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Yeah, it is a quiet time right now.  Colby Rasmus signs for another year, avoiding arbitration.  Adam Loewen signs up for another tour of the Jays minor leagues. 

Colby Rasmus gets $4.675 million next year, a big raise from his old $2.7 million deal.  Generally in range with expectations as salary is more based on years of service at this point. 

Adam Loewen gets to play baseball for a living for another year.  He had a poor year in Baltimore's system last year, hitting just 227/328/391 in Buffalo.  Still, he does have some talent so will be useful down there I'm sure.  At least he'll know where the clubhouse is in Buffalo.

Other Jays waiting for arbitration/contracts are...
J.A. Happ - 2nd year of it, B-R expects $3.8 mil
Emilio Bonifacio - 2nd year - B-R expects $2.5 mil
Josh Thole - 1st year - B-R expects $1.2 mil
Brett Cecil - 1st year - B-R doesn't list an expected value

Everyone else who isn't signed the Jays can just renew at whatever they wish to pay them, so none will be over $1 mil most likely.

Colby signs up for another year | 42 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Richard S.S. - Monday, January 14 2013 @ 05:27 PM EST (#267954) #
Is Thole a 1st year Arby as a Super Two? I didn't expect Cecil to be 1st year Arby yet. So 2013 salary will be close to $125 MM.
Magpie - Monday, January 14 2013 @ 05:59 PM EST (#267956) #
Neither Thole nor Cecil has three years service but the cutoff for Super Twos was reported to be 2 years 139 days, and Thole and Cecil both clear that bar.
Richard S.S. - Monday, January 14 2013 @ 07:31 PM EST (#267957) #
According to the article on MLB Trade Rumors about the Jays and Rasmus avoiding Arby, includes information on remaining Arbys. Thole is mentioned there as an Arby, but Cecil wasn't.
Magpie - Monday, January 14 2013 @ 07:38 PM EST (#267958) #
Thole is mentioned there as an Arby, but Cecil wasn't.

Which is odd. Cecil has more service time.
jjdynomite - Monday, January 14 2013 @ 08:49 PM EST (#267959) #
Also Henry Blanco got $750K, not bad for a 41-year-old third string catcher, although non-guaranteed.

Question: Are the Jays really going to carry three catchers for 2013? If Blanco is Dickey's designated knuckleball catcher based on their time with the Mets, then what of Thole?

CeeBee - Monday, January 14 2013 @ 09:22 PM EST (#267960) #
Backup catchers. The new market inefficiency.
John Northey - Monday, January 14 2013 @ 09:51 PM EST (#267961) #
Good question jjdynomite.  Lets see...
A) Blanco is designated Dickey catcher - lifetime 69 OPS+, 33 last year, last 555 PA (2009-2012) he has hit 227/298/380 for an 84 OPS+ - basically a worse version of JPA - once Dickey is out of a game so is Blanco who is a right handed hitter
B) Thole is the backup catcher, 1-2 games per set of the rotation - lifetime 261/331/333 85 OPS+ but just entering his age 26 season.  Left handed bat, so easy platoon mix
C) JPA is the #1 catcher, 2 to 3 games per rotation set, entering age 27 season with a lifetime line of 222/275/433 88 OPS+ - a younger version of Blanco but not as good on defense.  Maybe mixed into DH when a LHP is on the mound and Blanco is catching.

Looking at this I could easily see Thole becoming the #1 guy by seasons end if not earlier.  He bats left, thus has the platoon advantage most of the time.  His defensive rep seems solid, unlike JPA's. 

Y'know, digging in a bit I wonder if JPA is on the trade block again.  Thole is a decent catcher with no power but a good OBP. Blanco is a older version of JPA but with better defense.  In the minors we have A.J. Jimenez who reached AA last year but had injury issues, and Mike Nickeas who isn't much of a hitter but is a long time catcher in AAA with 73 games ML experience and Santiago Nessy in low A ball who made at least one top 10 list (FanGraphs).  Not as much depth as at one time, but 2 quality prospects and a vet who can backup in the regular season. 

