The Blue Jays used some of their bullpen depth to fill another area of need by trading right-hander Brad Lincoln to the Phillies for catcher Erik Kratz and left-hander Rob Rasmussen on Tuesday night.
The move gives Toronto some much-needed organizational depth behind the plate and brings a little bit more clarity to next year's bullpen. Toronto had too many relievers for seven spots and it was clear at least one or two would be moved this offseason.
Lincoln becomes the odd man out after a rather frustrating season that saw him spend much of the year in Triple-A Buffalo. He was acquired from the Pirates in a 2012 trade for Travis Snider, but never really settled into the middle-relief role as originally anticipated.
The 28-year-old posted a 5.65 ERA with the Blue Jays after the 2012 non-waiver Trade Deadline and didn't break camp the following year. Lincoln did end up pitching 31 2/3 innings for Toronto in 2013, but struggled with his command and never really seemed to earn the trust of manager John Gibbons.
The low point of Lincoln's season came on May 9, when he walked Tampa Bay's Luke Scott with the bases loaded in the bottom of the 10th inning. The walk-off walk resulted in a 5-4 loss for Toronto and was somewhat of a symbol for a year that included four trips to the Minor Leagues.
Read more: Blue Jays trade reliever Brad Lincoln to Phillies for catcher Eric Kratz, pitcher Rob Rasmussen | MLB.com: News