The Jays will host the Milwaukee Brewers for their annual two-game exhibition set at Olympic Stadium before the roster ultimately gets finalized prior to Opening Day against the Detroit Tigers on Thursday.
We’ve had a pretty good idea for quite some time what most of the 2019 Blue Jays Opening Day roster is going to look like, but thanks to some injuries in spring training, a few roster spots will be up for grabs as the team heads to Montreal.
Some things to keep an eye on over the next couple days…
- The Blue Jays put Devon Travis on the 60-day Injured List on Monday, opening up a spot on the 40-man roster for newly-signed Daniel Hudson. Bud Norris is still on his minor league deal but everything points to him being with the team sooner rather than later, so another roster spot will need to be opened on the 40-man to accommodate him. Dalton Pompey, who suffered a concussion after bonking his head on some bats in his locker, could go on the 60-day IL, as could Julian Merryweather, who continues to recover from Tommy John Surgery.
- Elvis Luciano is probably the biggest wild card heading into the regular season. The 19-year-old Rule 5 draft claim from Kansas City has been, uh, all over the grid throughout spring, allowing 11 earned runs over eight-and-a-third innings. He’s shown some flashes of brilliance, as he struck out 10 batters during those eight-and-a-third innings, but he’s struggled mightily with command. If Luciano is returned to Kansas City, that would open up another spot on the 40-man.
- Another bullpen possibility for the Jays is Jason Adam, who was acquired from the Royals for cash. Adam, who possesses an electric arm, has been excellent in spring training. He also isn’t on the 40-man roster. I would imagine that if the Jays decide to dump Luciano, it’s because they figured Adam was more worth keeping around. As of right now, the bullpen consists of Ken Giles, Daniel Hudson, Tim Mayza, and Joe Biagini. Norris, as I said, will join eventually, as will Ryan Tepera, who is currently dealing with an injury.
- Sean Reid-Foley was optioned to Triple-A after some rough showings at the end of spring. That means the gig to replace the injured Ryan Borucki at the start of the season comes down to Sam Gaviglio, Thomas Pannone, and Trent Thornton. Sammy G is the veteran of that group, as he made 26 starts with the team last year, so he probably has the upper hand. Once Borucki returns, he would fill in nicely as a long guy out of the bullpen.
- Jordan Romano, who was returned to the Blue Jays from the Rangers after failing to make their 25-man roster, will be used as a reliever for the time being. The Jays will start Romano in Triple-A Buffalo, but it wouldn’t be shocking to see him up with the big club at some point during the season.