This is a post from bauxite Mike D.
An analysis of whether the Blue Jaysí bullpen has succeeded or failed this season is surprisingly complex.
Looking at the most basic mainstream measure of saves, the Jays have been an atrocious 6-for-16 in save situations (while the first-overall Cardinals have been a tidy 25-for-29). On the other hand, the Jaysí reliever ERA is better than that of eight other teamsí bullpens, and the bullpenís K/BB ratio is second-best in the majors while holding opponents to the tenth-lowest opposing OPS.
For the twelvth year in a row, I am once again asking for hardcore baseball fans to participate in the annual Scouting Report project, in which you evaluate the fielding characteristics of players on your team. If you have a few minutes, please drop by and evaluate your team.
(Hey, it just sounds better than "Inside the Rogers Centre.")
Anyway, the Jays have been playing full-time at their current digs since the 1990 season. Certain trends have been established. But what Toronto's pitchers have been doing at the Rogers Centre this season hasn't been seen before.
The Home Run Derby is tonight, which means at least 60 minutes of being subjected to Chris Berman saying back back back
. Robinson Cano and Adrian Gonzalez whooped everyone last year, with Cano taking the crown by a single dinger (bonus points if you remembered that).
Who will win this year? Let's have at it.
We're pretty close to mid-season, and since I didn't feel like Advance Scouting the Royals, let's review the Jays offense over the first half of the season (all numbers prior to Monday's game, except where noted).
A few years ago, I ranked Michael Saunders very high on the list of Canadian prospects (yes, even ahead of Brett Lawrie). I was impressed with his athleticism and his improving minor league batting record. Unfortunately his major league trials since them have been disappointing and he has spent a lot of the past two seasons in AAA. But with the continued absence of Franklyn Gutierrez, Saunders has stepped into the everyday centerfielder job. I expect him to remain there even when Gutierrez returns.
A thread on BBTF about Chipper Jones
got me to thinking about how long players stay with one team and has it changed drastically recently. So I figured, what the heck, lets check!
In the past 12 years the Jays have been, well, kind of trapped. 6 years of 3rd place, 1 in 2nd, 1 in 5th, and now 4 straight years of 4th place. During this time attendance has been as mediocre as the team. But when do those fans come out? What does it take to get a crowd? Would it be smart for the Jays to spend millions on stars to push them over 90 wins, push for a move to the AL Central (easier competition) or (financially) is it best to stick as is with the Yankees & Red Sox and perpetual 3rd/4th place finishes.
The Jays have avoided
arbitration with Casey Janssen, signing the 30 year old reliever for 2 years, $5.9 million with a team option for $4 million in 2014. Janssen had been seeking $2.2 million in arbitration, the team offered $1.8; the signing also buys out one of Janssen's free agency years.
The Jays signed
Brandon Morrow to a (for all intents and purposes) 3 year, $21 million deal with a club option for $9 million. Will he be worth it?
Honestly, at a visceral level, I never would have thought this argument could be sensibly made. But today on the really fine MLB Dirt blog, Jonathan C. Mitchell posits a pretty convincing case (Historically Underrated: John Olerud) that ex-Jay John Olerud had a better, if not necessarily Hall-worthy career than feared slugger Jim Rice. Here's part of his conclusion:
"This post is not to say that John Olerud belongs in the Hall of Fame or to say Jim Rice does not belong but to point out that the career Olerud had, although slightly better than Hall-of-Famer Jim Riceís ... is historically underrated for his on-field accomplishments."
Your thoughts, Bauxites?
Great idea from Bauxite :
Just for a laugh...does anyone want to comment on The Book of AA? For example: "We don't comment on any specific player, mainly free agents." ... And, "If it makes sense then we will do it." I know these are weak examples. So hopefully more creative Bauxites will have a go at it.
So. then, let's have that "go at it" ... what other rules and commandments would go in The Book of AA? Keep each one to a line or two. Stay serious! And feel free to disagree with each other, in a friendly-like way. Ready? Go! ...
Just was thinking about how dominating Bautista has been these last two years and got to thinking about which Jay had the most dominating season (vs teammates) all time? What about by position?
Blue Jays pitchers with different catchers. The Data Table....
Just before the All-Star Break, Bauxite 92-93 was grumbling about John Farrell's tendency to cycle through relief pitchers, one inning at a time. I think I suggested that this was simply standard practise in the modern day (which by no means makes it a good idea), to which 92-93 responded that "Plenty of managers ask for 2 innings from their relievers, even in today's game."
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