5/30/2014 11:40 P.M. ET
Loup reliable relief source in Toronto bullpen
By Jamie Ross / MLB.com
TORONTO -- Blue Jays relievers have worked their fair share of innings this season, and none more than Aaron Loup.
Entering Friday's contest against the Royals, the 'pen had amassed the fifth-most innings among Major League clubs with 175 through 55 games.
And Loup, the side-armed-throwing lefty, led Toronto with 26 2/3 innings through 25 appearances.
"He's been carrying a pretty good workload, you know," manager John Gibbons said of Loup, who led Toronto relievers in total innings in 2013.
Loup had not allowed a run in his last 13 outings, and gave up seven hits and four walks over his last 10 games. Loup's durability has landed him the reputation as the "man with the rubber arm," though he insists he's all flesh and bone.
"Some guys are like, 'you've got a rubber arm,' but I don't know about that. I'm human," Loup said. "But for most part, I do rebound quick [in between games] and usually don't have too many issues."
Since breaking into the Majors with Toronto midway through the 2012 season, Loup has logged 200 2/3 innings and 2.56 ERA. After grinding it out in the Minors for more than three seasons, the 26-year-old changed his delivery to sidearm in 2012 with Double-A New Hampshire, and has been a Major League mainstay ever since.
Loup in part attributes his durability to the rest he gets during the offseason. While most pitchers might give themselves a month or a month and half off after the regular season is over, he doesn't pick up a ball until the new year.
"I don't really start working out until December and I won't touch a ball until January," he said. "I take a good two months off without doing anything to let my body recuperate ... I've always done that. It just worked for me and until it doesn't, I don't see a need to change it."
Sans a few bumps along the road this season, Loup has been as dependable as they come for the Blue Jays. Loup said with those hiccups now behind him, he's been able to string together enough solid outings to bring him back to where he was last season.
"I just told myself, mentally, I have to get back on course," he said. "Stay more consistent like I'd done last year. I strung together a couple of good outings, and I'm building on it as much as I can."
Stroman will make first MLB start against KC
TORONTO -- Blue Jays top prospect Marcus Stroman will make his first Major League start on Saturday against the Royals at Rogers Centre. The club announced the 23-year-old right-hander will be recalled from Triple-A Buffalo after reliever Bobby Korecky was designated for assignment following Friday night's 6-1 loss to Kansas City.
Stroman was scratched from his scheduled start with Triple-A Buffalo on Friday night.
Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said the move will provide Drew Hutchison -- who was previously scheduled to start Saturday -- with a few extra days' rest. Hutchison will next start on Tuesday against the Tigers.
"We want to get Stroman up here to give him a look," Gibbons said. "And the thinking was, we'll back Hutchison off a couple of days. [Mark] Buehrle will start Sunday, Hutchison on Tuesday in Detroit. We've been trying to pick some spots, give Hutch a little breather. After his last start, I thought he looked a little bit tired. We thought it would be a perfect time to give him a couple of extra days."
The 23-year-old Hutchison is coming off his worst start of the season. He gave up seven hits and five earned runs over five innings in a win against Tampa Bay on Monday. The Blue Jays have been keeping an eye on Hutchison, who's in his first season back from Tommy John surgery.
After struggling in five relief appearances with the Blue Jays, Stroman will get his first big league opportunity as a starter. He went 1-0 -- getting his first MLB win in relief against the Phillies on May 6 -- and allowed nine earned runs over 6 1/3 innings in a bullpen role earlier this month.
"We want to see him as a starter," Gibbons said. "He's been really good down [in Buffalo] this year. This is his opportunity. We sat him down, when we were in Texas, I think it was, and we told him we wanted him to go down and get a couple of starts … stretch him out a little bit."
Stroman is 2-4 with a 3.03 ERA in seven starts with the Bisons this season.
What Stroman's promotion means for current No. 5 starter Liam Hendriks is unclear. Stroman gives the Blue Jays six starters, but Gibbons claims Hendriks will still have an opportunity to pitch toward the end of next week.
One option would see Hendriks pushed back a day to start on Wednesday in Detroit unless he moves into the bullpen. The 26-year-old assumed the fifth spot in the rotation after Dustin McGowan was transitioned into a relief role.
Hendriks has two wins in as many starts with a 2.31 ERA. He's allowed two home runs and three walks and was hit hard in last outing against the Rays, with seven of his outs coming at the warning track.
Korecky designated for assignment after loss
TORONTO -- The Blue Jays designated Bobby Korecky for assignment following Friday's 6-1 loss to the Royals.
Korecky had been promoted before the game as the club optioned left-hander Rob Rasmussen to to Triple-A Buffalo. The 34-year-old Korecky entered Friday's game with two out in the eighth to relieve starter J.A. Happ, who had just surrendered a two-run homer to Lorenzo Cain.
Korecky pitched 1 1/3 innings in his first Major League appearance since September 2012, and retired all four batters he faced.
Korecky was designated to make room for Marcus Stroman, who will be recalled from Triple-A Buffalo on Saturday for his first MLB start against the Royals.
In 22 games with the Bisons this season, Korecky had impressed, going 3-1 with a 0.29 ERA and five saves.
Jamie Ross is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.