Joe Biagini will make his first career start this afternoon in the Blue Jays’ pursuit of their second series win of the season.
News and Scuttlebutt
Aaron Sanchez just threw 33 pitches in a bullpen side session off the mound. Curve balls part of arsenal. No sign of blood. Positive day.
— Arash Madani (@ArashMadani) May 7, 2017
Welcome to the current state of affairs in Toronto, where Aaron Sanchez not getting a bloody hand after tossing a few fastballs is a huge fuckin’ breakthrough. I mean, yeah, this is good, but hell, the big picture has to be seriously bleak in order to have this get you revved up.
Aaron Sanchez felt "very encouraged" by pain-free bullpen session. Hoping to be ready to start for #BlueJays next weekend.
— Ben Nicholson-Smith (@bnicholsonsmith) May 7, 2017
Sarcasm aside, this is actually very good. If Sanchez can come back next weekend, the Jays won’t have to dig too deep into the depths off hell for a spot stater. They’ll need somebody else to go along with Marcus Stroman, Francisco Liriano, and Marco Estrada this week, though. But with Sanchez hopefully coming back, we won’t have to see somebody like Casey Lawrence make multiple starts.
Stroman will go Monday, somebody needs to fill in Tuesday, Liriano Wednesday, Estrada Friday, and possibly Biagini and the 10-man bullpen again on Friday. It’s May!
TV: SNET1, SNET 360
And now, the lineups…
— Blue Jays (@BlueJays) May 7, 2017
Joe Biagini: 18 2/3 IP, 3.38 ERA, 7.2 H9, 0.5 HR9, 1.4 BB9, 8.2 SO9
— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) May 7, 2017
Alex Cobb: 35 IP, 3.86 ERA, 10.8 H9, 1.3 HR9, 2.1 BB9, 5.9 SO9
Today will be the first start of Joe Biagini’s major league career. He was a starter in the Giants’ system, but was put in the bullpen because the Jays needed relief depth last season and there wasn’t a spot for him in the rotation. And, had they cut him, he would have gone back to the Giants. So yeah, Biagini hasn’t made a start since the 2012 season, in which he played in Double-A. It won’t really be a start, as Biagini has a 60-pitch limit, but it’ll be interesting to see how he performs. I know many Jays fans would like to see Biagini stretched and ultimately transitioned into a starter long-term, considering his impressive pitch arsenal is being wasted in the ‘pen.
Going for Tampa will be former ace-of-the-future Alex Cobb, who’s career has been derailed by injury. He missed all of 2015 and most of 2016 after having Tommy John, and hasn’t been great so far in his full-time return to action this season. He allows a lot of contact, doesn’t strike many out, and has struggled somewhat with command. This is a pitcher the Jays can hit, but I’ve said that so many times about so many pitchers already.