Blue Jays well positioned if Roberto Osuna falters in 2018

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 18: Roberto Osuna
TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 18: Roberto Osuna /

The offseason additions of veterans John Axford, Tyler Clippar and Seung-hwan Oh have the Toronto Blue Jays well positioned if closer Roberto Osuna falters in 2018.

Roberto Osuna had a tale of two seasons in 2017, the young closer pitched his way to his first All-Star game appearance after a first half earned run average of 2.06 slamming the door on 22 games. The second half of the season was not as kind to the young closer as he struggled with anxiety issues and his earned run average ballooned to 4.97.

Osuna also led the majors with 10 blown saves however he did finish the campaign with a respectable 3.38 ERA and 39 saves. The 23-year has had an impressive spring only allowing one-run in six appearances is undoubtedly the closer going into the season, however, the Jays are well prepared if the wheels fall off at any point.

The trio of John Axford, Tyler Clippard, and Seung-hwan Oh have a combined 244 saves between them on their major league resume. They offer Manager John Gibbons much more versatility and options when he makes the call to the bullpen in 2018.

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Axford is attempting to reassert himself as someone who can be relied upon again late in games, the former closer saved 46 games for the Milwaukee Brewers in 2011 but more recently closed 25 games in 2015 for the Colorado Rockies. The Canadian is motivated to finally be pitching on his home soil and has been impressive all spring in seven appearances.

Clippard has moonlighted as a closer and set-up man throughout his 11-year career. The 33-year old picked up 19 saves in 2015 and sports a career 3.11 earned run average in 625 MLB games.

The former St. Louis Cardinals closer Seung-hwan Oh struggled last season after finishing 6th in NL Rookie of the Year balloting in 2016. Oh sported an impressive 1.92 earned run average with 19 saves in his rookie season after saving 357 games pitching in the Pacific Rim.

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If everything goes to plan the threesome won’t be relied upon to close any games in Toronto this season, however, veteran depth and experience in the bullpen is never a bad thing and the Jays have plenty of it this season.