Thornton is one of the few remaining pitchers remaining from the opening day rotation and there have certainly been ups and downs for him this season but the team might have at least a mid-level starter to work with going forward.
What continues to be an issue for him is when he goes up against teams above .500 but not every start against a team above .500 has been a disaster either.
In his most recent start against the New York Yankees, Thornton pitched six innings allowing only one run on three hits while striking out six. That should be enough to get the win but unfortunately, the Blue Jays were stifled by Masahiro Tanaka.
Earlier this month I wrote how you would rather see your pitcher lose a game like that rather than blowing a six-run lead like Thornton did against Tampa Bay. For the 25-year-old to prove he can be counted on in the rotation he will have to show that he can get over the hump against teams over .500, it’s really that simple.
The Blue Jays did not invest a lot in Thornton after trading Aledmys Diaz to the Houston Astros for him but considering what he has been able to show, it would be safe to say he’ll likely return in a similar role in the rotation next season.