After Sunday’s game with the L.A. Angels was rained out, the Blue Jays announced that Tanner Roark will be moved to the bullpen going forward.
It’s not exactly a surprising decision after the way things have gone for Roark since he joined the Blue Jays ahead of last season. He signed a two-year, 24 million dollar contract as a free agent, and so far it’s been a complete disaster. Last season he went 2-3 with a 6.80 ERA and a 1.741 WHIP across 11 starts and 47.2 innings, and started off even worse by giving up five runs over just 3.0 innings in his first start this year, including three home runs.
For now Roark will likely serve as a long-reliever out of the bullpen, and most likely in a bit of a mop-up role, not unlike how we saw Tommy Milone used on Saturday. His rotation spot will be filled by the return of Robbie Ray from injury, who will join the remaining group that includes Hyun Jin Ryu, Steven Matz, Ross Stripling, and T.J. Zeuch.
With Nate Pearson ramping things up and even getting a bullpen session in on Sunday, he’ll factor into the equation at some point sooner than later, and Thomas Hatch could the same. With all of this in mind, as well as the new role for Roark, I thought it’s be interesting to take an updated look at the depth chart. This is based off of my own speculation, but it’s also based on information that’s not exactly a secret.
To me, I’d break the starters into three groups, but I’ll still rank them as I see them as of this writing. I’m also ranking them as if everyone is healthy, including Pearson and Hatch.