Batter's Box Interactive Magazine Batter's Box Interactive Magazine Batter's Box Interactive Magazine

The Yankees still have a glimmer of hope for the wild card, even though they lost against the Red Sox they are still just 2.5 games out of the wild card. They continue to be hit by injuries, Derek Jeter is out for the season, Brett Gardner might only be able to run and A-Rod has been in and out of the lineup with various leg issues.

Meanwhile on the Jays side of the ledger, will Edwin be back with his sore wrist? Will Colby Rasmus' body be healed? Moises Sierra has been the hot hand, can he keep it going? Meanwhile the Ryan Goins for 2013 train has derailed, how many games will he start?



Game one sees the ageless Andy Pettitte facing the not-quite-as-old RA Dickey.

On Wednesday the matchup is very non-exciting, Phil Hughes vs. JA Happ. If we were betting as to which game in the series would see the most runs it would be this one, but it probably won't happen, baseball is funny like that.

Thursday sees Todd Redmond facing Huroki Kuroda. The Jays were able to get to Kuroda last time around, can they repeat that?

This will be Mariano Rivera's last visit to Toronto. I assume the Jays will give him some parting gifts.

Game threads - 9/17 - 9/19 vs. New York | 103 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
katman - Tuesday, September 17 2013 @ 02:29 PM EDT (#279145) #
Pittsburgh's TribLive has an excellent, in-depth article about the radical shifts in the Pirates' system, which extends all the way into the minors. The focus? Run prevention.

Estimated difference at the major-league level this season? 12.8 games.

The method extends from the pitchers (throw way more 2-seam fastball/ sinker) to fielders (positioning based on data and far more use of shifts). One of the coaches helping to implement it is a guy named Nick Leyva, and one of the pitchers who quite likes it is a guy named A.J. Burnett. Who is having a nice season, and has said he absolutely wants to stay in Pittsburgh.

It seems that the Jays are using shifts a LOT less since Butterfield left - one more area where his absence has cost the club.

So when we say "the Jays need to focus more on defense," that focus needs to move beyond individual players (though some of those do have to change), and even beyond ensuring that people come out of our minor league system with baseball fundamentals (though that absolutely does need to start happening).

Thoughts?

Thomas - Tuesday, September 17 2013 @ 04:48 PM EDT (#279148) #
Katman, this article was discussed to some degree in the Baltimore Game Thread.
John Northey - Tuesday, September 17 2013 @ 05:17 PM EDT (#279149) #
And the DL grows again as the race for a high draft pick continues as Encarnacion and Cecil are done for 2013.

So now what?  The pen will be fine with 11 instead of 12 guys I'm sure.  The lineup though? Lind at 1B from now on I suspect, with DH/LF/RF being Pillar, Gose, and Sierra I guess.  The non-catcher part of the bench will be DeRosa, Kawasaki, Davis.  Infield of Lind/Goins/Reyes/Lawrie.  Probably see DeRosa get some time at 1B vs LHP and Davis mixed into the LF/RF/DH/CF mix.  Might be best to do a 5 day rotation where Pillar/Gose/Sierra/Davis/Rasmus each take one day off at a time then play 4 days then a day off so all 5 get tons of playing time.
krose - Tuesday, September 17 2013 @ 07:14 PM EDT (#279150) #
Good to see the kids getting an extended look.
greenfrog - Tuesday, September 17 2013 @ 07:28 PM EDT (#279151) #
It's interesting to see how the Cashner-Rizzo trade is playing out. Rizzo has had a respectable season, but has faded somewhat in the second half. Cashner has had a very good season and an excellent second half, punctuated by his brilliant start yesterday. He has surpassed Rizzo in overall value this season, at least if you go by WAR.

It's always tempting to provide a quick assessment of trades (and free agent signings), but they can take time to play out, as the Jays are discovering.
JB21 - Tuesday, September 17 2013 @ 08:27 PM EDT (#279152) #
http://www.baseballnation.com/2013/9/17/4739670/rizzo-cashner-trade-cubs-padres
Magpie - Tuesday, September 17 2013 @ 09:40 PM EDT (#279153) #
And the .500 season is still in play!
greenfrog - Tuesday, September 17 2013 @ 10:05 PM EDT (#279154) #
Great to see Dickey excelling at the RC.

Boni watch: 1/2, 1 BB, 2 runs, SB (27)...so far tonight. Average up to .245. Royals hanging tough in the wild card race.
PeteMoss - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 01:19 AM EDT (#279157) #
Regarding the velocity dip in Cashner, he was used a reliever last year so you'd expect it to drop as a starter.
John Northey - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 07:28 AM EDT (#279158) #
Jays now are in position for the 10th overall pick next year.  1/2 a game behind San Fran and 1 game behind San Diego in the overall standings so it is a tight race for that last protected pick.
With 11-12 games left for most teams we see ...
Locks for top 10 picks: Houston (100 losses), Miami (96 losses and counting)
Near locks: White Sox, Cubs, Twins (5 1/2 game 'lead' on the Jays)
In a fight....
+3 1/2: Seattle 66-85
+2: Mets: 67-83
+2: Milwaukee: 67-83
+1: Rockies: 69-83
10th place: Jays: 69-81
---------------------
-1/2: San Fran: 70-81
-1: San Diego: 70-80
-1 1/2: Philly: 71-80
-3 1/3: Angels: 73-78
-7: Arizona: 76-74

The rest are in the playoff hunt.

Well, it s a race at least just not one anyone wants to be in. 6th worst is the 'best' the Jays can hope for at this point, with a slim chance at 5th if the starters cooperate.  14th worst is as high in the standings the Jays can realistically get to.  The DL is trying to help the Jays.

Btw, Jays officially eliminated last night with Texas and Cleveland winning (Texas in 2nd wild card slot, Cleveland 1/2 game out) thus pushing both teams to 82 wins which the Jays cannot reach.  Baltimore and the Yankees are technically in reach if the Jays win every game left and those two lose either every game or all but 1 (Baltimore) or no more than 2 (Yankees).
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 09:40 AM EDT (#279160) #
With Greinke on his game, the Dodgers are to my mind the clear favourite to win the World Series.  Still, the chances of it happening are probably not significantly more than 20%; subjectively, I like their chances much more than that and more than any team going into the playoffs in recent years. 
Gerry - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 10:09 AM EDT (#279161) #
The 10th overall pick only matters if the Jays sign a premium free agent.  Given the Jays history, and the already level of committed payroll for 2014, does anyone think the Jays will try and sign a premium free agent?
John Northey - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 10:23 AM EDT (#279162) #
Stranger things have happened.  Who saw the Clemens signing in 1997 coming?  Well, I think I was pushing for it but didn't realistically think it would happen.
hypobole - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 10:58 AM EDT (#279163) #
If the Jays finish in the bottom 10 and sign a QO free agent, they would keep their first pick, but would lose pick #11.
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 11:52 AM EDT (#279164) #
Apparently, Rasmus had a great game last night.  Not only, did he hit a home run but he did so after returning from an injury described as "general soreness". He isn't even as old as A.J. Burnett... 

