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Blue Jays: What does the rotation depth chart look like now?

Apr 7, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu (99) pitches against the Texas Rangers during the fifth inning at Globe Life Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 7, 2021; Arlington, Texas, USA; Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu (99) pitches against the Texas Rangers during the fifth inning at Globe Life Field. Mandatory Credit: Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports /
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Mar 3, 2021; Tampa, Florida, USA; Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Simeon Woods Richardson (76) throws a pitch in the first inning against the New York Yankees during a spring training game at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 3, 2021; Tampa, Florida, USA; Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Simeon Woods Richardson (76) throws a pitch in the first inning against the New York Yankees during a spring training game at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Jonathan Dyer-USA TODAY Sports /

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It’s entirely possible that Tanner Roark will start another game for the Blue Jays this season, but it’s equally likely that he’s made his last outing as a starter too. I’m sure the Blue Jays will use him as a long reliever for a while, but it’s hard to see the veteran being very happy with that role, or even finding a new way to thrive. Time will tell.

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10- Tanner Roark
11- Tommy Milone
12- Alek Manoah
13- Julian Merryweather
14- Simeon Woods Richardson

If the Blue Jays have to dip into their depth chart beyond the top ten options, they could still turn to Milone to make a spot start. We’ll see how long he remains in the organization, as he’s the type that could end up designated for assignment to make room for another arm on the 26-man roster, but he was solid on Saturday following Matz in the win over the Angels.

The last three names on the list include talented arms that I don’t think the Blue Jays want to turn to, but could if need be. Merryweather may never start another game in his career after the way he’s performed as the early-season closer, and I’d vote for that career path for the fireballer going forward. As for Manoah and Woods Richardson, who both greatly impressed this spring, I think it’ll be later in the year before we see either of them, if not 2022.

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Ideally the Blue Jays won’t have to dip into this tier of starters, but as I’ve mentioned already, it’s a long season and teams usually need at least 10 starting pitchers, if not several more. I’m sure the Blue Jays will utilize the “opener” strategy a fair bit, and I’m confident that Atkins and his team have their eyes peeled on the waiver wire and also for trade opportunities, but this is how I see the current rotation depth chart now that Roark is out of the picture.

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