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-- Pitsburgh Steeler fans tomorrow as Tom Brady picks apart their DEEEEE-FENCE.

On a similar note, and thanks to erstwhile Rosterite Mike Green for the suggestion, here is today's ...

Question of the Weekend: What is the Toronto all-time defnsive team? On a related note, what is the all-time all-MLB defensive team? And how would this team do in real competition, given a league-average pitching staff?
Weekend QOTD: Can Wilson Pick It? | 120 comments | Create New Account
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_Mick - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 10:06 AM EST (#2848) #
No need to provide whole teams -- suggestions of individual players will do. That said, here is one hack's whack at an all-time all-defensive team:

C Johnny Bench
1B Wes Parker, apologies to Keith Hernandez
2B Bill Mazeroski
SS Ozzie Smith
3B Brooks Robinson, apologies to Scott Rolen
RF Dewey Evans
CF Jim Edmonds, aoologies to Cesar Geronimo and Junior Griffey
LF Barry Bonds v. 1.0
SP Jim Kaat

I saw all these guys except Maz -- I admit, that one's on reputation -- so that certainly colours my picks.
_27pif - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 10:31 AM EST (#2849) #
C - Cash (who else was good defensively?) Borders??
1B - Olerud (Upshwaw???) Maybe Segui
2B - Alomar
SS - Fernandez
3B - Gruber
OF - Wells
OF - White
OF - Barfield
P - Key
_Moffatt - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 10:37 AM EST (#2850) #
C Rick Dempsey
P Jim Palmer
1B Eddie Murray
2B Bobby Grich
SS Mark Belanger
3B Brooks Robinson
RF Frank Robinson
CF Paul Blair
LF John Lowenstein

Okay, those are just great defensive players from Earl Weaver's teams. Other than Dempsey and Lowenstein they all won Gold Gloves (most of them multiple times), though F Robbie won his as a Red.
_groove - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 10:38 AM EST (#2851) #
Pittsburgh will play better tomorrow - well I guess it wouldn't be possible to play worse than they did against the Jets. The Pittsburgh defence is still the best in the league. Remember the Jets only scored 3 offensive points, and their defense/special teams did the rest. So I guess you can conlcude that Pitts offense's defense isn't too good.

Groove's keys to the game: 1) Roethlisberger. Must come through and not choke - one interception max. 2) NE defense. If they can force turnovers they will win. This again ties into taking advantage of a rookie quarterback. 3) I don't really like this number thing. I'm running out of ideas.

Let's do one of those advantage-disadvantage bar things that every major web site likes to do

xxxxxxxxxxxx -Strong advatage here for NE
Running game
-PIT has more depth, both are strong
xxxx -PIT has good receivers, but can
Overall Defense Roethlisberger give them balls?
xxxxxx -who can penetrate the Steel curtain?
Special Teams
xxx -Vinateri and Reed are both solid
xxxxxxx - comeon
xx -NE wants revenge. Defending champs
have no ego problems.

Groove's pick - PIT
It is obvious that NE is the better in almost every aspect of the two teams. I will root for NE because I love Boston the city. As I am always wrong, I therefore pick PIT to win.

I think it's cool that I can write a page of stuff that has zero substance and zero relevance to the topic of discussion. Perhaps I am destined to become a sportswriter.
_groove - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 10:41 AM EST (#2852) #
You can't put White and Wells in the same outfield.. they're both CF that's cheating. I would pick Wells though. Barfield in RF and ummm certainly not Georg bell in left.

Was Mondesi a good statistical RF besides his fabled arm?
_Cory - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 10:48 AM EST (#2853) #
Can't forget Alberto Castillo. His bat was weak, but his defensive play behind the plate was second to none.
_GeoffAtMac - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 11:27 AM EST (#2854) #
Not sure I know enough to pick everyone on my fantasy defense Blue Jays Team, but if as groove says we cannot pick both Wells and White, I think I would have to pick White. Wells is amazing, but we have to remember the amazing triple-play-that-wasn't catch and throw that Devo pulled off -- and he pulled it off in the playoff season.

Perhaps we could split CF into L-CF and R-CF and use the two of them. Or maybe if you had a young Devon White, and a young Vernon Wells on the same team at the same time, you could eliminate the need for 3 fielders. They could just run around like cheetahs snagging fly balls. And then, you could spend the rest on pitching...although, even at today's $53 MIL payroll, we could only afford 2 entire Roger Clemenses, and a fraction of another.
_GeoffAtMac - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 11:32 AM EST (#2855) #
PS I wanted to post a couple of days ago, but I got interrupted and then forgot about posting. Da Box should have a question of the day where we pick our least favourite Blue Jays pitcher. Sort of the opposite of last week's question.

E.g. "Suppose the 'best hitter' (homerun or otherwise, your choice) in major legaue history is up to bat at the Skydome. Who would be your absolute worst pick (position players excluded) on the mound to try and defend a 1-run lead -- all Blue Jays' pitchers from 1977 onward are eligible."

Preview of my pick? A little home run specialist -- maybe he would be well suited to helping players in batting practice with his tantalizing (and also very hittable in key situations) fastballs --by the name of Pedro Borbon
_Prisoner of Ham - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 11:34 AM EST (#2856) #
Joe Carter in left, Devon White in centre, Jesse Barfield in Right
Kelly Gruber at third, Tony Fernandez at short, Roberto Alomar at second, Willie Upshaw at First
Buck Martinez behind the plate
Dave Stieb on the mound.
_Mick - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 11:48 AM EST (#2857) #
And here's a followup ... what would be the WORST Jays fielding team of all time? Use real positions, not "John Mayberry, CF" ... Carlos Delgado might make the team behind the plate.
_David Wang - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 11:53 AM EST (#2858) #
I'd rather have Carlos behind the plate that say.. a Josh Phelps
_Jeremy - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 12:27 PM EST (#2859) #
Going solely from memory, without defensive stats, Linear Weights or Win Shares in front of me...

Battery: Jimmy Key & Pat Borders

Infield: Olerud, Alomar, Gruber and Fernandez

Outfield(R-L): Barfield, White, and Carter.

Kinda hard for me to pick a LF because the only ones I remember playing left for any length of time are Bell and Stewart.

'Nuff said.
_Jeremy - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 12:36 PM EST (#2860) #
I think it would be hard to do an all-time worst defensive team, as most of the Stone Glove players tend to cluster at 1B, LF and RF. Offhand, the only player I can think of to have a lengthy career at a key defensive position, despite not being able to catch the measles in a leper colony, is Jose Offerman.
_Chuck Van Den C - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 12:49 PM EST (#2861) #
And here's a followup ... what would be the WORST Jays fielding team of all time? Use real positions, not "John Mayberry, CF" ... Carlos Delgado might make the team behind the plate.

Some recent corner OF have been pretty shakey. Tom Wilson and Dave Berg in LF. Catalanotto in RF.

Going way back, Bob Bailor had a difficult time at SS, despite being drafted as one (I think), and was eventually was moved to the OF (where his bat didn't carry his glove).

Worst 2B? Maybe Carlos Garcia?

3B? Didn't Roy Howell have his challenges?