The Blue Jays can still finish at .500 if they reel off another 12 in a row.  I guess it's possible if they think really hard about Luke Appling- the more they complain of pain, the better they play. 
John Northey - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 12:58 PM EDT (#279165) #
hypobole - I recall reading somewhere that since that pick (#11 this year, #10 last) was protected originally it still is even though it no longer is in the top 10, or that picks that are compensation for not signing a player are protected no matter what.  One or the other.  Either way, that #11 pick is safe no matter what the Jays do.  Tried finding proof online but no luck.  Closest is http://mlb.mlb.com/pa/pdf/cba_english.pdf which shows on page #89 that draft picks are protected if gained via ML Rule #4(c)(2) which I'm sure is in there somewhere but I cannot find it.  The text is...

" A Clubís highest available selection in the next Rule 4 Draft shall be determined after accounting for any selections the Club forfeited for exceeding its Signing Bonus Pool in the Rule 4 Draft. With the exception of draft selections awarded to a Club pursuant to Major League Rule 4(c)(2), all of a Clubís draft selections will be subject to forfeiture pursuant to subsection 4(c)(i) above, including draft selections obtained through assignments, draft selections obtained in the Competitive Balance Lotteries and Forfeited Draft Pick Lotteries, and draft selections awarded as compensation pursuant to subsection 4(b) above. "

So a top 10 pick could mean two of the top 11 picks are the Jays which would mean a ton of slot cash and higher quality players being available.

John Northey - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 01:02 PM EDT (#279166) #
So if the Jays want that top 10 pick time to DL Rasmus again for the rest of the season :)

That means we need to DL Reyes, Sierra, and Lind in order to tank without it being obvious.  At this point I suspect no one would be shocked by that either :P 
ayjackson - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 01:24 PM EDT (#279167) #
"If the Jays finish in the bottom 10 and sign a QO free agent, they would keep their first pick, but would lose pick #11."

I believe so, which makes the whole issue kind of moot. I think Callis stated that #11 (ie compensation pick) wasn't protected under the new CBA, however, I thought I heard an interview with Anthopoulos a couple of months back where he seemed to suggest it is. I just assumed I misheard AA at the time.
Lylemcr - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 01:27 PM EDT (#279168) #
I was wondering if they should sit Rasmus to not let him stack his numbers.  Isn't he up forarbitration this year again?
ayjackson - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 01:35 PM EDT (#279169) #
Sorry, I didn't see John's response regarding pick #11.
Beyonder - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 01:36 PM EDT (#279170) #
"Closest is http://mlb.mlb.com/pa/pdf/cba_english.pdf which shows on page #89 that draft picks are protected if gained via ML Rule #4(c)(2) which I'm sure is in there somewhere but I cannot find it. The text is..."

I wish it were available John, but it is not. The closest we can get is to look at the 2008 version of the Business Rules found on the Biz of Baseball site. In that old version of the Rules, Rule 4(c)(2) indeed pertained to compensation for unsigned players. I'm sure this is carried over to the revised rules, but I have never been able to find a copy (despite a lot of looking and asking).

Magpie - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 01:38 PM EDT (#279171) #
I was wondering if they should sit Rasmus to not let him stack his numbers.

It's seldom a good idea to deliberately irritate and alienate your players.
John Northey - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 01:53 PM EDT (#279172) #
In 12 games what is Rasmus going to do to 'stack his numbers' anyways?  At 21 for HR so not going to get to 30 unless he has a super-hot streak.  64 RBI isn't close to anything of note. 0 SB (weird).  275 avg is too far from 300 to reach unless, again, a super-hot streak occurs.  Yeah, I don't see anything he can realistically reach for 'magic numbers' at this point.  It would be nice for him to get a stolen base though...weird as he seems to have speed but just doesn't use it on the bases I guess.
James W - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 02:18 PM EDT (#279173) #
You don't have to get to thirty. Even 22 is greater than 21.
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 02:43 PM EDT (#279174) #
It's seldom a good idea to deliberately irritate and alienate your players.

...
especially if a player has put in a good effort at all phases of the game and performed well.  You shouldn't do it for other players, but you might incidentally irritate while trying to help the player in some respect, or while trying to correct/discipline.

It is also a good idea to try to win every single game of the season.  That doesn't mean expecting players to play through minor injuries, but at some point, the team gets the message that management might not be adverse to the club losing some more games at the end of the year.  This sets a bad tone. 
Moe - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 03:21 PM EDT (#279175) #
"I believe so, which makes the whole issue kind of moot. I think Callis stated that #11 (ie compensation pick) wasn't protected under the new CBA, however, I thought I heard an interview with Anthopoulos a couple of months back where he seemed to suggest it is. I just assumed I misheard AA at the time."

I remember last year there was a discussion whether the Mets pick at 11 should be protected because it was originally the 10th but fell to 11 because the Pirates did not sign Appel. The consensus was that the Mets pick was not protected and, by the same logic, neither would be the Jays pick at 11. That is, unless something changed since last year.

See here: http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/should-the-mets-get-an-exception-to-the-rules/

But as others have said, this is unlikely to matter since the Jays payroll for next year is already so high that a 10-15m FA contract seems not to fit in any more.
John Northey - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 04:10 PM EDT (#279176) #
There are also non-standard free agent routes to add if cash is available.  A Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka (currently 21-0 with a 1.24 ERA in Japan) who is expected to be a #2 or #3 guy, plus Jose Abreu - a Cuban 1B slugger who is thought to have 25 HR power as his low expectation and is ranked as an 80 power (on the scouts scale which maxes at 80).  Both are cash only, no players or draft picks.  Doubt the Jays will get either, but both certainly would fit in nicely.
sam - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 04:21 PM EDT (#279177) #
http://www.sportsnet.ca/baseball/davidi-arencibia-opens-up-about-tough-2013/

What's the point of giving this guy a platform? So he can insult fans and proclaim how good he is? Or is it to make excuses?
Chuck - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 04:54 PM EDT (#279178) #
Arencibia's skin is awfully thin. "The ones that are critical are the ones that most of the time never played and donít really understand it."

