Rays Option Vidal Brujan to AAA , Roster Yu Chang
By Josh Jacobs
The Tampa Bay Rays announced on Wednesday that the club is optioning Vidal Brujan to AAA Durham to clear a roster spot for the recently claimed Yu Chang.
Brujan, one of the Rays top prospects entering 2022, has struggled to find his footing at the Major League level, and it appears the club is hopeful that a stint in AAA will help the 24 year old get back on track, similar to fellow top prospect Josh Lowe.
In 46 games for Tampa Bay, Brujan slashed .167/.230/.246 with 2 HR and 15 RBI while providing defensive versatility all over the diamond. The switch hitter has always had questions surrounding how his bat would play at the big league level, and looked overmatched in his time thus far. It is not uncommon for a player to struggle their first go around in the Majors, so the club will be hoping he can return and produce in the near future.
The move corresponded with the wavier claim of infielder Yu Chang, who was recently designated for an assignment by the Pittsburgh Pirates. This is now Chang's third stop this year, beginning the year with the Cleveland Guardians and slashing .135/.237/.212 in 59 PA with both clubs.
The 26 year old has had brief stints with Cleveland beginning in 2019, but his career OPS sits at just .627. Chang is the kind of player that the Rays tend to get the most out of, so maybe the club will be able to unlock what the Guardians had been trying to for some time.
Although Chang has not produced much better than Brujan this year, it allows the Rays to help Brujan develop more in the minors while bringing in a versatile option to replace him in the meantime.
Chang appears to be a low-cost stop gap as the club continues to await the return of key contributors like Brandon Lowe. If Chang makes the most of his opportunities while on the roster, he could stick around to give solid production off the bench. If not, it is likely the club will recall the likes of Brujan if he turns things around.