This feels, to me, like the Jackets are scrapping their plans to be a totally offensive-minded team, and are instead going to try to grind other teams a bit with size. It's certainly not a move to bring in a "veteran," given that Bass is just 24 years old himself and has played on 34 career NHL games (with Ottawa).
Bass does bring size, however, and a willingness to mix it up. Witness his 13 PIM in five games in Springfield. But, he's also shown a touch of scoring, with two goals and two assists. Whether that translates to the NHL, we'll have to wait and see. It would seem the feeling is that bringing a guy like Bass in brings some size and a touch of physicality while also not being completely devoid of offensive touch.
Bass also provides some protection for his teammates, as he showed a willingness to drop the gloves in the pre-season. With Jared Boll currently out, that may help some, though I'll leave that up to all of you to debate.