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Bye, Juan.

In an odd, that''s-gonna-fail stab at  addressing a problematic hole in left field, earlier today the Los Angeles Dodgers acquired right-handed "hitting" outfielder Juan Rivera and cash from the Jays for a player to be named or cash. In a related move, to create roster space, LA OF Marcus Thames was designated for assignment.

In another thread, long-time Bauxite MatO captured this deal perfectly with the comment, "Who made the Rivera deal?  The bankruptcy judge? "

Rivera to Dodgers | 160 comments | Create New Account
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China fan - Tuesday, July 12 2011 @ 06:37 PM EDT (#238547) #
Since Anthopoulos will never disclose the details, it might be fun to speculate on what the deal actually entails  (although it's obviously a very minor exchange).  Rivera plus cash in exchange for a PTBNL or cash:   so the Jays are maybe paying half of the $2-million remaining on Rivera's salary this year, and in exchange they are allowed to choose anyone from the low-A affiliate of the Dodgers after the Dodgers have protected their favorite 10 players on the team.  Is that plausible?  And if Rivera plays 60 games for the Dodgers this year, the Dodgers are allowed to protect only 6 players on their low-A affiliate, and refund the $1-million to the Jays.   Something like that maybe??
Kelekin - Tuesday, July 12 2011 @ 06:49 PM EDT (#238548) #
That's quite elaborate...
TamRa - Tuesday, July 12 2011 @ 07:02 PM EDT (#238549) #
I assume nothing at all. I do kind of wonder if we paid all of his remaining pay would the give us DeJesus but i'm expecting something that amounts to nothing.



Forkball - Tuesday, July 12 2011 @ 07:23 PM EDT (#238550) #
Presumably the Dodgers can't take on much, if any, salary.  As such the Jays are probably paying Rivera's salary and getting a C level prospect in A ball or below.

If Rivera were worth something the Jays wouldn't have released him.

TamRa - Tuesday, July 12 2011 @ 08:47 PM EDT (#238554) #
technically they DIDN'T release him.
brent - Tuesday, July 12 2011 @ 09:04 PM EDT (#238555) #
It was pretty much inevitable that this would happen with Rivera, it was just a matter of timing. I'll be a lot more excited when the team can do this with E5- here's to hoping.
hypobole - Tuesday, July 12 2011 @ 11:31 PM EDT (#238560) #

Rivera can still hit left handed pitching, which is why the Dodgers acquired him to replace Thames who has stopped doing so.

2008-2010 Rivera vs LHP - .282/.334/.515

2011 Rivera vs LHP - .327/.400/.509

2011 Thames vs LHP - .167/.231/.306

Used strictly as a platoon bat, there is offensive value in Rivera (although nowhere near $5.2 million/season worth)

katman - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 01:32 AM EDT (#238562) #
Isn't Marcus Thames Eric's brother? That would be dark irony...
Original Ryan - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 02:02 AM EDT (#238563) #
They're not related. They even pronounce "Thames" differently.
TamRa - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 02:30 AM EDT (#238564) #
Someone 'splain this to me:

RGriffinStar Farrell said rotation Reyes-Villanueva-Romero-Morrow. Will use the off-day to flip Romero and Reyes and get Ricky back in top spot.


ok, to make that more visual:

here's the rotation as announced without a "flip"

7/14 - Reyes

7/15 - Villianueva

7/16 - Romero

7/17 - Morrow

7/18 - off

7/19 - Cecil

7/20 - Reyes

7/21 - Villianueva

7/22 - Romero

7/23 - Morrow

7/24 - Cecil

7/25 - off

and so forth.

And here's what happens with a straight flip as everyone is reporting Farrell plans-

7/14 - Reyes

7/15 - Villianueva

7/16 - Romero

7/17 - Morrow

7/18 - off

7/19 - Cecil

7/20 - Romero (on three days??)

7/21 - Villianueva

7/22 - Reyes

7/23 - Morrow

7/24 - Cecil

7/25 - off

Look again at Griff's comment: "get Ricky back in top spot"

Is our rotation Romero/Villianueva/Reyes/Morrow/Cecil
or is it Romero/Morrow/Cecil/Reyes/Villianueva

the latter fits with what we know of how the team sees the pitchers (and yes, I know full well that the ordering doesn't REALLY matter as a reflection of who's better than who) so why the flip? If he does place some value in "the top spot"?

is it important enough to have Romero go on three days? Let's say we simply haven't been told that CV will go on the 20th (his fifth day) to avoid that (which is not a simple "flip) then you are still adjusting the rotation to get Reyes in between Romero and Morrow - why?

Farrell said yesterday they had mapped out the rest of the season to optimize match-ups and so forth on their starters. But i don't see a single thing down the road where you gain a positive match-up (mostly that would be Romero against one of the big three instead of Reyes) by doing the flip.

He might have a good reason for flipping them but it's not evident in the quotes I've seen.

Magpie - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 07:59 AM EDT (#238565) #
No. Romero is starting tomorrow against the Yankees. It's Reyes' turn, but he's switching with Romero. That's the flip. Kind of an obvious thing to do, I would have thought.
R Billie - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 09:57 AM EDT (#238566) #
Any Rivera deal was likely to be about how much money the Jays could save on his remaining year. Anything else they get back would have to be considered a bonus.

Even with his decent split against LHP, Rivera has too many limitations, especially defensively to be much value to most teams. If the Jays get a decent player at a position where they are thin in the organization, then good for them.

I wouldn't hold out hope for anything significant considering the Jays already have a lot of quality prospects in the low minors.
uglyone - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 10:23 AM EDT (#238569) #
I don't think the jays care about saving money there at all, actually. i'm sure they're eating the whole contract. the dodgers certainly have no money to give us.

rivera's a useful enough piece that can play two positions where the dodgers need to upgrade pretty badly, especially against lhp.

i'm pretty sure the guy who netted us a decent prospect like uviedo for eveland will get us something similar for rivera.
Wildrose - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 10:39 AM EDT (#238571) #
Per Bob Elliott ;

"The outfielder was dealt to the L.A. Dodgers for roughly $175,000, with the Jays paying about $2.095 million remaining on RIveraís contract."



bpoz - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 10:44 AM EDT (#238572) #
Rivera's 1B defense was quite good. He historically hits better in the 2nd half. So there is a way for him to get playing time, which I prefer to go to younger players on the Jays. I hope he catches fire, that way LAD can trade him in August for something decent which maximizes his value to the LAD & Jays. AA has done complicated deals before, so he may have a claim on River's value increasing, if it does.

Believable?
Chuck - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 10:47 AM EDT (#238573) #
The first episode of the new Curb Your Enthusiasm season had a Frank McCourt-like character in it owning the Dodgers. Larry arranges a divorce lawyer for him. Things don't go well (or is this superfluous?).

I am guessing that the return on Rivera will be one bag of baseballs if he does poorly and two bags of baseballs if he does well. Some platoon time in LF, and perhaps 1B, awaits the man who tore up lefties in his, ahem, 55 ABs. Party on Garth.
Chuck - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 10:49 AM EDT (#238574) #

Believable?

Only if you have the keys to Mylegacy's liquor cabinet.

 

bpoz - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 11:02 AM EDT (#238576) #
Do I get a decent prospect back, someone in V Low A ball or an out of option former hotshot, to be nurtured in 2012, if I drink a scotch with rose colored glasses on.
Dr B - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 01:23 PM EDT (#238584) #
choose anyone from the low-A affiliate of the Dodgers after the Dodgers have protected their favorite 10 players on the team. Is that plausible?

If you replace the words "anyone" and "players" with the word "baseballs", yes.

(Though one can always dream.)
TamRa - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 02:55 PM EDT (#238588) #
No. Romero is starting tomorrow against the Yankees. It's Reyes' turn, but he's switching with Romero. That's the flip. Kind of an obvious thing to do, I would have thought.

that's not how Shi is reporting it.
R Billie - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 05:04 PM EDT (#238589) #
If the Jays are taking on that much of Rivera's remaining salary then hopefully they're getting something.  Although I suppose saving $175K is better than saving nothing.  Since Juan was DFA'ed, I doubt they were in much of a position to negotiate.
Magpie - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 05:15 PM EDT (#238590) #
OK, I see. ESPN still has Romero listed for Thursday, which seemed a no-brainer to me.

Anyway - it beats me. Rather than have 8 days off, take 10 - and then come back on 3? The point certainly eludes me...
BlueJayWay - Wednesday, July 13 2011 @ 08:53 PM EDT (#238597) #
ESPN now has Reyes going Thursday, followed by Morrow then Romero.
Thomas - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 07:43 AM EDT (#238599) #
The Jays website also reports it will go Reyes-Morrow-Romero.
uglyone - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 09:42 AM EDT (#238601) #
I'll say it - imo it's idiotic to come out of the allstar break with everyone rested and hoping to start the second half on the right foot....and actually choose to start off with your worst starter, and a guy who has looked every bit an aaaer his last few starts. especially against the yanks.

if anything, they should use the upcoming offday to skip jojo completely.
Jonny German - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 09:56 AM EDT (#238603) #
I agree. And I'll speculate it's a matter of AA being too cute, trying to showcase JoJo for a trade.
Mike Green - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 10:08 AM EDT (#238605) #
Yep.  If you look at Reyes' BBRef page, you'll actually seem helpful comp names like J.P. Howell and J.C. Romero.  It's obvious what the key is for Reyes- he has to change his name to J. J. Reyes and move to the pen. 
BlueJayWay - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 10:37 AM EDT (#238606) #
Yeah.  The Jays won't skip Jo-Jo, since they're obviously trying to trade him, but to start him the first day back seems almost obnoxious.
92-93 - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 12:01 PM EDT (#238611) #
It's consistent with the nonsense the front office has fed us all year. This is what you guys signed up for.
D. King - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 12:08 PM EDT (#238612) #

Mistrial in the Roger Clemens affair.

I don't understand the nuances of these legal procedures, but this seems pretty silly.

 

 

Magpie - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 12:20 PM EDT (#238614) #
This is what you guys signed up for.

