Toronto Blue Jays right-hander Alek Manoah, who hasn't pitched in a game in a month's time, is now regarded as "highly unlikely" to appear again this season, according to Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet. Manoah has been undergoing medical testing on his knee, back, and quad, and while no structural damage was found, the combination of those physical issues are "leading him to prioritize rest and recovery," per Nicholson-Smith's source.
If this is the end of Manoah's season, it closes the book on one of the year's most disappointing individual efforts. In 19 starts, he amassed a 5.87 ERA (72 ERA+) and a 1.34 strikeout-to-walk ratio. He recorded just four quality starts all year, with two of those coming way back in April. The Blue Jays demoted him to the complex league in June so that he could undergo an overhaul. He returned to make six more appearances, during which he compiled a 4.91 ERA and a 1.82 strikeout-to-walk ratio -- improvements, if not quite what the Jays desired.
Manoah, 25, finished third in American League Cy Young Award voting last season. He entered this year having tallied a 2.60 ERA (156 ERA+) and a 3.37 strikeout-to-walk ratio over his first 51 career big-league outings. Manoah can now only hope that an extended offseason will afford him the opportunity to rest, reset, and rediscover what previously made him one of the more promising young right-handed pitchers in the majors.
The Blue Jays, for their part, still have a real chance at making it to the postseason without Manoah. They entered Monday with an 80-63 mark on the regular season, putting them a game up on the Seattle Mariners for the second wild-card spot. They're 1.5 games up on the Texas Rangers, who, as of this moment, represent the first team out of the AL playoff picture.