Blue Jays: Who should close games while Ken Giles is out?

ST PETERSBURG, FLORIDA - JULY 24: Anthony Bass #52 of the Toronto Blue Jays and Rafael Dolis #41 fist pump prior to the game against the Tampa Bay Rays on Opening Day at Tropicana Field on July 24, 2020 in St Petersburg, Florida. The 2020 season had been postponed since March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo by Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images)
ST PETERSBURG, FLORIDA - JULY 24: Anthony Bass #52 of the Toronto Blue Jays and Rafael Dolis #41 fist pump prior to the game against the Tampa Bay Rays on Opening Day at Tropicana Field on July 24, 2020 in St Petersburg, Florida. The 2020 season had been postponed since March due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo by Douglas P. DeFelice/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit

The Toronto Blue Jays now need someone new to close with Ken Giles on the injured list.

Ken Giles has just been placed on the injured list with an elbow injury. This is the same issue that plagued Giles near the trade deadline last season and it seems that his elbow is wonky again. No one knows how long Giles will be out. It could be the minimum of 10 days or it could very well be longer as elbow issues for a pitcher is a serious injury. Heck, he could even be out for the season if it’s that bad (hopefully that’s not the case).

With Giles out for the next little bit, the Jays are going to have to rely on someone within the organization to fill in for closing duties. While they could explore a trade or a free agent signing, it’s not worth giving up future assets for a rental closer this early in the season, and there are no significant relief pitchers available to be signed.

If the Blue Jays plan on using someone out of the current bullpen, the best two candidates to hand over the closers role to are Anthony Bass or Rafael Dolis. In his career, Bass has converted eight saves in 16 chances with five of them coming last year on 10 chances, and he was successful on his first attempt last night.

More from Jays Journal

Meanwhile, before coming over from Japan and signing with the Jays, Dolis spent the 2011-2013 seasons in the big leagues and converted four of six possible saves. In Japan though, Dolis recorded 37 saves in 2017, 32 in 2018 and 19 in 2019.

While none of them have a whole lot of closing experience in the majors, Dolis has more professional closing experience than Bass, and Dolis might be work a look at finishing close games as well. If he struggles though, Charlie Montoyo can just simply hand 9th inning duties to Bass. It’s also possible Bass and Dolis form a committee for save chances to start things off, even if the skipper has said he’ll look to the former to start with.

Another option to close games could be Canadian Jordan Romano who hails from Markham, a town just about 30 minutes away from the Rogers Centre. While he doesn’t have experience pitching in high leverage situations, he does have a fastball that averages almost 95 MPH.

While it probably won’t happen, the Jays could call up Julian Merryweather and add him to the 30 man roster. Merryweather possesses a mid 90s fastball which is typical for a closer. That would likely require some time before it would be an option, if at all.

Next. Blue Jays season circling the drain?. dark

Based on yesterday’s matchup with the Nationals, it seems like either Bass will get the first shot at closing duties or will be in a committee with Dolis. The first opportunity was successful, and hopefully he can keep that going.