• Miguel Castro is out and Brett Cecil is back in as closer for Toronto. This isn’t necessarily the alignment that the Blue Jays will stick with all season but Gibbons said he will “try” Cecil as closer, with Loup-Osuna in 7th-8th. Miguel Castro will be moved to other innings and theoretically could regain the role at a later date. The fact Castro is staying in the majors might signal a somewhat legitimate commitment to him in Toronto. He and Osuna have their young warts but are very talented arms. Brett Cecil might go as far as his velocity takes him, as its been a bit of a roller coaster this year, but he was above 90 mph tonight as he recorded his first save of the year. If he’s healthy and maintains velocity like he had tonight, Cecil could hold the role but he’ll have plenty of power arms behind his back. Another road block in Cecil’s saves future could be Aaron Sanchez. If he gets demoted to the bullpen, he’s likely their best pitcher there but the Jays should continue to trot him out there every five days for a few more turns before making a change.
• We noted Steve Cishek’s struggles last night and now we have word that “he’s more like a seventh inning guy now.” Cishek’s loss of velocity is real and troubling. A loss of 2+ mph on the fastball does not bode well for Cishek’s success this year but he was throwing 92 mph in his save tonight, helping ease some concern. He’s still the closer and he has time to turn it around, and nights like tonight will give him a leash but I would certainly entertain offers on Cishek. Unfortunately there isn’t an obvious selection behind Cishek, it could go to a committee between Mike Dunn, A.J. Ramos and Bryan Morris. This might reek of committee but we’re also getting ahead of ourselves with Cishek still having the job.
• Injury Updates: Adam Ottavino could miss some significant time after finding out he has elbow inflammation in addition to his previous triceps issue. John Axford could rack up a few saves. Greg Holland threw a bullpen session and could be back next week. Kenley Jansen threw to hitters today and is aiming for a Mid-May return. Sean Doolittle also threw off a mound and could be nearing a return with a similar time table as Jansen.
• Quick Hits and Tidbits: Glen Perkins pitched a perfect ninth for his 6th save of the year. Fernando Rodney threw a perfect ninth as well, striking out two en route to his 6th arrow shot in the air. Aroldis Chapman did what Aroldis Chapman does, striking out two for his fifth save this season. Drew Storen also nailed down his 5th save after Jason Grilli imploded in the ninth for his first blown save of the year. Grilli was perfect before tonight’s outing so his job is secure, although he might be a deadline deal candidate for the rebuilding Braves. Andrew Miller and Dellin Betances rested today so Chris Martin received the save opp, notching his first save of the year. I wouldn’t expect many more for Martin, but he’s been a nice surprise for the Yankees bullpen.
[Green light, yellow light, red light: the colors represent the volatility of the bullpen order.]
When he's not focusing on every team's bullpen situation, Ben can be found blogging at Ben's Baseball Bias and on Twitter @BensBias