Toronto Blue Jays left handed reliever Aaron Loup burst onto the major league scene last season unbeknownst to even the most seasoned Jays supporter. Loup dominated hitters in his debut season posting a tidy 2.64 ERA in 33 appearances in 2012. The 25 year old hurler held left handed batters to a .203 batting average working out of the Jays pen.
Loup continued where he left off this spring utilizing his fastball, change-up and slider effectively forming a formidable lefty duo with Darren Oliver. Loup has a 1.29 ERA in seven appearances this spring.
The reliever was drafted in the 9th round of the 2009 amateur baseball draft by the Jays, paying his dues in the minors until the opportunity presented itself in July last season. Prior to the promotion, Loup was pitching for the double A New Hampshire Fisher Cats where he earned a 2.78 earned run average in 37 appearances striking out 8.5 hitters per nine innings.
Loup was never mentioned in any top prospect rankings or organizational depth charts having only pitched one inning prior in spring training, taking the bump in a lone inning in Grapefruit League action in 2012. However, that did not stand in the way of Loup being named the Blue Jays “2012 Rookie of the Year.”
Baseball is about making the most of the opportunities presented and Aaron Loup has definitely done that. Now he finds himself securely cemented in the Blue Jays bullpen entering the 2013 season.
Clayton Richer covers the Toronto Blue Jays for Rant Sports. Follow and interact with him on Twitter at @MLBHotCorner.