Odds are with that group the Jays will try to send Blanco to AAA with the promise of being the first called up when a catcher goes down.  If they have all 3 up then I see a situation where JPA is the RH half of a semi-platoon at DH whenever Blanco is catching Dickey, with Thole & JPA doing a full platoon the rest of the time.  When a RHP is on the mound against Dickey I suspect we'll see a mix and match of Thole/Blanco depending on situation.  That is, if the Jays go with 3 catchers and don't get another RH hitter to DH.
Richard S.S. - Monday, January 14 2013 @ 10:08 PM EST (#267962) #
I thought Thole was a quality upgrade on anything else we've had. Now we're talking about another no-hit backup catcher ( they've all played good defense).
Paul D - Monday, January 14 2013 @ 11:27 PM EST (#267963) #
Not that I think this a great idea, but...

JPA versus LHP: 

Lind versus LHP:

John Northey - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 12:32 AM EST (#267964) #
But if we use JPA as a DH vs LHP then we also have...

vs LHP - career - 2012
Blanco: 240/312/412 - 162/205/216
Thole: 187/256/260 - 211/259/303

Ugh.  If Blanco hit at his career average great but odds are strongly against that.  The only time it makes sense is if a LHP is facing Dickey and Thole or Blanco is catching.

sweat - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 01:10 AM EST (#267965) #
I think the Blanco signing means Thole gets full time at bats in Buffalo.
Jays want Buffalo to succeed, so it becomes a permanent home.
TamRa - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 04:11 AM EST (#267966) #

Blanco is injury insurance. period. No injury, he's in Buffalo.

Ryan Day - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 09:50 AM EST (#267967) #
Thole was essentially acquired to be Dickey's personal catcher, so he'll get 95% of Dickey's starts and sub for JPA a couple times a week. There's almost no chance of JPA losing the starting job now that d'Arnaud is gone.

Unless the Jays go with some really weird roster construction, Blanco is AAA backup.
greenfrog - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 10:51 AM EST (#267968) #
Maybe also injury insurance during spring training.
jerjapan - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 11:02 AM EST (#267969) #
Lots of talk about catcher pitch framing these days.  does anyone know how are catchers stack up in this regard?
Chuck - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 11:10 AM EST (#267970) #
BP's study. FG's study.
92-93 - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 11:18 AM EST (#267971) #
Cecil has the service time for Super-2, but he didn't spend enough time in the majors in 2012 (3 months) to qualify.
acepinball - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 11:23 AM EST (#267972) #
I believe Blanco is Thole insurance. Should Thole be struggling with the lingering effects of a concussion, they have a catcher who has caught Dickey. Essentially, an upgrade on Nickeas. Not to mention whatever positive side effects Blanco has on improving JPA/Thole/Jimenez by veteran osmosis.
codyla - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 02:14 PM EST (#267973) #

The Blue Jays have apprently added another Dominican pitching prospect to our system. Right hander Dennis Villatoro:

TamRa - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 04:44 PM EST (#267974) #
Here's what I'm wondering. the talk goes on and on that the Blue jays would like to add another reliever...with it noted that the cost is a potential issue, why does no one ()in the media) ever suggest the return of Brandon Lyon?

MLBTR had a link just today in which John Heyman (yeah, I know, but it's a pattern that goes beyond him) lists off several possibilities while ignoring the guy who was actually here and successful last year.

China fan - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 05:24 PM EST (#267975) #
Lyon was mentioned in Heyman's tweet today in his list of possible relievers for the Jays.
greenfrog - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 06:04 PM EST (#267976) #
Lyon would be a respectable option on a one- or two-year deal. I could see that happening.
TamRa - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 07:00 PM EST (#267977) #
yeah, once I saw the actual article he's in there - funny MLBTR chose not to mention him.
jerjapan - Tuesday, January 15 2013 @ 07:05 PM EST (#267978) #
Thanks Chuck..  Looks like Blanco's framing was solid from 2007 to 2009 with a poor 2010 and mediocre 2011 pulling him down to essentially neutral for the five years of BPs data.  No idea where to find 2012 data, so it's unclear if 2010 and 2011 are a decline or a fluctuation.   Thole's first two years were positive while his 2011 was a negative.  Hard to get a read on Nickeas with his limited MLB time. 