I'd rather have Carlos behind the plate that say.. a Josh Phelps

I don't think Phelps caught even one inning in the majors whereas Delgado did. That would disqualify Phelps.
_Chuck Van Den C - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 12:56 PM EST (#2862) #
With respect to the good defenders, I'd rate Cash ahead of both Borders and Martinez.

And certainly someone must have been better than Joe Carter as the team's best defensive LF. At his best, Carter was decent, but no better. Reed Johnson must certainly rank ahead of Carter.

I acknowledge that these assessment are unscientific.

To jog your memories, here are the team's regulars throughout history.
_Fozzy - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 12:59 PM EST (#2863) #
As far as catchers go, I don't think we can rule out our journeyman backstop Gregg Zaun, who when coupled with the cannons in the outfield shocked more than a few of the game's better runners this past year.
_David R - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 01:13 PM EST (#2864) #
Worst Fielding OF ever for the Jays had to be Kenny Williams. He was as bad in the field as he was on the basepaths.

How was Benito Santiago at catcher for the Jays? Never got to see him, myself.
1b Olereud
2b Alomar
ss Bordick
3b Gruber
CF White
RF Barfield
LF Carter (decent in left, suspect at centre)

Most overhyped minor league prospect was Michael Jordan. The daily updates were ridiculous. Apologies for posting that in this thread, but I had to get it off my chest.
_Rob - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 01:25 PM EST (#2865) #
I don't think Phelps caught even one inning in the majors

He actually caught 40. COMN. I didn't think he had that many, perhaps 10 at most.
_Chuck Van Den C - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 01:33 PM EST (#2866) #
He actually caught 40. COMN. I didn't think he had that many, perhaps 10 at most.

Thanks for that. I obviously have no recollection of that at all. I was pretty certain he hadn't caught since being called up to the majors for good.

I know Phelps changed positions because of knee problems. I wonder what his defensive rep was. I know that in Delgado's case, he was moved out from behind the plate specifically because they didn't think he could play the position.

ss Bordick

Either you're very young or hold Tony Fernandez in very low regard. ;)
_H winfield Teut - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 01:33 PM EST (#2867) #

C: Phelps
1: Delgado
2: Danny Ainge
3: Roy Howell
ss: Luis Gomez
LF: Carlos Delgado
Cf: Otis Nixon
Rf: Dave Winfield

C: Santiago
1: Olerud
2: Alomar
3: Gruber
SS: Fernandez
LF: Henderson
CF: White
RF: Wells (he played 2 games there in his second stint)
_Chuck Van Den C - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 01:50 PM EST (#2868) #
2: Danny Ainge

Good one! Forgot about Danny Two-Sport. He might also have been worse than Howell at 3B.

Cf: Otis Nixon

At least he had wheels. Barry Bonnell played some CF and was quite miscast, IIRC.
_Matthew E - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 01:53 PM EST (#2869) #
I don't think Phelps caught even one inning in the majors

During Phelps's first cup of coffee with the Jays, he caught one game that Buck Martinez, then doing colour, said was the best-caught game the Jays had had all year.
_David R - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 01:56 PM EST (#2870) #
Either you're very young or hold Tony Fernandez in very low regard. ;)

Neither. Just a Bordick fan. Fernandez was the most graceful SS I've ever seen, but those beautiful side-arm throws just seemed too unorthordox to have been the most efficient method of getting the ball to first base. I'm probably also biased because I used to cringe whenever I heard him interviewed:)
_John Northey - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 02:30 PM EST (#2871) #
Hmm. Sticking with the regulars (love that cheat sheet)

CA: O'Brien was darn good iirc
1B: Olerud - no one else close
2B: Alomar - as fun as Damaso was, Alomar was better
3B: Gruber - Mulliniks had great fielding % but little range
SS: Fernandez - not close, in his prime he was amazing
LF: Cruz Jr - Good enough to be CF, but moved to LF and RF due to White & Nixon
CF: White - Sorry, Wells isn't close. White would be standing under the balls that others were diving for.
RF: Barfield - Again, no one close. 20+ assists a year even after everyone knew he had a cannon. I always wanted fly balls hit to him with runners on 2nd or 3rd just for the fun of watching them be thrown out
P: Key - hard one to judge, but Key always seemed good out there

So the Jays have had, imo, 3 HOF defensive players (if there was a HOF for just defense) in Fernandez, White and Barfield who I doubt we'll ever see someone move ahead of. Alomar has the rep, but the stats don't match the rep. The others were solid but not amazing.

Worst? I can't recall anything about Ainge or he'd probably be in two slots.

CA: Fletcher
1B: McGriff - it was him or Cecil Fielder for the Jays in the late 80's. Defense was very much an afterthought then (Fielder actually played more than once at 2B & 3B - be afraid!)
2B: Iorg - what was he doing in the lineup in '87?
3B: Sprague - Hinske had a shot at it, but improved
SS: Woodward - never impressed with his glove imo
LF: Stewart - noodle arm, should've been a heck of a lot better
CF: Mookie - fun player, but was at the end here
RF: Merced - don't remember anything good about his time here
P : Wells - C'mon, picture him running after a ground ball
DH: Carty & Burroughs - Both played only as DH's in TO, Burroughs 75 games, Carty 230. Fullmer had 2 games at first, Phelps 22 at 1b, 8 catching.

Funny, totally forgot about a few players listed as being on the Jays as regulars. Willie Greene in 99 for example (of course, a DH going 204/266/394 should be forgotten quickly - $1 million out of an Ash budget for that).
_27pif - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 02:50 PM EST (#2872) #
I'll change my LF vote to Cruz or Sparky and leave Devo in centre
_Rob C - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 03:21 PM EST (#2873) #
The argument could be made that Jesse Barfield deserves to be considered for the All-time defensive team, not just the All-Jays team. He had the second-highest rate of outfield assists per defensive innings (14.0 per 1000 innings, just behind Chuck Klein). As anyone who saw him play can attest, he had an unbelievable arm. I still remember a throw he made in Exhibition Stadium from the RF corner to third base - top of the arc couldn't have been more than 20 feet, and the ball was perfectly on target, no hops. His other great ability was to cut off the ball in the alley and fire it to second so quickly, the runner was only a few steps past first and would have to scramble back. I would have loved to get Barfield in his prime to a driving range to see how far he could throw the ball. It would have to be a driving range because ballparks are too small! :)

I might be biased because he signed my ballglove when I was fifteen during his 1986 career year, or I might not. Okay, probably.
_Chuck Van Den C - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 04:01 PM EST (#2874) #
The argument could be made that Jesse Barfield deserves to be considered for the All-time defensive team, not just the All-Jays team.

