Monday, May 11, 2009

David Purcey update

How far has David Purcey fallen in the past month? After a fantastic spring training, he was pencilled in to be the number two starter in the Blue Jays rotation. With 5 mostly miserable starts that saw him go 0-2, posting a bloated 7.01 ERA, the big lefty was sent down to AAA Las Vegas to work on his release point and fix his control problems.

Just one problem; Purcey has been even worse in a pair of starts in the minor leagues! His last outing yielded a horrific 30.86 ERA! Purcey was bashed around for 8 earned runs, 8 hits, and walked 3, before exiting after just 2.1 innings. This is not how the career arc of the Jays 2004 1st round pick was supposed to go.

Barring a rash of injuries to the big club, it might be quite a while before Purcey steps foot on a major league mound again. With the unexpected brilliance of Brett Cecil, the decent performance by Robert Ray, not to mention the wonderful job Brian Tallet has done to go along with expected return of Ricky Romero, Casey Janssen, and Jesse Litsch in the coming weeks, it's easy to see how Purcey will be buried on the depth chart. If he doesn't pick up his game for Las Vegas, he faces a serious uphill battle to make any long term impact with the Blue Birds. His opportunity might have come and gone.

Brett Cecil stating case to stay with big club

Toronto's best pitching prospect is turning heads with his remarkable start to his major league career, so much so that the club will face a tough decision on what to do with Brett Cecil when the regular starters come back from injury.

Cecil has been dynamite in two starts, most notably yesterday against Oakland. He silenced the A's bats, holding them to just 5 hits over 8 innings, without giving up any runs, and for the 2nd consecutive start, Cecil whiffed 6 batters.. Against Cleveland in his big league debut, the 2007 first round pick gave up just 1 run in 6 innings. In two starts, his ERA is a minuscule 0.64!

If Cecil continues his scorching play, it will be a very difficult decision on what to do with Ricky Romero, Casey Janssen and Jesse Litsch when they come off the disabled list. Could the rotation conceivably have Roy Halladay, Romero, Scott Richmond, Brian Tallet, Cecil as the starting five? Or does Cecil get sent down along with Robert Ray to AAA, and Tallet move back to the bullpen in favour of Romero, Janssen and Litsch? Either way, the Jays will be facing a good problem with their starting five, something that couldn't be said a month ago.