The Blue Jays have continued their efforts to bolster their bullpen. Earlier in the week, it was reported that they were still in the market for another right-hander. They seem to have found their man, as Ken Rosenthal reports that they have signed Joe Smith to a one-year deal.
Source: #BlueJays in agreement with free-agent reliever Joe Smith on one-year, major-league contract.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) February 5, 2017
On the surface, Smith had a fine 2016 season, as he posted a 3.46 ERA over 52.0 innings. That said, his peripherals were concerning. Smith posted a rather ugly FIP of 4.99. Fortunately, he had not posted a FIP above 3.60 since 2010. If last year was an outlier, then the Jays could have another strong relief option. The one concern for Smith is that his HR/9 nearly tripled to 1.38 in 2016. He will need to get that back down to succeed at the Rogers Centre.
With Smith in the fold, the Jays’ bullpen looks to be almost set. Smith will join the recently acquired J.P. Howell, along with Roberto Osuna, Jason Grilli, and Joe Biagini. Beyond those five, it is likely that Rule 5 pick Glenn Sparkman will be given an opportunity. That will leave the seventh spot open for one of Gavin Floyd, Mike Bolsinger, Ryan Tepera, Bo Schultz, and Aaron Loup. From that group, Loup probably has the advantage, as the Jays would be well served to have a second left-handed option.
What do you think of the Jays’ bullpen? Are you satisfied, or could they have addressed their needs differently?