Camp Report: Accardo on the Bubble
Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Jeremy Accardo (Getty Images)

Posted Feb 25, 2007

The Blue Jays came into spring training saying they'll take the best 12 pitchers in camp north when the season starts.

It's no idle threat. That means there will be more competition for the spots in the bullpen than originally thought. One pitcher who will have to produce this spring and pitch his way on to the team is right-hander Jeremy Accardo, acquired last year in the deal that sent disgruntled DH Shea Hillenbrand and right-hander Vinnie Chulk to the Giants.

The Jays love Accardo's live arm -- he consistently throws in the mid-90s -- but would like to see more consistency. In 27 appearances with the Jays last season, Accardo allowed 38 hits in 28 2/3 innings and a .325 opponents' batting average.

Simply put, he has to locate the ball better.

"He's fighting for a job," was the blunt assessment of general manager J.P. Ricciardi.

Manager John Gibbons likes his arm but also wants better results.

"He needs a strong spring," Gibbons said. "The bullpen is up for grabs a little bit. We're going to take the best team north." It might be one without Accardo.

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