Blue Jays reportedly close to decision with Randy Wolf


The Toronto Blue Jays are reportedly closing in on decision time with 38-year old AAA star Randy Wolf. According to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, if the Blue Jays do not select Wolf as part of their September roster expansions, the organization will grant him his release to seek other opportunities late in the season.

“He’s got the knowhow and experience, and he’s performing the best (at Triple-A),” a person close to the Blue Jays told Heyman recently. This does seem to hint at some optimism for the veteran lefty, who has remained relatively quiet about his contractual decision despite posting very impressive numbers with the Buffalo Bisons.

Trending: Marcus Stroman’s rehab schedule adjusted…for the better?

Wolf owns a 9-2 record over 23 starts in the minors this season, good for a 2.58 ERA. He’s stranded a boatload of runners at the AAA level, something you can view from the glass half-full or half-empty side, and opponents have still managed a .270 average off Wolf. He’s been great, but not perfect. That’s just fine.

More from Toronto Blue Jays News

Much like his teammate through most of 2015, Matt Hague, none of Wolf’s numbers matter as much as his birth year. If Wolf were posting these identical numbers as a 24-year old who had just climbed through the Blue Jays system, he may have already unseated Drew Hutchison in the starting rotation. Instead, like Hague, he’s been passed over by younger talent that, despite their sometimes lesser statistics, possess a greater ceiling.

Daniel Norris, Matt Boyd, Scott Copeland, Felix Doubront and Todd Redmond have all received starting nods over Wolf, whose 2015 has been the picture of reliability. Still, he insists that he holds no bitterness towards the only team that would even consider watching him throw this past offseason.

“I’m definitely not trying to bad-mouth the Blue Jays — they’re the only team that would watch me throw,” Wolf told Heyman. “They are in the playoff hunt. They have a lot on their plate. I get that.”

I still struggle to see where Wolf would fit into the Blue Jays picture for September, especially if the rotation remains at full health and the unlikely comeback of Marcus Stroman continues to gain steam. Perhaps he could be used as the ultimate long-man to save the bullpen in a lopsided game, but with expanded rosters, there’s other options for that. His career splits suggest that Wolf is slightly stronger against lefties, but not nearly to the point of being a matchup specialist.

Randy Wolf is a man without a country. Pitching too well to be collecting dust at AAA, yet not fitting in to the Blue Jays MLB roster. I’d still support his addition in September solely based on his contributions at AAA, and there’s surely some dirty work to be found sometime down the stretch. There could be another team looking to plug their fifth rotation and grind out the season, however, and if they like Wolf, he’s earned the opportunity.

Next: Blue Jays set sights to 2016 with Michael Saunders

More from Jays Journal