In a roster move that will not likely draw the excitement of many Brewers fans, the club has claimed right-handed reliever JB Bukauskas off of waivers from the Seattle Mariners. In a corresponding move, infielder Luis Urías will be transferred to the 60-day injured list. The news was first reported by Todd Rosiak of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
Bukauskas, 26, made 21 appearances out of the Arizona Diamondbacks' bullpen back in 2021, allowing 19 runs (15 earned) on 24 hits in just 17.1 innings of work.
To start the 2023 campaign, he made just a single relief appearance for the Mariners, giving up two earned runs in one inning of work. He was designated for assignment last week when the Mariners selected the contract of former Brewers pitcher Tommy Milone (who has since also been DFA'd).
A first-round pick in the 2017 MLB Draft (Astros), Bukauskas has yet to see his professional career take off at any step along the way. He strikes out his fair share of batters and doesn't surrender many home runs, but he has historically had troubles with limiting base hits and allowing free passes.
What makes him attractive to a team like the Brewers (who have a knack for finding diamond in the rough types of players just like him), is the minor league option he has tied to his name. The Brewers will be utilizing that right off the bat and immediately optioning him down to Triple-A Nashville where he can get some additional reps in so the club can evaluate what they have in him.
The move to place Urías on the 60-day injured list puts some officiality on a move that we all already saw coming. The promising infielder made just one appearance for the Brewers this year before going down with a hamstring injury that has kept him out of play ever since. The last known timeline for his injury was six-to-eight weeks, which puts him around a mid-May return to the big league club.
With the Brewers currently down Gus Varland after what was almost a very scary injury, it's possible there could be an opportunity in the bullpen. However, he'll have to impress a little bit in the minors first before he gets that opportunity.