I think we, who have never played, can simultaneously applaud the effort and skill that was required for him to even make the major leagues and critique his poor on-field results.

I'm not sure that it takes major league experience to recognize that a .610 OPS just isn't getting it done. And that is not a disparagement of his work ethic, his willingness to learn, his integrity or his personal worth. It's just a nuts and bolts assessment of the bottom line that he insists on taking as a personal affront.

One would hope that his agent or the organization or someone would step in and suggest to him that someone who is hitting .200 maybe shouldn't hurl insults at the public that pays his salary. That strategy is likely not one that will win anyone over.
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 04:56 PM EDT (#279179) #
Arencibia's inability to reach base over his career as a full-time player has really been only approached by shortstops like Rey Ordonez. 

Davidi has significant familiarity with statistics and analysis.  He surely knows that how often a batter reaches base is the single most important piece of information about his offensive abilities.  I hope that he knows that there has never been a player left in a full-time role as long as Arencibia with such a poor career record in reaching base unless someone believed that he was a significantly above-average defender.  Not even his most ardent defenders would say that.   The closest comp to Arencibia is definitely Miguel Olivo, who started out as a part-time player and was a better hitter and defender than Arencibia.  He was not the kind of player that you really want to have on a team seeking to win.

Chuck - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 05:41 PM EDT (#279180) #
Life as a beat reporter must surely make it difficult to be entirely objective, given that you know the players personally and presumably like many of them. Davidi's piece masqueraded as objective, but clearly wasn't. I am not convinced it betrayed a lack of any fundamental understanding on his part, however. Still, the piece does Arencibia no favours as it can't help but reveal his continually hostile and naive attitude towards his detractors.
John Northey - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 05:50 PM EDT (#279181) #
Each time an article like this comes out I think in AA's office you see the odds of trading JPA go up significantly. I cannot imagine the team appreciates a guy going out of his way to insult the paying public. If he was hitting like EE has this year and fielding like I-Rod then he'd have something to say, but hit like he has and field like he has and you need to keep your mouth shut. Hopefully other players on the team will go up to him and remind him of that.  Soon.
China fan - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 06:09 PM EDT (#279182) #
I don't think the Davidi piece was intended to be "objective", and it certainly wasn't an attempt to do favors to JPA. The value of the piece was simply the fact that it was a relatively rare interview with Arencibia at the nadir of his career. He has been dodging the media recently, and I haven't seen anybody else doing a full-length interview with him in the past few weeks. (Maybe there have been one or two interviews with him, but if so, they were relatively low profile, and not as extensive as this one.)

It's obvious to everyone that JPA is having a terrible season, and he has faced widespread criticism this year. The story doesn't evade that reality at all -- and it actually contains a good summary of all the statistical evidence of his terrible season -- but it does give him a chance to respond, in his own words. Whether that enhances JPA's reputation or damages it -- that's not Davidi's concern.

The story was never intended to be a hard-nosed analysis of JPA's bad numbers. But any interview story is inherently going to show some sympathy to its subject, since -- by definition -- it gives the subject a chance to give his viewpoint at some length. So now, because of this story, we've seen JPA's response to the criticism. That, by itself, is inherently interesting, and allows us to judge him for ourselves. It's not intended to be the definitive analysis of the guy. It was intended to give him a chance to speak for himself, so that we can see his feelings and judge his words. I think that has value to the reader.
Gerry - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 06:38 PM EDT (#279183) #
I hope that AA, in his end of season meeting with JP, says "next year you will likely be competing for a job and you could come into camp as the backup".  Hopefully that straight talk will get it into JP's head that his job is in jeopardy despite his denials.
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 07:15 PM EDT (#279184) #
If he's competing for a full-time job next spring, that would mean that Anthopoulos hasn't done his job of finding someone better for the role. 

This is the paragraph of Davidi's that got my goat:

His raw talent, his durability, his work ethic and his toughness Ė he rejected a cortisone shot to ease the bursitis in his right knee back in July because it would have meant a month on the DL Ė are why the 27-year-old remains an intriguing commodity, even amid the turbulence.

His "durability" is not an asset.  There is no freaking advantage to having a player performing well below replacement level because he is injured.  This isn't Johnny Bench we are talking about.  That the club puts up with this kind of nonsense is to its discredit.  The club should say to a player like JPA. "you are performing very poorly and your injury may be contributing to it; take your pick- the shot, the DL and a chance at a full-time job after or the bench now"  Something similar could have been said to Bonifacio in April. 

China fan - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 07:37 PM EDT (#279185) #
Bench him? For whom? Thole was worse.

In any event, we're not the team's doctors here, and we lack the medical data. Doesn't make sense to get angry over a failure to DL someone whose performance "may" have been affected by an injury.
AWeb - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 08:15 PM EDT (#279186) #
If Thole got 500 PA, I'd guess he would somehow manage to put up a line equivalent to JPA's - last year he hit .234/.294/.290 - useless, but almost as good as JPA's line this year. JPA is hitting at the "good pitcher year" level. And if his knee was that bad, how well can he possibly move behind the plate (not well, as we've seen)? Unless you are a superstar, your injured-level performance is going to hurt the team. Toughing it out is great in a single game or series roster pinch, but not for months on end by a player hitting .154 in the second half. With no particular power.  Since April, he hasn't hit for power, average, or gotten on base. He has been awful, and he has been hurt. If AA can't act on the first part of that (making him non-terrible), then he should insist on dealing with the second part (DL trips aren't optional).


Eephus - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 08:28 PM EDT (#279187) #
Going, going, Goins!!!!

Hey someone had to do it.

Eephus - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 08:47 PM EDT (#279188) #
I'm fairly certain that J.P. Arencibia is a perfectly decent and good human being.

But as a baseball player I'm sick of him, his attitude and his Dome sized ego. The day he is no longer on this team will be a very happy one for me.

JB21 - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 08:50 PM EDT (#279189) #
Colby Rasmus with 4 HR's in his 4 games back. Not too shab. He's now slugging over .500 with a WAR of 4.4.
John Northey - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 09:05 PM EDT (#279190) #
So, if JPA went down for the year in July what would we have missed?
JPA from July 1st to yesterday: 178/223/290 for a 513 OPS
JPA from August 1st to yesterday: 140/181/260 for a 441 OPS

Thole for the season: 144/233/212 for a 444 OPS
Thole from August 1st to yesterday: 167/211/278 for a 488 OPS

Yes, as terrible as Thole has been JPA from August 1st to now has been even worse.  They still outhit pitchers - overall in majors pitchers are hitting 131/163/168 for a 331 OPS, but I checked some historical and pitchers in 1953 in the majors (pre-DH) hit 179/220/230 for a 450 OPS, or slightly better than JPA since August 1st and a bit better than Thole on the year.