Not sure I understand. Do you have anyone in particular in mind or are you just sliming everyone in general?
92-93 - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 12:25 PM EDT (#238615) #
The people who scolded me all winter because I wanted the team to make an effort to win baseball games instead of setting itself up for 2015.

If you were happy about the Shaun Marcum and Vernon Wells trades and the lack of spending in the FA market it shouldn't matter to you one iota whether JoJo Reyes starts Thursday or Saturday. In fact, you should be upset if AA DIDN'T give scouts as many looks as possible for Reyes and if Romero was being leaned more heavily on in a lost season.
Magpie - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 12:26 PM EDT (#238616) #
I don't understand the nuances of these legal procedures

The prosecution showed a video that included - in passing, but there nonetheless - material that the judge had already declared was inadmissible. Which seems just astonishingly careless.
bpoz - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 12:32 PM EDT (#238617) #
I had not heard that AA was trying to trade Reyes. Usually he works in silence.
D. King - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 12:35 PM EDT (#238618) #

Which seems just astonishingly careless.

This is what I mean.  I am shocked that the prosecution would play this video in its original form, even though any kid with 10 minutes of free time could have properly edited it to remove the inadmissable material.  The issue moves beyond "astonishing" and into "is this a joke?" territory when it is revealed that when the judge ordered the prosecution to stop playing the tape it was in fact paused on a picture of Ms. Pettite's testimony, which was then displayed proudly for the jury to view until they were chased out of the courtroom. 

The Coen brothers should make a movie about this.

Shane - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 12:42 PM EDT (#238619) #
  "I had not heard that AA was trying to trade Reyes. Usually he works in silence."    Dudes intelligent, that's all I needed to know to figure it.
Magpie - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 12:46 PM EDT (#238622) #
If you were happy about the Shaun Marcum and Vernon Wells trades

You would rather those trades hadn't happened?

Anyway, I could have used your help the other day, I was trying to explain that the Wells deal represented a downgrade for 2011 and maybe 2012 as well, and I encountered... some resistance. And I did see it coming, and said so, back in January:

In ten months, this team may be wrapping up up a 74-88 season and Shaun Marcum and Vernon Wells may be joining Roy Halladay in the post-season. There will be grumbling.

That prediction is still alive!
92-93 - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 12:58 PM EDT (#238623) #
My response to the Marcum trade paints my feelings nicely. Nothing has changed:

92-93 - Monday, December 06 2010 @ 02:19 AM EST (#226848) #
This is a good trade if it's followed by the trading of Hill, Lind, Bautista, Escobar, and any reliever you can get value for. Heck, why not eat 3/4 of Vernon's salary so you can trade him for prospects too? This way the team will be flush with prospects ready to make an impact in 2014, and none of them will be blocked. Come to think of it Brandon Morrow is already in arbitration too, I wonder what we can get for him.
MatO - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 12:59 PM EDT (#238624) #
Showcasing a player tends to work much better when that player has something to showcase.
uglyone - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 01:00 PM EDT (#238625) #
was Villy nudgenudgewinkwink part of the Marcum trade?


Villy: 78.1ip, 5-1, 1.09whip, 2.99era
Marcum: 111.2ip, 7-3, 1.13whip, 3.39era
Magpie - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 01:14 PM EDT (#238626) #
My response to the Marcum trade paints my feelings nicely.

I gather that you would have preferred an attempt to improve on the 85 wins Gaston squeezed out of the 2010 team and actually contend in 2011. I feel your pain, but I don't see the horses. I think it would have required trading the prospects - Snider, Drabek, Arencibia - and bringing in some major league ready talent.

Which is certainly not an approach that I'd want to dismiss. I have an extremely strong bias in favour of trying to win this year - no matter what year it is, what team you have, what division you're in. I also have a very strong preference for baseball players, as opposed to prospects. It's a very risky way to go, of course.
Magpie - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 01:17 PM EDT (#238627) #
was Villy nudgenudgewinkwink part of the Marcum trade?

It was a separate transaction, three days earlier.
Ryan Day - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 01:20 PM EDT (#238628) #
There's no reason a team has to take an all-or-nothing approach. Just because you can't win 95 games doesn't mean you should settle for losing 100. Developing young players is vital to any club, but I'm not sure Toronto could handle a "'We're Not Even Trying" season or two. Attendance is mediocre now, and that's with a respectable team.
uglyone - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 01:31 PM EDT (#238629) #
It was a separate transaction, three days earlier.

how often do two teams have two "completely separate" transactions within days of each other?
bpoz - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 01:40 PM EDT (#238630) #
92-93, I think you have a right to be upset or disappointed in the way things are. AA did not do much to help the team win in 2010. For 2011 he rebuilt the pen but made potentially weakening moves by committing to inexperience at C & 1B. Nonsense is not so harsh a word in this light.

I liked the Marcum & Wells trades.
IMO Morrow, Y Escobar, Gose & Lawrie are all players with a lot of talent . Maybe AA over paid.
AA called Wells contract an Albatross. He may not have given detailed reasons but IMO he does not want 1 player owed a huge % of the total budget because in some years (you need it every year) that player won't produce as a super star. IMO 1 player cannot carry a team and that is what may be expected.
I see youth & talent in the rotation & youth in the lineup for the 2nd half of 2011. IMO 2nd & CF have under performed so far this year, with no near term solution. That leaves 7 positions that don't need immediate addressing, more or less. which leaves 5 positions of 12 for consideration & 2 more for depth.

I did not feel the 2011 team was capable of 96 wins, but I hoped 91-93 wins if we got them would somehow get us into the playoffs. The other teams would have to play badly. I also did not want to sacrifice any youth in the effort.

I really like AA's silence because it works for him. He also explained his reasons for being quiet.




Magpie - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 01:44 PM EDT (#238631) #
how often do two teams have two "completely separate" transactions within days of each other?

It's certainly happened before - the two trades with the Braves (Alexander for Ward, Acker for Johnson) back in 1986 leaps to my mind. I assume that the two teams are talking mainly about one thing, and other players get mentioned along the way. Villaneueva for a PTBNL happened first because of the arbitration deadline (the Brewers hadn't decided whether to offer it or not), while the two sides were still hemming and hawing over Lawrie-Marcum.
Mike Green - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 01:45 PM EDT (#238632) #
Well, my view of the Wells' trade was that it actually made it more realistic that the team would compete before 2015 because a) Napoli is about as valuable as Vernon Wells at this point and b) the extra money could be put to good use. 

I could be wrong, but I am pretty sure that the return for Reyes will be negligible, and it's not like he's pulling down the big bucks.  I really don't see the connection between approving of the Wells' trade and lamenting the ongoing showcasing of Reyes. 
uglyone - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 01:58 PM EDT (#238633) #
anyone want to take a stab at guessing how different our record this year might be if we had let Lawrie and Thames (and even Cooper) break camp with the big squad, like they earned in ST?

why do I get the sinking feeling that this team is going to have a good enough second half (with good performances from those very kids being a big part of it) that we're going to be wondering whether keeping the kids down cost us a decent shot this season?
TamRa - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 02:05 PM EDT (#238635) #
Morrow in the second game now? Huh?

What happened to "we mapped it out"

Magpie - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 02:09 PM EDT (#238637) #
I don't even understand the concept of showcasing Reyes. And I wouldn't think you'd do it by having him pitch to the Yankees. There's a lot of ways that can go wrong...

It looks to me sometimes that Anthopoulos has been proceeding exactly as if he were Pat Gillick - in 1981. As if he had what was essentially an expansion team, and the only way forward was simply to acquire as many promising young players as he could, and see which ones worked out. When there are no expectations at all, you've got that opportunity. Gillick had it when he was first free to run the show (after Bavasi was gone), and Anthopoulos was the first GM since with the same moment of opportunity.

There were certainly no expectations whatsoever for his 2010 team - no one around here was optimistic enough to predict the 85 wins they'd actually finish with. Which was reasonable, after all. Anthopoulos took over a team that had just gone 75-87, after which his only really good player had demanded a trade. Hardly anyone expected them to play .500 ball. Lots of people expected 90+ losses. An expansion team.
Mike Green - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 02:17 PM EDT (#238638) #
It's kind of hard to pretend that you still have an expansion team when one of your players turns into the best player in the league overnight. 

The other important difference is that Gillick's young prospects, like Moseby and Barfield, were working out their kinks early on at the major league level.  There is no way that Anthopoulos would have allowed Moseby to have burned up his pre-arb years hitting .230. 

92-93 - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 02:19 PM EDT (#238639) #
Extra money? With Vernon the team's payroll would still be only 85m. I don't understand how people believe the front office when they say they intend on spending 120-140m yet at the same time think that Vernon's contract mattered in the grand scheme of things. Even worse is when people say that the trading of Wells allowed AA the flexibility to extend Bautista long term - does the team have money to spend, or not? Make up your minds. If they do, they could have kept Vernon and still had plenty of "extra money" to spend when the right opportunity presented itself.

The connection between Wells & Reyes is that most people clearly didn't care about the 2011 product, so I'm asking for some consistency. If you were happy the team traded Wells & Marcum then NOTHING this team does this year on the field should bother you in the slightest, let alone something as trivial as whether Reyes' first start comes on a Thursday or a Saturday.
John Northey - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 02:32 PM EDT (#238641) #
Well, Thames, Lawrie and Cooper might have been overmatched to start the year and sent down for the rest of the season as they try to figure out what went wrong.

Cooper's brief playing time here produced a 35 OPS+ and in Las Vegas he is getting onbase but without home run power (lots of doubles). I'd like to see him get a full shot, but if I was the Jays I'd have sent him to AAA to start the year as well since his OPS the past 2 years was sub-800 in AA and he had yet to face AAA pitching let along major league.

Thames is in his 3rd season as a pro, played over 60 games last year for the first time. He has torn the cover off down there, but it made sense to let him see a bit more minor league time before feeding him to the sharks. His 138 OPS+ in the majors suggests he might have been OK right away, but it is hardly unreasonable to make him get a bit of AAA time coming into 2011.

Lawrie had to learn a new position, and again had yet to play in AAA. It was a mistake to leave him down a few more days once the decision to call him up was made but understandable as that could've cost the Jays millions (early arbitration) for 2 or 3 more days in the majors. Just dumb luck caused him to be injured.

