The Blue Jays made a series of roster moves on Sunday, according to Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet. The club has optioned pitchers Brock Stewart and Justin Shafer, allowing for the activation of Clay Buchholz from the injured list and Ken Giles from the paternity list. In addition, right-hander Nick Kingham has been designated for assignment.
Buchholz last pitched for the Jays on May 5, before a shoulder strain forced him onto the 60-day injured list and kept him out of commission for more more than three months. After completing a rehab assignment in which he made three starts, the veteran will rejoin the Toronto rotation in time to start Sunday’s game. He’ll certainly face some restrictions in his workload as he works back into Major League action; his pitch count maxed out at 67 during his rehab.
After a resurgent season in Arizona last year, Buchholz hasn’t gotten much of a chance to ingratiate himself to the Toronto organization, having made just five starts with his new club. However, that five-game sample hasn’t given the Blue Jays much to be optimistic about, as Buchholz has managed to strike out just 4.4 batters per nine innings, fueling an unimpressive 5.67 FIP. Regardless, he’ll have just over a month to straighten things out and make good on the $3MM contract he earned last winter.
Giles, meanwhile, will return to the Toronto bullpen after a few days away from the game. He’s been far and away the Jays’ most reliable pitcher, enjoying his best season since he was traded out of Philadelphia. In 40 innings this year, he’s posted a 1.80 ERA while striking out batters at a career-best rate. While the 29-year-old, who can be a free agent after next season, may not be a part of the promising Blue Jays’ future plans, he certainly provides a boon to a club that has turned some heads with its young core.
27-year-old Kingham has been on the injured list since early August owing to a strained oblique, and will now be removed from Toronto’s 40-man in favor of Buchholz. While he could remain in the organization, he’ll first need to pass through waivers. He’s already done that once this year, when the Pirates designated him and later traded him to the Blue Jays. Despite his outwardly impressive 3.00 ERA in Toronto, most indicators suggest that Kingham’s performance is roughly in line with the poor numbers that earned him a ticket out of Pittsburgh.
After more than three seasons bouncing between the ranks of the Dodgers organization, Stewart now finds himself doing more of the same, only now with Toronto. Since joining the Jays, he’s already been optioned several times, though he’s shown himself to be a serviceable long-man for the starter-thin Blue Jays. Shafer, for his part, has been a solid bullpen choice for a Toronto organization that has shuttled seemingly dozens of relievers into and out of the Major League bullpen. The 26-year-old has struck out 29 batters in 31 innings, though he has had trouble keeping the walks in check, surrendering 22 free passes for an average of 6.4 per nine innings pitched.
I hope Shafer figures out his control issues. He could be a pretty decent middle reliever if he did.
Now if we can get rid of Shapiro and Atkins.
We can only wish!
Ahhhh, the joys of being a Pirates fan…
The front office refused to trade Nick Kingham, Harold Ramirez, Allen Hanson, Reese McGuire for 1.5 years of David Price. None of those four have amounted to squat and none even hardly even played for the Pirates…
To think what we could have done with Price, Cole, Liriano, Burnett…
Hey! Look everbody! Its Captain Hindsight and his negative attitude! MLB owners are now clamoring to hire him as their new GM.
It isn’t hindsight…. everyone in the Pirates world was clamoring for that trade to be made. The front office backed off of it claiming they were looking for “long sustained success” instead of “chasing a window” and “going for it”
I’m just restating the situation because it was horrifically wrong — just like most of the trade choices this front office has made. Ya clown.
Dropping Godley or Ramirez was out of the question? Shafer just needs to stop walking guys and he could find a home in the Jays bullpen.
Welcome back Clay. Didn’t expect to see you again. Good luck today.
Clay looks pretty decent so far today?
Yep. The way the Jays have pitched all year you’d take what Clay provided.
Jays should do the right thing an release Smoak. So he could potentially be added to a playoff roster or on a team with a shot at the postseason. It’s not Justin’s fault Atkins was too busy acquiring Fisher at any cost.
Shifting deck chairs in the tank. The BlueJays get good draft picks out of it. Probably Shapiro’s plan all along despite the claims.
The real test comes in the off season when they have the ability to sign or trade for elite pitching talent. They need to leap now. Otherwise it is truly about money not winning.
I don’t always agree with you, but this time I think you’re right.
I don’t think we will see any Jack Morris or David Cone types next year, until the club can prove it’s knocking on the door. IMO they will want to see what they have internally before that happens.
They could start the year with Wauguespack, Thornton, Borucki, & Shoemaker, & we should see Pearson (with innings limits), Zeuch, Kay, and so on.
I don’t think they will be handing out any long term deals until they see what these guys can do, then they will be looking to fill holes.
2020 Blue Jays are not ready to compete. They have a lot of questions marks with little answers. 2020 is a fact finding mission for the team. Offensively and defensively they have to take a big step forward with the current players. Do not re-sign Smoak. Deal Maile and an OF. Make a decision on Alford; I’d have him make the team and face lefties.
Spending spree needs to happen after the 2020 IF the team’s core grows in 2020. Maybe consider going in on 1 pitcher (the best available pitcher). Pearson should be up next year mid-April.
I think the Jays are primed for a run next year if they send the bucks and dump a bit if the farm system in trades,.
Let me put it this way: If Cashman or Dombrowski were hired right now and ownership said let’s go for it in 2020, what would these elite gm’s do?
I suggest we think about what sample plan would it take to run at winning in 2020:
When Clay Buchholz is on your team, you hate him less.
Blue Jays have to work on the little things before they can compete with the big boys. It is tough to watch their games if not for the few talented prospects.
Yes they do. Mental mistakes and fundamentals have been a huge problem.