A former Blue Jays reliever I would like to see as the new bullpen coach

Toronto Blue Jays vs Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim - May 17, 2006
Toronto Blue Jays vs Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim - May 17, 2006 / Kirby Lee/GettyImages

The Toronto Blue Jays are currently without a bullpen coach officially named to their organization. Earlier in the week, Matt Buschmann, a former player who had been manning the position since 2018, abruptly left the team to "pursue other opportunities".

While Buschmann's departure is all fine and dandy, no formal replacement has been named.

One name on my radar to replace him on the coaching staff is former Blue Jays closer B.J. Ryan.

Ryan is no doubt a huge blast from the past for many long-time Jays fans, as he was a dominant closer on the club in 2006, making his second consecutive All-Star Game appearance and earning 38 saves.

Ryan remained on the club all the way through 2009, but was never quite able to duplicate his 2006 performance. He came close in 2008, returning to the mound after missing nearly all of the 2007 campaign after undergoing Tommy John surgery, by earning 32 saves in 60 appearances and posting an impressive 144 ERA+.

What made Ryan so good was his innate ability to limit the longball. Throughout his career, he pitched 536+ innings and only allowed 42 home runs. In 2003 as a member of the Baltimore Orioles' bullpen, he allowed just one home run in 76 appearances, which is absolutely bonkers.

Now, as far as why I believe he would be a good fit on this staff.

First off, Ryan has experience around the club and understands the culture, even if the leadership up top is much different now than it was back when he was a player.

Second, he actually was very recently a pitching coach at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, leading the pitching staff for the Ragin' Cajuns. He used to play ball for them way back in the day as a two-way player, even leading the program to its first Sun Belt Tournament Championship.

In 2021, Ryan left his post as the program's pitching coach, but he has some recent experience under his belt in a coaching position, which would obviously be a plus for the Blue Jays if he was to throw his name into the hat for the open bullpen coach role.

Point blank, having someone like Ryan, who has experienced the highest of highs and the lowest of lows in the game of baseball, on a big league coaching staff would be huge for a club like the Blue Jays. He's got the big stage experience that is truly invaluable in today's game and would be an exceptional add to the staff.

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