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Hard-throwing right-handed pitcher Junior Fernández has been released by the Blue Jays

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Photo credit:Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports
Ryley Delaney
9 months ago
The Blue Jays have released a hard-throwing reliever.
According to the Blue Jays transaction page, the Jays have released Junior Fernández. The 26-year-old righty was picked up off waivers on January 5th, 2023 from the Yankees, and was promptly designated for assignment five days later. He cleared, and has spent the entire season in Triple-A
With the Buffalo Bisons, the 26-year-old has a 5.69 ERA and a 5.95 FIP in 49 innings pitched, along with a 19.9 K% and an 11.3 BB%. The strikeout rate you’d expect from someone who touches 100 mph.
Fernández averaged 97.2 mph on his fastball this season and only had a 17.5 whiff percentage on 399 pitches. His changeup was statistically his best pitch this season, as it had a 38.8 whiff %. This makes sense, as his changeup was graded a 60, compared to a 55 fastball according to Fangraphs in 2021.
The 26-year-old has some experience pitching in the major leagues as well, as he has a 5.17 ERA and a 5.57 FIP in 54 innings pitched. He most recently pitched in 2022 with the St. Louis Cardinals and the Pittsburgh Pirates, where he had a 2.41 ERA and a 5.79 FIP in 18.2 innings pitched, along with a 16.7 K% and a 14.3 BB%.
Despite Fernández having the stuff to be successful, he just wasn’t able to figure it out in the Blue Jays system. Add in the fact that the only Canadian team arguably have one of the best bullpens with a ton of depth, he was likely never going to get an opportunity with Toronto.
We here at Blue Jays Nation wish nothing but the best for Fernández. I don’t expect it to be long before he finds another organization.

As always, you can follow me on Twitter, Instagram, and Threads @Brennan_L_D.

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