Richard S.S. - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 12:30 AM EST (#267981) #
Thole (26) hits better than any other catcher we have, while J.P. (27) has more has more power.   Blanco (41) has neither, and hasn't caught Dickey since 2010.   If Blanco, an offensive wasteland, makes this team, we have a big problem.
Richard S.S. - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 05:07 AM EST (#267982) #
With J.A. Happ, Emilio Bonifacio and Josh Thole all filing for Abritation, A.A. usually lets these go to the Abritator unless a multi-year extention is worked out.   Who gets what and for how long?
John Northey - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 05:56 AM EST (#267983) #
Don't see Happ getting a long term deal given how AA isn't guaranteeing him a spot in the rotation one would figure they'd have drastically different views on his value.  Bonifacio I could imagine but hard to say value again - something in the range that Izturis got but a bit lower I'd expect.  Thole is a challenge as odds are he is viewed as a backup here but thinks of himself as a regular.  This year it is possible for all 3 to go to arbitration.
China fan - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 06:26 AM EST (#267984) #
Richard, if you want to post links to videos, could you please tell us what you see as new or significant in the video? Not all of us have time to sit through a lengthy video. If you notice something new or interesting in what Anthopoulos says in an interview, please summarize it for us. The link is helpful as a supplement to your summary, but posting only a link, with no information about it, is somewhat pointless. Thanks.
hypobole - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 10:21 AM EST (#267985) #
JohnL had already posted the entire AA interview in the Boxcast Episode 10 thread.

CF, there are only a few items that stand out for me. A couple of items out of part 2 and that is AA's valuation of hitters and pitchers.

When asked what is the most important stat(s) he looks for in hitters, AA responded batting average would be last. The 2 he mentioned were K's and BB's. However contact alone isn't enough, speed and contact are what he wants.

With pitchers, again K's and BB's. But then he went on to say scouting overrides stats, a view he stated a few times in the interview.

JohnL - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 10:34 AM EST (#267986) #
I admit, when I first posted the link, I hadn't yet watched much of it, but did more or less watch it later.

hypobole points out a couple of notable items. Not sure if I would have termed his view that scouting "overrides" stats, but he definitely said he puts more weight on scouting than stats now.

What I found most interesting, perhaps because I didn't know much about his background, was about his early life and how he got into baseball.

His father owned a home heating company, and it was generally thought the sons would take it over. But his father died when Alex was in his early 20's, none of them wanted or were ready to take on the business, so sold it.

He'd already decided he wanted to do something he loved, and that was baseball.

During the interview, they talked about one of his main strengths in the job being his passion, dedication, and willingness to go "all in". It became his life he said.

He'd started delving into baseball through stats, but later ended up paying his own way into scouting school in Florida. (I hadn't heard that), where he learned different perspectives, and how (for example), watching the approach or swing of a player added another dimension to the numbers.

CBC has the full interview; YouTube has it in 3 parts, conveniently skipping the ads.
hypobole - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 10:59 AM EST (#267987) #
Concerning AA's Stats vs Scouting opinion when talking about pitchers, the word "overrides" was mine.

What he did say was "if you ask me today, I'd put the stats in the trash and go with my eyes"
Richard S.S. - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 11:13 AM EST (#267988) #
When I spend time typing, click on preview, everything vanishes from the comment box - 4 times, so any commentary I wrote is gone and after much swearing, I was making quick posts so as not to lose anything.   I wanted to talk about the links, but after my troubles, I no longer remember what I want to say.
JohnL - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 11:28 AM EST (#267989) #
Guess that overrides the stats!

I must have missed that line.
hypobole - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 11:31 AM EST (#267990) #
I guess they've got the Richard-filter up and running. Sorry, couldn't resist :)

I had similar problems on a site in the past, so I used Word and then copied and pasted.
China fan - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 11:49 AM EST (#267991) #
Hypobole and John, thanks for the information about the AA interview.

