Bianchi was put on waivers Wednesday, according to MLB.com, the day after right-hander Yovani Gallardo sprained his ankle in a loss Tuesday in Atlanta. The Brewers were anticipating a possible move to cover Gallardo’s scheduled start on Sunday.
Bianchi, 27, made his first Opening Day roster this spring, but was struggling mightily at the plate.
He was hitting .145/.172/.145 with four RBI in 21 games and 58 plate appearances at the time of his demotion. He also struck out 16 times.
Bianchi wound up being a semi-regular on the Brewers infield in 2013, playing 100 games and starting 54 of them at third base, shortstop and second base and hitting .237/.272/.292 with a homer and 25 RBI to go with 46 strikeouts.
Bianchi has the right to refuse the assignment and become a free agent because this is the second time Milwaukee has assigned him outright to the minors.
“I understand it,” Bianchi said. “I was here and I didn’t get the job done. Go down there, get my swing right, get things right and hope to be back soon. … I have to talk to my agent, talk to my wife. See what my options are.”
Bianchi was drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the second round of the 2005 amateur draft out of Lampeter-Strasburg High School in Lampeter, Pa. He was claimed off waivers by the Cubs in December 2011 and a little more than a month later was claimed by the Brewers after the Cubs placed him on waivers.
Bianchi is a terrific defender—in limited playing time last year, Bianchi ranked ninth in the National League in Defensive Wins Above Replacement with 2.0.