Claimed RHRP Jason Anderson off waivers from the New York Mets; Optioned him to Buffalo (AAA)
Seeing that Anderson was the centerpiece to last year’s Armando Benitez deal, I’m a bit surprised the Mets risked outrighting him, especially when they still had an option on him. By my recollection, Anderson is the 5th bullpen arm claimed off waivers in the past two years (Matt White, Jack Cressend, Nick Bierbrodt, and Cliff Bartosh being the others). Given this history, it looks like Shapiro is definitely looking to build a bullpen without giving out multi-year, multi-million dollar contracts to LOOGYs and various “veterens” that have name value. Just take a look at the current bullpen:
David Riske (56th! Round of the 1996 draft)
Jose Jimenez (1 year, $1M contract)
Scott Stewart (traded Ryan Church and Maicer Izturis)
Rafael Betancourt (minor-league contract)
Jack Cressend (waiver claim)
Chad Durbin (minor-league contract)
Jake Westbrook (the David Justice trade)
Of these seven guys, only Jake Westbrook really cost anything, although Ryan Church could someday become a decent outfielder. Of course, Bob Wickman obviously cost the Indians a ton of money, but his stint with the Indians is essentially over. And hopefully Mark Shapiro has learned his lesson.
So what about Jason Anderson? From what I can tell, he’s basically a live arm who has had success in the minors in the bullpen. So the Indians will maybe treak some mechanics in Buffalo, see what he can do, and eventually send him up to Cleveland. Unfortunately for Anderson, Fernando Cabrera and Kazuhito Tadano will probably get chances before he does. The Indians have been successful in their relief projects recently, and hopefully Anderson further that track record.