Chad Wallach was claimed off waivers by the Angels on Saturday, ending his eight-day stint with the Dodgers, who now have only two catchers on the 40-man roster.
The Dodgers claimed Wallach from the Marlins on July 30, the same day Keibert Ruiz was sent to the Nationals in the six-player trade that brought Max Scherzer and Trea Turner to Los Angeles.
Wallach played just one game with Triple-A Oklahoma City, going 0-for-3 with a walk and a run scored on Friday night in Albuquerque. The Angels optioned Wallach to Salt Lake, so he’ll remain in Triple-A.
The move opens up a spot on the 40-man roster, which will be needed soon, when Corey Knebel is activated off the 60-day injured list in the next few days. Knebel pitched a scoreless inning on Friday night on a rehab assignment with Oklahoma City, and is expected to pitch on Saturday as well, back-to-back outings the final item on the check list before his return.
Knebel has been out since late April with a lat strain, and has pitched five games so far on his rehab assignment, striking out 10 of his 21 batters faced while allowing a run in 5⅓ innings.
For now, the Dodgers have only Will Smith and Austin Barnes on the 40-man roster. Those two have combined to start every game behind the plate for the Dodgers this season, and have caught all but five innings. Should one of them get hurt, the next catcher up is probably veteran Tim Federowicz, who just won a silver medal at the Summer Olympics with Team USA on Saturday morning.
It’s unclear when Federowicz will return to Triple-A, but the other catchers on Oklahoma City’s roster are 27-year-old Hamlet Marte, who has started 17 games behind the plate, and 22-year-old Juan Zabala, who’s started 14 times this season at catcher, but only once in Triple-A.