In need of depth on their bench, the Washington Nationals are calling up second baseman Jeff Kobernus from the Triple-A Syracuse Chiefs and designating relief pitcher Yunesky Maya for assignment. Kobernus’ contract will be purchased to place him on the 40-man roster as Maya will now go through the waiver process.
Kobernus joins the Nats to provide an extra position player with Danny Espinosa out with a loose bone chip in his right wrist.
“We’re doing something with Maya and calling up Kobernus,” Davey Johnson said. “We’re already one player short with four players on the bench, I like to have at least five. And with Espinosa down, we can’t go with three.”
Kobernus, 24, has spent four seasons in Washington’s minor league system after being drafted by the club in the second round of the 2009 MLB Draft. He has yet to make his major league debut.
The Cal-Berkley product has been a standout at Syracuse this season with a .333 average, 33 runs, and 21 stolen bases, second most in the International League. He has a .28 career average in the minors with 95 total steals split between 2011 with Potomac and 2012 with Harrisburg.
Once he is DFA’d, Maya will have seven days to clear the waiver wire where he can either be claimed by another team or traded. After the week has passed he will then either be cut loose by the Nationals or sent back to join the rotation at Syracuse.
Maya made one appearance since his call-up, taking the loss in San Francisco on May 21 after he allowed walkoff home run to Pablo Sandoval in the tenth inning. Before joining the Nats this season, Maya was 1-5 with a 5.07 ERA through eight starts in Triple-A.