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Blue Jays release 26-man roster (and Taxi Squad), Reese McGuire and Breyvic Valera have been designated for assignment

The Blue Jays have finally let us know who’s going to be the team to kick off the season.

The roster features 14 pitchers and 12 position players…

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Pitchers: Hyun Jin Ryu, Ross Stripling, Steven Matz, Tanner Roark, T.J. Zeuch, Ryan Borucki, Tyler Chatwood, Rafel Dolis, Tim Mayza, Julian Merryweather, Joel Payamps, David Phelps, Jordan Romano, and Trent Thornton.

Players: Danny Jansen, Alejandro Kirk, Bo Bichette, Cavan Biggio, Vlad Jr., Joe Panik, Marcus Semien, Rowdy Tellez, Jonathan Davis, Randal Grichuk, Lourdes Gurriel, Teoscar Hernandez.

Taxi Squad: Riley Adams, Travis Bergen, A.J. Cole, Santiago Espinal, Tommy Milone.

Panik and Mayza needed to be added to the 40-man roster, so the team has designated both Breyvic Valera and Reese McGuire for assignment. The former comes as no surprise at all and the latter seemed inevitable once we learned yesterday that the team had gone out and acquired a veteran third-string catcher in Juan Graterol.

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I would imagine that somebody takes a flyer on McGuire who is certainly good enough to be a glove-only backup catcher at the big-league level. Regardless, Kirk is the better player, and this move that prioritizes winning over asset management proves where the Blue Jays are at right now.

Elsewhere, both George Springer and Robbie Ray will start the season on the 10-day Injured List. Let’s hope they’re both ready to be activated after the Texas Rangers series next week.

Finally, the Jays are opting to roll with a nine-man bullpen, which isn’t surprising given how thin their starting rotation is right now. There are multiple guys in the ‘pen, like Trent Thornton and Joel Payamps, who can log more than one inning per outing, which might be important this weekend given Ross Stripling and T.J. Zeuch appear to be starting the second and third games of the season.

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