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    http://mlb.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/news/a...=.jsp&c_id=tor

    Chacin out until August



    TORONTO -- Gustavo Chacin stretched with the rest of the Blue Jays prior to Saturday's game, but when it came time to play catch in the outfield, the left-hander sat out. That was fine with Toronto. It was Chacin's day off.

    Chacin, who is currently on the 15-day disabled list with an injured left elbow, threw for the first time in two weeks on Friday. The program that the Jays have him on calls for an off-day in between throwing sessions. The tentative schedule for Chacin's return should put him back on the mound for Toronto in a little over a month.

    "We don't anticipate him coming back until the beginning of August," Toronto general maneger J.P. Ricciardi said. "We're not in any hurry. We're just going to ease him back."

    On Friday, Chacin threw from a distance of about 45 feet on flat ground. The 25-year-old Venezuelan will increase the distance to 60 feet on Sunday. From there on, Jays pitching coach Brad Arnsberg said Chacin will alternate throwing days until working his way onto a mound, which will probably happen in about two weeks.

    "The program is similar to the one that A.J. was on," said Arnsberg, referring to starter A.J. Burnett, who spent two months on the DL with a similar injury. "It'll be four weeks or so before [Chacin will] be back."

    Chacin and Burnett both suffered sprains of the ulnar collateral ligament in their throwing elbow. After reinjuring his arm, Burnett rested for two weeks before playing catch. It then took another 17 days before he pitched off the mound in the bullpen. The right-hander was activated from the 60-day DL on Thursday.

    On May 11, Chacin landed on the 15-day DL with the elbow problem and didn't start again until May 30. He exited his third start back after just three innings and wound up back on the 15-day DL on June 10. The lefty is 6-2 with a 5.61 ERA in 10 starts this year for Toronto.

    Walker throws: Right-hander Pete Walker threw in a simulated game on Saturday and could be ready to come off the 15-day DL on time. Walker, who is eligible to be activated on Tuesday, landed on the shelf with right shoulder bursitis on June 10.

    "Pete's a valuable part of our team," Toronto manager John Gibbons said. "He threw good and he feels good. There's a chance [he'll be back] Tuesday."

    The 37-year-old reliever threw a 30-pitch inning and a 32-pitch inning with Jays infielders Russ Adams and John McDonald standing at the plate. Walker, who is 1-1 with a 5.00 ERA in 19 outings, mixed in all his pitches and finally called it quits when Arnsberg cut him off.

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    "He felt strong and said he could've gone a couple more hitters," Arnsberg said. "We felt that was plenty for him, though. It's not often he's going to be out there for a 30-pitch inning. ... He had good late life on the ball. His cutter was good, his sinker was good, and he moved the ball pretty well."

    In order to make room on the roster for Walker, Toronto will probably option another reliever back to the Triple-A Syracuse. Left-hander Brian Tallet, who has been called up four times already this season, appears to be the odd man out.

    Hot hand: It turns out reliever Justin Speier just needed some time off. Ever since taking a three-day break from pitching from June 9-11, the right-hander has been lights out. Since then, Speier has allowed no runs, just three hits and has 12 strikeouts versus two walks in seven innings.

    "He went through a stretch where we gave him three days off a couple weeks ago," Gibbons said. "Ever since then he's pitched well. He's got that ability. He's just making his pitches."

    In June, Speier has posted a 1.93 ERA in 12 games with 15 strikeouts in 9 1/3 innings. That's quite a contrast from May, when he had a 5.19 ERA in 13 games and fanned eight batters in 8 2/3 frames.

    Streaking: Closer B.J. Ryan has posted 14 2/3 scoreless innings since May 27. That matches the longest scoreless innings streak of the season for a Toronto pitcher. Starter Ted Lilly had a streak of 14 2/3 innings without allowing an earned run from June 10-21. During Ryan's streak, the left-hander has picked up nine saves and has lowered his ERA to 0.49 from 0.77

    One million: Friday's attendance of 28,507 at the Rogers Centre pushed the Blue Jays' season total to 1,000,236 through 38 home games. Last year, Toronto didn't reach the one million mark until the 43rd home contest. The last time the Jays reached one million fans that quickly was in 1998, when it took 35 games.

    Quotable: "I was talking to Gibby and was saying we probably won't have our whole rotation back until August." --Ricciardi

    Coming up: Right-hander Josh Towers (1-8, 8.76 ERA) will take on New York righty Steve Trachsel (5-4, 4.67 ERA) when the Blue Jays host the Mets in the finale of a three-game Interleague set at 12:07 p.m. ET on Sunday at the Rogers Centre.

    Jordan Bastian is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


    This is bad news!! IT means Towers has to start now!!!!!

  • #2
    Towers pitched pretty good in his last outing, and with Burnett back we should be able to withstand the loss of Chacin until August. I'm more concerned with Rios than I am with the starters. He is in a real funk and he is showing his frustration. He broke his bat over his leg right at the plate after a strikeout yesterday against the Mets, and Gibbons pulled him for a pinch hitter late in a game last week in Atlanta. We need him to be clutch while we get through these pitching injuries.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by starkeeper
      Towers pitched pretty good in his last outing, and with Burnett back we should be able to withstand the loss of Chacin until August. I'm more concerned with Rios than I am with the starters. He is in a real funk and he is showing his frustration. He broke his bat over his leg right at the plate after a strikeout yesterday against the Mets, and Gibbons pulled him for a pinch hitter late in a game last week in Atlanta. We need him to be clutch while we get through these pitching injuries.
      His first start back from the minors wasn't that good. He still gave up something like 4 runs in 5 or 6 innings and just look at today's start. We will not be able to withstand the loss of Chacin with Towers. On another note Jannsen is struggling as well! :grouchy

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      • #4
        Who can predict these kind of things in the off-season? We knew about Burnett's injury problems but I didn't think he'd miss as much as he has. Chacin has never had arm problems. I expected Towers to have a decent season, not be terrible. And I don't think I'd ever even heard of Casey Jannsen before this season.
        Like Maple Syrup, Canada's evil oozes over the United States.

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