Justin Turner returns from paternity list, Addison Barger optioned to triple-A

Designated hitter Justin Turner has joined the Toronto Blue Jays in Seattle for Saturday’s contest at T-Mobile Park versus the Mariners, the club announced prior to first pitch.

The 39-year-old has been reinstated from the paternity list after he and his wife, Kourtney, welcomed a baby boy into their family on Friday. It is their first child together.

To make room for Turner, the Blue Jays have optioned Addison Barger to triple-A Buffalo, where he’ll receive regular playing time again. They also confirmed the release of reliever Tim Mayza, now a free agent after clearing waivers.

Turner is absent from Toronto’s starting lineup Saturday, but he should be available to pinch-hit if needed. The right-handed-hitting slugger has been red-hot since breaking out of his May slump, hitting .343/.494/.463 with six extra-base hits (one home run), seven RBIs and a 184 wRC+ in 23 games since June 5.

This impressive stretch has surely revived his trade value ahead of this month’s deadline, making Turner — a free agent after this season — a likely candidate to be dealt over the next three weeks.

Meanwhile, Barger has struggled to find his footing at the plate during two separate major league stints this season. In 20 games, the 24-year-old has slashed .150/.177/.183 while striking out 18 times and walking only twice. He was in a 1-for-22 skid at the time of his recent demotion.

The Blue Jays will look to snap a three-game losing streak Saturday during the middle contest of this three-game set in the Pacific Northwest.

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Title: Justin Turner returns from paternity list, Addison Barger optioned to triple-A
Author: Thomas Hall

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