Blue Jays Morning Brew: Sparkman, Colabello and more

DUNEDIN, FL - MARCH 07: Chris Colabello
DUNEDIN, FL - MARCH 07: Chris Colabello /

Your Toronto Blue Jays news and notes for Sunday, July 9th including Glenn Sparkman’s return to KC, former Jay, Chris Colabello’s release, and more.

Glenn Sparkman returned to the Kansas City Royals

The brief experiment with this year’s Rule 5 pick has come to an end, and he has been returned to his original club. The Blue Jays selected Glenn Sparkman in the Rule 5 draft this year, and he has been with the organization throughout the 2017 season. However, he’s spent nearly all of it on the disabled list.

If you’re unfamiliar with the Rule 5 draft, the team selecting the player (the Blue Jays in this case) must keep him on their big league roster. If they decide to send him down to the minors, he must be offered back to his original team, which is what happened on Saturday.

The Blue Jays managed to keep Sparkman around this long because he wasn’t active, spending time on the disabled list with a broken bone in his thumb. Once he was healthy, he was given time to make rehab appearances, and then was actually called up to the Blue Jays, but his time in Toronto did not go well. Appearing in two games, Sparkman managed to record three outs and allowed seven earned runs.

He was designated for assignment on July 4th in favour of Mike Bolsinger, who has pitched well out of the bullpen since being recalled, and had to be offered back to the Royals, as per the stipulations of the Rule 5 draft.

Chris Colabello released from the Cleveland Indians organization

A former Blue Jay was released from his current ball club on Saturday, as Chris Colabello was let go by the Cleveland Indians organization. The first baseman/outfielder signed a minor league deal with Cleveland in the offseason in hopes of earning a spot on the big league roster. That opportunity never materialized, and he actually struggled to perform in Triple A as well.

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The 33 year old managed just a .225/.324/.333 with six home runs in 296 plate appearances in Triple A, Columbus, and now he’ll look for another system that believe he’s a flyer on a minor league deal.

He’ll be remembered in Toronto for his breakout season in 2015, where he ended up hitting .321/.367/.520 with 15 home runs over 360 plate appearances, splitting time with Justin Smoak at first base. By the time the playoffs rolled around, he had become the trusted option, and consistently hit 5th in the lineup, ahead of All-Stars like Troy Tulowitzki and Russell Martin.

Of course, with the beginning of the 2016 season came the end of Colabello’s time in Toronto, and the last time we’ve seen him in a big league game. He was suspended for a positive test for an anabolic steroid, and has been fighting to get back ever since.

I personally had the opportunity to meet him in Mesa, Arizona during Spring Training, and he was very gracious with his time and even complimented my Blue Jays hat. I wish him well and hope he can find another opportunity somewhere.

Stroman believes he should be an All-Star

It’s funny how quickly a pitcher’s stock can rise and fall, and there aren’t many better recent examples of that than Marcus Stroman. The “Stro Show” burst onto the scene in 2014, looking like a future ace. He missed nearly all of 2015 with a knee injury (only to return in heroic fashion at the end of the season), and then struggled mightily through the first half of last season.

Those struggles are in the rear view mirror now for the 26 year old, as he’s been the Blue Jays’ most consistent starter this year. He’s been more than that though, currently sitting with a record of 9-5 with a 3.28 ERA in 18 starts, and 112.1 innings pitched.

Earlier today, our own Clayton Richer took a look at Stroman’s comments from yesterday, and his season, and it’s worth checking out.

Next: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. tabbed as the #2 prospect