Scott Copeland, the former Southern Miss ace and onetime big leaguer, is still taking the mound every fifth day for the New Orleans Baby Cakes, Miami’s Triple-A affiliate. The 6-foot-3 right-hander, 29, worked 7 2/3 innings on Thursday night, yielding just two runs with eight strikeouts but getting no decision. He is 8-10 with a 5.31 ERA, a number inflated by a couple of bad outings. Copeland was a horse at USM in 2010, winning his first 11 decisions and earning Conference USA Tournament MVP honors. Drafted by Baltimore in the 21st round in 2010, he was released in 2012 and signed with Toronto. He spent parts of five seasons in the Blue Jays’ system and got his cup of coffee in the big leagues – with several refills, actually – for the Jays in 2015. He was up and down from Triple-A Buffalo to Toronto multiple times that season and managed to get into five MLB games, going 1-1, 6.46. He went to Korea for a stint in 2016, returned and re-signed with Toronto. He became a free agent again last off-season and signed a minor league deal with the Marlins. Copeland has a career minor league ledger of 60-62, 4.18 over 174 games, 57 of those in Triple-A, where you can smell the big league coffee but not quite taste it.
The elevator ride continues for Scott Copeland, the former Southern Miss pitcher, but he can’t really complain about these ups and downs. The Blue Jays recalled Copeland from Triple-A Buffalo to start today’s game against Miami at Rogers Centre. This is Copeland’s fourth call-up since May 2, when he made his big league debut. He went back to Buffalo on May 4, back to Toronto on May 18, back to Buffalo on May 28, back to Toronto on June 2, then back to Buffalo on June 3. Before today, Copeland had only pitched in two games for the Jays, both in relief, and hadn’t allowed a run over three innings. He is 4-1 with a 1.97 ERA for Buffalo. Originally drafted by Baltimore, Copeland signed with Toronto as a minor league free agent in the summer of 2012. P.S. Tampa Bay has announced that Desmond Jennings will undergo arthroscopic surgery today on his troublesome left knee. It’s unclear when the Itawamba Community College product might play again. He has been out since April 26. He missed the last month of 2014 because of issues with the same knee.