After sustaining a shoulder injury that has literally sucked the last two seasons or so out of Dustin McGowan, it appears that there could be some light at the end of the tunnel.
McGowan, who underwent shoulder surgery last year, has had a long road back to the Majors, but to his credit, he has kept on the horse and the journey could come to an end in the next few months.
Over the past few weeks McGowan has begun throwing about every third or fourth day. Each time out Blue Jays management have noted that McGowan has increased his consistency, arm strength and overall movement on his pitches.
Best part of all of this, he has not suffered a setback like the previous time he attempted a comeback.
In his most recent extended spring training game, McGowan pitched to three Pirates players, all of whom struck out. McGowan pitches 15 pitches, nine of which were for strikes, which included what a scout said to be one of the nastiest cutters he's ever seen, registering at an amazing 95 mph.
With extending spring training set to end June 8, McGowan will begin his Major League rehab which lasts a maximum of 30 days. After those 30 days, the Jays will either have to add him to their active roster, or risk losing him via waivers.
McGowan is out of options, but luckily for him and Blue Jays fans, the bullpen is in dire need of a consistent power arm, and McGowan could be the remedy.
Now exclusively being used as a reliever, McGowan's four-pitch repertoire which includes a 96 mph fastball, a devastating curveball, a cutter and a change-up, should help him immensely in the bullpen.
McGowan's days as a front line starter are most likely over, but his days as a legit option out of the bullpen appear to be re-surfacing as we speak.
From all Jays fans, we wish him the best of luck in his rehab and hope to see him after the All Star Break.