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Who’s Hot, Who’s Cold: Blue Jays Pitchers

A look at how our pitchers performed the last two weeks.

New York Yankees v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images

Over the past two weeks, the Jays have a 4-9 record. The pitchers have a 3.76 ERA (better than their season ERA). The pitchers have been pretty good.


Kevin Gausman: 3 starts, 0-1, 1.71 ERA. In 21 innings, batters hit .187/.228/.267 with 1 home run, 4 walks and 23 strikeouts.

In his last three games, Gausman has thrown 6, 7 and 8 innings (in that order, so a complete game should be in his future). All three were Quality starts. When you hold batters to a .495 OPS over three games, you really should have had some Ws. He’s been great, and we lost all three games, scoring 7 runs.

Chris Bassitt: 3 starts, 1-1, 0.81 ERA. In 22.1 innings, batters hit .156/.226/.325, with 3 home runs, 4 walks and 19 strikeouts.

In the first two of those starts, Chris threw 16 shutout innings. Yesterday he allowed 6 runs, but just 2 were earned. But he did give up 3 home runs (that wouldn’t have happened if plays were made). After his first start, we heard he shouldn’t be allowed to call his pitches. We were told that catchers were the experts and they should call pitches (mostly by former catchers, who, every time a ball was hit hard, would tell us how the catcher chose the wrong pitch). I’ve always believed Earl Weaver’s line that the pitchers call their games and that catchers made suggestions, but it was up to the pitcher. Earl managed several Cy Young winners. But more likely it depends on the pitcher. Anyway, Bassitt has shown he can do it.

José Berríos: 2 starts, 0-1, 3.65 ERA. In 12.1 innings, batters hit .250/.321/438 with 2 home runs, 4 walks and 11 strikeouts.

One was a Quality Start, and the other was short of a QS. On the season, he’s had 9 starts, 6 were good, and 3 weren’t. I think that’s a ratio that we can live with.

Tim Mayza: 6 games, 0-1, 1.93 ERA. In 4.2 innings, batters hit .125/.263/.250 with 0 home runs, 3 walks and 4 strikeouts.

He’s been terrific this season. He’s been a consistent arm in the pen for most of his time with the Jays. His splits aren’t huge (small sample size and all). Right-handers have a .656 OPS against him, and lefties .587. He’s been a jack of all trades for the Jays, he’ll get one out or do 2 innings. He’ll be in close games or blowouts.

Anthony Bass: 5 games, 2.25 ERA. In 4.0 innings, batters hit .083/.250/.167 with 0 home runs, 3 walks and 4 strikeouts.

He seems to be in a mop-up role, but he’s been quite good.


Alek Manoah: 3 starts, 0-2, 6.28 ERA. In 14.1 innings, batters hit .302/.439/.585 with 4 home runs, 12 walks and 9 strikeouts.

Two of the three starts were bad. One was pretty good. In his three seasons in the MLB, his strikeout rate has gone from 27.7% to 22.9% to 16.9% this year. Also, the walk rate has jumped from 6.5% last year to 13.9% this year. I don’t know the answer, but I hope Pete Walker and Alek can figure it out.

Yusei Kikuchi: 2 starts, 0-1, 7.27 ERA. In 8.2 innings, batters hit .316/.381/.684 with 4 home runs, 4 walks and 10 strikeouts.

His season started well but has been rolling downhill like a snowball headed for hell (another reference no one will get). His ERA in April was 3.00. In May, so far, it’s 5.59. I’m hoping he figures it out again soon.

Jordan Romano: 4 games, 1 save, 2 Blown saves, 1 win, 3.60 ERA. In 5 innings, batters hit .286/.348/.476 with 1 home run, 2 walks and 6 strikeouts.

He gave up one run in each of his two-blown saves. Conventional wisdom says that Tom Henke never had a blown save, but Henke’s career success rate was 85%. Career, Jordan is at 87%. This year he’s at 77%. I thought his strikeout rate was down this year, but it’s up a bit (29.6%, up from 28.3). Batters are hitting slightly better against him this year, with a .648 OPS, up from .531 last year. There was talk that he has been overworked lately. I don’t know, 4 appearances in two weeks don’t seem overworked, but your mileage may vary. I think it is more that sometimes the other team gets the hit.

Erik Swanson: 6 games, 1-1, 2 holds, 8.53 ERA. In 6.1 innings, batters hit .280/.400/.600 with 2 home runs, 5 walks and 7 strikeouts.

He was doing great until his last 3 appearances. In those last three games, he’s allowed 2 runs in each. Before that, he hadn’t allowed 2 hits in an appearance. Before those 3 games, he has a 1.33 ERA. Now, his ERA is 3.52.

Yimi Garcia: 7 games, 0-2, 1 hold, 6.35 ERA. In 5.2 innings, batters hit .308/.400/.346 with no home runs, 4 walks and 7 strikeouts.

Now Yimi can complain about being overworked. He’s pitched in 7 of the last 13 games and seems to be up and throwing in the pen every day.

Trevor Richards: 4 games, 1 hold, 6.75 ERA. In 5.1 innings, batters hit .191/.320/.333 with 1 home run, 4 walks and 8 strikeouts.

It seems kind of unfair to put him in this category when he’s held batters to a .191 line. He had 3 earned against him against the Philles on May 9th, they all scored after he left the game. Trevor started the 8th, allowed a walk, single and walk. John brought Swanson in and he unloaded the bases. Not that it was wrong to pull him after loading the bases.

Nate Pearson: 5 games, 1-0, 4.05 ERA. In 6.2 innings, batters hit .250/.345/.458 with 1 home runs 4 walks and 6 strikeouts.

Cold might be a bit mean, but a .803 OPS isn’t good. I like having him as someone in our pen who can go a couple of innings. In his 12 innings since being called up he has a 2.25 ERA and batters are hitting .227/.300/.341 against him. I’d take that gladly, but the last couple of weeks is what were are looking at here.

Also Pitched

Jay Jackson: Pitched in two games, with a .143/.250/.571 batting line against. Only allowed the one hit, the Aaron Judge home run and there seemed to be a little bit of malfeasance going on about then. And now he’s back in Buffalo.

Thomas Hatch: Pitched in two games. 1.1 innings, 0 ERA. In 1.1 innings, batters hit .200/.333/.400. I would think he will be headed back to Buffalo when Cimber is activated.


Hyun Jin Ryu: Apparently he threw a bullpen session. I don’t think he’ll be back until July.

Chad Green: Coming back from Tommy John. Also threw a bullpen session. Back sometime in July?

Zack Pop: On the IL with a hamstring issue. He’s not due back until June.

Adam Cimber: Likely to be activated today.

Mitch White: Came out of a rehab start in Buffalo with shoulder fatigue.