06/26/12 7:36 PM ET
Richmond back in bigs after extended absence
By Gregor Chisholm / MLB.com
Richmond has only thrown one pitch in the Major Leagues since 2009, when he made 24 starts for the Blue Jays after making the club out of Spring Training.
During his absence, he battled a lingering right shoulder injury and an inconsistent 2011 campaign. But following a series of setbacks to Toronto's pitching staff, Richmond is back with the Blue Jays and is expected to serve in a long relief role.
"I just stayed really positive, regardless of being told 'No' your whole life -- 'You don't throw hard enough, you're too old,' things like that," Richmond said. "Just stay positive and focus on what you can control.
"It has been a tough road. I was taken off the 40-man last year, had a tough year coming off an injury my first full season, this year bounced back, put a bunch of quality starts together. I was able to show them I can keep my team in the game and pitch in a tough league."
Richmond was recently inducted into the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame along with the 2011 Canadian National Team, which won gold at the Pan-Am Games. Richmond recorded the final six outs in a 2-1 victory over the United States to capture the first gold medal for Canada's senior national team at any event.
The 32-year-old Richmond is 9-14 with a 5.26 ERA in 33 career games in the Majors, all of which were with the Blue Jays.
Alvarez won't miss next start for Blue Jays
BOSTON -- Henderson Alvarez is expected to make his next start despite leaving Monday night's game against Boston with soreness in his right elbow.
Alvarez flew to Florida on Tuesday morning to visit Dr. Steve Mirabello. The right-hander underwent an MRI and was diagnosed with mild inflammation in the elbow.
The club announced that shouldn't prohibit Alvarez from pitching on Saturday afternoon against the Angels. The second-year right-hander became the fourth Blue Jays starting pitcher to leave with an injury during the past two weeks.
"There's really not a whole lot we can do about it," Blue Jays manager John Farrell said. "As we said before in that four-day stretch when we lost three guys in the rotation, this is another challenge that we'll face. It will bring out opportunity for others."
Alvarez's diagnosis comes as welcome news for a Blue Jays pitching staff that could ill afford another serious injury. Right-handers Brandon Morrow, Kyle Drabek and Drew Hutchison are currently on the 15-day disabled list and the club is quickly running out of options for replacements at the big league level.
The frequency with which the injuries are currently taking place has caused some to question the Blue Jays' developmental system. Farrell said the organization is always looking for ways to improve its ability to maintain the health of its players, but in these particular cases, there wasn't much that could have been done differently.
"I think we always need to self-examine," Farrell said. "I think that's the prudent thing to do to continue to improve in any area. But when you look at the events that took place, two of the incidents were on the ninth pitch of the game, without any previous indicators.
"And in Kyle's situation, it was in the fourth inning or in the fifth inning when the injury took place, so we feel confident there's a sound process in place. That doesn't mean we wouldn't look to re-examine in any area."
Blue Jays prospect d'Arnaud out at least six weeks
BOSTON -- Triple-A Las Vegas catcher Travis d'Arnaud is expected to miss the next six to eight weeks after tearing the posterior cruciate ligament in his left knee.
d'Arnaud suffered the injury while attempting to break up a double play during Monday night's game against Sacramento. d'Arnaud slid hard into second base and had an infielder fall on top of his knee, which caused the injury.
The 23-year-old was examined by Dr. Bernard Ong in Las Vegas, and the MRI results were later sent to Dr. Steve Mirabello in Florida who confirmed the original diagnosis.
"These cases are typically six to eight weeks, and at this point everybody, everybody being Dr. Mirabello and Dr. Ong, who examined him in Las Vegas [said] it is a non-surgical rehab," Blue Jays manager John Farrell said.
d'Arnaud, who is ranked the Blue Jays' No. 1 prospect according to MLB.com, was enjoying a productive season in the Pacific Coast League. He is hitting .333 with 16 home runs and 52 RBIs while posting a .975 OPS in 67 games this season.
The native of California wasn't expected to be considered for a promotion until the end of the season due to the presence of Blue Jays starting catcher J.P. Arencibia. d'Arnaud likely would have been a candidate when rosters expand in September, but it wasn't clear if that would still be the case.
d'Arnaud was acquired in a multiplayer trade for ace Roy Halladay following the 2009 season. Last season, d'Arnaud won the MVP award in the Eastern League following a breakout campaign with Double-A New Hampshire.
Moyer to make two starts in audition for Blue Jays
BOSTON -- Jamie Moyer's audition with Triple-A Las Vegas could end up being relatively short.
Moyer, who was signed to a Minor League contract on Monday, is expected to make two starts for the 51s. After that, the Blue Jays will decide to either promote him to the Major Leagues or likely grant his release.
"This is an agreement that I think we'll come to a decision one way or the other pretty quick," Blue Jays manager John Farrell said.
"I think at that point, there's no guarantees. But we want a two-start look and then determine, 'Is he an improvement in our rotation?'"
The 49-year-old Moyer began the season with Colorado and went 2-5 with a 5.70 ERA in 10 starts before he was designated for assignment. Moyer then joined the Orioles' organization, but he was released after not being promoted to the Major Leagues.
Moyer's signing comes at a time when the Blue Jays starting rotation has been devastated by injuries. Right-handers Brandon Morrow, Kyle Drabek and Drew Hutchison are currently on the 15-day disabled list while Henderson Alvarez was forced to leave Monday night's game in Boston because of soreness in his right elbow.
Moyer, who missed all of last season because of Tommy John surgery, is 269-209 with a 4.25 ERA in 25 seasons at the big league level.