Blue Jays pitcher J.A. Happ finds himself in the awkward situation of being the sixth starter in a five-man rotation. Happ is taking it in stride, though, vowing to be ready when the club needs him. (Reuters)
The irony is obvious. In any one of the last 15 or 20 seasons, the presence on the Blue Jays spring training roster of an additional pitcher the pedigree of J.A. Happ would have been celebrated.
The tall left-hander has been a rotation member, first with the Phillies and later with the Astros for the past four years, making 96 starts in the process.
At the dawn of the 2013 season, on a renovated Blue Jays pitching staff that expects to accomplish big things, Happ finds himself in an awkward situation. He is the sixth man in a five-man rotation and even though most every major-league team will need not just five starters, but six, seven, eight, maybe nine, before the season is done, no pitcher worth his salt wants to be in that position.