No question though that we have seen black holes that could've been filled and will be by prospects in the 2nd half. The split OPS+ (based on OPS+ vs league OPS+ at that position) is sub-80 at CF/LF/2B with 3B being at 92 (surprisingly high even factoring in Bautista's time there - must be a very bad year at 3B overall).

The Jays, on the other hand, have sOPS+ over 110 at 1B/CA/SS (131)/ and RF (161). Heck, even the DH is at 108 despite a 771 OPS (again, bad year for DH's).

To my thinking, leaving Thames/Lawrie/Cooper in AAA for at least April made a ton of sense. I could even see until June hit just to be sure they were for real. Checking transactions I see Thames up May 18th, then again on June 23rd for good. Cooper on April 29th, back down on May 15th. Lawrie was due up around June 8th which fits my time window but, as we all know, had that fracture happen instead. This suggests the Jays were ready to give these 3 a shot but just wanted them to experience a bit of AAA first (and probably delay free agency by a year).

As to the standings, the Jays are 5 back of Tampa Bay for 3rd, 10 back of the Yankees for the Wild Card and 11 behind the Red Sox for the division lead. I think, best case, the Jays would be up with Tampa but still well back of the Yanks and Sox. Whereas by leaving those 3 in the minors for at least 1-2 months the Jays gain the 2017 season out of all 3 by which time they better be contending. If not, well, nothing done today would help the team as that would mean they never gained the horses even with a ton of effort.
Matthew E - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 02:35 PM EDT (#238642) #
Well, nobody's happy that they traded Marcum. (Nobody in Toronto, anyway; I imagine there are people in Milwaukee who like it.) Who wanted Shaun Marcum run out of town? Nobody I ever heard.

I am happy they acquired Lawrie. Aren't you?

I'm not sure it was an even exchange of value. Maybe the Brewers won; maybe Toronto won. Don't know. I do think it was a reasonable way for the Jays to reallocate their resources and I think there's a good chance the trade will turn out to be a real smart move for the Jays. Can't tell yet.

AWeb - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 03:09 PM EDT (#238643) #

The Gord Ash era was full of seasons where the Jays went for it with inadequate players, the Ricciardi era was full of teams that were good and hoping for things to break right. Both of these eras worked out about the same (except one cost a lot more). Ash had the star hitters but never good enough pitching, Ricciardi the opposite.

I don't think Anthropoulos has established exactly what he will do long term, but I do worry that is becomes a perpetual "two years from now" situation. Rather than being good at finding the scrap heap veterans like Ricciardi, he's good at finding prospects, or so it appears. But neither strategy will work on it's own in this division - Tampa won because they found great scrap heap guys (Zobrist, Pena) and had great prospects pan out.

The Jays have a window right now - they have possibly the top player in baseball at his peak. This is exactly the break that Ricciardi flailed around looking for and never hit on, thus dooming his strategy to consistent good teams, but never great ones. If you go back to 2006, which seems more likely -  Alex Rios or Jose Bautista turning into a super-duper star? Anthropoulos has hit on one of the luckiest breaks in GM history, but unfortunately (for him) he wasn't really planning for it - he was apparently ready to do a tear down and restart from scratch. I would argue that's it's only Bautista's performance that has oddly forced the team to go off script and make an attempt to win sooner, at least half-heartedly.

I think I might be arguing that Ricciardi would in retrospect have been a better GM for the 2011/2012 Jays, assuming Bautista turned out the same. He was skilled at building teams without huge problems at positions (which made it hard to get better without a fluke like Bautista) and good pitching. Anthropoulos has stumbled into a spot where it turns out, they should have been going for it right now. His long-term strategy is better, and might still work out (although I also worry he'll be good at making a profit, instead of great teams), but it is frustrating to think about what might have been with decent production from 2B, 3B, CF, LF this year. It's not hard to construct a reasonable hypothetical team with a $80 million payroll being a lot better.

uglyone - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 03:17 PM EDT (#238645) #
I agree that this can't be AA "showcasing" Reyes - you don't do that against the Yanks. that's just silly.

I actually see Reyes starting tonight as not really a too-cute move by AA, but more of yet another too-clever-by-half move by farrell.

He's shown a propensity for overthinking these kinds of decisions and seemingly getting so bogged down in the trees that he loses sight of the forest.

Like when Thames was the hottest hitter in baseball, and our lineup was finally starting to warm up again, and had just beat up on the red sox in game 1....Farrell suddenly decided that game 2 was the right time to sit the redhot Thames for an icecold Patterson, to also move davis to the top of the order, and to move Escobar down to the 5-hole....just when the lineup was starting to click again for the first time in weeks. Of course, unsurprisingly to me, that resulted in a 3-4 game losing streak with little offensive production.

I find that Farrell gets so caught up in the minutiae that he fails to see the obvious - like the fact that his ingenious cutesy matchup decisions left him with Davis/Patterson and their sub-.300obps at the top of the order against Lester, while his obp leadoff guy hit 5th and his hottest hitter sat on the bench.......or like the fact that all of his clever "mapping out" of the rotation has resulted in him leading off the 2nd half against the Yanks with JoJo Fricken Reyes, his worst pitcher, when there's no reason to pitch him at all this series, or even this turn around the rotation.
uglyone - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 03:20 PM EDT (#238646) #
Extra money? With Vernon the team's payroll would still be only 85m. I don't understand how people believe the front office when they say they intend on spending 120-140m yet at the same time think that Vernon's contract mattered in the grand scheme of things. Even worse is when people say that the trading of Wells allowed AA the flexibility to extend Bautista long term - does the team have money to spend, or not? Make up your minds. If they do, they could have kept Vernon and still had plenty of "extra money" to spend when the right opportunity presented itself.

regardless of how much the jays are and will be willing to spend, dumping that Wells contract was always, ALWAYS a good move.
uglyone - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 03:28 PM EDT (#238648) #
John Northey - I agree with you 100% at every step of the way. Everything they did made sense, and was best for the team longterm.

But yet i'm still getting this feeling that when we look at the performances we get from the likes of Thames and Lawrie over the rest of this season, it's going to be hard not to argue that they would have been a big improvement to our first-half team......and the kicker there is that for all the sensible reasons we had to send them down, there's no denying that they did, in fact, EARN starting jobs with this team in spring training. there's no two ways about that.

And while I buy as well that having them up here would only have moved us up into Tampa territory right now, and not necessarily Yankee/Red Sox territory.....I have to think that even if we were in Tampa territory right now (especially based on key performances from elite talent youngsters), then right now there's no question that AA would be full-on looking to make some big trade deadline acquisitions, with out any reservations about it.

Maybe the team flops in the 2nd half and the kids don't contribute, but i have a sneaking feeling that this team will look closer to a contending team than a non-contending team in the 2nd half, and we're going to be wondering if sending down players who had earned their spot on the team was being....again....too clever by half.
ramone - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 03:49 PM EDT (#238649) #
"And I'll speculate it's a matter of AA being too cute, trying to showcase JoJo for a trade."

Maybe, but I have a hard time believing that anyone thinks that starting Reyes against the yanks will actually boosts his trade value or showcase anything.
Ron - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 03:59 PM EDT (#238650) #

Youíre the GM of the Jays, would you trade Brandon Morrow for Colby Rasmus?

I like Morrow but Iím getting a AJ Burnett vibe from him. Heís got elite stuff and should be challenging for the Cy Young every season but it hasnít and might not ever happen. The Cardinals probably donít view Rasmus as a untouchable player. 

Besides Rasmus, I think Gordon Beckham is another young player that should be targeted.

Gerry - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 04:00 PM EDT (#238651) #

While we can debate whether the Jays could have spent $120 mil in 2011 I don't think it was a good idea.  I believe the calculation that AA is working under is that Toronto is not one of the more desirable locations for free agents.  It's a different country for US born players, the early season weather is bad and you have to compete against the Red Sox and Yankees.  The top tier of free agents are generally not attracted to Toronto.  JP Ricciardi tried to work around this by overpaying for 2nd tier free agents but that didn't work.

I think AA believes you have to grow more talent internally than sign free agents, the free agents will be more attracted to come here if you have a talented base.

From time to time a top tier free agent might be willing to sign here, but until that happens you have to go with plan B.

ayjackson - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 04:02 PM EDT (#238652) #
Well whether he pitches Thursday versus the Yanks or Saturday, he was always going to pitch against them.  They do lean to the left don't they?
Ron - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 04:19 PM EDT (#238653) #
The top tier of free agents are generally not attracted to Toronto.

Are the top tier free agents generally not attracted to Toronto or is it the fact they rarely come here because the Jays rarely bid for them?

The last time the Jays made a bid for an elite FA was AJ Burnett (he was the most coveted FA SP available if you exclude Clemens since he was either going to re-up with the Astros or retire) and they were able to sign him  We can talk about the funny currency, lack of ESPN, cold Winters, etc.... but what really matters the most  to %99 of free agents is money. If the Jays are willing to pony up, I don't view the city of Toronto/Canada as a major stumblng block in getting free agents. As a matter of fact, Riccardi said the only person he tried to aquire that had reservations of playing in Canada was Matt Clement (who later signed with the Jays near the end of his career).
Mike Green - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 04:20 PM EDT (#238654) #
The Yankees this year have hit .252/.334/.439 against RHP and .271/.355/.457 against LHP. 
92-93 - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 04:24 PM EDT (#238655) #
I'd certainly rather have moved Morrow for Rasmus than Marcum for Lawrie.
MatO - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 04:31 PM EDT (#238656) #

Something that will become more and more of an issue is the turf at the Rogers Centre now that virtually all teams are playing on natural grass.  It`s one more thing that FA`s will consider a negative.  I`m sure there`s a way to get grass in the dome and I don`t think it would cost Vernon Wells dollars to do it.

