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Blue Jays pick up Grilli’s 2017 option

Toronto will keep a key to the back-end of its bullpen.

MLB: ALCS-Cleveland Indians at Toronto Blue Jays Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

Toronto exercised reliever Jason Grilli’s option for 2017, the club announced Saturday. Grilli will earn $3 million next season.

Though Grilli is about to turn 40, he has proven to be an effective bullpen option. Over 42.0 innings with the Blue Jays last season, he pitched to a 3.64 ERA and 4.29 FIP. Grilli seemed to benefit from the change in environment after opening the season with the Braves. Over 17.0 innings with Atlanta, he pitched to a 5.29 ERA and 4.44 FIP.

Grilli signed a two-year, $7 million deal to remain in Atlanta at the end of the 2014 season. The option was included in that deal.

Despite struggling for the first few seasons of his major league career, Grilli has emerged as a consistent back-end of the bullpen option. He’s pitched to a career 4.09 ERA and 3.83 FIP.

Grilli first became a durable late-innings option with the Pirates in 2013 and has been called upon in the later innings since.