milwaukee will be able to outright him to Colorado Springs and retain his contractual rights.
Statistics courtesy of Baseball-Reference