According to Scott Mitchell of TSN, the Toronto Blue Jays reportedly have interest in free-agent pitcher Collin McHugh.
The Blue Jays are said to be one of the teams internally mulling over bringing the oft-injured free-agent hurler on-board. According to Jon Heyman of the MLB Network, Collin McHugh has been cleared to begin a throwing program after undergoing a Tenex procedure to rectify an elbow concern.
The 32-year old right-hander could be a nice bullpen addition if he can channel his inner 2018 season where he posted a minuscule 1.99 earned run average in 58 appearances while fanning 94 in 72.1 innings of work.
Last season, McHugh was not as fortunate going 4-5 with a 4.70 earned run average in 35 appearances that also included eight starts for the Houston Astros. He still managed to strike out 9.9 batters per nine innings even in a down season.
McHugh earned $5.8 million last year with the Astros but may bite on an incentive-laden one-year deal to prove he is healthy and boost his value before re-entering the open market next offseason.
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It is definitely something worth exploring if you are the Blue Jays especially seeing how volatile MLB bullpens can be from month to month. Mchugh has eight seasons under his belt split between the Mets, Rockies, and Astros.
The right-hander sports a career 58-43 record with a respectable 3.95 earned run average while fanning 8.7 batters per nine innings and accumulating a 9.5 WAR in 210 games. McHugh has made 119 starts over his MLB career although at this stage of his career he will likely be relegated to bullpen duties.
The Blue Jays still have a number of ongoing bullpen battles that will continue throughout Grapefruit League action until the team breaks camp and heads north. McHugh could also be a nice trade deadline chip if the Jays find themselves out of the playoff picture and he pitches anywhere close to his 2018 totals.
Definitely a low-risk addition if the brain trust can get him on a team-friendly pact.