Blue Jays’ Oh Seung-hwan tosses 8th straight scoreless outing amid trade rumors

July 26, 2018
In this Associated Press photo, Oh Seung-hwan of the Toronto Blue Jays throws a pitch against the Minnesota Twins in the top of the ninth inning of a Major League Baseball regular season game at Rogers Centre in Toronto on July 24, 2018. (Yonhap)

In this Associated Press photo, Oh Seung-hwan of the Toronto Blue Jays throws a pitch against the Minnesota Twins in the top of the ninth inning of a Major League Baseball regular season game at Rogers Centre in Toronto on July 24, 2018. (Yonhap)

SEOUL, July 25 (Yonhap) — Toronto Blue Jays’ South Korean reliever Oh Seung-hwan has tossed his eighth scoreless outing amid trade rumors.

The right-hander worked a clean ninth inning against the Minnesota Twins in the Jays’ 5-0 loss at Rogers Centre in Toronto on Tuesday (local time).

Replacing Aaron Loup to begin the top of the ninth, Oh got Jorge Polanco to pop out to third and then struck out Bobby Wilson. Joe Mauer then flied out to left field for the final out.

Oh needed just 14 pitches, nine of them strikes, as he lowered his ERA from 2.74 to 2.68 in 47 innings. He has 55 strikeouts and 10 walks for the season.

Oh is tied for fifth in the American League (AL) with 48 appearances.

The 36-year-old hasn’t given up an earned run since giving up one against the Detroit Tigers on July 2. He has a 1.04 ERA in nine appearances this month.

Since getting touched up for six earned runs in 1 2/3 innings on June 2 and June 5 combined, Oh has limited opponents to only two earned runs in 20 2/3 innings for a 0.87 ERA, with 26 strikeouts against one walk.

Having enjoyed a solid stretch with his club stuck in fourth place in the AL East at 46-54, Oh has emerged as a potential trade candidate before the July 31 deadline. Contenders who could use some relief help down the stretch may have a spot in their bullpen for Oh, who was a closer for parts of the two previous seasons with the St. Louis Cardinals. He recorded 39 saves for the Red Birds, after picking up 80 in two years with Japan’s Hanshin Tigers and a record 277 saves in nine years with the Samsung Lions in South Korea.

Oh signed a one-year deal with the Jays in February worth U$1.75 million, with a club option for 2019 worth $2.5 million.

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