D-backs return Rule 5 pick Tyler Jones to Yankees

Mar 24, 2017, 2:42 PM | Updated: 2:47 pm

The Arizona Diamondbacks continue to pare their roster down in preparation for Opening Day on Apr. 2.

Friday, they reduced the number of players in camp to 39 by returning right-handed reliever Tyler Jones, a Rule 5 draft pick in December, back to the New York Yankees. Jones would have had to remain on Arizona’s 25-man roster for the entire 2017 season for the Diamondbacks to retain his rights.

He’s already been assigned to the Triple-A Scranton/Wilkes-Barre RailRiders of the International League.

Jones, 27, saw action in eight Cactus League games for the D-backs, posting a 4.05 ERA in 6.2 innings. He struck out eight and walked none.

He was originally an 11th-round draft pick out of LSU by the Minnesota Twins in 2011, but has never pitched above the Double-A level. In 33 relief appearances for Trenton, the Eastern League affiliate of the Yankees, Jones went 6-2 with a 2.17 ERA, 67 strikeouts and 11 walks while converting 11 saves.

Earlier Friday, the D-backs reassigned outfielder Oswaldo Arcia, catcher Josh Thole and pitchers Erik Davis and Brian Matusz to their minor league camp.

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