So, if JPA was down for the year would it be worse? Might just have been, but it would've been close from the looks of it and that isn't factoring in what Mike Nickeas would've 'hit' (lifetime 479 OPS, 507 in AAA this year) as a backup.  For sad, d'Arnaud has hit 167/233/231 for a 463 OPS this year since being called up (he has played fairly regularly since being called up).  Talk about feeling like there was no hope behind the plate.

Meanwhile Yan Gomes continues to hit well for Cleveland (134 OPS+ - his season OPS+ is almost as high as JPA's batting average since August 1st, and his OPS in September is 876 so he isn't slowing down).  Sigh.
John Northey - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 09:09 PM EDT (#279191) #
Hmm... Phil Hughes is a free agent after this season - would you sign him for the Jays rotation and if so for how much?  His HR/9 rate is 1.5 this year, lifetime 1.3 but his BB/9 is 2.6 this year 2.8 lifetime and his K rate is 7.5 this year and 7.6 lifetime.  Safe to assume the Yankees won't make a qualifying offer I'd think with his 80  ERA+ and the way they are pulling him quickly.
Gerry - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 11:17 PM EDT (#279192) #
The bunt in the ninth inning was a bad call in my opinion. The Yankees knew it was coming and so to make it work the bunt had to be perfectly placed down the third base line. These days it is hard for players to get a bunt down, but to get it exactly where you want it is almost too much to ask for. Gibbons should have let Sierra hit away in that situation.
katman - Wednesday, September 18 2013 @ 11:36 PM EDT (#279193) #
Yeah, Yan Gomes is really looking like the one that got away. Which I never heard anyone else say at the time, and wouldn't have imagined myself.

On the flip side, the guy we got in exchange now looks like a legit #4 starter, with further upside. It hurts because we're screwed at catcher. But then, we're screwed for starting pitching, too. If Rogers can be even a decent starter in 2014, we'll have no cause for complaint with this trade.

Magpie - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 12:27 AM EDT (#279194) #
The Yankees knew it was coming

No kidding. How close was Overbay to home plate? Was he shaking hands with Kawasaki between pitches?
Magpie - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 12:33 AM EDT (#279195) #
the guy we got in exchange now looks like a legit #4 starter, with further upside.

I dunno. I think he's got a better chance of being a useful swingman, and most of these guys - Carlos Villanueva comes to mind pretty quickly - can give you a few decent starts when you need it. But prolonged use in the role tends to expose them.

We won't feel nearly so bad about Yan Gomes if he hits .215 next year, which I promise is a very real possibility.
katman - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 01:05 AM EDT (#279196) #
Magpie, I respect your opinion. Why do you think Esmil Rogers is just a swingman? What's missing? I would have said so a while ago, but then he started putting very good starts together again.
Alex Obal - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 01:24 AM EDT (#279197) #
As the Box's resident Chuck Newton supporter, I feel obligated to point out that he did fine as a starter this year and might be a sensible buy-low target for a team seeking starting pitching.

Villanueva started nine games at Wrigley Field, which played as an even bigger hitters' park than usual this year, a 108/109 park factor per BR. His six road assignments were as difficult as they come in the NL: Atlanta, Cincinnati, (Miami), Colorado, Arizona, and St. Louis. In that environment, a 4.50 ERA and 6 IP/GS (deflated by the the occasional swingman pitch count) is pretty respectable. As usual his first month was his best month, it's true, but we never get to see how he responds to a run of bad starts, since whenever it happens he gets shunted to the bullpen in favor of some scrub with a big fastball.
China fan - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 02:35 AM EDT (#279198) #
"....Unless you are a superstar, your injured-level performance is going to hurt the team...."

There's actually nothing in the Davidi article to suggest that JPA's injury was the reason for his poor performance. The article actually suggests that the Jays believe that his poor results could have been his "approach" as much as anything. Aside from April, his hitting numbers have been terrible all season -- before the July injury and after, and including this month too -- so there's no real evidence that the injury was the reason for his decline. Lots of players routinely play through minor injuries. If everyone in MLB jumped onto the DL as soon as they have a small problem, we'd be watching minor-leaguers all year. Again, without knowing the assessment of the Jays medical team, I don't think it's fair to speculate that JPA and the Jays stupidly allowed him to hurt the team by playing through a significant injury.
greenfrog - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 06:57 AM EDT (#279199) #
Magpie, even if Gomes hits .215 next year with a 6.3 BB%, he would have a leg up on Arencibia (3.8 BB% this year). The better OBP acts as a nice buffer against the ups and downs of BA. In any case, Gomes's BABIP this year is .330, which isn't outrageously high.
greenfrog - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 07:06 AM EDT (#279200) #
The other factor, of course, is that Gomes's 2014 salary will be a fraction of Arencibia's 2014 salary.
92-93 - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 07:23 AM EDT (#279201) #
There's actually nothing in the Davidi article to suggest that JPA's injury was the reason for his poor performance.

We must read this paragraph completely differently. "One thing the Blue Jays must settle on is how much the bursitis in his right knee and the subsequent hamstring and plantar issues heís experienced in his left leg as a result of compensating have affected Arencibiaís hitting, and whether his approach is more the issue."

Thole's numbers playing once every 5 days are pretty irrelevant if you're trying to figure out what sort of replacement production he could've provided.

92-93 - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 07:28 AM EDT (#279202) #
I doubt Rasmus' arbitration case is going to matter much, because he should be getting a contract extension soon.
Chuck - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 08:02 AM EDT (#279203) #

There's actually nothing in the Davidi article to suggest that JPA's injury was the reason for his poor performance.

