The Toronto Blue Jays have announced a pair of roster moves, including the promotion of a flame-throwing reliever from Triple-A Buffalo. Sources confirmed with Jays Journal Thursday night that the Jays planned to promote Hagen Danner to the big league squad and it is now official.
Per the Blue Jays, starting pitcher Alek Manoah is being demoted to Triple-A Buffalo after his rough outing in Thursday's start against the Guardians.
Blue Jays promote Hagen Danner, option Alek Manoah.
Danner, a second-round pick of the Blue Jays in the 2017 MLB Draft, began his professional career as a catcher before making a highly successful transition to the mound. The 24-year-old is in just his third full season on the mound and has been striking batters out at an alarmingly high rate this year. In a total of 33 outings split between three minor league levels, Danner has a 3.66 ERA with 56 strikeouts in just over 39 innings, which translates to a K/9 of 12.8. The Jays love themselves a hard-throwing reliever who strikes batters out and Danner fits that bill perfectly.
With the demotion of Manoah, it seems that the Blue Jays are already pulling the plug on their six-man rotation experiment. While all other starters have performed well, Manoah has largely been the obvious weak link. After struggling to find any consistency over the first two months of the season, the 25-year-old was sent down to the Florida Complex League to focus on some mechanical adjustments. A month later, he was back up in the big leagues and it seems fairly obvious now that he was rushed back to The Show.
In six starts upon returning to the majors, Manoah surrendered 16 earned runs with 17 walks in just over 29 innings of work. This equates to a 4.91 ERA and 5.07 FIP in that time, which is not good enough for a Blue Jays club that has strong playoff aspirations. The club seems content to roll with a rotation consisting of Kevin Gausman, José Berríos, Chris Bassitt, Yusei Kikuchi and Hyun Jin Ryu for the foreseeable future.