Blue Jays rumors: Toronto inquiring into Braves shortstop Tyler Pastornicky

Daniel Shirey-US PRESSWIRE

In desperate need of help up the middle, the Jays have reached out to Atlanta about getting one of their former prospects back.

The Toronto Blue Jays have talked to the Atlanta Braves about re-acquiring infield prospect Tyler Pastornicky, reports Jim Bowden of ESPN.

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The Jays are on the prowl for reinforcements up the middle in the wake of Jose Reyes' severe ankle sprain, which is expected to sideline the All-Star shortstop for at least three months. Toronto purchased the contract of infielder Munenori Kawasaki from Triple-A over the weekend as a temporary stopgap, but it's evident that the club is interested in adding help from outside the organization.

Pastornicky, 23, was selected by the Blue Jays in the 5th round of the 2008 Draft, and was steadily working his way through the farm system when he was traded to the Braves as part of the package for Yunel Escobar and Jo-Jo Reyes in July 2010. Once in the Braves' system, the young infielder continued to play well, and earned the Opening Day shortstop gig for Atlanta in 2012.

He struggled out of the gate once in the big leagues, however, and was eventually usurped on the depth chart by Andrelton Simmons at the end of May. Pastornicky found his way back to Atlanta after the All-Star break, but continued to struggle in the field and at the plate, finishing his rookie year with a .243/.287/.325 batting line and two home runs in 188 plate appearances.

Pastornicky is definitely of the defense-first mold of shortstops, but if he is unable to bring his numbers at the dish at least near the league average then his glove-work will ultimately be for naught (Edit: Scratch that. Pastornicky is actually pretty bad on defense. Not sure who I was thinking of). The young infielder started his year with Triple-A Gwinnett and currently sits fourth on the Braves' depth chart at short behind Simmons, Ramiro Pena, and Blake DeWitt, so there's a pretty good chance Atlanta will be willing to part with him.


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