Arencibia was interviewed before last night's game and he strongly implied this was the case. Paraphrasing here, he suggested he could have taken the easy way out and gotten a shot and gone on the DL for a month, but that he chose instead to gut it out to help the team. It seemed pretty clear that he saw his non-DL time as heroic and unselfish and that his numbers paid a price. He also suggested that the number of games he caught was also a contributing factor, saying that he prides himself on his durability. It seemed pretty clear that in his mind, he took one for the team, playing hurt at the expense of his numbers.

greenfrog - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 08:12 AM EDT (#279204) #
It's amazing how many Jays players have broken down physically this year - i.e., in a non-contending season. I'm not sure why some of the heavily-used players weren't given more rest to address their injuries. Is getting to 75 wins really so important?
greenfrog - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 08:18 AM EDT (#279205) #
If I were Rasmus, I would give free agency a try after 2014. I wouldn't want to play on concrete for the next 4-5 years. Did you read his comments the other day? He said running on the RC turf makes his body ache all over.
John Northey - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 09:02 AM EDT (#279206) #
For JPA just to scare everyone - he has actually gotten worse.  In September he has hit 054/103/054 for a 157 OPS.   Yes, his OPS in September (over 39 PA) is lower than the Mendoza line for batting average.  Well below.

Why on earth is he still out there so much?  His OPS by month is 833-607-542-617-572-157.  That is NOT someone you want out there everyday.  His highest OBP was 284 in August. What on earth do they see in him? He works hard I'm sure, is a nice guy around the clubhouse I'm sure, but so is Kawasaki and he isn't getting in there everyday by any stretch yet JPA has played in all but 20 games this season.  If I was a teammate I'd be feeling like the team isn't trying to win, if I was Thole I'd be seething.
finch - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 09:12 AM EDT (#279207) #
If I were Rasmus, I would give free agency a try after 2014. I wouldn't want to play on concrete for the next 4-5 years. Did you read his comments the other day? He said running on the RC turf makes his body ache all over.   I don't think the turf will matter much as Beeston has been quite coy when asked about replacing the turf with grass in order to make it a baseball only stadium. I will guess it will happen after next season. They do need to give the Argos sufficient time to find a new home.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 09:45 AM EDT (#279208) #
As the Box's resident Chuck Newton supporter

He's Charles to the rest of us.  I like Villanueva as a low-cost acquisition too, but with the idea that you get 100-130 pretty good innings out of him.  He's got a career pattern of struggling the 3rd time through the order.  Villanueva and Rogers make a nice pair.  15 starts from each and bullpen stints in the long role when the other is starting.  Ach.  It'll never happen.  Creeping bolshevism.
ayjackson - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 10:21 AM EDT (#279209) #
If Regina, Hamilton, Winnipeg and maybe Halifax can build new CFL facilities, what's wrong with the big spenders on Queen Street?
Mike Green - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 10:31 AM EDT (#279211) #
Rename them the Don Bosco Argos and we'll talk...
China fan - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 10:49 AM EDT (#279212) #
".... "One thing the Blue Jays must settle on is how much the bursitis in his right knee and the subsequent hamstring and plantar issues heís experienced in his left leg as a result of compensating have affected Arencibiaís hitting, and whether his approach is more the issue...."

This is precisely the paragraph that I was referring to in Davidi's article. It clearly states that the Jays don't know whether the injury affected his hitting. It also suggested that his approach may be "more the issue." This is a clear statement that the Jays themselves don't know whether his injury affected his performance. Why, then, are some fans so completely convinced that it did affect his performance? Do the fans know more than the team?

"....Paraphrasing here, he suggested he could have taken the easy way out and gotten a shot and gone on the DL for a month, but that he chose instead to gut it out to help the team...."

If we are trying to read between the lines in a broadcast interview, it would be nice to see the actual words, rather than an impression. I'm not sure that the impression is accurate. If his clear intent was to "help the team," it's doubtful that he would simultaneously admit that the injury was significantly reducing his hitting ability. He's not stupid enough to think that he is "helping the team" if his numbers (already poor in the pre-injury period) were being hurt significantly by the injury. Nor are the Jays stupid enough to think that they should ignore an injury if it is significantly affecting his performance. They routinely place a lot of players on the DL when an injury is having a substantial impact on their performance. Would they make an exception for JPA just because he prefers to "gut it out"? I don't think so.
Chuck - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 11:06 AM EDT (#279213) #

If we are trying to read between the lines in a broadcast interview, it would be nice to see the actual words, rather than an impression.

I'd link to the video if it were on-line anywhere. Absent that, all I have are my impressions which you are certainly free to disagree with, as you have done. Perhaps others who saw the interview can weigh in with their impressions and those well might contradict mine.

Nor are the Jays stupid enough to think that they should ignore an injury if it is significantly affecting his performance.

I'm not saying that I know what the Jays knew or didn't know, or if Arencibia's injury actually hurt his numbers or didn't. I'm just providing my potentially flawed recollection of the message that I felt Arencibia was conveying.

Thomas - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 11:37 AM EDT (#279214) #

China Fan, I donít think that article as clearly states that the Jays donít know whether his knee has affected his hitting as you do. I think a reasonable interpretation is that Davidi suggests that there are two likely explanations for his offensive struggles, which arenít mutually exclusive, and those are that heís either not a good offensive players whose lack of plate discipline and pitch recognition skills are being further exploited the more evident they become or that his struggles are, to at least some degree, impacted by physical issues. It says that ďthe Jays must settleĒ the issue, but I donít read a couple of quotes from Mottola as excluding the possibility that the front office or coaching staff may have already made up their minds on this front.

 

If they havenít made up their minds, theyíre going to have to decide how much of a mulligan to give for 2013, but I donít see Davidiís wording as indicating that AA hasnít already decided to either a) give JP that mulligan or b) to view him as someone likely to have continued offensive difficulties in the majors.

 

And I also donít agree with your ďhelping the teamĒ comment. JP seems to have an inflated view of his own talent and any professional athlete must have a certain level of self-confidence. I think itís very likely that JP believes that his presence in the lineup does more to the teamís chances of winning than Tholeís, even with an injury. We see professional athletes gutting it out through injury all the time, sometimes to their teamís detriment, and I donít see why JP would be any different.

China fan - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 11:47 AM EDT (#279215) #
"...I think itís very likely that JP believes that his presence in the lineup does more to the teamís chances of winning than Tholeís, even with an injury..."

I'm sure that's true. But I doubt that Gibbons would agree so easily, and nor would Anthopoulos. I don't think the Jays are easily pushed around by a stubborn or egotistical player. If a player's performance is being significantly affected by an injury, it's clearly the job of the manager and GM to ensure that that player is put on the bench or the DL. There may be examples of players who damage the team by concealing an injury, but there are also lots of examples of players who are put on the DL against their will. The Jays could easily have done that, in the JPA case, if it was obvious that his injury was hurting the team. They certainly knew about the injury and discussed various forms of treatment (a cortisone shot or whatever). It was no secret, and it was widely reported by the Toronto media in early August. So the Jays could have easily put him on the DL (even against his own wishes) if they felt it was hampering him.

