Blue Jays: Berrios is quietly ranking on the Major League leaderboards
Jose Berrios has been playing well for the Blue Jays as of late, a good sign after what the club had to give up in order to bring him North of the border.
After sending top prospects Austin Martin and Simeon Woods-Richardson the opposite way to Minnesota, Berrios had a great start in Toronto but did struggle on the August road trip, giving up eight earned runs through 9.0 innings with seven walks to six strikeouts through two outings.
Since the August 29th game against the Tigers, where the right-hander tweaked his mechanics with pitching coach Pete Walker, Berrios has once again found a groove and is pitching well, highlighted by his performance yesterday against his former team, holding the Twins to three earned runs over 6.2 innings with one walk and six strikeouts.
The win against the Twins was much needed as the club fights for a playoff berth, holding onto a Wild Card spot while fending off teams like the New York Yankees and Seattle Mariners alongside the Boston Red Sox who occupy the other spot. Especially with Hyun Jin Ryu on the IL right now, Berrios needed to step up in a big way and he got it done.
While some criticized the trade at the time, Berrios has sneakily been making his way to the top ten in multiple categories in the American League, such as first in innings pitched (180.0), fourth in WHIP (1.07), fifth in ERA (3.45), seventh in strikeouts (187), and seventh in opponents batting average (.224).
While teammate Robbie Ray is dominating the headlines, Blue Jays starter Jose Berrios is quietly ranking amongst the top pitchers in the American League.
While this isn’t the same level as Cy Young candidate and teammate Robbie Ray, Berrios is pitching well and is a considerable upgrade over some of the internal options that the club would have had to go with without him in the rotation. Before joining the Blue Jays, the Puerto Rican product was dealing with his former club, sporting a 3.48 ERA through 20 outings with 32 walks, 126 strikeouts, and a 1.04 WHIP through 121.2 innings.
The right-hander has quietly been ranking well across the American League especially with his league-leading 180.0 innings pitched, a testament to him being able to pitch 5+ innings consistently as well as stay healthy, something the Blue Jays lacked earlier this season.
Making the matter even sweeter is that Berrios is around for next season as well, a cushion in the event that Ray, a pending free agent, leaves for another club this off-season. Factor in the rest of the starters, a rotation bolstered with at least Berrios, Ryu, Alek Manoah, potentially Nate Pearson, and hopefully the return of Ray, the Jays could put forth one of the top rotations in the American League next year.
While some may criticize the package given up for Berrios being too much at the time, it is clear that the Jays are a better team with him in the rotation and considering he is around for at least one more season, having a full season of the right-hander could be a huge difference-maker in the long run next year.