Blue Jays exercise $1.2M option on Jose Molina

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From John Lott of Toronto’s National Post comes word that the Blue Jays have exercised catcher Jose Molina’s $1.2 million option for the 2011 season.

No surprise here.  John Buck had an exceptional 2010 campaign as the Blue Jays’ starting catcher, tallying 20 homers and an 802 OPS over 409 at-bats, but he will be a free agent this offseason and is expected to land a multi-year contract with another club.

With that knowledge, the Jays decided to lock up Molina for one more year and use him in a platoon with young backstop J.P. Arencibia for the first few months of 2011.  If Arencibia continues to develop as expected, he should be the starter in Toronto by the All-Star break.

Molina, 35, hit .246/.304/.377 this past season with six homers in 167 at-bats.  Arencibia, 24, slugged 32 home runs in 412 at-bats for Triple-A Las Vegas.

Blue Jays could move Jaime Garcia to bullpen

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Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi reports that the Blue Jays are considering moving starter Jaime Garcia to the bullpen. If they go that route, Sam Gaviglio would start in Garcia’s place on Sunday against the Angels.

Garcia, 31, has struggled to a 6.16 ERA with a 56/31 K/BB ratio in 61 1/3 innings over 13 starts this season. Gaviglio, meanwhile, has a 3.75 ERA with 35 striekouts and 11 walks in 36 innings across six starts and two relief appearances for the Jays this year.

Garcia inked a one-year, $10 million contract with the Jays in February. The deal includes a club option for the 2019 season worth $10 million with a $2 million buyout.