By the way, Arencibia himself said the injury was not affecting his hitting. From a John Lott story about Arencibia and his bursitis on Aug. 9: "Asked whether he believes the injury affects his hitting, he replied: 'I donít think so.'"
Mike Green - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 11:49 AM EDT (#279216) #
For what it's worth, it is well known that catchers are extremely susceptible to knee problems which can affect their performance.  If I had a catcher whose monthly splits were:

April- .253/.267/.566
May- .208/.232/.375
June-.175/.230/.313
July- .232/.284/.333

And I knew that he had some kind of a knee problem, medical advice (if I got it) that the knee problem definitely wasn't affecting his performance would receive the highest degree of skepticism- 2nd opinions...I doubt very much that the club received that kind of advice. 

It seems pretty clear to me from the club's approach to Arencibia over a period of years, that he has fans in management who are very impressed with the raw tools and other qualities that he has.  Those same things that Davidi mentions.  And which, it appears to me, have prevented management from making a reasonable judgment about what to do about him.

China fan - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 12:13 PM EDT (#279217) #
So, Mike, you're suggesting that the knee injury occurred at the end of April and that's why his hitting suddenly fell off the cliff? I don't see any evidence that the injury occurred at the end of April. In fact it wasn't reported until August. Yes, the injury occurred sometime before August, but I don't see any evidence that it occurred at precisely the right time to explain why his hitting was so good in April and so bad in the rest of the season.
Four Seamer - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 12:44 PM EDT (#279218) #
It may be that I am just too overly cynical, but I don't find it a stretch to think that a team as far out of the mix as the Blue Jays were by the end of July would continue to stick with one of their more marketable and visible players day in and day out, regardless of performance, when there aren't any more obviously better performing replacements at hand (I think that Thole would, if given more regular work, provide better results than we've seen to date but he has hardly made a strong case for more playing time).  If you can't win games, you can at least sell tickets and jerseys and Arencibia, for reasons which largely escape me, has some value there.  (That said, his community work is impressive and provides a puzzling contrast to the sense of self-entitlement and self-pity that emerges each time he talks to the press.  I am large, I contain multitudes, as Walt Whitman once said.)   
92-93 - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 12:52 PM EDT (#279219) #
It's hard to know which is worse - that the Jays knew Arencibia had an injury that was hampering him and still allowed him to play as frequently as he has, or that they didn't and were fine with what he was bringing to the position.
greenfrog - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 12:57 PM EDT (#279220) #
What leaps out at me from the stats Mike Green lists is the fact that Arencibia hasn't hit the .290 OBP mark in any month this season. That's distressing, especially when you factor in the poor defense and the summer power outage.

I can't imagine that he has much trade value at the moment. It might be worth it to some non-contending team to acquire him for a song and try to rebuild his value, with a view to flipping him for some younger, cheaper talent in 2014.
BlueJayWay - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 01:16 PM EDT (#279221) #
I'd be happy if I never saw or heard or read about Arencibia ever again.  I know this is pretty much beating a dead horse at this point, but...I don't think I can stomach another year with him as catcher.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 01:29 PM EDT (#279222) #
CF, the knee injuries which catchers routinely get are effectively types of repetitive strain injuries.  You would anticipate insidious onset. 

I guess the club figured that giving him the Dickey day off would be enough rest, and maintained that view in the face of the evidence to the contrary.

Alex Obal - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 01:30 PM EDT (#279223) #
It might be worth it to some non-contending team to acquire him for a song

Hell, I'd trade him for "Sorry For Party Rocking."
China fan - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 01:41 PM EDT (#279224) #
"....It's hard to know which is worse - that the Jays knew Arencibia had an injury that was hampering him and still allowed him to play as frequently as he has, or that they didn't and were fine with what he was bringing to the position..."

To be fair, both of those scenarios are narratives which you have constructed in your head. Many players on every MLB team have minor injuries -- it's a routine thing -- and the "hampering" is often so minor that it is overlooked. There's no evidence that the injury was seriously damaging his performance. (If it was seriously damaging his performance, wouldn't the Jays or JPA have admitted this by now?) There are many reasons for JPA's poor season -- primarily his approach at the plate, which many Jays coaches have publicly mentioned already this year. The Jays did many things to try to improve his hitting and his defence. In retrospect, should they have dumped him and replaced him with Thole or someone else? Yes, perhaps, but 20-20 hindsight is always easy.

As for the second narrative in your head: there is absolutely no evidence that the Jays were "fine" with his poor performance. In fact, this has been repeatedly contradicted by the public comments of the Jays coaches. They have repeatedly mentioned his poor approach at the plate, his insistence on throwing to 2B from a sitting position, etc, etc. Obviously they were not "fine" with his poor performance. It's quite rare for a player to be criticized so publicly by his own coaches, and I'll wager that they were frustrated with his reluctance to adjust.

I know that people are trying to find villainy here. But the most likely scenario is simply that JPA is having a very bad season, for multiple reasons, and that he was never as good as we had hoped. There's no reason to assume deliberate deception or stupidity.
John Northey - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 01:49 PM EDT (#279225) #
This year JPA has caught 998 2/3 innings.  The other 3 have caught a total of 358 1/3.  Dickey has 209 1/3 IP of which about 6 were caught by JPA meaning that of the non-Dickey pitchers JPA caught 992 2/3 innings out of 1147 1/3 or roughly 86%.  Just nuts.

Going by sOPS+ (OPS+ vs league at that position) we see a 65 at catcher and 57 at second base. Next worst is LF at 80 while all other positions are over 100. 

Internal options? Goins is hitting for a 64 OPS+ now, Kawasaki 75 so neither is a likely good answer to 'what to do about 2B in 2014' nor is Izturis and his 65 OPS+.  Behind the plate AJ Jimenez is the best hope but his OPS in AAA was 525 (just 8 games), AA 721 this year (plus a 1.091 in A+ over 9 games) with a total of 85 career games in AA/AAA so I suspect he is a year away.   You have to go to rookie ball (and a 20 year old which is old for that level) to find another catcher (other than Thole) with an overall OPS over 700 and more than 1 game played.  At 2B Goins is the best hope in the near future.

Yeah, catcher and 2B are must improves for 2014 and most likely from outside the organization.  LF might solve itself with Sierra/Pillar/Gose mixed with a healthy (?) Cabrera although if an upgrade shows itself why not?  DH (Lind) would be a minor worry again unless an opportunity arises (the Cuban slugger for example). 

