The Toronto Blue Jays won in exciting fashion last night in Milwaukee, collecting 13 hits to the tune of nine runs while getting contributions from pretty much the entire order except for Bo Bichette and Santiago Espinal in a weird off night for the top of the lineup.
On the mound was right-hander Alek Manoah, who battled througe the entire game and some tough situations to allow just two earned runs through 6.2 innings with six strikeouts and three walks. The Jays used three relievers and ran into some more trouble towards the end of the contest when Jeremy Beasley loaded the bases in the ninth and the club had to call on Adam Cimber to finish things out. He did allow one run to score but closed out the game without any more drama, which quite frankly, is something that one would hope to avoid when the offence puts nine runs on the board.
With the Blue Jays announcing Yimi Garcia to the IL prior to first pitch yesterday, joining the likes of Trevor Richards, Julian Merryweather, Andrew Vazquez, Tayler Saucedo, and Nate Pearson, the club’s bullpen is running out of reliable and healthy options. Although the group I mentioned above is not necessarily the Jay’s high pressure working grouo (minus Garcia), with the injuries mounting and the need to contend in a tough AL East, the time for the Blue Jays front office to acquire bullpen help is sooner rather than later. So far this season, Jays relievers own a collective 4.44 ERA, which simply isn’t going to cut it when it comes to contending for the postseason.
The trade deadline is on August 2nd this year, which is still over a month and a week away. With Garcia now out and Nate Pearson struggling through another injury, the Jays bullpen priority keeps going up when it comes to finding outside resources. While this is good in theory and one would hope a deal is done sooner than later, the front office may run into some difficulty completing moves this season.
With Yimi Garcia heading to the IL, the Toronto Blue Jays bullpen needs some outside reinforcements before the trade deadline
The expanded playoff format means more team’s are looking to be buyers this summer, which has some trade implications:
1. The competition for trades drives the demand and the compensation up
2. Team’s are still trying to decide whether they can contend or not, limiting trade partners
3. Opposing clubs that are not contending may be encouraged to wait towards the deadline to combine points one and two together to get maximum value towards rebuilding or assets in return
All of these factors combined could present problems that the Jays didn’t experience last year, as both the Adam Cimber and Trevor Richards deals were done in late June/early July. They also added Joakim Soria and Brad Hand at the trade deadline but both those moves soured as the season wore on.
We know Atkins and co. are trying to make some progress on adding to this team but with a few starters struggling to go deep into games and a bullpen crew that is starting to cause more concern as the campaign wears on, time is of the essence. While the club may be on the outside looking in for top spot in the division with the Yankees running away early, the Wild Card is easily in play if the club can continue it’s current trend.
For the Blue Jays to go deep in the postseason, they will need to acquire some bullpen help, and that will hopefully be done sooner than the trade deadline.