Shelton: Looking at the Blue Jays' starting pitching options

Right-hander Sean Reid-Foley has struggled with the triple-A Buffalo Bisons this season.

Right-hander Sean Reid-Foley has struggled with the triple-A Buffalo Bisons this season.

June 10, 2019

By Cole Shelton

Canadian Baseball Network

The Toronto Blue Jays have a starting rotation problem to say the least. And it doesn’t appear that help is on the way to fix it according to manager, Charlie Montoyo, who announced that struggling Edwin Jackson will make his next start.

The veteran right-hander has an ERA of 11.90 and has allowed 32 runs in just 19 2/3 innings over five starts.

Now, if Toronto decides to replace Jackson, the remaining options in their system haven’t shown much to deserve a big league call-up.

Sean Reid-Foley

Before the 2019 season started, Sean Reid-Foley was set to be the sixth starter and the first one up if anything happened. However, after struggling in triple-A, Reid-Foley was passed over. With the Bisons, he has an ERA of 5.72 and has allowed eight home runs which has been a problem for the right-hander. He is not having the success Toronto would want him to have in order to get a call-up.

The Rest of the Bisons

Overall, the Buffalo Bisons have not had strong starting pitching this season. Other options beside Reid-Foley include Shawn Morimando, Jacob Waguespack, Andrew Sopko, or Jordan Romano (Markham, Ont.) and all four have struggled. Out of the four, Waguespack has the lowest ERA and his is 5.86, with the other three posting ERAs over 6.00. It is fair to say if the Blue Jays look within, they will have to look past triple-A.

Patrick Murphy

Patrick Murphy may very well be the top candidate to replace Edwin Jackson in the rotation. In double-A with the New Hampshire Fisher Cats, the right-hander is having success. He has started 12 games and has an ERA of 3.67 but has struck out 68 compared to just walking 19. And, the 24-year-old has only allowed five home runs all season showing he can keep the ball in play which has been a problem for Toronto. Ultimately, Murphy should get the next call if the Blue Jays decide to get a new starter.

The Rest of the Fisher Cats

Unlike the Bisons, the Fisher Cats rotation is having success. If Toronto doesn’t want to call on Murphy, the likes of Yennsy Diaz and Zach Logue could be viable starters. Diaz has a 3.71 ERA in 60 2/3 innings while Logue has a 3.70 in 58 1/3 innings. The two have anchored New Hampshire’s rotation and at the very least deserve a look on triple-A.

Ultimately, the Blue Jays have a rotation problem and in the minors they don’t have many options that could be better right now. So, it could be a waiting game until Clay Buchholz and Ryan Borucki come back from injury to strengthen the rotation.