The Blue Jays will be playing in the postseason for the first time since 1993, and while the offseason is still a ways away, the team is expected to have interest in pending free-agent Doug Fister, according to Jeff Blair of Sportsnet.
Fister, 31, will be a free agent at the end of this season and is coming off of one of the worst seasons of his career. In 103 innings this season, Fister has a 4.19 ERA, a career high 10.5 H/9 rate, 2.6 BB/9 rate and a 5.5 K/9 rate and he lost his spot in the Washington Nationals rotation.
There could be a reason for this down year, as Fister spent a month on the disabled list with forearm tightness. Fister's walk and home-run rates jumped to the highest they have been since 2009. Conversely, his groundball rate dropped to the lowest it's been since 2009. Combined those numbers, a groundball pitcher and the shaky Nationals defense and it's no surprise that Fister struggled this year.
For the Blue Jays, this wouldn't be the first time that general manager Alex Anthopolous tried to acquire Fister. Back during the 2013-14 season while Fister was with the Tigers, Anthopolous tried trading for the right-hander. Detroit felt that the Blue Jays could match the value they were looking for, and they ended up moving Fister to Washington.
Mark Buehrle is set to retire. David Price and Marco Estrada are impending free agents. The only three rotation spots that the Blue Jays have locked up are taken by R.A. Dickey, Marcus Stroman and Drew Hutchison. Fister, at age 31, would be a good fit in the Rogers Centre, if he can get back to his old groundball ways. The Blue Jays have solid infield defense that would play to Fister's tendencies well, making it obvious why the Blue Jays would want to add him to their rotation for next season.