Brad Hand’s stint as a member of the Toronto Blue Jays was short-lived, as the former Nationals closer has been designated for assignment, the team announced Tuesday.
Washington traded Hand at this year’s trade deadline, receiving catcher Riley Adams from the Blue Jays in exchange. The deal now looks to be a complete win for the Nationals, as Hand’s tenure in Toronto did not live up to the team’s expectations.
Toronto DFA’d Hand after the lefty posted a 7.27 ERA in 11 appearances on the mound over 8 2/3 innings pitched. Now that Hand’s contract has been DFA’d, the Blue Jays have seven days to either trade or waive him.
In the nation’s capital, the three-time All-Star put up a 3.59 ERA in 41 games. Although at times he looked sharp on the bump in D.C., Hand often displayed a difficulty to find the strike zone at crucial late-game moments, eventually conceding two consecutive walk-offs in two of his final three appearances as a National.
On the flip side of the deal that sent Hand to Toronto, Riley Adams has been nothing short of sensational in his 19 appearances thus far in Washington. The catcher is batting .341 with nine runs, seven RBIs and a miraculous 1.010 OPS in D.C.
Adams burst onto the scene in a big way in his third game in Nats threads, blasting a go-ahead two-run shot in the ninth inning of what would become a 3-2 win over the Atlanta Braves. It was the 25-year-old’s first ever homer in the majors.
Nationals GM Mike Rizzo is better known for buying rather than selling at the trade deadline. The decision to ship Hand to Toronto has turned out to be a smart move, as Adams has been lighting it up since arriving in Washington.