2014 priorities: 2B (unless you believe in Goins), CA (unless you love JPA), high end starting pitcher, then comes LF, RH DH, backups, rotation fodder, bullpen fodder, etc.

Magpie - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 02:02 PM EDT (#279226) #
I can't imagine that he has much trade value at the moment.

Probably not, seeing as how most major league teams are getting more production out of their backup catcher, and Arencibia isn't going to make anyone's roster because of his glove.
Magpie - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 02:07 PM EDT (#279227) #
Why do you think Esmil Rogers is just a swingman?

I don't believe in his secondary pitches. They seem to come and go. Of course that nine start stretch from the beginning of July (0-4, 7.47) into August that eventually sent him back to the pen may simply have traumatized me.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 02:08 PM EDT (#279228) #
I'd like to trade "Livin' on a Prayer" for Russ Martin, Alex.  Also, "Take A Look at me now" for Dioner Navarro.  Mitt Romney has a binder full of women, and I've got a jukebox full of ballplayers.
Magpie - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 02:11 PM EDT (#279229) #
But the most likely scenario is simply that JPA is having a very bad season, for multiple reasons, and that he was never as good as we had hoped.

I agree that it's just that simple. It's unlikely that he's really as awful as he's been this year, but I don't think there's much in the way of upside beyond what he's already demonstrated in his first two seasons. That's probably about as good as it's ever going to get.
John Northey - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 03:19 PM EDT (#279231) #
Did you know Rogers now is #3 in starts this year for the Jays at 18? and #4 is a tie at 16 with both Happ and Johnson?  Ick.  Redmond has the #6 slot with his 11 starts and #7 is Morrow at 10. Wang's 6 starts comes in 7th out of the 13 starters we've seen this  year.

Rogers in September has 3 starts and a 1.35 ERA over 20 IP. Twice no runs allowed (vs Arizona & Minnesota), once 3 runs (vs Baltimore). Not bad but how strong were those other 2 teams vs Baltimore?  4 times this year he allowed 7+ runs, but he also has 4 starts allowing 0 runs with two of those being against Boston and Atlanta.  He is interesting and hard to guess for 2014.

Lylemcr - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 04:23 PM EDT (#279233) #

I have a question

Why has there been little talk about getting Halladay back? I realize he is having a bad year, but 2 years ago he was cy young?  His pitching style is one that he can pitch for a long time.  In this poll, how can he drop to 20th?  (Josh Johnson is ahead of him?)

http://www.mlbtraderumors.com/2013/09/top-34-free-agent-starters.html

Personally, if he can come available for a decent price, I am putting a flyer on him.  But...  In my eyes, he can do no wrong.

 

Mike Green - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 04:28 PM EDT (#279234) #
Shhh.  Probably 1/2 of da Box dreams of Doc returning on an incentive-laden contract and getting his first ring here. I might be able to trade "Sweet Dreams are made of this" for that.
John Northey - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 04:38 PM EDT (#279235) #
Well, partially because many fear seeing a shell of his old self and getting depressed I suspect.  His ERA+ this year is 57 - an improvement as he was down at his record low of 48 not too long ago.  His BB/9 is at 5.0 and HR/9 at 1.8.  Yes, in 2011 he was Cy Young and the best on the planet. But his stats have gone major south - BB/9 from 1.3 to 2.1 to 5.0, K/9 from 8.5 to 7.6 to 7.4, HR/9 from 0.4 to 1.0 to 1.8.  Entering his age 37 season I doubt he can come back as well as he did when he was just entering his age 24 season (age 23 was the 10.64 ERA season).

For Halladay I'd be scared to invest any real money unless the scouts said it was a clear issue early on that has been cleared up and even then I'd be nervous. His ERA since coming back in late August is 4.28 and he has more walks than strikeouts (17 vs 16).  That isn't the Halladay we all knew and loved. That isn't even Josh Towers.  Maybe it would work, but it'd be sad to see the Jays sign him then release him in spring or watch him get lit up by the AL East for few months then spend the rest of the year on the DL.
Chuck - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 05:10 PM EDT (#279236) #
Baseball teams do have a habit of bringing back their old stars. My Expos brought back Staub, Carter and Raines (and I'm probably missing a player or two). Position players seem easier to bring back because you can limit their playing time to low leverage situations.

It's another story bringing back a starting pitcher, like Halladay, who looks extremely broken. Unless he accepts being the long man in the pen, he could hurt you on the field while you're trying to figure out if he has anything left in the tank.

Nostalgia is fine and all, but sometimes organizations have to be a little more ruthless than that.
greenfrog - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 05:49 PM EDT (#279237) #
I'm thinking that the lyrics to "The Gambler" by Kenny Rogers (the musician, not the pitcher) pretty much sum up the Arencibia situation for the Jays.
krose - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 07:28 PM EDT (#279238) #
Is it necessary to know the rules to play or manage?
finch - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 09:11 PM EDT (#279239) #
I'm okay with Sierra and Gose as the 3/4 outfielders next season but if that's the case I want a nice bat at 2B. Someone like Ian Kinsler or moving Jose Reyes there with the acquisition of someone like Elvis Andrus.

And then there's the starters...
greenfrog - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 09:57 PM EDT (#279240) #
If Lind's swing is this sweet next year, he might have to change his name to Adam Lindt.

I'll see myself out.

John Northey - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 10:57 PM EDT (#279241) #
Sierra and Gose are looking good aren't they? Playing a team fighting for their playoff lives they both have done well. 4 for 8 for Gose, just 2 for 9 for Sierra with one a double plus 2 walks (OBP 364, slg 333).  Certainly nothing to complain about over the 3 games.

Boy, this winter could be interesting. A platoon of Sierra and Gose in LF with Cabrera the backup LF/DH (Gose or Sierra to RF or CF when Rasmus or Bautista need days off) might be best but with Cabrera getting $8 mil I suspect he'll be everyday in LF again unless Lind is traded opening up DH.  2B is the big challenge - do you go nuts and chase Cano? Do you go for Kinsler who is expensive but not as much ($62 mil over 4 years - too much for what he brings imo)?  Get a shortstop and move Reyes (doubt it)? Find a decent league average guy somewhere and hope for the best (most likely)? Trade for a kid and put him in there?

Yeah, it'll be a fun winter.
krose - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 11:43 PM EDT (#279242) #
Small sample size for the new guys. But it sure is good to see them getting a chance to learn. If there is money to spend on next year's roster, my wish is that Santa buys a catcher.
92-93 - Thursday, September 19 2013 @ 11:56 PM EDT (#279243) #
"there is absolutely no evidence that the Jays were "fine" with his poor performance."

