The Blue Jays entered the season, in which many were questioning the pitching depth, and already the Blue Jays have had to use their fair share. J.A. Happ, Aaron Sanchez, Bo Schultz, Glenn Sparkman and J.P Howell have all seen time/are on the disabled list. With that, the Jays have had Joe Biagini, Mat Latos and Mike Bolsinger start games which just simply won’t cut it.
Now, you have to wonder if Mark Shapiro and Ross Atkins were just hoping to get lucky with no injuries or what, but the Jays depth in the organization is something that needs work, and should have gotten work in spring training. The starting depth was just awful, Mat Latos, Mike Bolsinger, and Casey Lawrence should not been the first pitchers up. Yes, it is hard to replace Aaron Sanchez and J.A. Happ but at least having capable MLB arms in the minors is something the Jays need. Right now they have Joe Biagini starting, which is not that big of a deal if it is spring training. But, they didn’t stretch him out in spring so why stretch him out in the regular season when the Jays already had a bad start and now have a pitcher who will only go 4 innings. And, many have said well he is still starting but a pitcher only going 4 innings will now make the bullpen work to get 6 innings, which they never should have to do in a game. But since the starting depth isn’t there they now have to, which results in a tired bullpen.
Now, onto the catching depth. Sure, the Jays signed Jarrod Saltalmacchia and he didn’t work and they released him. And sure enough a week or so later Russell Martin ends up on the disabled list. And, who are the catchers now Luke Maile who got cut by Tampa Bay after spring training and Mike Ohlman who is 27 and just made his MLB debut now.
There are still very capable catchers on the free agent market, which includes former Jay Dioner Navarro who would definitely look better than Maile, or Ohlman but the Jays think they have enough depth. Yet continue to lose games and may have taken themselves out of the playoff contention.
The only depth they have is the infield, as they have been able to keep the boat afloat while losing Josh Donaldson and Troy Tulowitzki to the disabled list. Darwin Barney, Chris Coghlan and Ryan Goins have kept the infield afloat.
And lastly, the Jays have been lucky to not have an injury to the outfield, especially with Dalton Pompey on the disabled list. After losing Upton Jr. the Jays depth in the outfield is Darrell Ceciliani, and after that not much maybe Anthony Alford but is he really ready.
The problem with the Jays depth is they have a lot of prospects coming up that are 3-4 years away but there are no real prospects that close other than Tellez that can come in and contribute right now. And with that, the Jays are lacking depth, and if injuries hit which they have, it have exposed the Jays depth. Now the question remains did Atkins and Shapiro do enough to address AAA depth in the off-season? Right now it appears not.
(Editor’s note) I would say it isn’t surprising that we have a lack of depth when we traded away a good portion of out minor league prospects, to bring us the guys that got us to the playoffs, the past two years. Depth comes up from the minors, it is a lot to ask the new regime to replace all that missing depth in a year.