I remember games where the opposition would have a man on third and a lazy flyball would be hit to medium RF. In anticipation of an impending throw from Barfield, the crowd would start buzzing during the flight of the fly ball.
_James - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 04:06 PM EST (#2875) #
C: Benito Santiago
_Grimlock - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 04:42 PM EST (#2876) #
Me Grimlock went to a Raptors game, and Barfield was in that front row seat where the Raptors sit all the "big-name" people. Anyways, they showed him on the screen, and all fans of a certain age stood up to applaud him. Later, the Raptor got him to throw T-shirts into the upper deck. What an arm!
_Magpie - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 05:15 PM EST (#2877) #
OK, I'll do a Jays team:


C - Buck Martinez (O'Brien's the only contender)
1B - John Olerud (Willie Upshaw was pretty good, too)
2B - Orlando Hudson (Alomar's positioning on turf cost him 20 plays a year)
SS - Tony Fernandez, 80s version (but Alex Gonzalez was pretty good too)
3B - Kelly Gruber (Batista does everything funny - fielding, throwing, and hitting - but he was OK at 3B)
LF - George Bell (!!! - in 1983, when George came up, he was a pretty decent outfielder. He could run well enough to play CF and throw well enough to play RF. He did play a fair bit of RF in fact.)
CF - Devon White (as good as Vernon Wells is, this is still easy)
RF - Jesse Barfield (arguably the greatest OF arm of the last 75 years. Certainly since Clemente, who's the only competition. And Barfield ran well enough to cover CF, and did on occasion)
P - Jimmy Key (by a nose over Stieb. Bob File was actually better than either, but... too few innings.)


C - Randy Knorr (or Ed Sprague. Of the first-stringers, Darrin Fletcher.)
1B - Fred McGriff (He was actually not bad, but Mayberry, Upshaw, Olerud, and Delgado were all better.)
2B - Tony Fernandez (it was a shock, but his range was gone by the time they put him there.)
SS - Chris Woodward (again, he wasn't really bad, but Gomez, Fernandez, Lee, Gonzalez, Bordick - all better)
3B - Roy Howell - he was actually bad. So was Ed Sprague, but Howell was worse.
LF - George Bell - by 1990, Bell was a very bad outfielder. Worse than Dave Collins, who couldn't throw but could at least run. By 1990, Bell seemed to have completely lost confidence in his ability to play the field. He was as tentative as Greg Luzinski...
CF - Shannon Stewart - so bad they had to move him to LF...
RF - Jose Canseco. No explanation required. (Shawn Green, curiously, was absolutely awful in RF when he started out. It was weird, because he obviously had the tools, and he quickly became a very good OF indeed. But gosh, was he bad for a while...)
P - ??? Maybe Tom Henke? Nolan Ryan is absolutely the worst fielding pitcher I have ever seen, although Randy Johnson is trying to make it interesting. What all three of these guys have in common is that they were or are so hard to hit that the pitcher seems to have no idea what to do if a ball ever comes his way...)

2B: Iorg - what was he doing in the lineup in '87?

That was part of Jimy William's interesting two year (1987-88) experiment in "Changing Your Starting Second Baseman Every Month." It went on from the time Damaso Garcia was traded until Cito Gaston took over and installed a Lee-Liriano platoon.

(Fielder actually played more than once at 2B & 3B - be afraid!)

This was during the afore-mentioned experiment. Williams sent Liriano to the minors and then discovered Manny Lee couldn't play. On May 2, 1988, Kelly Gruber started 2B and Fielder at 3B, with them switching positions against LH batters. On May 3, they used the same arrangemt, this time with Gruber and Pat Borders. Lee was back the next day.
_Rob - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 05:28 PM EST (#2878) #
On May 2, 1988, Kelly Gruber started 2B and Fielder at 3B, with them switching positions against LH batters.

That boxscore is one of the greatest things I have ever seen. COMN.
_John Northey - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 06:31 PM EST (#2879) #
For more fun, that spring (or was is '87) Jimy played Fielder at third base on a semi-regular basis. The Jays were desperate to find a way to get both Fielder and McGriff in the lineup, yet they kept Upshaw around in '87 and then were dumb enough to platoon Fielder (as much as I like Mulliniks platooning him with Fielder was dumb) in the DH slot rather than just letting him be. Rance should've been mixed into games at third and DH and first to give Gruber, Fielder, and McGriff rests when needed, not playing against all right handers.

Ah well. Just one of the many weird Williams decisions in the late 80's (along with that second base mess).
Thomas - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 06:36 PM EST (#2880) #
I just burst out laughing in the library and I couldn't stop. That boxscore is hilarious.
_Jeremy - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 06:41 PM EST (#2881) #
I'll cast a vote for Barfield as having the greatest arm of all time. The only guy ahead of him in outfield assists per 1000 innings (Klein) benefited from playing mostly in the Baker Bowl with a cozy RF measuring in the neighbourhood of 280.
Dave Till - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 06:52 PM EST (#2882) #
Best defensive Jays:

C: Buck Martinez
1B: probably Willie Upshaw, though Big John became a good first baseman
2B: Roberto Alomar (though the O-Dog is getting there)
SS: The young Tony Fernandez. Simply amazing.
3B: Gruber, at his peak, went better to his left than anyone else I ever saw in a Jays uniform.
LF: The Jays haven't had many good defensive left fielders. Bell, when young, had a great arm and good range, but didn't have great instincts. I think I'll give this to Carter, since he played left some of the time.
CF: Devon White. No question.
RF: Jesse Barfield. Best outfield arm I ever saw.
P: Many people here have picked Jimmy Key, and he's a good choice. Stieb was a good fielder too.

Worst defensive Jays:
C: no real horrible standouts. I guess Tom Wilson wasn't too good behind the plate.
1B: no obvious stinkers
2B: Carlos Garcia played second as if someone had nailed him to his spot.
SS: Homer Bush was awful when forced to play short, but that's not his fault. Woody seemed to lose confidence out there, so he's on the list. But I'll nominate the end-of-career Craig Grebeck, who couldn't throw.
3B: Ed Sprague had no discernible range to his left, and was constantly being handcuffed by balls hit down the line. It's too bad Tom Evans got hurt: the difference in fielding skill between Evans and Sprague was noticeable.
OF (collective): Tim Johnson once played an outfield of Tony Phillips, Shawn Green (in center), and Jose Canseco. You cannot begin to imagine how bad that outfield was unless you saw it.
Dave Till - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 06:58 PM EST (#2883) #
More on George Bell's fielding:

In 1984, Bobby Cox platooned Jesse Barfield and Dave Collins. When Barfield was in the lineup, George Bell played left; when Collins was in, Bell played right.

In the mid-1980's, Bell would sometimes play third base in the ninth inning if one of the infielders (usually the second baseman) had been pinch-hit for. And, once, he played second base in the ninth inning; as I recall, he made a decent backhanded play.
_Magpie - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 07:32 PM EST (#2884) #
You cannot begin to imagine how bad that outfield was unless you saw it.

And even having seen it, it was still pretty hard to believe.

It may have had the desired effect: on July 30, with the team at 54-55, Gord Ash gave up on the season, and traded Mike Stanley, Ed Sprague, Juan Guzman, and Phillips - this got Canseco out of the OF and over to DH, got Tony Fernandez off 2b and over 3B, and got Jose Cruz and Shannon Stewart into the lineup.

They promptly went 17-10 in August and 17-8 in September.
_Magpie - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 07:42 PM EST (#2885) #
Rotoworld (COMN) is reporting that the Texas offer to Delgado is four years at $48 million.

