Blue Jays pitching notes: Todd Redmond and Felix Doubront heading to Buffalo
If there is one evident truth during the earlier goings of the Blue Jays season, it is that Toronto could use any pitching help it can find, even if it is internally. Pitching depth is pitching depth, and for a team like the Blue Jays, they can use all the depth they can get.
Todd Redmond has cleared waivers and has been outrighted to Triple-A Buffalo, according to Gregor Chisholm of MLB.com. Surprisingly, he managed to make it through without a claim despite the lack of relief pitching across baseball.
While the news of Todd Redmond clearing waivers may seem like small potatoes to some, it’s great news for me. Redmond was roughed up in his two outings this season to the tune of 8 earned runs over his first 4.1 innings of 2015, walking 5 batters and striking out 4 in the process. He was designated for assignment on April 16th so that the team could clear roster space for Jeff Francis.
However, Todd Redmond has shown his worth over the last two seasons. In 156.1 innings as a member of the Blue Jays, Redmond has posted a 4.14 ERA, a 4.11 FIP, and a 8.1 K/9 ratio. Additionally, he’s proven to be a useful spot starter when the Blue Jays needed one. Needless to say, Todd Redmond could still be a useful depth piece if he irons out his control issues at Triple-A for a bit.
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Speaking of depth, anyone who thought that Liam Hendrik’s magical run was going to continue was deluding themselves. Given that the wheels are starting to come off and he wasn’t expected to stay with the team much past the first week-plus anyway, the leash is likely very short for Hendriks at this stage.
Speaking of depth, the Blue Jays got some more good news, this time in the form of left-hander Felix Doubront. Also noted by Chisholm, Doubront is expected to report to Buffalo shortly and join the Bisons’ rotation.
Signed to a minor league deal on April 2nd, Doubront has been working in extended spring training games while building up shoulder strength. The 27-year-old left-hander could become a very important piece if he can get back to his 2013 form with the Boston Red Sox.
During his sophomore season with Boston, Doubront posted a 11-6 record with a 4.32 ERA. However, his 3.78 FIP foretold a pitcher who was much better, and he backed that up with a solid 7.7 K/9 ratio and had a stellar 7.8 HR/FB rate as well. However, attitude issues and ineffectiveness led to struggles the next year, capped off with a combined 5.54 ERA and a 5.13 FIP between the Red Sox and Cubs.
Ideally, neither one of these two gentlemen are forced into duty with the Blue Jays this season. However, having an experienced arm available to fall back on has been inevitably needed by the Blue Jays each of the past several seasons. 2015 likely won’t be any different.