The last time Mark Buehrle set foot on the mound at Tropicana Field in Tampa, on May 6th, he lasted six innings… uh… giving up nine hits, seven runs and seven earned, as his ERA ballooned to 7.02. That start was the third straight in which he’d given up five or more earned runs, and the fifth of seven starts on the season at the time.
Since then, though– since then!– he’s had a terrific eight start stretch, giving up just 15 earned runs in 51 innings, for a 2.65 ERA, and the Jays have won six of eight times he stepped on the hill. It’s time for the Jays to get a new winning streak starter, and the way Buehrle’s been going of late, why the hell shouldn’t it start tonight?
Let’s let the good time start a-rollin’, eh?
Brendan Kennedy tweets that John Gibbons figures it will be about two weeks before Brett Lawrie is back.
Shi Davidi tells us that Sergio Santos threw a side session and could get into a rehab assignment in early July. He later clarifies, having been informed that the plan for Santos, specifically, is to pitch July 1st, 4th, and 7th at Dunedin, and then head to Buffalo after that for a couple of games, with a return to the Majors slated for either just before or just after the All-Star break.
Gregor Chisholm tweets that Santos is the latest Blue Jay to have begun work on Jamie Evans’ weighted ball program.
He’s not looking for velocity, Davidi notes, but says that he saw progress from Dustin McGowan on it and wants to use it to help strengthen his shoulder.
Speaking of McGowan, he’s one of a number of candidates to be sent packing before tomorrow, and Ben Nicholson-Smith clarifies some confusion this afternoon by confirming that, indeed, McGowan could refuse an assignment and sign elsewhere (presumably for the league minimum), with the Jays being required to pick up the rest of his salary. But with the way the club has stood by McGowan, though, and the possibility that the pitcher would consent to a demotion in order to get some much-needed work in, he wonders if maybe that’s what ultimately happens here. I’d buy it, if McGowan would.
On that topic, Gregor tweets that John Gibbons says Neil Wagner has “got nothing to worry about” as far as tomorrow’s roster move goes.
“Take this for what it’s worth,” Kennedy writes, “but to question from Japanese reporter re Kawasaki playing 2B, Gibby said ‘I think he’d be v good over there’.”
John Lott gets into the game, noting that Gibbons says he likes having four lefties in the bullpen (i.e. keeping Luis Perez around)– though he wasn’t tipping his hand in any direction, no matter how much reporters were prodding.
Toronto Blue Jays
DH Melky Cabrera (S)
RF Jose Bautista (R)
3B Edwin Encarnacion (R)
1B Adam Lind (L)
2B Mark DeRosa (R)
LF Rajai Davis (R)
CF Colby Rasmus (L)
C J.P. Arencibia (R)
SS Maicer Izturis (S)
LHP Mark Buehrle
Tampa Bay Rays
CF Desmond Jennings (R)
LF Sean Rodriguez (R)
DH Ben Zobrist (S)
3B Evan Longoria (R)
RF Wil Myers (R)
SS Yunel Escobar (R)
1B James Loney (L)
C Jose Molina (R)
2B Kelly Johnson (L)
LHP Matt Moore