Toronto Blue Jays: Taking a look at where all the 2019 starters are now
Things just didn’t go as planned
ERA: 5.96 Record: 1-5 IP: 45.1 WHIP: 1.566 bWAR: -0.1 GS: 10 of 10
In the off-season of 2019, the Toronto Blue Jays acquired veteran pitcher Clayton Richard from the San Diego Padres. In the last year of his two year, $6 million dollar contract, the rationale to acquire Richard was another move to add some veteran flavour into a younger pitching corps.
It was unknown whether Richard would make the rotation or find himself in the bullpen when the 2019 season began, but he would start his Blue Jays career on the injured list (IL) with a stress reaction in his right knee. He would spend most of the season on the IL, starting in only 10 games from late May to mid-July, before being put back on the IL (again) and eventually released by the Blue Jays in September. Richard is currently a free agent.
ERA: 6.16 Record: 3-6 IP: 73.0 WHIP: 1.425 bWAR: -0.3 GS: 7 of 37
Thomas Pannone has been one pitcher the Blue Jays have toyed with over the past two seasons in regards to whether to make him a full-time starter or a full-time reliever. In 2019, the Blue Jays had Pannone start the season as a reliever in the bullpen, but would use him as a spot starter on multiple occasions throughout the campaign. He was never able to find his stride when starting games, going three innings or less in four of the games he started while also giving up 4+ earned runs on six of his seven games started.
For the 2020 season, manager Charlie Montoyo has already stated that Pannone will be competing for a spot in the bullpen, meaning his starting days are probably a thing of the past. Given his pedigree, Pannone could be used as a long reliever or middle reliever to help eat innings and give the bullpen some rest if the starter can’t go deep into the game.
ERA: 4.26 Record: 2-4 IP: 31.2 WHIP: 1.705 bWAR: 0.1 GS: 6 of 9
Finding himself on the Blue Jays top 30 prospects list over the past few seasons, Sean Reid-Foley has been a key prospect cog in the Toronto Blue Jays farm machine. Reid-Foley would spend some time in both the rotation and in the bullpen in 2019, riding a roller coaster of good starts versus bad starts when he was on the mound. He would spend most of the season in AAA, riding the option bus between AAA and the Blue Jays roster when needed.
Reid-Foley will also find himself in the mix for the last spot in the rotation against the other internal options. If he does not win the last spot, the Blue Jays do plan to keep him as a starter in AAA, with the clock ticking down on where he stands in the organization as a starter or a reliever.
ERA: 1.57 Record: 3-0 IP: 28.2 WHIP: 0.872 bWAR: 1.2 GS: 5 of 5
Spending his whole career in the Los Angeles Angels organization, Matt Shoemaker would sign a one year deal with the Toronto Blue Jays during the 2018/2019 off-season. He started the season off strong, pitching to a 1.57 ERA while striking out 24 batters through five games. During his 5th start, Shoemaker was part of a rundown when he went down to the ground with an injury. The result was a torn ACL in his left knee, sidelining him for the rest of the year.
This past off-season, Shoemaker and the Blue Jays were heading towards arbitration before eventually agreeing on a one year, $4.2 million dollar contract for the 2020 season. He will factor into the Blue Jays starting rotation, slotting in alongside newly acquired pitchers Hyun-Jin Ryu, Chase Anderson, and Tanner Roark.
Blue Jays: ERA: 11.12 Record: 1-5 IP: 28.1 WHIP: 2.188 bWAR: -1.5 GS: 5 of 8
The Edwin Jackson experiment in Toronto was one that fans would most likely want to forget. Jackson was acquired by the Blue Jays from the Oakland Athletics on May 11, a move to help offset the injuries that had started to plague the starting rotation. The veteran pitcher would start five games for the Blue Jays, pitching to a not so pleasant 11.12 ERA with only 19 strikeouts and over 12 home runs surrendered.
He would find himself on the injured list and would eventually be designated for assignment and then released by the Blue Jays in mid-July. After being released, Jackson would join the Detroit Tigers for the rest of the season. For the 2020 season, the 6’2″ right-hander received a non-roster invite to the Arizona Diamondbacks spring training, where he is trying to earn a spot on the major league roster.