Sunday was quite a day for the New Hampshire Fisher Cats starting rotation. For two starters, in particular.
Righthander Chad Jenkins, the Jays 1st round pick in 2009, pitched into the 6th against the Red Sox, picking up the 10-4 win as the Jays took two of three from Boston. Making only his second start of the year at any level, the recently re-activated Jenkins was charged with a pair of runs in 5 innings, giving up 7 hits and 1 walk, while striking out two. Jenkins told Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star that he threw fastballs and changeups the whole game. Jenkins pitched reasonably well in an audition with the club when injuries ravaged the pitching staff last summer, recording a 1-3 record with a 4.50 ERA, and 1.34 WHIP.
Meanwhile, lefthander Sean Nolin was also making his second start of the year for New Hampshire, tossing 6 scoreless innings as the Fisher Cats topped Trenton, 4-0. Nolin allowed 4 hits, walking 2 and striking out 8. Some pre-season rankings had Nolin as one of the first prospects to be summoned to the big club if any of the starters encountered difficulties, but a leg injury suffered near the end of spring training held that timetable back. Nolin has been described as not having overwhelming stuff, but he has an advanced feel for pitching. It's likely that the parent club may prefer to keep Nolin in AA for a few more starts, but it appears he's close to being ready for a call-up to the major leagues.
And there's more good news, of course, on the way for the Fisher Cats, with last year's first round pick Marcus Stroman just a bit more than a week away from serving out his suspension, and likely on the way to New Hampshire's starting rotation.