The Blue Jays make a trade for Foster Griffin, a former 1st round pick and make other roster moves

A litany of roster moves were announced early Saturday morning, including a trade!

The Jays traded 20-year-old minor league pitcher Jonatan Bernal to the Kansas City Royals for 26-year-old pitcher Foster Griffin.
Pitching mainly for the Omaha Royals, Griffin has posted a 1.93 ERA and a 2.86 FIP in 28 innings pitched with the AAA ball club. His K/9 sits at 10.29 while his BB/9 is a rather impressive 1.93.
There’s very little Baseball Savant data on the 26-year-old lefty, but I can tell you what he throws and what his average velocity is. He throws a cutter at 89.3 mph, a four seamer at about 94 mph, a changeup at 85.1 mph and a curveball at 79.9 mph.
His velocity actually ticked up from 2020, where he his cutter for 86.2 mph and four seamer for 91.8 mph.
This season is his first season pitching out of the pen. However, Griffin’s pitch mix is an unusual one for a reliever. It’s to be seen if the Jays attempt to stretch him out again, as they only have two starting pitchers in Buffalo (Casey Lawrenece, Thomas Hatch). Below is a thread where he struck out the side, dating back to June 9th.

@Foster_Griffin strikeout thread from June 9th.#BlueJays #NextLevel
— Brennan Delaney (@Brennan_L_D) July 16 …

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Author: Brennan Delaney / Blue Jays Nation

Maple Leafs sign Calle Järnkrok to four-year, $2.1 million AAV contract

The Maple Leafs announced on Friday that the club has signed forward Calle Järnkrok to a four-year contract, carrying an annual cap hit of $2.1 million dollars. Järnkrok split last season between Seattle and Calgary, registering 12 goals and 18 assists in 66 games before adding another four points in 12 postseason contests for the Flames.

We’ve signed forward Calle Järnkrok to a four-year contract.#LeafsForever
— Toronto Maple Leafs (@MapleLeafs) July 15, 2022

A native of Sweden, the soon-to-be 31-year-old Järnkrok has suited up in 574 regular season NHL games over nine seasons between Nashville, Seattle, and Calgary, tallying 106 goals to go along with 135 assists for his career. He is known more as a versatile player who can play down the middle or on the wing while providing solid defensive value.

Calle Jarnkrok, signed 4x$2.1M by TOR, is a versatile defensive third line forward who can score goals and draw penalties but otherwise possesses a very limited offensive skill-set. Takes very few penalties. #LeafsForever
— JFresh (@JFreshHockey) July 15, 2022

Järnkrok isn’t a huge offense driver but has shown the ability to finish scoring chances, netting 15 or more goals four times in his career. He blends good speed with a quality release to be an effective secondary scoring option who can fill various roles up and down the lineup. While his greatest contributions will come on the defensive side of the puck, Järnkrok should inject a bit more scoring touch to the Leafs’ bottom-six forward group.

Well how do yah do, Calle
— NHL (@NHL) November 22, 2021

At first glance, Järnkrok looks like a great fit to replace some of what Ondřej Kaše provided to the club last season while playing alongside David Kämpf and shouldering difficult minutes against other teams’ best players. Järnkrok doesn’t carry the same kind of injury history as Kaše and as a result, provides a bit more certainty for the Leafs as they continue to build out their lineup.
With a four-year term, Järnkrok is locked in longer than any player on the Leafs’ roster aside from Morgan Rielly, whose eight-year extension kicks in this coming season.
Alex Kerfoot has just one year remaining on his current contract, and if the club decides to shop him around in an effort to clear additional salary cap spac …

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Author: Nick Richard / The Leafs Nation

Get to know every invite to Maple Leafs development camp

The Toronto Maple Leafs finally announced their development camp roster earlier today, and as per usual, there are a bunch of very intriguing invites.
Undrafted free agency is an excellent way to supplement your prospect pool when you don’t have many draft picks. While the Leafs did draft five times this year and they are close to the 50 contract limit, there are numerous prospects that would be worthwhile bets to be signed to an entry-level contract while they are eligible to do so.
Firstly, the invites have been separated into two groups: those in the CHL and those on the path to the NCAA.
Players in the CHL can sign as undrafted free agents, regardless of their age (as long as they have been eligible for an NHL draft), until the start of the new CHL season. This is how the Leafs signed Braeden Kressler last year, or how Philadelphia landed Philippe Myers and Egor Zamula in the past.
NCAA players, on the hand, don’t have it quite as easy. If they sign an NHL contract, they forego their NCAA eligibility. While we have seen …

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Author: Kyle Cushman / The Leafs Nation