That just might get it done. Teixeira would move to LF, and Mench would either DH or be traded for pitching.

It makes a lot of sense. I know, you're saying "Doesn't Texas have enough hitting? Don't they need pitching?"

Well, they need pitching - everybody needs pitching - but their offense really isn't that good. The ballpark inflates it quite a bit, however, Buck Showalter apparently isn't fooled.

On the other hand, only four teams in the AL gave up fewer runs than the Rangers. They have an outstanding bullpen, and while I'd be worried if Kenny Rogers was my best starter they got away with it last year.
_Mick - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 08:21 PM EST (#2886) #
I'd be worried if Kenny Rogers was my best starter

Then the Rangers have nothing to worry about. Now, if you want to say "I'd be worried if Ryan Drese was my best starter" then I'd be inclined more to agree. (One quick and dirty stat -- among TEX SP, Drese has 17 WS, Rogers had 14 and third was ... gulp ... The Ho, with 4.)
Mike Green - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 08:36 PM EST (#2887) #
"erstwhile" Rosterite? Easy come, easy go, I guess.

I agree with Magpie's selections. I prefer O-Dog to Alomar at second, not only because of the positioning/range issue, but also because Orlando has a more effective pivot on the DP.

4 years/$48 million for Delgado? That's about right in today's market.
Mike Green - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 08:38 PM EST (#2888) #
And the answer to the question, "Can Wilson Pick It?" is of course, "Only if it goes to extras, he plays better in the midnight hour".
_actionjackson - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 09:05 PM EST (#2889) #
I can only judge those that I have seen when they were solid defensively (or playing), so Mr Bench and Mr Robinson, please excuse me. Here are my best MLBers and alternates:

P- Greg Maddux (Jimmy Key/Tom Glavine/Mike Hampton)
C- Ivan Rodriguez (Bob Boone/Mike Lavalliere/Tony Pena)
1B- Keith Hernandez (JT Snow/Don Mattingly/Mark Grace)
2B- Roberto Alomar (Jose Lind/Harold Reynolds/Ryne Sandberg)
3B- Scott Rolen (Matt Williams/Robin Ventura
SS- Ozzie Smith (Omar Vizquel/Barry Larkin/Ozzie Guillen)
LF- Barry Bonds (Rickey Henderson, a little too much razzamatazz, but... I'm stuck)
CF- Jim Edmonds (Devon White/Gary Pettis/Torii Hunter)
RF- Dwight Evans (Ichiro Suzuki/Jesse Barfield/Larry Walker)

Here are my best Blue Jays (only one at each position):

P- Jimmy Key
C- Buck Martinez
1B- Willie Upshaw
2B- Roberto Alomar
3B- Kelly Gruber
SS- Tony Fernandez
LF- Lloyd Moseby (he moved briefly for Campusano, and if I can't have him I'll take Rickey Henderson over Joe Carter)
CF- Devon White
RF- Jesse Barfield

Whew! Now tawk amongst yourselves!
_Magpie - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 09:11 PM EST (#2890) #
Then the Rangers have nothing to worry about.

It's just that he is 40 years old, and neither a power pitcher nor a knuckleballer. I can't figure out how he's still doing it...

I guess he just doesn't beat himself. He doesn't give up many walks or all that many HRs...


I have noticed yet another area where the 2004 Blue Jays seriously failed to meet the standards established in previous seasons.

The pitchers went 0-20 - it was the worst performance by the pitchers with the bat in the history of the franchise. Even the 1998 pitchers, who also went 0-20, managed to squeeze out one (that would be 1) base on balls.

This was especially disappointing after the outstanding performance of the 2003 staff, who batted a lusty .214 and slugged .357. The 6 hits, 3 RBI, and 5 runs scored were all franchise highs for the staff, highlighted of course by Mark Hendrickson's HR, a blow that has guaranteed Lurch a small piece of immortality. Very, very small. Unlike Lurch himself.

Gosh, this is trivial.

Anyway, over the years, Toronto pitchers have hit .095 (16-168), with 3-2b, 1-3b, 1 HR, 5 BB, 4 RBI, and 7 runs.

Woody Williams (of course!) has the most hits, with 3. Woody went 3-8 as a Blue Jay, and is a lifetime .213 hitter over 381 AB, with 24 2b and 3 HR. Making him possibly a more dangerous hitter than Kevin Cash...

Roger Clemens was actually walked twice, and also has one of the doubles (Hamilton and Tam had the others.)

Chris Michalak hit a triple? Why don't I remember it?

The four RBI came from four different guys: Hamilton, Tam, Escobar, and Hendrickson.

Roy Halladay has scored two runs, and is the only pitcher to score twice. (Dave Stieb also scored two runs, but on both occasions he was pinch-running, once for John Mayberry and once for Cliff Johnson. Stieb was used as a pinch-runner 10 times in his Blue Jay career: twice by Hartsfield, five times by Mattick, and three times by Williams.)

Is this useless information or what?
_Mick - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 09:14 PM EST (#2891) #
"erstwhile" Rosterite? Easy come, easy go, I guess.

Well, thank God someone finally called me on it! I've been using obscure adjectives to describe various Roster members on and off for a month and was about to resort to "halcyon" or "gonfalon" to see if anyone would!
_Jdog - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 09:35 PM EST (#2892) #
Magpie ,

THe pitchers batting stats were great...i dont know why i just love american league pitchers hitting..

But didn't David Cone have a few hits as a blue jay ?
_actionjackson - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 09:54 PM EST (#2893) #
Just for completeness sake, please add Eric Chavez at 3B and Eric Davis and Jacque Jones to LF on my best MLBers. Maybe Turner Ward or Reed Johnson in LF on the Jays defensive wizards? It's such a defensive black hole in the team's history.
_Greg - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 10:13 PM EST (#2894) #
I suppose he faces still competition...but I remember Craig Grebeck was my favourite Jay for a brief period of time for some reason, I assume it was because he was the best defensive second baseman I ever saw. Though incidentally he hit a homerun and like...two doubles in the 2 Jays games I went to in 1998

So maybe that was the reason
_Greg - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 10:13 PM EST (#2895) #
STIFF competition

Still competition doesn't sound that challenging
_Magpie - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 10:46 PM EST (#2896) #
But didn't David Cone have a few hits as a blue jay ?

Two, in the 1992 World Series - he never batted for the Jays in the regular season.
_greenfrog - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 10:53 PM EST (#2897) #
Delgado could post some amazing numbers in Texas, and Showalter is by most accounts a very good manager. Although Texas isn't going to the world series anytime soon, unless they improve their pitching.
_Magpie - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 11:09 PM EST (#2898) #
Listing the guy I think was better first:

C - NL Johnny Bench; AL Jim Sundberg
1B - NL Keith Hernandez; AL Don Mattingly
2B - NL Bill Mazeroski; AL Frank White
SS - NL Ozzie Smith; AL Luis Aparicio
3B - AL Graig Nettles; NL Scott Rolen or Mike Schmidt
LF - AL Joe Rudi; NL Barry Bonds
CF - NL Willie Mays; AL Gary Pettis
RF - NL Roberto Clemente; AL Jesse Barfield
P - AL Ron Guidry; NL Greg Maddux

Some all-time worst

Dick Stuart, Dave Kingman, Ron Kittle, Bobby Bonilla, Greg Luzinski...
_Ryan Lind - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 11:15 PM EST (#2899) #
Magpie, are you, by chance, on Jayson Stark's staff? :)

Referring to your earlier post, of course.
Mike Green - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 11:20 PM EST (#2900) #
Nice list, Magpie, but Jesse was better than Clemente. He even had a better arm.
_Magpie - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 11:24 PM EST (#2901) #
Although Texas isn't going to the world series anytime soon, unless they improve their pitching.

