The Blue Jays have placed starting pitcher Shaun Marcum on the 15-day disabled list with right elbow inflammation. Although it’s not uncommon for pitchers who’ve had Tommy John surgery to experience a few lingering issues, this has to be alarming to Blue Jays brass.

After last night’s start, the Jays right-hander is 7-4 with a 3.88 ERA in 17 starts this season. His spot in the rotation will most likely be handed over to Brian Tallet (shudder ).

The Marcum injury comes on the heels of a five-game losing streak that saw the Jays fall from Wild Card contention. This will assuredly turn GM Alex Anthopoulos into a seller as the trade deadline approaches. 

Toronto is 9.5 games behind the Yankees for the AL East and 8.0 games behind Boston for the Wild Card.

The swoon may not be a surprise to fans with a more skeptical or analytical eye, but that doesn’t mean this turn of events is any less disappointing.

Furthermore, for those espousing the fantastical trade value of guys like John Buck and Fred Lewis, I draw your attention to the recent Bengie Molina trade .

Molina was sent to the catcher-needy Texas Rangers in exchange for reliever Chris Ray and minor league pitcher Michael Main .

Although not a bad haul for a veteran catcher, it’s not the top-five prospect jackpot that some Jay fans fantasized about in a John Buck deal. Also, by all accounts, Bengie Molina is a better player, albeit not having as good a season as Buck.

Although a fire sale is not anticipated, Toronto can be expected to move as many as four regulars as Anthopoulos continues to tinker with the fringe players and restock the minor leagues.

With the Yankees, Twins, and Red Sox representing the final nine games before the All—Star break, the Marcum injury could end up the least of our worries.

It’s going to get ugly.

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