Rays Claim Preston Guilmet
The Rays have claimed right-handed reliever Preston Guilmet off waivers from the Blue Jays and optioned him to Durham, according to Brendan Kennedy of the Toronto Star.
Guilmet has bounced around a lot over the past year. Besides appearing in 10 big-league games with the Orioles in 2014, he spent time in the Cleveland, Pittsburgh, and Toronto organizations.
All that activity would lead you to (correctly) assume Guilmet has a polarizing profile. He’s listed at 6-foot-2 and releases the ball from an upright, over-the-top delivery. Guilmet does most of his work with an upper-80s fastball and splitter, with past reports indicating he also employs a breaking ball. His biggest asset is his control, as he hasn’t walked more than two batters per nine since 2012, though the question with these types is often whether their command and stuff can cut it against big-league hitters; sometimes the answer is yes and the reliever becomes useful in the middle innings, but often the answer is no and the reliever serves in an up-and-down role until the roster spot is needed.
Presumably the Rays feel Guilmet could be a middle reliever, or will at least tinker with his approach to get him to that side of the fence—perhaps by seeing if he can ape the high-fastball, low-splitter style perfected by Jake Odorizzi? The stakes are so low that it’s worth a shot, even if he never sees the light of the dome.
In a corresponding move, the Rays transferred Drew Smyly to the 60-day disabled list.