I know that's what everybody thinks - hell, it's what I think - but the fact remains that playing in one of the best hitter's parks in all of baseball, Texas had the fifth best pitching staff in the AL last year. And if you put them in a neutral park (never mind putting them in Oakland) they'd look even better than that.

It defies all reason. After all, Chan Ho Park was third on the team in starts, and he only started 16 games; even more alarming, he was third in ERA among the starters.) John "Shrieking Nightmare of Hideousness" Wasdin made 10 starts for them last year. That's... that's just frightening.

In fact, seventeen - that's 17 - different pitchers started for them last year: it seemed like it was Rogers, Drese, and anybody who showed up at the ballpark.

And yet... they allowed 794 runs in 2004, which was 175 runs fewer than they had given up the year before. Only Minnesota, Anaheim, Oakland, and Boston gave up fewer. The league average was 808, which is how many the Yankees gave up.

The bullpen was fabulous, and Rogers and Drese were both good. And I think one of these days, Buck Showalter is going to build his third world champion and maybe this time he'll stick around long enough to get a ring himself.
_Joseph Krengel - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 11:30 PM EST (#2902) #
If Texas signs Delgado then Teixeira moves up to 5th of my fantasy draft list. Delgado has to hit cleanup, and Teixeira projects better as a 3 hitter than Blalock. Either way, either he gets to see a LOT of fastballs and hits 40 HRs this year, or he hits 5 and drives in 120 runs.

Oh yeah, the defence:

C = Buck Martinez (the closest thing to Bobby Baun the Jays ever had)
1B= David Segui, career wise, was obviously the best. His TO performance was mediocre though. I'd go for Olerud.
2B= Roberto Alomar of course. I mean, Hudson is good, but can he field a tin of McCain's frozen punch?
SS= Gotta be Fernandez in my book. Even if Gonzalez did have a howitzer attached to go along with that empty head.
3B= Ken Huckaby... Gruber I guess, but how do you miss two years (on and off) with a bad thumb?
LF= Cruz Jr. when he was there. I can't think of anyone else.
CF= Devo. People underestimate how good he was at getting a read on the ball. Tellingly, they do the same thing for Wells (who is better at it.)
RF= Barfield seems to be the consensus. I don't remember that well myself.
P = Steib. For catching that home run that Higginson hit.

Ok, the worst:

C = I want to pick Joe Lawrence because I hate him that much, but he never played the C in the bigs. So I'm gonna have to go with Fletch. Bad luck, bad knees, and slow hands. Good guy though.
1B = Howie Clarke
2B = Carlos Garcia. I was at a game in '97 when he actually dropped the ball during the pre-inning throwaround. That was the highlight of the game for me.
SS = Tony Batista. Transferring from one hand to the other faster than anyone doesn't mean much if neither one is particularly reliable.
3B = Ed Sprague. That guy was like a cardboard cutout.
LF = Shannon Stewart in his last year. Cat may be slow in LF, but Stewart's range wasn't as good as it should have been, and he threw like Lupus from "the Bad News Bears."
CF = Otis Nixon. They should have used face instead of a fried egg for those "don't do drugs" commercials.
RF = Canseco. At least he never alley-ooped a home run... but damn.
P = Guzman. He'd be lucky to be standing after a pitch, let alone in position.
_Magpie - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 11:43 PM EST (#2903) #
are you, by chance, on Jayson Stark's staff?

Gosh, I don't get it...

(Goes over to ESPN to see if Stark has written something I should know about...)

I still don't get it - I must be missing something, and I fully expect to have a Homer Simpson (DOH!) moment as a result - but I do see the Phillies GM has the occasional clever idea:

Terry Adams ... new contract would pay him an extra $875,000 if he makes 32 starts this year.

There's some money the Phillies won't be spending.

Jesse was better than Clemente. He even had a better arm.

Maybe, maybe. I dunno... I do think they had much the same arm - they both threw the ball from the OF to wherever (3B, home) much the same way a good 3B throws it to first - they were just laser shots right on a line. Like Scott Rolen whipping one across the diamond, except Clemente and Barfield were doing it from the RF corner. Whereas someone like Dewey Evans, who was also pretty great, seemed more like... I dunno, John Elway unloading a 75 yard bomb to someone on the fly...

I think... maybe... Clemente (when young anyway) might have been a little quicker than Jesse. Maybe...
_Ryan Lind - Saturday, January 22 2005 @ 11:50 PM EST (#2904) #
It's just that you had a long post of useless stats (pitchers hitting,) and Jayson Stark ...

nevermind, it's not funny. I'm never funny.

How can a bad-defense team not include Dave Berg in LF? That was almost comical at times.
_Magpie - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 12:02 AM EST (#2905) #

How can a bad-defense team not include Dave Berg in LF?

Now, now. Let us instead remember the good times.


Ok, let us remember the good time... (the 13 pitch at bat against Guardado last July that set up Delgado's walk-ff HR.)
_gv27 - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 12:21 AM EST (#2906) #
Hey Magpie. Did the Hendrickson home run come at Olympic Stadium? Do you remember the pitcher. I recall going to a game at Exhibition Stadium (against the Twins) in which Dave Stieb played left field. Anyone remember that?
_Keith Talent - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 12:23 AM EST (#2907) #
I remember watching on OTR, some fat bald guy was talking to Lansberg about a fight that took place between George Bell and Tom Henke. It was when the SkyDome first opened. Henke got the batter to hit a shallow fly to left, Bell charged, then stopped charging, letting the ball drop to an astroturf bounce, allowing a run-scoring double instead of an out.

This fat guy on OTR said Henke was all "nice hustle, Goerge" and George was going off at the mouth and Henke replied with a knuckle sandwich: zap.

Anyone hear that tale?

That Dave Berg in LF comment made me think of that. I was fortunate to at SkyDome this year to witness a near identical play pulled by the IceBerg in LF. Boy was there some jeering, I let out an: "Oh Come On!" I'm sure he just lost it in the lights, though. Or didn't know how people are supposed to dive on astroturf, it looks painful.
_Joseph Krengel - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 12:31 AM EST (#2908) #
I've layed out on astro-turf before... and I did it for a frisbee, and I wasn't being paid... I have no sympathy.

Berg was pretty bad in LF, I must have blocked him from my memory. Gross also looked pretty brutal in a few games.

All in all, who is the worst defensive player in Jays history then?
_Grimlcok - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 12:45 AM EST (#2909) #
But didn't David Cone have a few hits as a blue jay ?

