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Back from shoulder surgery, Sergio Santos hopes to regain Blue Jays’ closer job

Feb 2, 2013, 11:36 AM EDT

Sergio Santos Getty Getty Images

The Blue Jays were largely praised when they acquired Sergio Santos from the White Sox last winter, but his first season with Toronto was a bust, as he made just six appearances due to a nagging shoulder injury which eventually required surgery. Casey Janssen stepped up as the Blue Jays’ closer in his absence by saving 22 games in 25 chances while posting a 2.54 ERA, but Santos tells Gregor Chisholm of MLB.com that he’s ready to turn the page on 2012 and reclaim the closer job.

“Casey did an unbelievable job, but at the same time, I would love to be the closer,” said Santos, who is reporting to camp in early February. “That’s the role I relish. I would love to be able to go in and just compete for the job. If we go in and we compete and he beats me in the spring, I have no problem with being a seventh- or eighth-inning guy — whatever they need me to be.

“But just a chance to compete will be great, and if we’re both healthy and throwing well, with Darren coming back, our bullpen is going to be just fine.”

At the very least, the Blue Jays have makings of a potent late-inning combo. Janssen figures to have the edge over Santos going into spring training, but it’s worth noting that he’s coming off November surgery to relieve discomfort in the AC joint of his right shoulder.

Santos was solid in the closer role for the White Sox in 2011, posting a 3.55 ERA, 30 saves and a 92/29 K/BB ratio over 63 1/3 innings. The 29-year-old right-hander is owed $6.5 million over the next two seasons while his contract includes team-friendly club options from 2015-2017.

  1. edmata - Feb 2, 2013 at 12:23 PM

    Will he be another BSOHL player?

  2. proudlycanadian - Feb 2, 2013 at 1:32 PM

    The Jays should have quite a good bullpen this season.

  3. missthemexpos - Feb 2, 2013 at 1:32 PM

    No, better to classify Santos as a HTRTOF (hoping to return to old form) player

  4. losanginsight - Feb 2, 2013 at 1:40 PM

    Lets go Serg! Represent the HH 626

  5. cur68 - Feb 2, 2013 at 5:29 PM

    Man I’m glad he’s back. He’s got a great arm. All gong well, late innings should be pretty solid

  6. jaysjunkie - Feb 2, 2013 at 9:04 PM

    The closer’s job should be Janssen’s to lose. I’m quite optimistic that the Jays’ bullpen will have a much better overall season this time around.

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