Let’s skip the ‘should they be playing’ questions for a bit and take a look at some of the Blue Jays pitcher questions.
Let’s start with our top prospect, Nate Pearson and the rest of the pitching staff.
The good news, for him, is that there is no Bisons to have him start the season. Getting him facing batters is far more important than gaming his service clock (not that getting him pitching in the majors isn’t more important anyway). The question I have is will he be in the rotation or the bullpen.
In spring training it appeared the rotation would be Hyun-Jin Ryu, Matt Shoemaker, Tanner Roark, Chase Anderson (as much as he’s been terrible in my OOTP Baseball season) amd Trent Thornton. Ryan Borucki was injured, but he isn’t now and he could be part of the rotation.
The team is going to need relievers who can get them 2-3 good innings and Nate would fit that. Shun Yamaguchi would be in that group. Wilmer Font. Sam Gaviglio. Perhaps Julian Merryweather. Maybe Thomas Pannone. Jacob Waguespack (you think I could spell Waguespack for Minor Leaguers Sprorcle quiz?).
I’m thinking Nate will be in the bullpen, but then, if 2-3 starters come down with COVID (or, you know, normal type pitcher injuries) then Nate would be in the rotation.
Short men look to be Ken Giles, Rafael Dolis, Anthony Bass and likely Jordan Romano (who seemed to have a roster spot locked up in spring), though he could likely do two innings.
Maybe non-roster guys like Travis Bergen, Justin Miller, Brian Moran, Marc Rzepczynski.
Then, of course there are guys that will be on the taxi roster, and how they use those 20 spots (at the start of the season) will be interesting. You have Anthony Kay, T.J. Zeuch, Hector Perez, Patrick Murphy, Yennsy Diaz, Thomas Hatch, Sean Reid-Foley, Elvis Luciano on the 40-man roster.
Plus who knows which non-roster guys. I didn’t see spring training, so I don’t know how Phillippe Aumont looked. Or A.J. Cole (who could be part of the bullpen if he throws well in summer camp). Ryan Dull, Ty Tice and Jake Petricka could easily be part of the taxi squad.
Off-topic, but is summer camp going to have games like spring training does? Or will they play just inter squad games?
Seeing how the team uses the taxi squad is going to be as interesting as seeing the active roster.
So here is the question, which pitcher your choice to be the one that surprises us with how good he performs?