"He just needs to go down and pitch. He's been that one guy, the forgotten man down there. That's just the way it is," Blue Jays manager John Gibbons said.
Loup surrendered a pair of hits and an earned run over two-thirds of an inning in the Blue Jays' loss to the Yankees on Saturday. Over 48 games (36 1/3 innings), the 27-year-old has posted a 5.20 ERA.
This season has been a tough one for the left-hander, who was a key part of the Blue Jays' bullpen the past two seasons. Loup had become known as the man with the rubber arm for his ability to pitch frequently without tiring. But he hasn't been able to recapture his previous success, which saw him post a 2.47 ERA over 64 games (69 1/3 innings) in 2013 and a 3.15 ERA over 71 games (68 2/3 innings) in '14.
"He's been one of the guys who would take the ball every day and you could count on him, no complaining. He was reliable," Gibbons said. "He didn't come with that mysterious ailment when he was fatigued, and there's a lot of guys that do that. He got ridden pretty hard. Basically he needs to go down and pitch and get on a little program."
Optioning Loup shrinks the Toronto bullpen back to seven relievers. It's likely the team will promote an outfielder considering it's without a backup at any of the three outfield positions.