Russ Canzler spent this offseason flipping rosters. He was placed on waivers four times and has been claimed each time. Since mid-December, Canzler was on the 40-man rosters of the Indians, Blue Jays, Indians again, Yankees and then the Orioles.
“I just kind of sat in my living room and answered the phone every couple weeks to see which team I was going to be on,” Canzler said with a smile. “You can get worked up about it. You can get upset, but I have a lot of faith I’d land somewhere. And all you can ask for is an opportunity with a team and I think I have a good one here.”
Orioles manager Buck Showalter said Canzler will see time this spring at first base and in the outfield.
“We've got a spot there for a good right-handed bat and he's in that competition,” Showalter said. “If you look at his minor league numbers and a small sampling in the big leagues, he's done well against left-handed pitching. It's one of the things we looked at when we signed a lot of these guys.”
The Orioles were interested in Canzler as a minor league free-agent last offseason before he signed with the Indians, and they filed waiver claims for him previously this offseason but weren’t high enough on the waiver order to get him.
Canzler has averaged 20 homers and 81 RBIs the past two seasons in Triple-A. In 102 major league at-bats with the Rays and Indians, Canzler owns a .271/.304/.396 line with three homers and 12 RBIs, including a .400/.419/.667 in 30 major league at-bats against left-handed pitching.