The Blue Jays have acquired starting pitcher Taijuan Walker from the Mariners ahead of Monday’s MLB trade deadline, according to multiple reports.
The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal was first to report the news. Seattle will receive a player to be named later in the exchange.
The trade gives Toronto another arm in its starting rotation as it attempts to lock down one of the American League’s final playoff spots in the final month of the season. The Jays have three starters (Matt Shoemaker, Trent Thornton and Nate Pearson) on the injured list.
Under 2020’s expanded playoff format, eight teams in each league (the top two teams in each division, plus two wild card teams) will qualify for the postseason. Toronto (15–14) is currently in the second wild card spot, two games behind the Yankees for second in the AL East.
An elbow injury and subsequent Tommy John surgery limited Walker to just four starts over the past two seasons. In five starts this season, he has a 4.00 ERA and has struck out 25 batters in 27 innings with eight walks.
Walker was a first-round pick by Seattle in 2010 and one of the top prospects in the Mariners’ system before he debuted in 2013. He played four seasons for the M’s before being sent to Arizona with Ketel Marte in a trade that sent Zac Curtis, Mitch Haniger and Jean Segura to Seattle. He played three seasons for the Diamondbacks and signed a one-year contract with the Mariners this winter.