Two, in the 1992 World Series - he never batted for the Jays in the regular season.

One of which was an RBI single in Game 2 off of John Smoltz to tie the game.

Clemens' 2b was very nearly a HR at Shea Stadium during his superlative 1997 season. IMGRC, that double tired him out, and led to runs being scored against him the next inning.

And don't forget Al Leiter's 2b in Game 4 of the 1993 World Series. Him batting for himself was widely seen as Cito punting the game and getting ready for Game 5. Who knew the Jays would come back?

The Hendrickson HR was indeed at Olympic Stadium off of Sun Kim. Me Grimlock was there. Me Grimlock took advantage of the humongo beer cups there, and was a little too loud. Of course, Aki Lopez and Cliff Politte would blow a 5-1 game in the 8th by allowing 7 runs. Expo fans would run up the aisle to point at me Grimlock and laugh amd spent the 9th inning tormenting poor me Grimlock. Good times!
_Magpie - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 12:47 AM EST (#2910) #
Hendrickson hit a solo HR off Sun Kim at the Big O in June 2003. Kim made one more start and hasn't been heard from since...

Stieb played an inning in LF (I think it was the 15th) against the Twins back in 1980. (He was originally scouted as an outfielder.) He didn't have any official chances out there, but with runners on second and third he fielded a base hit and they did hold the second runner at third... well, they knew he could throw. :-)
_gv27 - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 12:54 AM EST (#2911) #
Olympic Stadium wasn't as bad as many think. In fact, I thought it was an excellent place to watch baseball. My last game there was the season finale of 2002. The Expos beat the Reds on an absolutely masterful performance by Tim Drew, J.D.'s brother. If that one game had represented a career, he'd be headed for the Hall.
_Mick - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 01:13 AM EST (#2912) #
In fact, seventeen - that's 17 - different pitchers started for them last year: it seemed like it was Rogers, Drese, and anybody who showed up at the ballpark.

True Dat. Any time you're running Joaquin Benoit out there regularly .... ((( shudder )))

But you know, the Jays aren't the only team thinking they have a shload of young pitchers on the way. Would the Rangers trade any one of John Danks, Tom Diamond or Chris Young for David Bush? Well, Young, yes, but not the other two. And Young is good on the offesnive glass, so he could have Mark Hendrickson's old locker.

nevermind, it's not funny. I'm never funny.

Making it all the more appropriate (and ironic) that you posted about Stark. He's never funny either.


Okay, I am getting SICK and TIRED of people torching my name like this! I have agreed with a friend of mind at work that the title of my autobiography will be "Doh! Blame it on Homer" ... though seriously, if I ever get back to writing regular non-Hall-of-Names columns for this site or any other, that -- "Doh!" -- might make a fine title for the column.
_actionjackson - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 01:25 AM EST (#2913) #
Worst fielders: Lonnie ("Skates") Smith, Mitch Williams (the shot off the head seen 'round the world), Bobby Bonilla, Mackey Sasser, Pete Incaviglia, Greg Luzinski, Mark Dalesandro, Goose Gossage (a guess based on momentum similar to Williams' from the other side), Jason Giambi, George Bell (particularly on the days when he didn't give a hooie), Hal McRae, Don Baylor, Mike Fitzgerald, Mark Carreon, Darren Daulton, Francisco Cabrera, Rafael Ramirez, Mickey Hatcher, Jose Offerman, Kevin Mitchell (bare-handed catch aside), Sam Horn, Steve Balboni, Glenallen Hill, Randy Knorr, Ron Kittle, Brian Harper, Ron Hassey, Edgar Martinez, Geno Petralli, Jeff Kunkel, Pedro Guerrero, Mariano Duncan.
_Magpie - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 04:44 AM EST (#2914) #
Lonnie Smith!!

However, the Dark Prince of them all just might be:

Marvellous Marv Throneberry.

There can be only one...
_Magpie - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 04:45 AM EST (#2915) #
I was gonna wait til the midnight hour for that one...

so I did

but I forgot...
_Andrew K - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 08:33 AM EST (#2916) #
Comment #41 on this BP thread (COMN) includes a very rough-and-ready simulation of 2005 based on ZiPS projections. No doubt there will be more thorough projections later (this one is only 20 simulated seasons, which is not enough) but it's an interesting first pass. The important bit is:

W L Div WC
Bos 99 63 16.5 1.5
NYY 90 72 3.0 6.0
Tor 84 80 0.5 1.5
Bal 77 85 0.0 0.0
TB 75 89 0.0 1.0

Obviously there's a big big variance, if the Jays managed to win the division once out of 20 an tie for a win once. I'm not quite sure why they play an average of 164 games though..? And of course we take ZiPS with a pinch of sodium chloride. (How did it do for predicting 2004? I can't find the data to check).

I wish I had access to these programs, or I'd run some simulations of my own, with proper statistical analysis.
_Andrew K - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 08:37 AM EST (#2917) #
Sorry, for "division" in penultimate paragraph read "wild card"
Pistol - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 08:56 AM EST (#2918) #
Various newspapers say that the Rangers have offered Delgado 4 years and $48 million, the Mets have matched that, and the Orioles may have gone higher than that.

COMN for the various articles.
_Moffatt - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 09:03 AM EST (#2919) #
ZiPS has the Rangers going 74-88. Even without Delgado, I don't buy it for a second. They're a much better team than the Mariners.

I wonder what playing time looks like for the Jays players in his sim. I wonder much time he gave to Eric Crozier and his patently ridiculous projection.

Still fun to look at, and I'm glad Cocoa decided to run it!
_Rob - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 10:28 AM EST (#2920) #
There's a good story on Delgado in the NY Daily News. COMN. A sample:

Ricciardi said Delgado did not approach him before beginning his protest and pointed out that, while he personally disagrees with Delgado's opinion, the club had no rules about standing for the song and thus, had no problem with Delgado's choice.

"Look, he doesn't like wearing a hat much either during batting practice and infield," Ricciardi says, "but we have a rule about that: You've got to wear a hat. So what does Carlos do? He wears the hat. He's never been about doing anything that would disrupt the team."
_Eric - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 11:06 AM EST (#2921) #
Hendrickson hit a solo HR off Sun Kim at the Big O in June 2003. Kim made one more start and hasn't been heard from since...


Kim pitched 135.2 innings with a 4.58 ERA for the Expos last year.
Pistol - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 11:14 AM EST (#2922) #
But Kim didn't call up that writer to tell him about it.
_Jim - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 11:16 AM EST (#2923) #
'Kim pitched 135.2 innings with a 4.58 ERA for the Expos last year.'

And just got designated for assignment the other day.
_Rob - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 12:06 PM EST (#2924) #
Stieb played an inning in LF (I think it was the 15th) against the Twins back in 1980.

Going back to the magic of Retrosheet:
Stieb did play left field in the 15th inning of a game against the Twins. It was a Thursday afternoon game at the Ex, and after 14 innings on August 28, the game was suspended due to a "4pm curfew for rock concert" (5-5 score at the time). Stieb's outfield heroics came the next day, as the game was continued Friday afternoon (August 29). Minnesota scored two in the 15th and Toronto lost the game. The Jays already used Bailor, Braun, Ault, Ainge, Whitt and there was nobody left to play left. Stieb replaced Velez in LF (Iorg moved from LF to 1B), but why did Velez leave the game?

