Blue Jays: 2017 Free Agent Bullpen Targets To Consider
By Jason Lee
The Toronto Blue Jays already have the looks of a formidable bullpen to start the 2018 season. Adding another impact arm or two to that mix would further improve the pitching staff as there would be greater late-inning stability and less pressure on the starting rotation.
Toronto Blue Jays GM Ross Atkins stated in his year-end press conference that the offseason priority would be to add an impact arm and an impact bat. When asked whether that impact arm would be a starter or a reliever, Atkins suggested that there wasn’t a specific role that the front office had in mind.
The Blue Jays enter 2018 in need of a 5th starter and a strong left-handed option for the bullpen. However, adding a starter may not be the best option for the Blue Jays as the 2017 free agent class consists of very few quality options. Instead, the Blue Jays could focus on signing relievers to shorten games and relieve the load on the starting rotation.
Signing relievers to shorten games has been a very successful strategy for the last few years as the Royals of 2015, the Indians of 2016, and the Yankees of 2017 have shown. The Blue Jays would be wise to invest their money on the bullpen if the price of the starting pitching options become too overpriced. With that in mind, here are some of the relief options that the Blue Jays could take a look at.