Mariners acquire lefty reliever Ryan Borucki from Blue Jays for prospect

Jun 4, 2022, 6:30 PM
Mariners Ryan Borucki...
Ryan Borucki pitches at Yankee Stadium on May 11, 2022. (Al Bello/Getty Images)
(Al Bello/Getty Images)

Shortly after their 3-2 loss to the Texas Rangers on Saturday, the Mariners made a move, acquiring 28-year-old left-handed reliever Ryan Borucki from the Toronto Blue Jays. Borucki was designated for assignment by Toronto on May 31.

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To complete the deal, Tyler Keenan, a corner infielder who was Seattle’s fourth-round pick in 2020, is heading to Toronto. Additionally, first baseman/designated hitter Mike Ford has been designated for assignment in order to make room for Borucki on both the 40-man roster, which is now full. Ford has been with the MLB roster, so Borucki may take his place on the 26-man MLB roster for Sunday’s series in Texas.

Borucki was a 15th-round pick of the Blue Jays in 2012 and made his MLB debut in 2018 as a starting pitcher, going 4-6 with a 3.87 ERA in 17 starts. He made just two starts in 2019 due to elbow issues before making 21 appearances out of the bullpen for the Blue Jays in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season, posting a 2.70 ERA in 16 2/3 innings.

In 2021, Borucki threw 23 2/3 innings for the Blue Jays out of the bullpen with a 4.94 ERA. In 2022, Borucki made 11 appearances for Toronto, posting a 9.95 ERA in 6 1/3 innings before being designated for assignment.

Borucki is mostly a fastball-slider pitcher, using his slider over 51% of the time, per Statcast, and a 2-seam fastball/sinker 43.2% of the time while mixing in an occasional changeup.

Borucki’s fastball averages 94.8 mph while his slider is firm at roughly 87 mph.

At the moment, Borucki’s addition gives the Mariners nine pitchers in their bullpen and three lefties as the team also has Anthony Misiewicz and Roenis Elías.

Keenan, 23, has spent 2021 and 2022 in High-A Everett, where he’s hit .212 with nine home runs and 58 RBIs in 89 games. Keenan ended 2021 as the Mariners’ No. 25 prospect on MLB Pipeline, but did not crack their top-30 list this season.

Ford, 29, has appeared in 16 games for the Mariners this season and hit .179 with one extra-base hit and three RBIs. He spent time with the Mariners earlier this season but didn’t appear in any games before joining the San Francisco Giants. Seattle re-acquired Ford for cash considerations on May 12 and he’s been with the MLB roster since.

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