The plot thickens now: Otto Velez did not play another game that season. He must have been injured; he played DH all season long until that 15-inning game and the two previous ones. John Mayberry, the regular first baseman that year, left a game five days earlier in the fourth inning and did not play the field again until Velez was hurt. And he was already used in the suspended game, so he couldn't play first base.

With the five players mentioned earlier already used, and Velez hurt, the remaining position players were: Davis, Garcia, Howell, Griffin, with an outfield of Iorg-Cannon-Moseby. What about Barry Bonnell, you ask? Well, he was injured from August 13 to August 30. Nobody else who was listed as a non-pitcher in 1980 was on the active roster at this time, so Mattick had to put a pitcher somewhere on the field.

Anyway, Friday's day game started (I guess 20 to 30 minutes later) and Stieb started and went 8.2 innings, gave up 5 runs and the Jays lost again.

One thing, though: There was nothing in the play-by-play to indicate Velez's injury. He was simply replaced the next afternoon and never played in 1980 again. So, his injury most likely was one of those freak, away-from-the-field ones, like Ted Lilly's TV. Anyone remember?
Named For Hank - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 01:27 PM EST (#2925) #
I'm sure he just lost it in the lights, though. Or didn't know how people are supposed to dive on astroturf, it looks painful.

The first time I touched the turf at SkyDome I asked myself "How the hell do people dive on this?" It felt like threadbare carpet on top of concrete.
_Andrew K - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 02:20 PM EST (#2926) #
Rotoworld have top 10 prospect lists for each time in the AL East (COMN). Why is Chacin not on the Jays list?
_Greg - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 02:24 PM EST (#2927) #
Not sure if it's the same type of turf, but I once played some flag football on Taylor Field, home of the Saskatchewan Rough Riders and thought I'd lay out for a long slant pattern...and let me tell you, that was NOT fun

Seems silly to play any sport on that stuff
_JayFan0912 - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 02:41 PM EST (#2928) #
If Delgado signs with the rangers, do you think they will revisit the mench/tixeira for wells/hinske deal discussed sometime ago ...
_Caino - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 03:06 PM EST (#2929) #
""Rotoworld have top 10 prospect lists for each time in the AL East (COMN). Why is Chacin not on the Jays list?""

Probly the same reason that they refer to Josh Banks as Bush, and wonder when Hudson will have a breakout year and establish himself as a very good regular.
_Andrew K - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 03:16 PM EST (#2930) #
Probly the same reason that they refer to Josh Banks as Bush, and wonder when Hudson will have a breakout year and establish himself as a very good regular.

Yes, I noticed that the article didn't seem very good. There seem to be a lot of review and best-of articles at this time of year. It's going to be a long month until spring training.
_Mick - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 03:16 PM EST (#2931) #
If Delgado signs with the rangers, do you think they will revisit the mench/tixeira for wells/hinske deal discussed sometime ago

You mean the one that was completely fictionalized? The Rangers would love to have Wells, but would never give up Tex for him, and the Jays presumably wouldn't deal Wells for Mench, even if Adrian Gonzalez was part of the return.

And I cannot imagine any reason the Rangers would want Hinske, in any capacity. This Blalock kid is pretty good.
_Ryan C - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 03:19 PM EST (#2932) #
Why is Chacin not on the Jays list?

Who do you bump though? Aside from me not considering Adams as a prospect anymore (since he is now the starting SS), I cant think of anyone I would remove from the list. Vito maybe, only because I personally dont know a whole lot about him. Jackson was drafted just last year at the end of the 1st round and he didnt make the top 10 either. Just goes to show how deep the Jays system is becoming IMHO.
Craig B - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 03:33 PM EST (#2933) #
All-time, all-defense. Note : I am not treating the outfield spots separately, because the best thirty or forty centerfielders of all time are all better than the best LFs or RFs. Mostly "reputational" but backed up with a lifetime of reading and research. Do with this what you will.

(Also, I don't really care about "defensive ability"... ability is useless on a ballfield unless it's turned into results. These are the defensive players who most often won ballgames with their defense.)

C Biz Mackey
1B Wes Parker (good catch, Mick!)
2B Bill Mazeroski (with apologies to Jackie Robinson)
SS Ozzie Smith
3B Willie Kamm
OF Tris Speaker
OF Garry Maddox
OF Willie Mays
P Jim Kaat, I guess (i.e. I don't know)

There are too many others to list. An equally good case could be made for this team:

C Johnny Bench
1B Bill Terry
2B Jackie Robinson
SS Phil Rizzuto
3B Mike Schmidt
OF Dom DiMaggio
OF Cristobal Torriente
OF Paul Blair
P Greg Maddux

I couldn't say no to that team.
_Andrew K - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 03:37 PM EST (#2934) #
Who do you bump though?

As you say, Adams shouldn't be on the list. Apart from that, I would bump Vito or Josh Banks; I would have thought that Chacin was clearly above Banks. (I'm no prospect buff though).
Craig B - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 03:54 PM EST (#2935) #
'Kim pitched 135.2 innings with a 4.58 ERA for the Expos last year.'

And just got designated for assignment the other day.

Anyone think that a 6-2 righty with a good fastball and a mean streak, who can start and relieve, might be able to help the Jays at the back end of the rotation?

Or about 15-20 other teams?

Or the Nationals, for that matter?
_CaramonLS - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 04:13 PM EST (#2936) #
If the Jays had an offer for Gonzalaz + Mench for Wells. I'd jump all over that. You get 2 Power hitters for the price of 1.

All the Sudden our holes start to fill in.

Of course if I was Riccardi, I would be trying to get Nix thrown into the Deal, all the sudden you have 3 young power hitters coming over. Likely we would be throwing in a grade A-B pitching prospect or 2, likely a Chacin. Which I would be more than happy to part with for at least 3-4+ years with most of these hitters.

Heres what a realistic deal would look like that would benifit both teams:

Nix (CF), Mench (OF), Gonzalaz (1B)


Wells (CF), Cattalanto (OF), Chacin (SP), Towers (SP).

[Reason I added towers is that they need someone to pitch and hes better than most of the junk they can throw out there on any given night to start].

Of Course this would depend on what Tex Sees as Wells value, if they would be willing to give up Mench + Gonzalaz for Wells.

This deal would also depend on if they can Get Delgado.

All the Sudden if this deal goes down I LOVE the Jays starting 9:

Rios (RF)
Mench (LF)
Nix (CF)
Gonzalaz (1B)
Hudson (2B)
Koskie (3B)
Adams (SS)
Hillenbrand (DH)
Zaun (C)

(In no special order).
Craig B - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 04:17 PM EST (#2937) #
Jays all-time all-defense:

C Buck Martinez, yeah. One of the best ever at blocking bad pitches.
1B John Olerud, and not even close
2B Roberto Alomar (maybe the best defensive player in Jays history)
SS Tony Fernandez
3B THIS SPACE FOR RENT (OK, Gruber I guess)
LF Dave Collins
CF Devon White (soon it will be Vernon, I guess)
RF Barfield, oh yeah!

