I’m away from the computer this morning and we are at the playoff-time low ebb for Blue Jays news. I understand that baseball doesn’t like teams to make news during the playoffs, but it makes life hard for us that write about baseball. So why don’t we go with a question.
Which player in Blue Jays history did you have the highest hopes for but didn’t live up to your expectations?
You can go with this question in several ways, but I’m picking Brandon Morrow.
We traded Brandon League and Johermyn Chavez to Seattle to get Morrow. The Mariners couldn’t decide if they wanted Morrow to be a starter or a reliever. The Jays decided he was a starter and stuck to their guns.
In his first season, as a Jay, in 2010, pitching coach Bruce Walton tinkered with his delivery some and tried to get him to throw strikes. It didn’t go great. He finished with a 4.49 ERA but struck out 10.9 batters per 9 innings. Bruce worked with him the following year to throw more ‘quality strikes,’ but he wasn’t very successful, putting up a 4.72 ERA. Finally, in 2012, Morrow put it all together. He had a 2.96 ERA. It looked like we’d have a star pitcher for years to come.
After that, things fell apart, with a mess of injuries and ineffectiveness in those rare moments when he was healthy enough to pitch.
There were great moments. August 8th, 2010, was the biggest. That was when he came within an out of a no-hitter, striking out 17 along the way. It might have been the best pitching performance I’ve ever seen. He was so good. I thought there would be more shots at no-hitters in his future. When he was on, he seemed unhittable.
He had some good moments in the bullpen since leaving the Jays, but he was still injury-prone and last pitched in 2018.
Who would you pick?