Photo credit:Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports
Former Blue Jay closer Ken Giles looking to make Major League comeback
1 month ago
A former Blue Jay closer is looking to make a comeback.
According to NY Post’s Jon Heyman, Ken Giles is set to throw a bullpen on January 26 for teams, hoping to reignite his MLB career.
Before the trade deadline during the 2018 season, the Blue Jays traded disgraced closer Roberto Osuna to the Houston Astros for Giles, David Paulino, and Héctor Pérez. The two prospects never amounted to much, with Pérez pitching just an inning and two thirds with Toronto in 2020, and a third of an inning with Tampa Bay in 2023.
However, Giles was nails for the Jays from 2018-2020… when healthy. After joining the Jays in 2018, Giles had a 4.12 ERA and a 4.33 FIP in 19.2 innings, along with a 26.5 K% and a 4.8 BB% with 14 saves.
Giles’ 2019 season was fantastic, as he posted a 1.87 ERA and a 2.27 FIP in 53 innings pitched. On top of the phenomenal ERA (his third-lowest), Giles’ 39.9 K% this season remains a career high, while he had an 8.2 BB%. With a minimum of 50 innings pitched, Giles’ 31.7 K-BB% was the sixth highest in the league that year.
For whatever reason, the rebuilding Blue Jays didn’t trade him at the 2019 deadline, one of the rare blunders from the Blue Jays front office. In 2020, Giles pitched just three and two third innings before a season ending injury. He had a 9.82 ERA and a 10.28 FIP in his brief stint. Towards the end of the season, Giles underwent Tommy John surgery, missing the entirety of the 2021 season.
Prior to the 2021 season, he agreed to a two-year deal with the Seattle Mariners. He only pitched four and one third innings with Seattle, posting a 0 ERA and a 3.11 FIP before being designated for assignment.
He has yet to pitch in the big leagues since, but he did sign a minor league deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers in late May for the 2023 season. With their Triple-A team, he had a .950 ERA and a 6.51 FIP in 18 innings pitched, declaring free agency after the season ended.
It’s a sad decline for one of the best closers in the league at a time when healthy. Time will tell if he’ll ever pitch in the big leagues again, but Giles in 2019 will never be forgotten by Blue Jays fans.
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