Toronto Blue Jays Sign Hard-Throwing Reliever

One thing many observers have noted that the Toronto Blue Jays have been lacking the last year or two is some serious bat-missing heat out of the bullpen. Today they hope they took a small step towards helping to rectify that, by signing a reliever who can hit triple-digits on the radar gun.

It's a minor league deal for 27-year-old Julian Fernandez. Jays beat writer Ben Nicholson-Smith notes that Fernandez averages 99 mph on his fastball, and tops out at 103 mph. That's some serious heat.

The problem is that, thus far, that heat has come with a bit of a home run problem. He spent the 2022 season with the Colorado Rockies Triple-A affiliate at Albuquerque and surrendered 15 HR in just 57 innings pitched. Yikes. He was also wild, walking five batters per nine innings. That nasty combination led to a 6.63 ERA. 

But hey, he did strike out 10.4 batters per nine. Also looking on the bright side, that was all done in the hitter-happy PCL league. 

Toronto hopes that getting their coaching staff to work with him will help reign in the firepower, and lead to some better success for the right-hander.