There are 4 players who have more AB as catchers than Arencibia - Yadier Molina, Matt Weiters, Salvador Perez, and Jonathan Lucroy. If they weren't fine with his performance and just kept on running him out there, well they are just plain old stupid.
92-93 - Friday, September 20 2013 @ 12:03 AM EDT (#279244) #
There will always be a GM out there willing to give you something (power relief arm?) for Arencibia's power from the catching position. That HR total is sexy. The Jays should sign Carlos Ruiz just so they can force Ruben Amaro into overpaying for Arencibia's RBIs.

ogator - Friday, September 20 2013 @ 08:46 AM EDT (#279245) #
At what point does the serious Todd Redmond discussion begin? Even if he is not this good, is he better than Josh Johnson? Is he a better bet going forward than Ricky Romero? Chad Jenkins? Drew Hutchison? Is he not a pretty good, inexpensive number five? Does he not give you money to spend elsewhere? Where is the Todd Redmond love and if not now, when?
Chuck - Friday, September 20 2013 @ 10:03 AM EDT (#279246) #
is he better than Josh Johnson? Is he a better bet going forward than Ricky Romero? Chad Jenkins? Drew Hutchison?

Given Redmond's lack of a track record, his performance must be viewed with an especially skeptical eye. But still, there's no arguing with success, especially when accompanied by strong peripherals. I think he will definitely be in the mix for next season. For no really good reason, I see he and Rogers as low cost 100-150 inning swingmen rather than stalwarts of the rotation. But even that has value, given their modest paycheques.

As for some of the other names, you've got a mixed bag there.

I can't believe that Romero and Jenkins are in the plans at all, unless they can wedge themselves in via surprising performances during spring training. Hutchison would figure to be in the long term plans, but my guess is that he'll start 2014 in the minors. And there does seem to be loose talk that Josh Johnson would return, though surely not at 13M. If he's truly healthy, I believe he would get every opportunity to crack the rotation.

Morrow and Happ are two more question marks. Morrow may just be one of those guys who's never entirely healthy. And the walk-happy Happ is not someone who fills me with confidence.

It will be interesting to see where AA focuses his energy and money this off-season. The rotation has been the team's Achilles' heal but there also appear to be several positions that need shoring up. Availability in the market, either via trade or free agency, will be a determining factor into which paths AA ends up pursuing to improve the team. And of course budgetary constraints. I don't expect any big name starting pitchers to be acquired because the asking prices will be too dear. I don't know that 15M a year for a Garza will be seen as palatable.

A default strategy, for good or for bad, might end up being just bringing back the same batch of starting pitchers with the hope that they are better and healthier.

Mike Green - Friday, September 20 2013 @ 10:16 AM EDT (#279247) #
Where is the Todd Redmond love and if not now, when?

Invoking Primo Levi will get my attention.  Todd Redmond had an interesting minor league career; despite being a 34th round pick, he was one of the best pitchers in his league for 3 of his first 4 years in the minors (through double A).  He's always had good W/K rates, and continued them this year in Buffalo (do not be deceived by the 5+ ERA).  Here he is at 28 in the major leagues, having missed time with a shoulder injury earlier in the year. He looks good to me, with a 92-94 mph fastball which he locates very well, a quasi-forkball/change which helps against LHP and the ability to throw sidearm against RHP and be very effective that way.  Most of all, he seems to have a very good idea what he wants to do out there. 

If he can stay healthy, I see no reason why he couldn't be one of those (many) positive surprises among pitchers. 

On the other hand, I don't share the appreciation for Sierra and Gose. Gose has now had 300 major league PAs and hasn't hit.  His minor league performance the last two years has been even worse.  He has terrific arm strength, terrific speed and enough twitch to produce medium range pop.  That hasn't added up to a ballplayer yet.  It's nice that Sierra has had a little hot streak upon his arrival in the major leagues, but his overall performance from 2011-2013 is of a below average platoon player. 
Mike Green - Friday, September 20 2013 @ 10:20 AM EDT (#279248) #
Achilles' heal

Nice (good morning, Dewey). 

Chuck beat me to the punch.  I have no idea whether Redmond can throw 180+ innings with all that funky stuff happening and his shoulder injury.  He was throwing 160-170 innings for years in the minor leagues and he does look solid.  Damned if I know. 
Chuck - Friday, September 20 2013 @ 10:35 AM EDT (#279249) #
Achilles' heal

Ack. Heel. Heel. Heel.

Mike Green - Friday, September 20 2013 @ 11:05 AM EDT (#279250) #
Actually, I enjoyed that one.  It made me think of a tongue-twister/language learning device:

"could Archimedes heal Achilles' heel?"

Dewey - Friday, September 20 2013 @ 11:28 AM EDT (#279251) #
 Mike Green - Friday, September 20 2013 @ 10:20 AM EDT (#279248) #
Achilles' heal

Nice (good morning, Dewey).


I can see that my work here is bearing fruit, at last; and in certain instances at least.  Enjoy it while you can lads; there will come a time when youíre not so absurdly sprightly at this hour of the day.

Keep up the good work.
Beyonder - Friday, September 20 2013 @ 12:18 PM EDT (#279252) #
"A default strategy, for good or for bad, might end up being just bringing back the same batch of starting pitchers with the hope that they are better and healthier."

I happen to think that is pretty close to the dominant strategy insofar as winning games is concerned. My fear is that it may be a poor strategy from a marketing perspective. One cheap way to maintain fan interest would be to re-sign Halladay in the hope he can be our fifth starter.

I would gladly give Johnson 13 million if he would give us a team option for the following year for the same amount. This season screams fluke to me.
MatO - Friday, September 20 2013 @ 03:06 PM EDT (#279253) #
It's now official. The Argos have signed a new lease through 2017 that will not be renewed. The Argos can opt out before then if they find a suitable place to play but I suspect we won't see grass at the Rogers Centre before 2018.
adrianveidt - Friday, September 20 2013 @ 03:43 PM EDT (#279254) #
Boy, this winter could be interesting.
With bad organizations, it's frequently more interesting to watch everything except the product.
John Northey - Friday, September 20 2013 @ 05:04 PM EDT (#279256) #
Hey, dreaming is fun.  One of these days those will come true as in the glory days of 83-93 when they were contenders year in year out.  Hopefully before we all die of old age.
Game threads - 9/17 - 9/19 vs. New York | 103 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.