On Monday, Dustin McGowan tossed his longest outing in almost two years, throwing 2.1 scoreless innings of relief against the Oakland Athletics. Three days later, he is expected to be heading to the 15-day disabled list with what appears to be an injured side, as tweeted by Sportsnet’s Shi David Wednesday night.
— Shi Davidi (@ShiDavidi) August 1, 2013
McGowan, who has battled numerous shoulder and elbow issues during his career, had missed the entire 2012 season and only made 17 appearances in 2011. With that history in mind, the Blue Jays made the decision to transition McGowan to the bullpen in order to limit the wear and tear on his arm and shoulder, and the experiment has been relatively successful.
In 16 appearances for Toronto in 2013, the 31-year-old right-hander has a thrown 17 innings and posted a 2.12 ERA and a ERA+ of 202. His 9.0 K/9 ratio is a career high and he’s rocking a 54.2% groundball rate.
However, the injury bug was always the elephant in the room, as the Blue Jays only used McGowan on back-to-back days once this season. Now, that elephant is front and center, and the right-hander will miss some more time.
In his stead, the Blue Jays are set to activate right-hander Sergio Santos from the 60-day disabled list, which will also require a 40-man roster move in order to clear space for Santos. Santos had been on the DL with right forearm tightness since April 16th and has spent the majority of his Blue Jays career on the disabled list since Toronto acquired him prior to the 2012 season.
The 30-year-old Santos has made just 11 appearances for Toronto in two seasons, posting a 5.79 ERA and 2 saves in the process. His rehab assignment has not gone particularly well, with Santos pitching to a 6.17 ERA and 9 strike-outs in 11.2 innings pitched. However, the Blue Jays needed to make a move with Santos before Friday, as his rehab window was due to run out, so he’ll need to work his kinks out at the Major League level.
The Blue Jays have transferred right-hander Brandon Morrow from the 15-day disabled list to the 60-day DL due to the entrapped radial nerve in his right forearm. This move will clear up the 40-man roster spot that Toronto needed in order to activate Sergio Santos.