Blue Jays should take gamble on free agent Drew Pomeranz
The Toronto Blue Jays should take a gamble on free agent hurler Drew Pomeranz as they attempt to shore up their starting pitching depth in 2019.
Drew Pomeranz is an interesting free agent option as the southpaw looks to overcome a disappointing, injury-riddled campaign in 2019. The 30-year old battled a forearm flexor strain as well as bicep tendonitis limiting him to just 11 starts over 26 appearances for the Red Sox last season.
In 2018, Pomeranz saw his ground ball percentage dip from 43.2% to 37.1% while his fly ball rate increased to 38.9% with the Sox last season. Despite inflated FIP, WHIP, and Hits per 9 last season, the hurler is a low risk, wild-card signing that could pay dividends for the rebuilding Blue Jays.
The lefty hurler went 2-6 with an inflated 6.08 earned run average surrendering 50 earned runs in 74 innings of work. MLB Trade Rumors ranked Pomeranz as the 50th ranked free agent and predicted he would sign a one-year, $6 million dollar pact with the Royals this offseason.
The Jays added free agent pitcher Matt Shoemaker earlier this past week but could definitely benefit from another arm with the past injury uncertainty surrounding both Shoemaker and Aaron Sanchez.
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Steamer Projections has Pomeranz going 8-9 with a 4.72 earned run average while compiling a 0.8 WAR in 24 starts in 2019. The hurler earned $8.5 million last season but will likely take a pay cut in his time through free agency.
The 6’6″ lefty posted solid numbers in 2017 coupled with an All-Star selection the previous season with San Diego. Pomeranz has a track record for success at the major league level and could provide upside for a young staff looking for an innings eater.
If the Jays were willing to add an additional year, they probably could get Pomeranz on a 2-year/$10-12 million dollar deal. Seems like a worthwhile gamble for a guy affectionately nicknamed the “Big Smooth”.