A.J. Griffin was supposed to be the Rangers' fifth starter until Yu Darvish returned and bumped him from the rotation — probably either down to Triple-A or out on the street.
Yeah, that ain't happening.
Griffin has been the Rangers' best starter this year, including Cole Hamels, and on Monday evening in Toronto — a building that should still haunt the Rangers — Griffin owned the Blue Jays' potent lineup and gave up just one run in six innings while fanning a career-high nine batters using a new curveball that struggled to break 70 mph on the gun.
It was simply poetic to see Griffin fan Texas' Public Enemy No. 1 Jose Bautista looking on a slow, sweeping curve and send Bautista into a hissy fit. Who needs to hit him when you get that sweet revenge?
Griffin lowered his season ERA to 2.32 through his five starts. In those five, he's thrown 31 innings, so just above six innings per outing.
The Rangers have discussed an unorthodox six-man rotation when Darvish returns, but if they opt to stick with five guys, the odd man out definitely won't be Griffin. And that's a huge bonus given the expectations when they brought in the former A's pitcher who hadn't pitched in two seasons.
Have yourself a day, A.J. You deserve it.