Person of Interest: The 411 on Drew Storen

Washington Nationals relief pitcher Drew Storen (David Tulis/AP)

In order to strengthen a bullpen with an abundance of question marks the Toronto Blue Jays  brought  in veteran reliever Drew Storen in exchange for Ben Revere and a player to be named later on Friday.

Storen was the 10th overall pick of the 2009 draft and has been pitching high-leverage innings for the Washington Nationals since debuting in 2010.

Here’s the skinny on the newest Blue Jay:

Age: 28
Bats: Right
Throws: Right
Height: 6-foot-1
Weight: 195
Fastball Velocity: 94.0 mph

Storen is death to right-handed hitters

With a hard fastball and a dynamic slider, Storen makes life incredibly difficult for right-handed hitters. Last season he held righties to a .146/.212/.271 line and in his career it’s an only slightly-higher .206/.275/.312.

Only five pitchers held right-handers to a lower average last year and for a frame of reference the often-mocked Bartolo Colon hit .138, only eight points lower than the mark Storen allowed against same-handed hitters.

Storen is one of the most-used pitchers in baseball

Since he first appeared in 2010 the Nationals have gone to Storen again and again and again. He’s pitched 55 or more innings in all but one season and his 334 innings rank 25th league-wide among relievers in the last six years.

His 355 games pitched during that time frame is tied for 27th in baseball with Boston Red Sox closer Craig Kimbrel.

Storen has some playoff demons to exorcise

The big right-hander has an 8.44 ERA in two playoff runs with the Nationals and blew a save in Game 5 of the 2012 NLDS that prevented his club from making it to the next round.

There is some doubt as to whether Storen can handle himself on the biggest stage, but it’s awfully hard to judge his October mettle based on only six appearances.

What’s a reasonable expectation for Storen?

In Storen the Blue Jays have acquired a quality option to eat up high-leverage innings. He stumbled at times as the Nationals’ closer, but he’s been reliable far more often than he’s been shaky and has had a long consistent career by reliever standards.

The fact the 28-year-old set a career high in strikeouts per nine innings last season indicates he can still overpower hitters on a regular basis. If he’s anything less than an above-average, high-leverage guy in 2016 the Blue Jays will be disappointed.

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