FanPost

Jays Top 5 Off-Season Needs: 5th Starter

 

I’m not sure this is so much a ‘need’ as it is to determine what is the best fit to fill the role.  The Jays have plenty of internal depth to fill this role but could also look outside the organization for an upgrade.

 

Internal Candidates: There’s a lot of internal depth here: Kyle Drabek, Shawn Hill, Mark (can't believe i got the last name right and screwed up the first name) Marc Rzepczynski, Scott Richmond, Brad Mills, Robert Ray and Zach Stewart would be the top internal candidates.

External Candidates: On the free agent market the list is led by Cliff Lee and also includes Jorge De La Rosa, Carl Pavano, Aaron Harang and Javier Vazquez.  There are also some FA starters who are coming off injury and could be looking to prove healthy: Rich Harden, Erik Bedard, Jeff Francis and Chris Capuano among them.  On the trade market you will mainly find over-paid starters (Zito, Kazmir, Wolf, Lowe or Zambrano) and starters that will cost a kings ransom (Greinke, Garza, Shields, Nolasco, Danks and Wandy Rodriguez).

Likely Scenario: With the depth of starting pitchers in the system I think this spot will be filled internally.  Kyle Drabek will open the season as the 5th starter barring a spring meltdown with Scott Richmond, Shawn Hill or Marc Rzepczynski making the bullpen as a swingman in case Drabek struggles or one of the others gets injured.

Pie in the Sky: I was going to say sign Cliff Lee, but that is too obvious and to me there’s something about Cliff Lee that screams "I’m not a team player, I’m just in it for the money" and that is not the type of player you want around a rebuilding team (though not sure he’s much different then Manny in that respect).  So I’ll go with having the healing gods strike Dustin McGowan with a new shoulder, arm, elbow, knee, left ear, right eye or whatever else is bothering him and he returns to the rotation as the ace he was starting to develop into.

 

Up Next: Bench

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