Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Julian Merryweather is poised to make his minor league debut on Monday.
Julian Merryweather was acquired by the Blue Jays in exchange for slugger Josh Donaldson last season, however, the 27-year old has yet to pitch for the club after undergoing Tommy John surgery while a member of the Cleveland Indians.
The flamethrowing right-hander has not pitched since 2017 after making 25 starts between Double-A and Triple-A for the Indians affiliates. Merryweather struggled in 16 Triple-A starts posting a 6.58 earned run average while surrendering 13 home runs in 78 innings of work.
Regardless of the stat line, the hurler came with high regard from the Jays brain trust who were familiar with Merryweather from their tenure in Cleveland. There is no questioning his stuff as Merryweather was touching 100 mph during his rehab starts at the Jays minor league facility. Ross Atkins went on record following the deal.
"“What I can tell you is we’re excited about the return, It’s a near-term prospect that we feel will impact our major league team in a significant way.”"
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The Blue Jays have not tipped their hand where Merryweather will be assigned, but it is probably a safe bet that he will be inserted into the Buffalo rotation following a few starts in the lower levels. Merryweather could conceivably make his MLB debut later this summer if all goes well on the farm.
The team is in dire need of MLB ready starters and that need will in all likelihood increase following the trade deadline. Merryweather projects to be an important piece of the puzzle moving forward. The former 5th round pick owns a career 3.92 earned run average while fanning 351 in 381 minor league innings at the professional ranks.
It will be interesting to see how this trade plays out in a couple of years once Merryweather has established himself in the majors.