Tag: Jesse Litsch

Breaking News: Jesse Litsch Done For Season, Brad Mills Replaces Him

The Blue Jays have announced Friday that starting pitcher Jesse Litsch will miss the remainder of the season with labral tear in his right hip. Litsch will undergo the surgery next month and be lost to the team for four to six months.

The 25-year-old Litsch was 1-5 with a 5.79 ERA in nine starts. The last two years have been pretty injury filled seasons for Litsch who also underwent Tommy John Surgery and was trying to return from that injury.

The Jays recalled lefty Brad Mills from AAA Las Vegas on Friday. Mills compiled a record of 8-4 with a very respectable 4.20 ERA in the Pacific Coast League. Mills earned his first ever MLB victory against the Orioles earlier in the month going seven shutout innings against Baltimore.

Litsch will rehab the injury and should be back in time for Spring Training next March. He will be competing for the fifth starters job along with Kyle Drabek, Zach Stewart, Brad Mills, Marc Rzepcynski and hopefully a healthy Dustin McGowan.

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Toronto Blue Jays Hit AJ Burnett Hard: Will They Play August Spoilers?


A.J. Burnett sure wasn’t happy to play his old team tonight. The Blue Jays bats ran rampant over the fireballer, knocking him out in the fifth inning after notching seven runs against him. The Blue Jays hit six doubles in the sixth, two of them by Travis Snider.  After the seven-run inning by the Jays that put them up 8-2, New York would come back to score runs in the bottom of the fifth, sixth and ninth. The Bluebirds would hang on though to win the heavy-hitting contest, 8-6.

The Blue Jays have a very tough schedule in August, facing several teams that are fighting for a playoff spot. Their familiar foes in the AL East, New York, Boston and Tampa, they will all face twice. Anaheim, Oakland and Detroit they will all face once, all of who can be tough competition. Another way of looking at this schedule is that the Blue Jays may play a large role in deciding who claims that Wild Card spot in the American League.

Perhaps the biggest concern for the Blue Jays is whether their young arms can keeping going late into summer. Shaun Marcum didn’t pitch at all last year, so hasn’t pitched a full season since 2007 and Jesse Litsch just returned recently from injury. Brandon Morrow was shuffled between starting and relief with the Mariners before becoming a full-time starter with the Jays this year.

This is Brett Cecil’s first full year in the majors, and while he has pitched fantastic, he could be on a limited innings count. Only Ricky Romero pitched a full season last year, and could likely hit the 200 innings mark this year. All of the Jays starters are yet to hit that 200 mark in their career though, which suggests that their may be more spot starts by Brad Mills or even Brian Tallet to help give these young pitchers some more rest.


Of course, the Blue Jays already know what kind of position they are in though, which means they have a lot to prove. They don’t want to roll over and die; they want to learn how to win against the best to prepare for next season. 

The easiest target is of course Boston, as they have been decimated by injuries this year (Kevin Youkilis might have been hurt as well tonight) and are behind Tampa by 6.5 games. New York will be difficult, but luckily the Jays will not have to face C.C. Sabathia in this series at least. Plus, the Yankees stadium suits the long ball style of the Toronto batters. Tampa will be difficult, as their diverse offense and strong pitching is always finding new ways to win. 

If the Blue Jays bats can stay potent, and their starters can stay healthy and find a way to pitch deep into ball games, the team certainly has a chance to play spoiler. If the Blue Jays want to be in this race next year, they are going to have to prove that they are capable of playing with the best.

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The Prodigal Son Returns: Blue Jays Face Roy Halladay and the Phillies

Correction: The Prodigal Son does not return.  You can thank the G20 Summit and the infinite wisdom of Rogers Media (owners of the Toronto Blue Jays) for that.

So, instead of a bittersweet moment that would have, could have, had some legitimate intrigue and injected greater interest into a jaded fan base, we get a downtown core that looks like 1942 Berlin.

This is an issue that’s been beat to death already, so I won’t add to the cacophony of discontent in this piece.  In the end, it would only be white noise anyways.


Roy “Doc” Halladay was drafted by Toronto 17th overall in 1995, and he made his MLB debut on September 20th, 1999. 

