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Dustin McGowan’s comeback attempt moves to the bullpen

Mar 14, 2011, 12:19 PM EST

dustin mcgowan blue jays

Once upon a time Dustin McGowan was a promising young starter who threw 281 innings with a 4.20 ERA between 2007 and 2008, but injuries sidetracked his career and now the Blue Jays say he’ll be coming back as a reliever.

If he comes back at all, that is.

McGowan hasn’t pitched in a major-league game since July of 2008, during which time he’s had two shoulder surgeries, and Gregor Chisholm of MLB.com reports that the Blue Jays are taking a “cautious approach” with his transition to relief, limiting him to 25-pitch bullpen session at less than full effort.

Currently on the 60-day disabled list so the Blue Jays can avoid using a 40-man roster spot on him, McGowan is likely headed to minor-league camp with the hope being that he can appear in a game there at some point later this month. Prior to the multiple surgeries McGowan definitely had the raw stuff to be a shutdown reliever, as his average fastball clocked in at 94.5 miles per hour, but the now 28-year-old right-hander has indicated that another setback could motivate him to retire.

  1. proudlycanadian - Mar 14, 2011 at 2:21 PM

    The guy has a lot of talent. The Jays are very reluctant to give up on him. He is out of options, so once (if?) he comes off the 60 day DL he would either have to be added to the ML roster or be waived.

    • missthemexpos - Mar 14, 2011 at 3:49 PM

      The Jays still remember what can happen if you give up on a injured, potential stud pitcher too soon. Does the name Chris Carpenter ring a bell?

      • Chris K - Mar 15, 2011 at 4:12 PM

        Does the name, Mike Sirotka, ring a bell? Oh…wait…

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