TORONTO – The Toronto Blue Jays are heading into the all-star break with the type of uncertainty in their starting rotation that has dogged them for most of the season.
Marcus Stroman may not be ready to make his next scheduled start Thursday because of the cramp that truncated his last outing, saying “we’re looking at (the possibility of missing a turn) as an opportunity because of how it’s playing up with the break where it’s going to get me a little breather.”
“Obviously I have goals of throwing 200 innings,” he added, “and a little breather is good sometimes.”
If that’s the case, the Blue Jays would recall lefty Thomas Pannone from triple-A Buffalo, stealing a starter from the Bisons for the second straight day. Jacob Waguespack was recalled to start Wednesday in place of Sean Reid-Foley, who was needed Tuesday to cover after Trent Thornton was knocked out early from a 10-6 loss to the Boston Red Sox.
Reid-Foley threw 3.1 unblemished innings of relief only to be optioned to Buffalo to make room for Waguespack. The Blue Jays went through an unusually long set of deliberations – including a discussion in manager Charlie Montoyo’s office with GM Ross Atkins, pitching coach Pete Walker and trainer Nikki Huffman before making the decision.
Reid-Foley was in the outfield shagging balls during batting practice when the news was broken to him.
“He already pitched (Tuesday) and we need everyone else,” explained Montoyo.
Stroman was slated to get some treatment and play catch Wednesday before an assessment on his status was made. The right-hander, named to his first all-star game over the weekend, left his last outing with what the team described as a left shoulder pectoral cramp.
After that game he said, “I’m not worried about it. I’m a warrior, I’m a dawg, always. I’ll be back out there (Thursday).”
Asked Wednesday if the area was still bothering him, Stroman replied, “not much. I could probably go out there and get through it, but it’s something that I think if I take a few more days, it can be perfect rather than feeling it at all. I’d rather not feel it all and give it a few days. We’ll see.”