Game 118: Boston at Toronto

Thumbnail image for arencibia.jpgOne of the areas that the Blue Jays will be re-evaluating this coming winter is the situation behind the plate. Entering the year, the club hoped that catching prospects J.P. Arencibia (right) and Brian Jeroloman would be big-league ready some time this year, or at least by 2010.

Given their performance this season, the Jays are now thinking the young catchers might need a little more time.

“I dont think they’ll be ready for next year,” Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston said on Wednesday. “I think it’s going to take another year or so to step up and be ready.”

In 96 games with Triple-A Las Vegas, Arencibia has hit .227 with 13 home runs and 54 RBIs, posting a .277 on-base percentage. In 95 games at Double-A New Hampshire, Jeroloman has batted .226 with six homers and 28 RBIs. Jeroloman has reached bast at a .341 clip.

This offseason, the Blue Jays will have to decide whether to try to re-sign free-agent catcher Rod Barajas. Backup Raul Chavez is eligible for arbitration. Barajas might seek a multi-year contract and Toronto needs to decide whether it’s willing to do that in light of the development of the young catchers.

“That’s one of the things we’re going to have to look into for next year,” Gaston said. “Is Rod going to be back? Is Chavez going to be back? Are both going to be back and let the kids play another year in Triple-A? Or, do you go out and get a different catcher and you keep one of the two guys you have here now.”

Yup, that about covers it…

Come early September, the Blue Jays plan on shutting down rookie starters Brett Cecil and Marc Rzepczynski due to innings limits. Gaston said the club has not decided who will slide into the rotation down the stretch. Brian Tallet will likely be one of the replacements, as he’s been all year, and the Jays will need to look to the Minors for the other. “There’s a good chance” that David Purcey might be one of the guys, according to Gaston.

Today’s lineups:

Thumbnail image for Thumbnail image for RedSox.gifBOSTON RED SOX (67-51)
Second place AL East, 7.0 GB

1. Jacoby Ellsbury, CF
2. J.D. Drew, RF
3. Victor Martinez, C
4. Kevin Youkilis, 3B
5. David Ortiz, DH
6. Jason Bay, LF
7. Casey Kotchman, 1B
8. Nick Green, 2B
9. Alex Gonzalez, SS

Starter: RHP Clay Buchholz (1-3, 4.45)

Thumbnail image for BlueJays.jpgTORONTO BLUE JAYS (55-62)
Fourth place AL East, 18.5 GB

1. Marco Scutaro, SS
2. Aaron Hill, 2B
3. Adam Lind, LF
4. Lyle Overbay, 1B
5. Vernon Wells, CF
6. Randy Ruiz, DH
7. Edwin Encarnacion, 3B
8. Rod Barajas, C
9. Travis Snider, RF

Starter: RHP Roy Halladay (13-5, 2.65)

Don’t forget, you can follow me on Twitter: @MLBastian

~JB

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