Shane - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 04:39 PM EDT (#238657) #
  In regards to earlier kvetching in here about why Reyes is not being skipped etc. Mike Wilner:"Farrell: Reyes and Cecil will go B2B (back to back) in post-ASB rotation because Cecil and Romero are the most similar among the lefties. #Bluejays #jays" via Twitter    
uglyone - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 04:51 PM EDT (#238659) #
that has no bearing on them starting Reyes in this game.
MatO - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 04:57 PM EDT (#238660) #

because Cecil and Romero are the most similar among the lefties

Yes.  They both resemble competent major league starters.

smcs - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 06:09 PM EDT (#238663) #
I don't understand how people believe the front office when they say they intend on spending 120-140m yet at the same time think that Vernon's contract mattered in the grand scheme of things.

The ability to spend 120-140M is separate from the continuous desire to spend that same amount. Why pay Vernon Wells $86MM dollars when you could pay Rajai Davis a fraction of that? I fully believe that Rogers has the ability to spend 120-140M on salaries, if they desire. I also understand that they do not see the point in spending an extra $50M on essentially the same product. If, say, after the 2013 season, where the Jays have posted 88 wins, Anthopolous were to go to the owners and say we are one or two pieces away from contending, we want to spend $150M on Felix Hernandez, we believe he will propel us into the playoffs, I think that Rogers would say go for it. I think Anthopolous has the sense to know that Rogers is not necessarily unwilling to spend money, but that they are a tad gun-shy on spending very large amounts of money on one player. I also believe AA thinks that teams hurt themselves when they overspend on non-elite talent. Wait for the right player (or players) at the right time, and then go for it.

If you were happy the team traded Wells & Marcum then NOTHING this team does this year on the field should bother you in the slightest, let alone something as trivial as whether Reyes' first start comes on a Thursday or a Saturday.

Well, in general, it does bother me when the Jays are non-competitive. I went to both those Red Sox blowouts, and there was absolutely no way I would not be disappointed about seeing my team get beat 31-5 on aggregate (other than seeing Mike McCoy pitch. That was cool). There is a difference between knowing and accepting that your team will not be good in February and March, and then watching them not be good April thru September.
ramone - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 06:20 PM EDT (#238664) #
AA was just on PTS, said he's looking to add major league talent or near ready major league talent in any trades, not really after prospects. He also said he's open to obtaining a player who is a free agent at the end of the year if it was a player they would like to sign next year in order to give the player a chance to see the city and for the front office to evaluate the player while playing in Toronto. To me this part sounded like they had a specific player in mind, but that could just be me reading too much into it.

Also in classic AA style just to temper any enthusiasm AA said right now they are not close to any deals.
Shane - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 06:25 PM EDT (#238665) #
 
  • that has no bearing on them starting Reyes in this game.
   How so? I assume they must be trying to keep everyone pretty much on regular turns with days of rest, etc. So not sticking Reyes five starts from now was part of the kvetching. Anyways, matters not to me.  
  • Yes.  They both resemble competent major league starters.

Snark to Mike Wilner.

Flex - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 06:31 PM EDT (#238666) #
Jumping in here late, as usual, but I want to say I think people are forgetting a certain business aspect of Anthopoulos's approach. He has seen, not only that paying for an injection of free-agent talent doesn't get this team closer to contention, but also that it doesn't move the turnstiles. I believe that the approach he's taking is meant not only to refill the system with talent, but also to rebuild a fanbase. When you hear the front office talk, particularly Farrell lately, there's a lot of reference to the number of fans in the stands.

I believe that Anthopoulos thinks the best business-savvy approach ó which he has no-doubt sold to Beeston and the owners ó is to spend money at the same time and rate that the fans are giving it to them. Building a team with young talent allows excitement to build, and hopefully fans will start slowly trickling in as the talent does. In this way I think there is a parallel with Gillick in the late '80s and early '90s.
Kasi - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 07:02 PM EDT (#238667) #
I'm off the Rasmus hype train. I'd rather have Lawrie than him going forward as well.

http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/index.php/why-the-cardinals-cant-trade-colby-rasmus/

I think for the same reasons that the Cards can't trade him makes it hard for anyone trading for him. Also have heard his defense in center is fairly mediocre and that he might be moved to the corner, where Lawrie's bat clearly has more upside.
Gerry - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 08:01 PM EDT (#238668) #
Good planning by the Jays to start Reyes, Farrell must have known the Jays would score a lot of runs.
Shane - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 08:13 PM EDT (#238669) #
Yip. Reyes is good. Heck of a tradable commodity he is. He needs to be on a NL team, bad. I stand by in my mind, it was Gonzalez, Collins, and Pastronicky for Escobar. Still great trade.
smcs - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 09:01 PM EDT (#238670) #
The Jays are honoring 80s night by recreating the end of the 1987 season.
JC - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 09:04 PM EDT (#238671) #
Reyes down/Mills up, please.
Jonny German - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 10:16 PM EDT (#238672) #
I'd like to revise my earlier speculation. Clearly AA was not hoping to showcase JoJo for a trade, but rather for a claim-free trip through waivers. Well played, sir.
BlueJayWay - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 10:20 PM EDT (#238673) #
Well, I'm about ready for this Reyes thing to end.  I hope it is, for our sanity's sake.
scottt - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 11:05 PM EDT (#238675) #
Obviously, this was way too much run support for Romero.

Any words on Bautista's ankle?

Ryan Day - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 11:17 PM EDT (#238676) #
X-rays negative, he'll get an MRI in the morning. So not broken, but some degree of twisted/sprained.
ayjackson - Thursday, July 14 2011 @ 11:58 PM EDT (#238678) #
Bautista needs to get back on the field and earn his salary.  I don't see why he can't DH with a sore ankle, all he does is walk and trot.
Anders - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 02:43 AM EDT (#238679) #
While we can debate whether the Jays could have spent $120 mil in 2011 I don't think it was a good idea.  I believe the calculation that AA is working under is that Toronto is not one of the more desirable locations for free agents.  It's a different country for US born players, the early season weather is bad and you have to compete against the Red Sox and Yankees.  The top tier of free agents are generally not attracted to Toronto.  JP Ricciardi tried to work around this by overpaying for 2nd tier free agents but that didn't work.

I think more to the point, the free agent market is by far the least effective way to build a team. You are almost always overpaying for guys on the downside of their careers. The guys that signed for more than $30 million total money this offseason were Carl Crawford, Jayson Werth, Cliff Lee, Adrian Beltre, Adam Dunn, Derek Jeter, Victor Martinez, Paul Konerko and Rafael Soriano. Lee looks great (but its a ton of money for a pitcher), Beltre and Konerko look good, Martinez alright, and everyone else pretty much abysmal.

2009 is similar - Matt Holliday, John Lackey, Jason Bay, Chone Figgins,
2008 - Mark Teixeira, CC Sabathia (who got an opt out), AJ Burnett, Derek Lowe, Ryan Dempster, Manny Ramirez, K-Rod, Raul Ibanez, Oliver Perez, Milton Bradley, Rafael Furcal - much better, but still a lot of ugly misses.

Regardless of whether people want to come to Toronto or not (and most of the baseball guys see to like it well enough), the Free Agency game is generally not a winning strategy.
TamRa - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 03:24 AM EDT (#238683) #
Reyes down/Mills up, please.

Reyes has no options.


Also - people on Twitter keep saying "DFA Jo-Jo"

This will NOT happen. particularly not before August 1.

Jo-Jo's ERA vs everyone but Boston and NY is 3.89 - Alex can move that, and he will. To Cleveland, for just one example - he's better than Mitch Talbot easily. Of course there are other available pitchers but there are other teams looking too.

Reyes won't be tossed aside, and Alex won't trap himself into a move by DFA. if Jo-Jo is still here on August 1 obviously he will go through waivers, and probably get claimed, and at that point I expect AA will probably take the best deal he can get, because he's going to need room for Listch/Drabek to come back. On the other hand, if both those guys suck large through their next three starts then maybe he stays a while longer.


TamRa - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 03:30 AM EDT (#238684) #
no one around here was optimistic enough to predict the 85 wins they'd actually finish with.

I predicted 83 - you could look it up.

The connection between Wells & Reyes is that most people clearly didn't care about the 2011 product,

Ima go out on a limb here and suggest that when people care whether or not, for instance, rivera or patterson get a lot of at bats, or Reyes gets a lot of innings, it's NOT because they care specifically about wins and losses, it's because they had rather watch Thames, Lawrie, Loewen, Cooper, and even Mills take their lumps as Patterson and Rivera play like lumps.


let alone something as trivial as whether Reyes' first start comes on a Thursday or a Saturday.

Point of order - i wasn't asking because I care when REYES pitches, i was asking because I care when ROMERO pitches.
TamRa - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 03:39 AM EDT (#238685) #
Youíre the GM of the Jays, would you trade Brandon Morrow for Colby Rasmus?

No, but I'd build a deal around Cecil easily enough. Say add in Jimenez and Jenkins and a guy who's at Lansing or below

Well whether he pitches Thursday versus the Yanks or Saturday, he was always going to pitch against them.  They do lean to the left don't they?

Indeed. makes you wonder why CV is going Sunday instead of Cecil, don't it?

TamRa - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 03:46 AM EDT (#238686) #
  In regards to earlier kvetching in here about why Reyes is not being skipped etc. Mike Wilner:"Farrell: Reyes and Cecil will go B2B (back to back) in post-ASB rotation because Cecil and Romero are the most similar among the lefties. #Bluejays #jays" via Twitter   

Does not compute. If Farrell flips Romero and Reyes as he said he would, Reyes and Cecil won't be back to back at all.

Cecil and Romero will. I'm begining to doubt the flip was accurately reported. This combined wit the three days rest thing just makes it too implausable.

If, instead of a straight flip, he goes with Morrow on the20th (his regular fifth day), Romero on the 21st (ditto) and CV on the 22nd (likewise) THEN Reyes (8 days rest) and the Cecil - that would get Cecil and Reyes pitching back-to-back and Morrow would slide nicely between the two similar guys - and no 3-days rest.


Magpie - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 05:30 AM EDT (#238687) #
I predicted 83 - you could look it up.

Yup. I believe you were one of two people who saw them clearing 80 wins. But (as I said!) no one was so reckless as to foresee 85.
R Romero Vaughan - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 06:37 AM EDT (#238689) #

You have to wildly overpay for FAs if you are the 2011 Washington Nationals. Not so much if you're the 1992 Toronto Blue Jays,or even the 2011 Yankees - and I don't think Canada is an issue to FAs at all -  winning is.

