Yankees claim Sam Demel off waivers from Astros

2013 Season Preview: The Bench
Girardi confirms Hughes will open season on the DL

The Yankees have claimed right-handed reliever Sam Demel off waivers from the Astros, the team announced. Fellow righty Dan Otero was designated for assignment to clear a 40-man roster spot. Otero was claimed off waivers just yesterday.

Demel, 27, owns a 4.95 ERA (4.75 FIP) in 63.2 career big league innings, all with the Diamondbacks over the last three seasons. He got absolutely hammered in camp — ten hits, eleven runs, four homers, three walks, and one strikeout in 2.1 innings — but the Yankees are clearly hoping he can miss bats like he has in Triple-A going forward (24.6% in 138 IP). Demel is a low-to-mid-90s fastball/slider guy with an option left, so again, just another depth arm.

2013 Season Preview: The Bench
Girardi confirms Hughes will open season on the DL
  • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

    I think claiming all these relievers is just about minimizing the risk of losing depth when they have to free up roster spots. I’m assuming this guy, and at least one of Eppley/Kelley/Rondon will be DFA’d soon. The more relievers they DFA, the more likely one or two clear waivers and can be outrighted.

  • john letizia

    ok so not to sound stupid but why cut adams then? they should of cut otero or not signed him at all. not that adams was great but he is much better than these marginal P that wont see the bronx ever. just dont get it

    • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

      They need more spots. Otero, and likely Demel now, were probably always intended to get cut along with Adams. Not sure why Adams was cut first, but picking up Otero and Demel likely didn’t impact whether Adams would’ve been cut or not.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Adams going first was questionable. It may also have been unavoidable, so order may just be the stuff of blog comment talk as to priorities and whatnot.

      NP described above exactly why you claim guys like this. Everyone does it.

  • bobtaco

    What are the chances that Adams clears waivers and is resigned?

    • titit

      Adams is a free agent and doesnt have to clear waivers. He was released, not DFA’d. Therefore, he can just resign with the Yankees, if he is not more receptive to a better offer.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        He still would have as decent a path with the Yanks to the majors, at this point, as with any other franchise. Still a lot of needs next year.

        Anything he signs with be an MiLB deal, I’m sure. He’s not getting a 40-man. I could see him sticking around unless someone else nabs him first.

        • Gonzo

          Here’s a list of teams with open 40-man spots.

          O’s 1 spot
          Indians 1 spot
          Tigers 3 spots
          Royals 1 spot
          Astros 1 spot
          Angels 4 spots
          Braves 3 spots
          Marlins 1 spot
          Mets 1 spot
          Phillies 1 spot
          Nationals 2 spots
          Cardinals 2 spots
          Dbacks 2 spots
          Giants 2 spots

          Caveat, I have no clue if the clubs have plans for these spots already. I also don’t know if they would be interested in Adams.

      • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

        Yeah, I don’t get why they released him instead of DFA’ing him.
        Doesn’t make sense, but maybe I’m missing something.

        I think technically released players can be claimed though. They only become free agents if no team claims their contract.
        The only difference in this scenario is the Yankees don’t have the option to outright him if he clears waivers, but they could sign him as a free agent (probably unlikely) if he clears.

        • Robinson Tilapia

          There may really be something we’re missing here. We’ll find out soon enough.

          We can irresponsibly rumormonger, of course, and wonder whether Adams asked for his release, is retiring, etc.

        • MatUK

          I read on twitter that his agent said it was better the Yanks to release him as another team would have claimed him. Yanks can now try to sign him on a minor league deal.

          • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

            I was under the impression players still have to clear release waivers before becoming a free agent. I may be wrong about that, though.

            • Need Pitching & Hitting (but mostly hitting)

              Nevermind. Apparently the player can refuse the claim and become a free agent.


              Unconditional release waivers. These are self-explanatory. A player on release waivers can be claimed for $1, and the claiming team assumes the player’s contract. The player does have the right to refuse this claim and become a free agent.

          • Robinson Tilapia

            Who reported that?

            Sounds like an strong openness to return without a 40-man slot.

            • trr

              “irresponsibly rumormonger” on RAB?? I’m shocked, shocked!
              anyway, I’d rather read that than what some of the trolls have been posting lately

              • Robinson Tilapia

                We could have the second-hand information character from SNL chime in with rumors every now and then.

                “You know, I heard from the guy on the corner that Alex Rodriguez is in biiiiiig trouble. I heard that he’s going to be suspended for illegally testing out beds.”

            • trr

              sounds good to me-

            • MatUk
          • Gonzo

            This makes some sense because the Yankees can now pay him much, much more than your average minor leaguer not on a 40-man.

  • Handsome B. Wonderful

    I like Demel — real live arm, was in the running to be the AZ closer for a while just two years ago.

    • Robinson Tilapia

      Good to hear. I’d never heard of him, so this is good. Maybe he helps out down the road. Maybe he’s back gone tomorrow.

    • Hoss

      Steve Demel? Heck of a pickup.

      • Robinson Tilapia

        Can’t force it. It’s gotta come naturally.

    • Manny’s BanWagon

      If he wasn’t good enough to make the Astros who are essentially a AAA team, I wouldn’t get my hopes up.

  • LeftyCoach

    Sam Demel has a good arm. My son was fortunate enough to play in the same district as Demel and he competed against him his junior year. I got to see him pitch a few times. He went to Spring High School, here in Houston….the same school where Josh Beckett played a few years before. Scott Kazmir played in our district as well.