With their first series in the book after the All-Star break, the Blue Jays have optioned first baseman Rowdy Tellez down to Triple-A Buffalo.
Rowdy Tellez optioned to Buffalo. #BlueJays
— Gregor Chisholm (@GregorChisholm) July 14, 2019
The 24-year-old made his debut in Toronto last season and has been up with the club for all of 2019 so far, making the 25-man right out of spring. This season, Tellez has hit for a .228 average and boasts a .718 OPS with 14 homers through 285 plate appearances. His 84 wRC+ leaves a lot to be desired, especially since his small-sample size 2018 was close to double the offensive production, with a 151 wRC+.
Even though Tellez has been a Statcast darling earlier this season, his exit velocity has lowered to just being within the 71st percentile of major-leaguers, while his expected statistics are now hovering over just league median.
This move makes room for another player on the 25-man, whether that be another reliever or a certain outfielder that has been bouncing between Buffalo and Toronto throughout the season. Billy McKinney looks to be that player, confirmed by Shi Davidi.
#BlueJays optioned Rowdy Tellez to triple-A Buffalo after the game. Sounds like OF Billy McKinney will be countermove.
— Shi Davidi (@ShiDavidi) July 14, 2019
McKinney, 24, has just a .641 OPS with the Jays this season but has risen that to an .883 during his time in Buffalo this year. Like we’ve seen this season with the blossoming of Lourdes Gurriel Jr. after making a stint with the Bisons, perhaps Tellez will have the same fate and come back as the big power bat he might have potential to be.
There will no doubt be many more Blue Jays-related transactions in the near future. The July 31 trade deadline is slowly approaching with every inning completed and immense pressure on this front office to get stable returns in exchange for the best players on this fourth-place roster.