Signing Paul Molitor and Dave Winfield equivalents at that stage of the cycle makes alot more sense than Jason Werth equivalents at this stage of the Jays cycle, which I think will mean we stay away from Prince Fielder.

Having said that, there seem to be so many fewer FAs actually reaching FA (especially pitchers) - that this is becoming almost a prohibitively expensive route at all with the Yankees and Red Sox around.

I think the future will be about more creative money spending (Beckett/Lowell to BOS model) and using prospects to trade for top talen (AdGon model)

bpoz - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 09:04 AM EDT (#238692) #
When we talk of $ & contracts, I wonder if we could break it into sections.

There is absolute & relative as concepts.

IMO Romero pre FA @ approx $6mil/yr is not large. But as a FA he may get $12-15/yr maybe(?), of course he is over paid now for future savings based on projections.
Bautista or anyone @ $13mil/yr is that big or medium? IMO opinions can differ. It may help in understanding each others opinions more clearly.

I am happy that we don't have the $ restrictions of TB.
TB, IMO is a great planning/strategy team to play mental exercises with 1) They have a low budget & low attendance despite winning. 2) They have great wealth in ML & minor league talent as well as numerous extra draft picks.
They are now in that window of opportunity (? years) to win & handling that opportunity is a mental challenge.
At the trade deadline I think I would trade prospects for a boost if I thought I could win or trade ML stars like BJ Upton for prospects if I thought I could not win. They are doing this too, they kept Crawford & lost him to FA for 2 picks but won in 2010, Garza was replaceable so he was traded for prospects & budget relief in 2011.
Moe - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 09:58 AM EDT (#238694) #
Re: FA signings

The problem with signing a FA is that these days teams do their best to try and buy out the first few FA seasons. As a result, most players become available after they peaked and you end up overpaying.  The exceptions are the stars (e.g. Sabathia or Teixeira -- not to be confused with the best guy in a weak class, eg. Werth). However, while these guys are solid bets, they also represent a huge risk due to the money involved and are not available every year (see the past post season).  Most other guys you end up over-paying which only makes sense if you sit at 85-88 wins and can use one of them to upgrade one position to get to over 90 wins.  There the marginal wins are valuable enough to overpay a bit. 

In the past post-season the Jays were not at that point, so they rightfully stayed put.  They are spending heavily in the draft and the IFA market, so you can't accuse them of just hording cash, so I'm fine with it.  I will be disappointed if they don't overspend a bit in a year or two when they are hopefully ready.  And I do hope they at least kick the tires on Fielder since imo he fits the elite label where the big dollars have a chance of working out.


Re: Jo Jo Reyes

Yes, he had another bad outing but overall he still has value.  It keeps being written over and over but most seem to just ignore it: he is not a great pitcher but he has value as long as he is healthy! Why? Because he gives you innings at only a bit below league average.  Move him to the NL and he could probably get his 2-3 WAR per season.  Even for the Jays he sits at .7 WAR meaning he is better than a replacement player.  Whatever the flaws of WAR are, it show he has too much value to simply be DFAed.  It's unfortunate that he is out of options and he is blocking prospects but just throwing him out is bad business.


Shane - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 10:21 AM EDT (#238697) #

 It's unfortunate that he is out of options and he is blocking prospects but just throwing him out is bad business.

Well, it would be bad business if he's actually blocking someone who can perform better. He gives you five innings a start, that's it. Considering his trade "value" at his peak, say the trade deadline, what do you think you'd get in return for him anyway. I personaly imagine not very much, a lower tier prospect. I don't care that he's around, as long as he's not taking the rotation spot of someone who can perform better and believe his trade value is not ever going to bring back much worth talking about at the end of the day.

MatO - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 10:50 AM EDT (#238700) #
It's time to flip Reyes and Rzepczynski.  The big thing I noticed in last night's game is that Reyes had no "stuff".  It was all blah.   In his last three games he has 2 K's over 17IP.  He's not fooling anyone and his K rate is plumetting.  You don't need to DFA him, just see how he does in the bullpen.  Rzepczynski has "stuff".   People are always talking about having players with upside.  Rzepczynski has it.  Reyes doesn't.
Anders - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 11:18 AM EDT (#238702) #
Couple thoughts:

I'm don't really think Reyes has that much value. He has been 16% worse than league average this year in terms of FIP, and averages 5.2 innings a start. Yes, you can say it's the AL East, but it's not like he hasn't been abysmal against the National League either; his ERA as a Brave was 6.40. As for why try Scrabble or someone else instead (though it seems the team want's Rzepczynski to be a reliever), it's because the Jays have a bunch of no-pressure audition starts available, and as we saw with Drabek, sometimes it takes guys some time to figure things out.

I don't have a problem with free agency, and obviously there are some guys worth paying for. I would shell out for either Prince Fielder or Albert Pujols this offseason, and while we don't need to play the what if lineup game, that would be the beginning of a pretty good team. Pretty much the entire rest of the free agent crop looks crappy though. As was mentioned, for the most part you are paying for guys who are on the downside of their careers, and even if you get good guys that are relatively young, Mark Teixeira got what, 8/180, so it's not exactly like those guys go cheap.
Gerry - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 11:33 AM EDT (#238703) #

There may be a light at the end of the tunnel.  I was listening to an interview AA gave to the Fan590 yesterday evening (it's on their website).  To paraphrase he was asked about what he wanted back if he was involved in trades this month, did he want prospects?  His answer was no, the team was in a different position now and he was looking for players who could help the team this year or next.  He specifically said he would be interested in players who are free agents at the end of the season.  He hoped that two months in Toronto would endear them to the city and the team and make it easier to resign them.

 

BlueJayWay - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 11:37 AM EDT (#238705) #
Yeah, AA was on Jeff Blair's show a few weeks ago actually and said he was targeting major league players, or at least players that will be in the majors at the beginning of next year.
Shane - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 11:45 AM EDT (#238706) #

His answer was no, the team was in a different position now and he was looking for players who could help the team this year or next.

He's made these trades before. So this isn't a new strategy. Best example: Escobar.

 He specifically said he would be interested in players who are free agents at the end of the season.  He hoped that two months in Toronto would endear them to the city and the team and make it easier to resign them.

I'd be surprised if he's actually refering to anyone in particular. If he was, anyone have any guesses?

R Billie - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 11:45 AM EDT (#238707) #
Is Rasmus really that good of a player? He has a chance to be a quality bat but I've heard question marks about his D in CF, which if true, really saps a lot of his potential value. I think if you know he can play CF at a high level, you spend what it takes to get him. If there's a good possibility he becomes a corner guy, you already have those positions relatively covered.

It's curious that he hasn't been able to establish himself, at least for his D, in St. Louis. They obviously feel he has some shortcomings.
Magpie - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 12:11 PM EDT (#238711) #
I'm not sure why I think this, but...

Colby Rasmus is the new Lloyd Moseby.

Which ain't bad, of course. It's pretty good.
Jonny German - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 12:35 PM EDT (#238712) #
Pretty much the entire rest of the free agent crop [besides Fielder and Pujols] looks crappy though.

Don't dream small dreams. Jose Reyes would be an outstanding addition.
Mike Green - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 12:38 PM EDT (#238713) #
The centerfielders who BBRef spits out as comps are interesting- Oddibe McDowell, Mel Hall and Andre Dawson.  Some of the ref comps are not really accurate- Corey Patterson, Bobby Bonds and Jimmy Wynn (insufficient weight to context in the latter two cases). 

If Rasmus develops offensively like Dawson did, then you really have something. 

uglyone - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 12:45 PM EDT (#238714) #
Also - people on Twitter keep saying "DFA Jo-Jo" This will NOT happen. particularly not before August 1. Jo-Jo's ERA vs everyone but Boston and NY is 3.89 - Alex can move that, and he will. To Cleveland, for just one example - he's better than Mitch Talbot easily. Of course there are other available pitchers but there are other teams looking too. Reyes won't be tossed aside, and Alex won't trap himself into a move by DFA. if Jo-Jo is still here on August 1 obviously he will go through waivers, and probably get claimed, and at that point I expect AA will probably take the best deal he can get, because he's going to need room for Listch/Drabek to come back. On the other hand, if both those guys suck large through their next three starts then maybe he stays a while longer.

I have no idea why anyone would try to fool themselves about what JoJo is.

  • Career: 299.2ip, 5.2ip/gs, 5.7k/9, 1.4k/bb, 1.4hr/9, 12.6%hr/fb, 1.64whip, 5.89era, 5.25fip, 4.77xfip
  • 2011: 105.2ip, 5.6ip/gs, 5.2k/9, 1.8k/bb, 1.1hr/9, 8.8%hr/fb, 1.57whip, 4.94era, 4.54fip, 4.57xfip


  • The only reason why his 2011 numbers are even slightly better than his pathetic career numbers is because of a lucky HR rate (and i think we've all been surprised by how many meatballs he's been getting away with) well below his career average....and that HR rate is quickly normalizing....after his first 9 starts he'd only given up 3hr, in his last 10 starts he's given up 10hr.

    not to mention he's been lucky to have an unusually high number of runs count as "unearned" this season - 12 of his 70 runs given up have been counted as unearned (that matches his previous career total of 12 unearned runs in 194 innings). You count even half those runs as earned, and his era is up in the mid-5s as per usual.

    He is a very bad pitcher. And it is pretty embarassing that we've already given this guy 19 starts, and it's a big surprise coming from a manager who has been as smart as AA has been so far.
    uglyone - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 12:47 PM EDT (#238715) #
    I always question defensive stats, but Colby has put up uzr/150s the last couple of years of around -10 in CF. That's approaching EE-level incompetence, and certainly suggests that he won't be able to stick in CF longterm.

    That still makes him probably a quality corner OFer capable of putting up a .900ops in his good years, but I'm not sure how much of an upgrade that is over our current corner OFers, if at all.
    Shane - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 12:57 PM EDT (#238716) #

    Don't dream small dreams. Jose Reyes would be an outstanding addition.

