Despite rumoured interest from the Houston Astros and Pittsburgh Pirates, the Toronto Blue Jays traded left handed fireball reliever David Purcey to the Oakland A’s in exchange for right handed Minor League reliever Danny Farquhar, who was originally sent to the Athletics by Toronto in the Rajai Davis trade.

Purcey, without options or command, was recently designated for assignment by the Blue Jays, signaling the end of the pitcher’s time in the Toronto organization.

It’s disappointing that the Blue Jays have to give up on a player who’s been in the organization since 2004, especially a left hander who has shown glimpses of greatness with a 94 mph fastball, but that’s what happens when you have bullpen depth to the degree that the Toronto Blue Jays do.

I hate to harp on it yet again, but if Purcey is ever able to get his command together, it’s going to be very disappointing to think about this team signing Octavio Dotel and making other bullpen acquisitions that wouldn’t allow them the patience to see if Purcey could come out of his early season slump. On the other hand, Purcey has had seven years to impress the organization, and despite those all too fleeting glimpses of greatness, he’s essentially been unable to do so.

Comments (11)

  1. Usually we agree Dustin. Here we’re miles apart. I’m glad they cut bait on a 29 year old who has demonstrated repeatedly that he simply cannot find the plate. Farquhar is a project control wise, but his 5.9 H/9 and 9.7 K/9 indicate that he misses bats and hitters don’t make very good contact off him. His numbers say he has the potential to be quite a nasty reliever, and he’s still “only” 24 years old. I like this trade.

    • David Purcey, age 27 & 28 seasons combined:

      82 innings, 9 home runs allowed, 45 walks, 71 strikeouts, 51 RA.

      Matt Thornton, age 27 & 28 seasons combined (with Seattle):

      89 innings, 15 home runs allowed, 67 walks, 87 strikesouts, 48 RA.

      Matt Thornton, last three seasons:

      6.6 WAR with a K/9 greater than 10.


  2. Good point. I’ll still take my chances on Farquhar thanks. Let somebody else sort out Purcey’s faulty scope.

  3. Not even a ridiculously lopsided trade- I’d say the chance Purcey becomes a reliable & effective reliever is only moderately higher than that of Farquhar. This is a better return than I expected from Purcey.

  4. Purcey’s splits against left handers weren’t impressive enough to salvage his career with the Blue Jays. While the potential was there with his great arm, he just never was able to show enough consistency. I mean, the Jays were patient with him in the past 3-4 years no?

    Oh, Purcey ivs. Thornton? In a perfect world (meaning Purcey attains command), Thornton’s stuff is much nastier than Purcey’s.

  5. I’m not really all that thrilled with either guy. I think I tend to agree with our buddy Gerard here. Considering that Purcey was DFA’d it’s a good return. Considering how well he pitched last year and what little time he was afforded this year, I’m not crazy about the DFA in the first place.

  6. Note: I do not think David Purcey will turn into Matt Thornton, I merely suggest that, in the past, David Purcey turned into Matt Thornton.

  7. @Drew: Probably not, but your point that sometimes pitchers with excellent stuff bloom late is absolutely valid. See also: Henke, Tom who finally when he got out from under Doug Rader’s critical shadow finally blossomed at age 27.

  8. Sometimes you just have to cut ties. Players become stale. Think about Hinske. Everyone hated Hinske because he didn’t live up to his AL ROTY season, and yet, he’s still a .750-.790 OPS player who plays both 1B, 3B, and corner OF spots (and very solid at all except 3B). He’s a top tier bench bat now, but if he stayed, people would’ve still had issues with him.

    Farquhar is an interesting player. I like that he throws from two arm angles, but mainly it’s safe to say his ceiling is similar to Purcey’s, but his floor can’t be any worse.

  9. I still remember 2 years ago, when David Purcey was all but annointed the #3 starter by everyone’s pre-season predictions and I just sat there asking why. He hadn’t shown anything but potential then, and he still doesn’t now.

    Good stuff, but what use is it if he can’t/won’t throw strikes. I know this is a rebuilding year, but even so I don’t think I could have stood to watch Purcey pitch the way he did all year. John Farrell couldn’t either, and the fact that we got something for him in a trade tells you we couldn’t have sent him down. At least they got something for him, a player they know and can wait on to see if he develops.

  10. I don’t like this move at all. Especially with Reyes still here, a pitcher who’s done absolutely nothing for this team, whereas Purcey had a decent 2010.

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