Blue Jays’ Jason Grilli designated for assignment

Blue Jays manager John Gibbons explains the difficulty in the decision to designate pitcher Jason Grilli for assignment.

The Toronto Blue Jays reliever Jason Grilli has been designated for assignment. Chris Smith has been recalled from triple-A Buffalo to replace him.

Also announced by the team was the reinstatement of outfielder Ezequiel Carrera. Dwight Smith Jr. has been optioned to make room for Carrera on the roster.

Acquired from the Atlanta Braves in last May, the Grilli hasn’t been able to maintain the same effectiveness he had last season.

The 40-year-old has struggled in 2017, allowing nine home runs and 16 earned runs in 20.2 innings, good for a with a 6.97 ERA. He surrendered eight homers and 17 earned runs in 42 innings (3.64 ERA) over the last four months of the 2016 campaign with Toronto.

Smith has appeared in 14 games for Buffalo, posting a 3.93 ERA with 15 strikeouts and two walks in 18.1 innings. He was a September call-up with the Blue Jays last season.

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