Blue Jays targeting Bullpen help, left-handed bat – .

Blue Jays targeting Bullpen help, left-handed bat – .

The Blue Jays are “focused on” improving the relief corps, general manager Ross Atkins told reporters (including Keegan Matheson of Presumably, this will involve getting help from outside the organization, but rival clubs have set high prices on potential business candidates at this point, reports Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith.
Overall, the Toronto relief unit is not doing so badly. Jays relievers have posted intermediate numbers (3.94 ERA, 24.9% takeout rate, 10.8% walk rate, 3.98 SIERA) over the season. However, they have had more difficult times recently, climbing to just 5.25 ERA / 4.89 FIP since early June. Only Jordan Romano and Trent Thornton supported strong race prevention figures with quality peripherals all year round. The Jays have just acquired Jacob Barnes des Mets, but it’s in the middle of a bad season, so surely there is room for other additions.

As always, there are a few quality relievers that should be available before the July 30 trade deadline. The pirates are getting closer Richard Rodriguez and left-handed oriots Paul Fry each have good years. Cole Sulser, Ian Kennedy, Jose Cisnero, Michel Fulmer, John Curtiss and Dons Mychal (currently on the 10 day IL) are among other relievers that work well for non-competitors.

There is also a chance that the Jays will deepen the bullpen with internal options. Atkins did not rule out the possibility of Nate Pearson and Tom Hatch, who both work on the rotation at Triple-A Buffalo, being called back to build relief capacity. The general manager also suggested (via Matheson) that the Jays could host again Ryan Borucki and Julien Merryweather from the injured list in the coming weeks. Borucki is expected to return later this month, according to Atkins, with Merryweather considering a potential return in early July.

While pitching staff seems to be the top priority for the 35-35 Jays, the front office is also looking for ways to add to the offense. Toronto is on the hunt for another left-handed stick, according to Nicholson-Smith, who reports they were interested in the first baseman Mike Ford before the Yankees traded him to the Rays this week. The outgoing left-handed / DH first baseman from Toronto, Rowdy Tellez, struggled to achieve a slash line of 0.209 / 0.272 / 0.338 out of 151 plaque occurrences.


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