Article Written by Craig Borden (@Craigers1221)
In the past few weeks, the Toronto Blue Jays have been getting an awesome glimpse at what their roster could look like for the foreseeable future. With the additions of Danny Jansen, Justin Shaffer, Thomas Pannone, and Billy Mckinney making the most of their recent promotions, the future looks bright. All these young players are on the heels of a dominant start from Lourdes Gurriel Jr. and what was a strong beginning for Teoscar Hernandez. Recently Hernandez has cooled off but the parade of new talent has not slowed down and will more than likely increase over the coming weeks when rosters expand.
So with all these promotions, we did see Sean Reid-Foley have some mixed reviews during his two outings with the big club. In those two starts, he only was able to muster 9.1 innings and a rough looking 8.68 ERA. Reid-Foley’s issues during those starts were not too hard to see and the Major League hitters of the Yankees made him pay for every mistake. He struggled with his control and left balls hanging over the plate. These balls were teed up for big runs during the outings.
I had the pleasure of seeing him last season first hand for W -
In case you were unaware of his performance this season in the Minors, let us set the record straight for you. Sean Reid-Foley has been nothing short of spectacular. The Buffalo Bisons have even named him the Pitcher of the Year for the organization as he won the Warren Spahn Award. As of the moment, he is sporting a cool 7-4 record with a 3.50 ERA over 82.1 innings. This is just how dominant he has been since being promoted. He started the season with the Double-A New Hampshire Fisher Cats, where he was ridiculously good. He was sporting a 2.03 ERA with a 1.060 WHIP over 44.1 innings. That is just insane!
So what do the Blue Jays do with someone that has clearly shown he can handle Minor League hitters? I think the blueprint for a player like Reid-Foley has already been established in the Blue Jays system. I think this mold could be the Aaron Sanchez formula. Sean Reid-Foley and Aaron Sanchez have pretty similar career paths when you look at their rise through the Jays system. Both players were highly touted draft picks. Sanchez was a 1st rounder and Reid-Foley was a 2nd rounder.
Sanchez had a great Minor League rise as he blew through hitters and ascended quickly. He became a fixture in the Majors after 5 seasons in the Jay’s system. At the moment, Reid-Foley has an identical career line as he made his MLB debut during his 5th season as a Blue Jays farmhand. The both even played in Double and Triple-A just before their debuts in the show.
After a not-as-smooth debut as Sanchez made, how do you get Reid-Foley to get comfortable with his MLB surroundings? I think you bring him back up to the show ASAP and slot him into the bullpen. He has 136 innings under his belt this season between the three levels and this would give him a chance to play for a .500 record with the Blue Jays. Sanchez was a wonder to watch out of the bullpen in 2014 and was electric during the Jays' rise to power for back-to-back playoff showings. In 2015, Sanchez had 11 starts, but played out of the bullpen the rest of the season. His arm looked even more explosive when he aired it out for an inning of work.
Bring Sean Reid-Foley back up to the Majors and let him face batters in the 7th inning. He will be able to go out there for an inning and just blow away hitters with his excellent strikeout pitches. This will get him used to the show and more then likely build some confidence for him as he pairs up with his buddy Danny Jansen as part of the late-inning battery. He currently has 155 strikeouts in 135 innings this year with just 33 walks. This could be an easy way to have him get some Major League innings in before he gets thrown into the 2019 rotation or at least next year's bullpen.
Vote Sean Reid-Foley as a bullpen arm of choice for the rest of this season! Future ace for the Toronto Blue Jays as he eventually figures everything else out on the bump.
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