    Considering the money required (and his bad health record as well) to sign him, and the marginal improvement he'd be over Escobar, I think Toronto would be one of the last teams that needs to dream of Reyes.

    He is a very bad pitcher. And it is pretty embarassing that we've already given this guy 19 starts, and it's a big surprise coming from a manager who has been as smart as AA has been so far.

    Nice. Too bad about Litsch and Richmond injuries this season. And apparenlty Brad Mills is waiting to be traded to an org like San Diego, etc. because he obviously has no future in TO.

    Jonny German - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 01:17 PM EDT (#238717) #
    Considering the money required (and his bad health record as well) to sign him, and the marginal improvement he'd be over Escobar, I think Toronto would be one of the last teams that needs to dream of Reyes.

    He's played over 130 games in 5 of his 6 full major league seasons, and over 150 in 4 of those. And I would have thought it was obvious that the upgrade would be over Aaron Hill, i.e. Escobar or Reyes would play second.

    The money will be ridiculous, and likely far more than he's worth. That's the "not small" part. But I'd rather have him than Fielder.
    joeblow - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 01:21 PM EDT (#238719) #
    All the Reyes defenses sound exactly like rationalization by stock market players when they buy a stock and it goes down but they refuse to sell it. The right move is almost always to cut your losses. It's not important what the stock is doing for you now or what you hope it could do. What is important is that your capital is tied up in a something when there are better opportunities out there.
    Shane - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 01:23 PM EDT (#238721) #
    Right. And in the most recent years he's having injury issues with his legs where he is missing a lotta games. Yes, I assumed you were assuming someone was just going to move over to 2nd. Reyes wouldn't and maybe Escobar wouldn't be happy at all to do so.
    Ron - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 01:55 PM EDT (#238723) #
    I can't even recall the last time their was a challenge trade involving 2 "established" players in their mid 20's. A Morrow for Rasmus swap would fill a short term and long term need for both teams. Both players are viewed as huge upside guys although they haven't reached it. From the Jays perspective, Rasmus is youger than Morrow and under club control for one more season.
    92-93 - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 02:18 PM EDT (#238726) #
    Reyes or Fielder? Sign both. The payroll still wouldn't approach 120m.
    D. King - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 02:30 PM EDT (#238728) #

    Reyes or Fielder? Sign both. The payroll still wouldn't approach 120m.

    It would also be pretty neat to have them keep each other company in the clubhouse playing MLB: The Show during their periodic stints on the DL.  Kind of like Mauer and Kevin Butler on the Playstation ads, only they would be sucking back more than 1/3 of the team's salary.  I'm sold.

    The_Game - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 02:31 PM EDT (#238729) #
    He is a very bad pitcher. And it is pretty embarassing that we've already given this guy 19 starts, and it's a big surprise coming from a manager who has been as smart as AA has been so far.
    Agreed on Reyes. The guy should not be starting in the majors, let alone for a team in the AL East. It's amazing that he's lasted this long into the season and I would expect he'll be gone within the next few weeks if not sooner. Do not agree on Farrell. He's been far worse than I imagined he could be. His inconsistent and almost clueless decision-making, his devotion to the concept of a "closer" in completely inappropriate situations, his regular poor lineup configurations, and his taking unnecessary risks with the running game add up.
    The_Game - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 02:35 PM EDT (#238730) #
    If Bautista is down for any significant period of time, at least they can bring up Lawrie to 3B in a few weeks without the added awkwardness of him supplanting the best player in baseball from a position he's succeeding at.

    Still don't understand why the Jays chose to make Bautista a stopgap solution for a month, but I can't say that it hasn't worked well (with Thames, Snider, and Encarnacion now hitting).

    TamRa - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 02:40 PM EDT (#238731) #
    I wouldn't pay what it costs to get either Reyes or Fielder - and with Lind having bounced back i rescind my previous enthusiasum on Pujols but I'd be ok with risking him.

    If we could get a yong slugger who might turn into Fielder at DH (like what everyone says Montero will be)  I could go for that. But 7 or more years at 18 mil and up - i don't see anyone out there this year I'd even think about doing that with.

    I'd rather spend our money to lock up our own good players.


    D. King - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 02:43 PM EDT (#238732) #

    So far this season many of John Farrell's decisions have been questioned, and observers smarter than I have even placed responsibility for a loss or two on his shoulders.  Nevertheless, I am not concerned. 

    The Blue Jays hired him not becuase he was the best manager available at the beginning of this season, but (according to what I have read on the decision) because they found in him the qualities and skills required to develop into a quality manager.  These are the same qualities and skills that led to those who have worked with him in the past to speak so well of him both as a person and a professional.  I understand that in situations like this everyone involved is likely to say exactly what was said, but that doesn't mean that it isn't true.

    He has made errors perhaps, but wouldn't it be more surprising if he hadn't?  Like one of the young players he is learning on the job, and I will not evaluate him on how he has performed over his first three months, but rather how he performs and develops in his first two or three years.  Given the incredible wealth of coaching experience in that dugout and the diligence with which the hiring process was undertaken, I am pretty optimistic.

    Magpie - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 02:49 PM EDT (#238733) #
    Reyes or Fielder? Sign both.

    I'd definitely take a pass on Fielder, and while Reyes makes sense (with Escobar moving to second base), I think it's going to take Carl Crawford money and I don't like him that much.

    The guy I'd be interested in is C.J. Wilson.
    92-93 - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 02:55 PM EDT (#238734) #
    Prince Fielder has never spent a day on the DL. If you're so worried about how he holds up (and really, you shouldn't be, the Jays play in the AL with the DH) sign him to a massive 3 or 4 year deal; he's 27 years old. If anything I'd be more wary of locking in long-term at a hefty price to a middle infielder who relies on his speed to provide value and typically gets on base at a .355 clip, which is solid but not certainly not elite. The team needs more offense (and pitching), not the defensive upgrade Reyes would provide over say, impending FA Kelly Johnson.
    uglyone - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 02:58 PM EDT (#238736) #
    Agreed on Reyes. The guy should not be starting in the majors, let alone for a team in the AL East. It's amazing that he's lasted this long into the season and I would expect he'll be gone within the next few weeks if not sooner. Do not agree on Farrell. He's been far worse than I imagined he could be. His inconsistent and almost clueless decision-making, his devotion to the concept of a "closer" in completely inappropriate situations, his regular poor lineup configurations, and his taking unnecessary risks with the running game add up.

    I was actually talking about the GENERAL manager (hence the AA), but I agree with you 100% on Farrel. Not only do I not agree with many of his roster decisions and in-game strategy, but I also have a hard time even figuring out his justification for his decisions. I am pretty unimpressed. At least with Cito, even when I disagreed with his decisions, I still understood where he was coming from.
    D. King - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 03:00 PM EDT (#238737) #

    The guy I'd be interested in is C.J. Wilson.

    Could we move Janssen to the rotation and make our own C.J. Wilson?

    R Billie - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 03:10 PM EDT (#238739) #
    There may be a chance Janssen can do a Villenueva type conversion back to starter, but his drop and drive delivery seems so max effort that he might just be best suited to short stints out of the pen.  I think like Villenueva, you'd want to see him succeed in a long relief role before you see if he can stretch that into 6 or 7 innings per game.  His strength as a reliever right now is fairly fine command...the question is whether that command is going to hold up throwing 100 pitches as opposed to around 15.
    John Northey - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 03:31 PM EDT (#238742) #
    Prince Fielder is an interesting one.
    OPS+ of 130+ for 5 seasons, OBP over 400 the past 3, entering his age 28 season.
    Easiest comparison would be his dad, who had 167 and 133 OPS+ is his age 26/27 seasons. For age 28-32 he was productive, 108 to a 124 OPS+ while missing very little time (1994/1995 was the strike period and occurred in his age 30/31 seasons). At age 33 he had just 425 PA (98 games) with a 101 OPS+ followed by an 86 over 117 games at age 34 and that was his final ML season (the Jays had him at spring training in 1999 with the assumption he was a lock for the team then he was shocked to be released).

    There are obvious differences. Cecil never had an OBP over 377 while Prince has beat that 4 times already plus has a 372 on his resume. Cecil was sent off to Japan by the Jays despite being a great hitter due to his horrid defense and a bit of stupidity on the part of the Jimy Williams Jays.

    Giving a 5 year deal (ages 28-32) would be reasonable, but odds are he'll want a 7 year with opt-out clauses for himself at $20+ a year. 5 years at $15 mil per I'd give immediately (FanGraphs has him at/above that level 3 of the last 5 with a 4th almost there) but I think 7 at $20 would be a mistake and it is easy to imagine someone doing that.

    Also, if signed he'd be mixed and matched with Lind at DH/1B which makes it very hard to mix in kids as we'll see many (Thames, Snider, Loewen, Sierra, Gose, etc) going for 2 slots (LF/CF assuming Bautista goes back to RF). Not necessarily a bad thing, but worth thinking about how that is a strength potentially and spending a stack of resources to possibly improve it may not be the best of ideas. Mix in Cooper as a guy who there is no space at all for as well.

    Reyes on the other hand fits a need (middle infield if Escobar would move or Reyes would move to 2B). He is a year older than Fielder, but speed ages better than power generally speaking. Only once he has cracked 120 for OPS+ (this year) but has 6 straight 100+ seasons which is great for a middle infielder. His OBP has been 350+ in 4 of his 6 healthy seasons. Regardless of injuries he always gets to double digits in steals peaking at 78 a few years ago, but should be penciled in for 30 a year. 4 of the past 6 years he has cracked $20 mil in value according to FanGraphs but injuries have cut him down a couple of times. Higher injury risk than Fielder, but a solid fielder who hits well at a position the Jays aren't as well stocked at. Again, 5 for $15 would be easy, but he'll want $20+ for 7 and, again, I wouldn't give it to him. I'd be more likely to give $20 for 5 to Reyes than Fielder though as he has higher odds of being worth it to the Jays, especially since he could be moved off SS to anywhere but CA, while Fielder is DH/1B only.
    Mike Green - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 03:37 PM EDT (#238743) #
    Janssen has had a whole whack of arm trouble.  Personally, I'd be delighted if he could succeed in a relief role, and if things go very well, maybe in a higher leverage role than he has been used in until now.
    Magpie - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 03:41 PM EDT (#238744) #
    Easiest comparison would be his dad

    He's better than his dad. But the guy he really reminds me of is Mo Vaughn - and Prince carries about 50 pounds more than Mo did.
    uglyone - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 03:51 PM EDT (#238746) #
    Active Career OPS+ leaders:

    1) A.Pujols (31): 171
    2) M.Cabrera (28): 148
    3) J.Thome (40): 147
    4) L.Berkman (35): 146
    5) A.Rodriguez (35): 145
    6) P.Fielder (27): 142
    7) J.Giambi (40): 142
    8) V.Guerrero (36): 141
    9) C.Jones (39): 141
    10) A.Gonzalez (29):140

    Prince is the youngest guy on the list, and one of only 3 guys younger than 35 there.

