Feb 28, 2013; Tampa, FL, USA; Toronto Blue Jays pitcher John Stilson throws against the New York Yankees during the bottom of the eighth inning of a spring training game at George Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

John Stilson Becomes Latest Blue Jays Arm Reassigned

The Toronto Blue Jays had a busy day on Wednesday, reassigning both Ricky Romero and Marcus Stroman to minor league camp. The team continued their roster cuts on later in the afternoon, sending right-hander John Stilson to the minor league facility after completion of Wednesday’s win over the Philadelphia Phillies, as tweeted by Mike Wilner.

Interestingly enough, Stilson closed out the win over the Phillies prior to receiving his ticket back to the minors. Stilson turned quite a few heads this spring with some solid bullpen work, posting a 2-0 record with a 0.00 ERA, a 0.818 WHIP, and a 7.4 K/9 ratio against an opponent quality ranking (Baseball-Reference) of 7.1.

That performance likely challenged the Blue Jays mantra that they would take the best team North, regardless of player options available. However, like Neil Wagner and Chad Jenkins before him, Stilson becomes a victim of the numbers crunch in the bullpen, with a number of out of option pitchers vying for a limited number of slots.

Instead, Stilson will return to Triple-A Buffalo, where he finished the 2013 season, posting a 6-2 record, a 2.09 ERA, and a 8.9 K/9 ratio over 33 appearances for the Bisons last season. With another solid performance at Triple-A, Stilson could find his way to Toronto this season for his Major League debut.

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  • Andrew van Laar

    I REALLY like this guy. I am really dissapointed that AA didn’t trade a reliever or two this offseason to improve the bench. Stilson, Wagner, Jenkins and to an extent Walden are all quality arms that could have stepped in and filled the gap. At least we know that if one of our oft injured relievers go down, we will not lose quality from the AAA guys coming up.

    • Quincy-Sam

      AA wants pitching depth and has too many pitchers without options. Even after sending guys down he still has to move 2 pitchers (or 1 with an 8 man bullpen) by the end of ST. If Hutchinson makes the rotation maybe even one more guy has to be moved.

      Watch for a trade very soon. Other teams also have players without options. The value of bullpen arms and 5th starters is going up as guys go down. And pitchers are getting hurt.

      Watch for a trade like Santos to Cincy in a Phillips deal (due to Chapman being hurt). Or Rogers or Happ being moved to an NL team. Even Oakland a possibility. Or a lessor deal of trade of pitchers without options to another team with the same problem. Guys like Sanchez, Stroman, Stilson, Hutchinson, and other pitchers may be in the lineup sooner than many think. What they do in the next two weeks at either camp will make a difference.

  • Justin Jay

    Just one more young bullpen arm that can sit and bide his time. Too many bullpen arms as it is