Halladay then pitched his first Complete Game on his next start, September 27th, against Detroit.

It would prove to be a harbinger of things to come.

Early in Halladay’s career he was more of a power pitcher, constantly trying to strike hitters out at the cost of control and pitch counts.

After a retooling in the minors, Halladay came back a completely new pitcher.  The “Doc” was born.

With a now league-renowned work ethic, Halladay transformed himself into an innings-eating control pitcher.  He consistently showed incredible command of his pitches, including a low-90′s tailing fastball, a knee buckling change up, and a tight curve with a huge bite that can be thrown at any point in the count.

Furthermore, Halladay thrived in the toughest division in baseball for the better part of a decade. 

Twice a 20-game winner, Halladay won 16 or more games six times with the Blue Jays and went to six All- Star Games

In 2003 Halladay won a Cy Young and narrowly lost out on his second in 2008.  He arguably would have won last year if not for some poor bullpen work limiting him to just 17 wins.

The only thing missing was post-season play.

At the time of his departure, Roy Halladay stands as the Jays all time leader in winning percentage at .661 and second only to Dave Steib in wins (148) and CGSO’s (15).

The NHL Entry Draft is tonight, and I haven’t missed one in fifteen years.  However, wild horses couldn’t drag me away from the TV as I watch the Jays face Roy Halladay.

Jesse Litsch takes the mound for the Jays.  No pressure, kid.

Halladay has actually been roughed up in his last few outings and has allowed five home runs his last two games.  He’ll need to harness his control tonight as the Jays lead the majors with 111 dingers.

As for Litsch, he’ll need to keep his nerves under control as he’ll be matched against his idol and mentor. 

Making just his third start of the season due to an injury, Litsch was destroyed in his return on June 13th, allowing seven runs in 2.2 innings to the Rockies.  However, he redeemed himself with seven scoreless innings against the Giants last Sunday.

Last season the Jays swept the Phillies at Citizens Bank Park, but with the red hot Chase Utley and Jason Werth absolutely mashing the ball lately, Litsch will need to be at his absolute best.

Someone text me if the Leafs make a trade.

For Halladay lovers, read this.

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Tommy John Surgery Will Not Hold Back Jesse Litsch

As a former bat boy for the Tampa Bay Rays, baseball has been a lifelong goal for Jesse Litsch.

Originally drafted by the Colorado Rockies in the 37th round of the 2003 Amateur Draft, you can say that Litsch fell into the Toronto Blue Jays’ lap.

Not signing with the Rockies was probably the best thing for this former South Florida Community College Panther.

Instead of dealing with the thin air of Colorado, Litsch had his chance to develop in the friendly confines of the Rogers Centre.

Litsch has been nothing more than beneficial to the Jays since his Major League call-up in 2007.

All he did was solidify a rotation spot for the 2008 season, and compile a solid 13-8 record with a respectable 3.58 ERA.

Despite rarely touching 90 mph on the radar gun, Litsch is able to get outs while throwing a combination fastball/cutter nearly 70 percent of the time.

Even more amazing is that 91.5 percent of the time that Litsch throws any pitch within the strike zone (2008), the ball is put in play. Numbers that high could seemingly mean disaster, but in the end it tells you that Litsch, who has less than three full years of  MLB experience, knows how to play this game, and can get hitters out by finessing the strike zone while keeping the ball in play and letting his fielders do the work.

Unfortunately, 2009 ended prematurely for Litsch, who complained of forearm pain that ultimately led to Tommy John Surgery.

Over one full season since Litsch made his final start, it appears that he may finally be back on the road to a full recovery.

All signs are pointing to a return to the Jays, mid-June at the very least, as newly appointed GM Alex Anthopolous wants all players recovering from Tommy John Surgery to rehab for at least 12 full months.

Litsch is set to make his home debut May 16 in Dunedin against the Pittsburgh Pirates affiliate, Bradenton Marauders.

His first rehab assignment scheduled for May 11 will be on the road against the Palm Beach Cardinals.

This article can also be found on The GM’s Perspective

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