    The Jays already have one of the best offenses in baseball, signing this guy would give them THE best offense in baseball for the next 5 years.

    sign me up.
    Jonny German - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 03:55 PM EDT (#238748) #
    Those in the Fielder camp: would you actively try to trade Adam Lind, or would you plan to have him or Fielder DH?

    I have a hard time with the idea of spending a huge huge amount for an upgrade to the DH spot. I'd really prefer to find a way to upgrade centre field or second base.
    Spifficus - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 03:59 PM EDT (#238749) #
    Reyes would be a great fit in almost every other respect, but I'd be a bit worried at how a player with chronic hamstring trouble would hold up on turf.
    Mike Green - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 04:00 PM EDT (#238750) #
    I'm not in the Fielder camp, but it is kind of unusual how durable he has been considering his size.  157-162 games a season every year.  I don't think that you could expect that to continue for another 5 years, but  Mo Vaughn and Kent Hrbek and Big Daddy never did anything like that.  It's usually the athletes like Eddie Murray or Lou Gehrig who do. 
    Spifficus - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 04:12 PM EDT (#238751) #

    Reyes would be a great fit in almost every other respect, but I'd be a bit worried at how a player with chronic hamstring trouble would hold up on turf.

    Continuing with this thought, it's not that I would avoid him, but I don't know if the team would want to win the bidding war Werth-style while simultaneously increasing the injury risk. Of course, I've always been a fan of the super-sub, so if the Jays could get their hands on a Jed Lowrie type to give him a half-day off with some frequency, that might work.

    D. King - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 05:14 PM EDT (#238755) #

    I suppose that the arguments made that Prince is more/less likely to be an injury problem because he is over-weight/has proven to be durable are both equally weak.  Injuries are largely a function of luck, although fitness and physical attributes do play some role.  Overall though, I would imagine that one should look at the median "time missed due to injury" for a ball player, and say that on the whole those with less have been lucky, and those with more have been unlucky.  Perhaps Prince has been "lucky" so far, and in a way that might actually increase the risk.  I'm not entirely sure, as finite mathematics have never been my strong suit.  (I enjoy Twain's belief that there are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics).

    Is anyone here an actuary?  Do baseball organizations employ them? 

    I do suppose that the issue of time lost due to injury may pale in comparison to the issue of decreased performance due to physical deterioration.

    bpoz - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 07:49 PM EDT (#238760) #
    Uglyone, I like your praise of our offense. You say our offense is good, but is it also not lopsided due to too much from Bautista, Lind & Escobar and too little from 2-3 spots. If this imbalance is reasonably accurate then time will address some of that if JPA can improve & Lawrie can do better than the current level. Thames, Snider etc... now and maybe McDade, Sierra etc... by mid or Sept 2012 may also be a positive factor. I hope so any way.

    As far as pitching goes: JOJo Reyes was an experiment in something. I don't know what but IMO he is having his best year in the ML. IMO he must have a IP limit of maybe 150IP. Maybe the experiment takes precedence over the FACT that better pitchers are in the system. Zep for sure & Mills in his limited ML opportunity have done better than Reyes before his current personal good year.
    Apparently Rauch is the closer again, with Frankie in waiting. There is deep thinking in this that we will never know IMO.
    BlueJayWay - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 11:19 PM EDT (#238766) #
    I would be very hesitant to trade Morrow.  His stuff is nuclear.
    Mike Green - Friday, July 15 2011 @ 11:47 PM EDT (#238768) #
    Now that was fun. The weather was perfect and it was Edwin Encarnacion's night. He made the defensive play of the game, diving and then throwing out the hitter from his knees. That garnered a standing O. When he followed that up with a line double to centerfield and an RBI, the fans in my section were chanting "MVP, MVP". Later, when the Yanks intentionally walked him, laughter ensued.

    Morrow was throwing 95-96 in the early innings, but with his usual inconsistent control and an all-too-common defensive lapse. After Encarnacion's defensive gem, Morrow settled in beautifully, throwing 93-94 but with better control and more nasty off-speed stuff which the Yankees were swinging over pretty consistently.

    It certainly wasn't the Yankees night, but even at that, they didn't look like a much better ballclub than the Jays.
    Shane - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 12:05 AM EDT (#238769) #

     I would be very hesitant to trade Morrow.  His stuff is nuclear.    

    Exactly. He's worth more to the Jays than Rasmus would be or the like.

    The_Game - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 12:48 AM EDT (#238770) #
    All things being equal, though, I'd rather have a potential position player star than a potential pitching star. It's just safer, too many young pitchers go down with serious injuries.
    Magpie - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 01:24 AM EDT (#238771) #
    I'd rather have a potential position player star than a potential pitching star. It's just safer, too many young pitchers go down with serious injuries.

    I understand your point - but any baseball team needs pitching, and lots of it. This team in particular needs pitching. This team would be competitive right now if the starting rotation didn't suck so desperately (only Baltimore and Kansas City have received worse work from their starters.)
    TamRa - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 03:11 AM EDT (#238775) #
    if the starting rotation didn't suck so desperately


    which is a strange statement given how good Romero and Morrow have been (and yes, check the FIP - Morrow has been one of the 4-5 best starters in the AL by that measure.

      And none of us are unhappy with CV. His ERA as a starter is second only to Ricky's and is slightly better than David Price's (not comparing skills, just sayin')

    (as an aside - the Jays starters are 0.58 ahead of the O's - if they went that far in the other direction they would rise all the way to 7th)

    I really don't think the starting pitching IS that bad. Drabek and Early Cecil really skew that total. (over a third of a run)

    Yes Drabek has to get right, Litsch has to stay healthy, McGowan has to hold it together...but Listch is a decent little starter and if everyone's healthy he's no better than the sixth or seventh guy on the team, maybe 8th. Any of these guys might get better results than Reyes (who has stuff, just not as much execution as we'd like)

    No, i don't think it sucks, despite the ranking.

    Consider FIP

    Romero is 35th among AL starters with at least 50 IP with a 3.95
    Villianueva is 16th at 3.35
    Morrow is 4th with 2.70 (coming into tonight, probably has gone down now)
    Jo-Jo's is 4.54, Drabek 5.44

    The mid-point among all AL teams in FIP and xFIP is around 3.96 - the Jays are at 4.12 and 4.10 respectively.

    That's hardly sucking at all, let alone desperately.
     



    Magpie - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 04:02 AM EDT (#238776) #
    FIP is nice to know, but they keep score in this game. Your starting pitchers through Thursday:

    RK    TEAM           GP     W    L     ERA    CG   SHO    IP     ER     R     BB     SO    BAA
    1    Seattle    92    30    36    3.19   9    9    613.0  217    234    165    506   .230
    2    Oakland    92    31    35    3.19   3    5    570.1  202    236    195    406   .247
    3    LA Angels    92    35    26    3.21   7    7    605.1  216    235    168    440   .246
    4    Tampa Bay    90    37    33    3.57   8    7    580.0  230    244    173    435   .240
    5    Texas    93    41    24    3.60   7   11    583.0  233    261    181    452   .245
    6    NY Yankees    89    42    27    3.67   3    4    552.0  225    252    180    408   .251
    7    Minnesota    90    34    32    3.95   6    7    560.1  246    274    171    372   .262
    American League    91    33    32    3.97   5    6    560   246    268    179    401   .257
    8    Chicago Sox    92    31    36    4.04   3    6    588.1  264    276    158    402   .263
    9    Detroit    92    37    30    4.08    4   10    560.0  254    280    173    395   .260
    10    Boston    90    42    24    4.09    1    8    539.1  245    257    202    403   .241
    11    Cleveland    90    33    33    4.36    2    4    541.1  262    283    154    348   .269
    12    Toronto    93    31    33    4.48    5    3    547.0  272    296    221    426   .268
    13    Baltimore    89    24    41    5.06    3    5    482.1  271    295    183    321   .281
    14    Kansas City    92    19    40    5.15    2    4    524.1  300    327    181    305   .295
    That ain't good. Without Romero, this is almost - gulp -  the Royals...
    Magpie - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 04:04 AM EDT (#238777) #
    Morrow has been one of the 4-5 best starters in the AL by that measure.

    You're not making me think very highly of that measure.
    AWeb - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 06:27 AM EDT (#238778) #
    Yeah, I seem to recall Morrow being similarly awesome by the "not what actually happened" stats last yeat too. And FIP is more predictive of future performance than ERA in general. But Morrow is a specific case, and it might not work for him. His strand % is terrible (65%), which indicates that he's a combination of unlucky and not as good out of the stretch.
    R Billie - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 09:48 AM EDT (#238781) #
    If Morrow is so bad out of the stretch, I'm not sure why he bothers pitching out of the stretch to begin with...it's not like he's particularly good at holding runners anyway.  His weakness, as it's been for a lot of Jays starters this year, is his terrible efficiency.  It took him about 50 pitches to get through the first two innings yesterday despite only allowing one run.  That's ridiculously bad when you've used half your workload 2 innings into the game.  The same with Drabek except Drabek could never fall back on his breaking ball to get out of trouble due to lack of command.