I'm intrigued by this: "However contact alone isn't enough, speed and contact are what he wants."

I have a feeling that Anthopoulos has been trending in this direction for two or three years now -- being acutely aware that the Jays are good sluggers but not good at OBP and base-running. Farrell often talked about the value of speed, putting pressure on the other team, and I wonder if he was reflecting AA's instructions to try to remake the team as a more contact-oriented team. Now, with the acquisition of players like Cabrera and Reyes, we'll see if the lineup finally becomes better at OBP and speed and contact.
John Northey - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 12:46 PM EST (#267992) #
While speed and contact are more fun to watch, power and patience scores more runs generally.  Still, a team ala the mid-80's Cardinals would be a lot of fun and they did have a lot of success.  Now he just has to acquire Billy Hamilton - his steals in the minors so far... 14 in 43 games, 48 in 69, 103 in 135 games, and last year 155 in 132 games between A+ and AA.  Wow.  All this while playing shortstop, but he is moving to the outfield this year.  Just imagine an outfield with him and Gose in it - could a ball fall in still?  Could you go with a 2 man outfield and 5 man infield?  Heh... obviously not but boy would that be fun to watch.

bpoz - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 12:47 PM EST (#267993) #
Very interesting.

BB means a good eye at the plate. Won't swing at bad pitches. Makes the pitcher earn it.

Ks mean holes in his swing. Many details can be mentioned about this. But basically these are areas that a pitcher can exploit.

Speed. There is no way you can teach this. You either have it or you don't.

So when drafting, trading or signing players for the minors speed is a constant. Either you have it or you don't.

Looking at some minor league prospects.
Kenny Wilson : Youth & speed.
Kevin Pillar : Everything but youth.
Jake Marisnick : Every thing pretty good. But he kept getting promoted which means an adjustment period. The scout & minor league report has to take this into consideration. Even minor league pitchers will/should test the newly promoted prospect. See if he will chase bad pitches.

I wonder what they see in Goins vs McDade. Was Goins at a high risk of being taken in the rule 5 draft?
hypobole - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 01:54 PM EST (#267994) #
"While speed and contact are more fun to watch, power and patience scores more runs generally."

AA did cover off patience, I believe, when he explained the BB stat to Mansbridge, but I was rather surprised he did not once mention power as a stat of importance.
bpoz - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 02:09 PM EST (#267995) #
Prospect J Heyward, Braves, had great success but T Snider did not. I have read many reasons about Snider, but basically I have no idea.

So regarding player development, IMO it is unfair to say " this was smart" because it succeeded or "this was stupid" because it failed.
Using "stupid" is rude so I will not use it, also I really do not know everything about these decisions.Before ST many factors are involved in the construction of the team.

Atlanta has been a contender for 2 decades. IMO that is because the team was good. Only 1 WS could be bad luck in a short series. I thought that it was a bad idea to bring in & play A Jones & J Dye regularly very late in the season & then let both of them be regulars in the playoffs. Since they did not win the WS I always thought that my thinking was right. But maybe I was not, especially if they had won the WS, but this is just an opinion.
In 2012 Atlanta's SS was Pastornicky & then A Simmons if he failed. Both are rookies, which I see as a risk for a contender but great strategy for a rebuilder. Then again you can have that 1 rookie batting 9th and have the rest of the lineup compensate for his youth. If you believe that you have an elite prospect then you have to give him a chance even if you are a contender.

Even before the trades our farm was not overloaded with elite position players. So I did not see 2 or more forcing the team.
I would be OK building with d'Arnaud, Gose & A Hech in 2013 but IMO their youth would have made the offense weak unless they all were instant successes.
We are a contender now, with no elite position prospects forcing the team IMO. I think that AA has covered everything glaring. Even the pen.

CeeBee - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 03:21 PM EST (#267996) #
Looks like Oliver will pitch for the Jays this year after all.
Ryan Day - Wednesday, January 16 2013 @ 03:33 PM EST (#267997) #
I guess Oliver didn't want to spend time with his family that badly.

If he were a younger man, I'd guess he might go looking for a new agent.
Colby signs up for another year | 42 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.