    FiP is nice and everything but it's more an evaluation of a pitcher's potential than what he's actually doing.  We all know what Morrow's potential is, but the whole point is realizing that potential in a practical sense.  After his second half run last year, this year has to be considered a pretty big disappointment.  Maybe he'll always be a bad first half, better second half pitcher, but unfortunately that just means he'll never stand beside Romero as a solid, reliable piece of the rotation.

    That said, I don't trade Morrow for Rasmus, whom I think people are a little too quick to label a franchise calibre talent.  He obviously has issues and might be a great change of scenery, positive environment guy.  But I would make sure I buy low on him.  You probably don't get him with that approach but I'd rather let someone else take the risk if it's going to cost me significant prospects and/or major league assets.

    greenfrog - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 10:00 AM EDT (#238782) #
    Trading Morrow for Rasmus would be like robbing Peter to pay Paul. The Jays could try a package similar to the one they used to acquire Escobar (ie, useful major-league piece plus a couple of decent but non-elite prospects). It probably wouldn't be enough, but it's worth a try.

    Of course, it all depends on AA's evaluation of Rasmus, too. His scouts may not value him highly enough to warrant a strong bid.
    John Northey - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 10:59 AM EDT (#238783) #
    This winter will be interesting, even if the Jays don't go too deep in the free agent waters. Doing a quick scan at http://mlbcontracts.blogspot.com/2001/04/potential-free-agents-for-2012.html

    At 1B we have Pujols, Fielder, Berkman (180 OPS+ this year). Those 3 will be going in that order most likely, with Pujols being well over $20 per, Fielder in the $20 range, and Berkman the consolation prize.
    Mike Green - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 11:01 AM EDT (#238784) #
    Here's one issue with FIP. In last night's game, Lind was charged with an error on a poor throw to Morrow covering. The thing is that Morrow was very late getting over there, and the batter would have been safe pretty easily even if the throw had been perfect. In this case, no runs were allowed so it didn't matter, but if you're looking for reasons why Morrow's BABIP is so unusually high for a power pitcher, one might be his own defensive failings.

    As I said, Morrow seemed to draw confidence last night from the fine defensive play behind him.

    He may yet become one of the best starting pitchers in the league, but inferring from his FIP that this is bound to happen anytime soon is not wise.
    Thomas - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 11:53 AM EDT (#238786) #
    Those walks stand out like a sore thumb.
    Alex Obal - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 12:51 PM EDT (#238788) #
    The Jays are 12th in defensive efficiency in the AL. To me, that suggests the outfield defense has been pretty weak, which can't help Morrow.
    Mike Green - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 01:27 PM EDT (#238791) #
    No question. In Seattle, where the OF defence was outstanding, Morrow had a better FIP than ERA.

    For his career though, Morrow is definitely a below average fielder and has pitched much better with no one on. Going forward, you'd weight xFIP and ERA somewhere between 35-65 and 65-35. That puts him somewhere around 3.8.
    uglyone - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 03:23 PM EDT (#238794) #
    FIP and xFIP are a nice predictor, and it's really not a surprise to see Morrow's ERA steadily working its way down closer to them as the season goes on. Even if he is the kind of guy whose ERA will always trail his FIP, due both to his incredible K rates and his distinctly poorer performance out of the stretch.

    I don't think it's wise to discount FIP in our pitching staff's case this year - by all the corresponding defense metrics, our defense has been godawful this year which is really hurting our pitching staff's numbers. ERA might not be telling the true story of our pitching staff this year so far.

    and the other note, particularly with our starting staff, is that we simply haven't been using our best starting staff this year, for a variety of reasons.


    R.Romero: 122.1ip, 106h, 45bb, 42er, 1.23whip, 3.09era
    C.Villanueva: 54.0ip, 52h, 13bb, 22er, 1.20whip, 3.67era
    B.Morrow: 94.2ip, 82h, 37bb, 46er, 1.26whip, 4.37era
    J.Litsch: 46.1ip, 48h, 18bb, 24er, 1.42whip, 4.66era
    B.Cecil: 41.1ip, 46h, 19bb, 26er, 1.57whip, 5.66era

    Total: 358.2ip, 334h, 132bb, 160er, 1.30whip, 4.02era

    still not great, but not awful.
    Kasi - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 03:27 PM EDT (#238795) #
    Not a big fan of how Romero performs against our best divisional rivals. Well he's passable against NY unlike Boston where he is awful. But he needs to improve more against them so we can have a real number 1 starter. Getting good numbers against the Twins and White Sox of the world isn't going to help us hugely in the AL East. That's one thing I like about Morrow. His problems are just dealing badly with men on base. He's just as capable of dominating the Red Sox as he is the Mariners. Of course the other issue is that he's as capable of blowing up too.
    The_Game - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 06:26 PM EDT (#238799) #
    Before today's Romero start (which wasn't really bad at all, he was hurt by terrible defense in CF and 2B), he was coming off two consecutive great starts against the Yankees. He's dealt with them fairly well in recent years.

    It's the Red Sox, the league's top offense, that Romero has had the most trouble with (and Morrow has been just as bad against them).

    scottt - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 07:00 PM EDT (#238804) #
    Romero needed a shutout for a win today. Not going to happen often. He's really not the problem.
    greenfrog - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 07:24 PM EDT (#238805) #
    Agreed. Romero is only a problem if you measure him against the true aces in the league (Sabathia, Verlander, King Felix, Weaver, Haren, to name several). Romero is a very good pitcher who has improved significantly in each of the last two seasons. Who knows, he might still take his game to the next level. But even if he doesn't, he's a very valuable #2 who will sometimes pitch like a #1.
    Kasi - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 09:05 PM EDT (#238809) #
    There was an article on Romero sometime last week. His numbers are virtually unchanged since last year. The only place he might have made an improvement is IP. The rest is just the same. As for the Sox he's always done badly against them, even last year when the Sox were beat up. They just have his number and every time he faces them he makes them all look like Barry Bonds. Morrow yes is bad against them too, but Romero is awful.

    And yes those are top teams. But thats what we're in. The top division. And no compared to other teams we don't have a number one starter. Romero is a good 2, but that's it. And sometimes you need your pitcher to pitch a shutout to get you that win. We got used to Halladay doing that for us. And that is what true number ones do. Hopefully one of our guys can develop into that. (or maybe just go with 5 2-3 starters and hope for the best)

    MrPurple - Saturday, July 16 2011 @ 09:50 PM EDT (#238811) #
    Trade rumors keeps talking about clubs interested in our bullpen. What would teams actually give up for our pitching?
    uglyone - Sunday, July 17 2011 @ 02:32 AM EDT (#238815) #
    last 2 seasons:

    Romero (26): 50gs, 6.7ip/gs, 3.49era, 3.75fip, 3.64xfip
    Sabathia (30): 54gs, 7.1ip/gs, 3.01era, 3.14fip, 3.43xfip
    Lester (27): 50gs, 6.4ip/gs, 3.27era, 3.42fip, 3.28xfip
    Price (25): 51gs, 6.7ip/gs, 3.13era, 3.30fip, 3.49xfip

    and, the other three "aces" all have an advantage in terms of team defense behind them, and two of them have the advantage of never having to face one of the top two offenses in baseball...ever.
    The_Game - Sunday, July 17 2011 @ 03:54 AM EDT (#238817) #
    If you're expecting a Jays pitcher to turn into the equivalent of Roy Halladay (a surefire HOFer and the best pitcher of his era), you're going to end up disappointed.

    Really, Romero is doing just fine for himself.
    bpoz - Sunday, July 17 2011 @ 11:03 AM EDT (#238825) #
    Trade rumors regarding our pen? Really?

    I hope AA does not trade youngsters like Zep & Perez, unless he is offered something pretty good. Another Gose, ie low minors,young & loaded with tools, ie a Gus Pierre.

    It will be interesting to see if FF, Dotel or Rauch get moved and for what. They may have to improve to get draft picks and also be offered & refuse Arb for us to get the picks. All speculation of course.
    Does anyone know if Dotel & Rauch were type B FAs and did they then refuse Arb, sign with the Jays & get a pick each for their former teams. If so who was the pick.

    AA states that he is interested in trading for players that could be FAs at the end of the year. I am sure he has his reasons. But here are some of my thoughts:
    1) The kids like Snider, Thames, JPA & Lawrie need the ABs for the rest of the year if healthy. IMO they look ready to test the MLs.
    2) Camp has done well enough & is cheap enough to test FA and win. Molina may accept Arb because how much more or less does he get as a back up than $1.5mil, he may not want to gamble.
    3) FF, Rauch & maybe Dotel IMO do not have an easy choice about rejecting Arb. But they do have the rest of the year to improve their attractiveness?, I mean Gregg did just fine.
    4) I am not sure, but teams may talk (unofficial) to our property eg FF after our season is over and we would not complain about tampering.
    5) I hope to see some clue to the plans for B.Mills, He has not been show cased yet. Maximize the value of non essential assets. I can't believe I said that about a guy I like & think can be successful.

    I see different motives, to some of the possibilities.
    Thomas - Sunday, July 17 2011 @ 02:16 PM EDT (#238829) #
    Does anyone understand what Angel Hernandez was doing on the play where Posada missed the base and Escobar attempted to (and looked like he did) touch the base? He didn't signal a call, which I understand if Escobar missed the bag and Posada wasn't initially on the base, but he also didn't signal a call when Posada subsequently stepped on first base.

    If Hernandez believed Escobar missed first, why was he not out then? Why did he make Posada tag Escobar? Was it not still a force? Escobar can't go anywhere else until he's safely reached first.
    Chuck - Sunday, July 17 2011 @ 03:52 PM EDT (#238836) #
    Hernandez is working extra hard to retain his hard-won title of baseball's worst umpire.
    perlhack - Tuesday, July 19 2011 @ 02:08 PM EDT (#238898) #
    Since there's no current MLB thread, I'll post it here. The Blue Jays will be retiring Roberto Alomar's number 12.

    perlhack - Tuesday, July 19 2011 @ 02:09 PM EDT (#238899) #
    Is Geeklog linking still broken? Anyway, the correct link is

    http://espn.go.com/mlb/story/_/id/6783914/toronto-blue-jays-retire-roberto-alomar-no-12
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