I do have one beef about Alomar, though, to echo Magpie's. Given his first basemen, Alomar was horribly inflexible about his positioning at second base. There was no reason for him to make so many hole plays, playing mostly with mobile first basemen.

The worst?

Cliff Johnson (didn't play much, but woooo...)
Craig Grebeck
probably the aging Dick Schofield
Ed Sprague made Eric Hinske look like Brooks Robinson
Shannon Stewart
probably Mike Huff
Jose Canseco

(Honorable mention to The Last Innings Squeezed From The Husk Of Candy Maldonado)
_Rob - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 05:10 PM EST (#2938) #
If the Jays had an offer for Gonzalaz + Mench for Wells. I'd jump all over that.

I wouldn't. Wells is only going to get better, and he plays some pretty nice CF, I'm told. Also, I don't see how Nix is better than any outfielder currently with the Jays.

Actually, Mench for Catalanotto (and Towers) looks nice, but so does a gold house and rocket car.
_CaramonLS - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 05:25 PM EST (#2939) #
Rob for a team like the Jays can they afford to sign and Keep Wells after his contract expires?

Chances are if we resign him, this turns into Delgado part duex.

We do this trade and we have 3 Years with Mench (likely 25-30 HRs per season and that same number in doubles). Not to mention 6 years with a great 1B prospect who has some great power and is only 22.
_Adam Vella - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 05:34 PM EST (#2940) #
C- Alberto Castillo
1B- Olerud (Soft hands, saved many a BJ infielders)
2B- Alomar (no one should be arguing this one)
ss- Tony F (Most underated SS ever?)
3B- Gruber (Despite addictions/flucuating bat, D was always there)
OF- Devo (Enough said)
OF- Vernon (Last year even with slumping bat, regular on the HOTN)
OF- Barfield (For his arm alone)
SP- Hentgen (Pitchers don't really matter)
RP- Timlin (Just for grabbin that Nixon bunt)
_DaveInNYC - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 06:19 PM EST (#2941) #
Caramon, are the Jays ever going to show some loyalty and try and keep a franchise guy so that he begins his career, and retires as a Jay? Yeah I know it's worked in Oakland (replacing their best offensive players) but Oakland hasn't had to contend with the Red Sox and Yankees 19 times a year, and even when they've had to face them in short series' in the playoffs they've choked and turned into mental idgets. (to paraphrase Derek Lowe)

I think keeping a guy like Wells is imperrative for the Jays as a franchise.

Agree or disagree as you'd like, it's just my opinion.
_DaveInNYC - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 06:28 PM EST (#2942) #
Should add that IMO, you HAVE to find ways to afford a guy like Wells. Get creative with contracts, trade some other big contract guys... just do something to keep a guy that instrumental to the team.
_John Northey - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 06:48 PM EST (#2943) #
Well, Wells is signed for a few more years (through 2007) fairly cheaply. The key is will he be worth whatever he demands after 2007. Arbitration won't be as big a deal as it was with Delgado as Wells will be paid under $10 million in the last year of his contract iirc (total value is $15 million over 5 years). Keeping guys for their whole career is nice but not needed. Would it have been good for the Jays to keep Dave Stieb in 1993 (his one season away from Toronto)? Or George Bell for his 3 final years after 1990? I doubt it. Roberto Alomar would've been great to have from '96 to 2000 but would he have pushed the Jays over the top during that time frame? Maybe in Tim Johnsons year, but that is the only time he could've made any real difference imo. If he was still here today where would Hudson be, and would the Jays be better off? I don't think so.

Personally, I'd love to keep some guys like Wells around for their entire careers but realistically it doesn't make sense. Once a player's cost is beyond his value to the team (vs potential replacements) then you have to let them go.
_CaramonLS - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 06:49 PM EST (#2944) #
Don't get me wrong Dave, if there was a way to afford Wells, I'd love to have him.

But when Well's contract comes up - how much do you think hes going to get? Seriously. One of the Best Defensive CFs in the Game and is capable of hitting 100+ RBIs in a season and the prototypical #3 slot hitter.

Hes going to be looking at at least 13 million a season, which consists of 1/4 of the Jays Payroll. Ouch. Thats a conservative estimate if he doesn't completely tear the cover off the ball next year.

I know full well we have to play 2 of the toughest teams in baseball... I think Gonzalaz and Mench give us a better chance to succeed in the future than Wells does. I want to make the playoffs again sometime and you have to make moves like Oakland does if you plan to do anything.
_Ron - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 06:53 PM EST (#2945) #
If a team has to constantly dump their best players once their nearing FA because of the contract then there's either a serious problem with the CBA or the owner (or both).
_CaramonLS - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 07:01 PM EST (#2946) #
I think its a big case of Both Ron, Don't you?
_DaveInNYC - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 07:21 PM EST (#2947) #
Hey, hopefully by 2007 when Vern's contract runs out, the Jays will be in the middle of their "stretch run" for the World Series and by then the budget/payroll should increase by enough to re-sign Vern! :)

Always gotta stay optimistic!
_Eric - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 07:23 PM EST (#2948) #
Caramon, Kevin Mench has put up a .772 OPS away from Arlington the last three years, compared to a .881 OPS there. Not the kind of thing that makes me think he'll be all that great away from there.

As for Adrian Gonzalez having 'great power', how do you get that from a .431 SLG in five minor league seasons?

Your trade idea would be a horrible return for the Jays.
_CaramonLS - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 07:39 PM EST (#2949) #
Look at Gonzalez's 04 Line:

.304/.364/.457 - He hits 12 HRs, which doesn't look great on paper, but he is able to get 88 RBIs, 28 Doubles.

Not to mention, check out his RBI totals the last 4 seasons in the minors

A (01): 103 RBIs
AA (02): 96 RBIs
AA/AAA (03): 53 RBIs, in between 2 leagues and 2 Orgs.
AAA (04): 88 RBIs

That says: He knows how to hit with RISP. His HR totals is only going to rise given his young age.

You can talk to just about anyone Eric, Gonzalez is one of the best 1B prospects around, and hes only 22.

Also Eric, we do know that Arlington is a pretty good hitters park, but the Skydome isn't bad either. I wouldn't expect too much of a drop off, combine that with another year of MLB experience under his belt, Mench is only going to get better.
_Greg - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 07:56 PM EST (#2950) #
Isn't Mench staying in a hitter friendly environment merely continuing the mirage of good numbers rather than having it crushed by him moving to a pitcher's park....

Hitter's park or pitcher's park he still contributes the same amount to the team's winning doesn't he?
Isn't that the point of tracking park effects?
_Mick - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 09:47 PM EST (#2951) #
I have to believe that if JP called John Hart and said, "hey, would you give us Mench and Adrian Gonzalez for Vernon Wells?" that Hart would actually harm himself because he couldn't get to a pen fast enough.

The larger deal, well don't talk about getting Nix "thrown in" ... the Rangers are higher on him than they are on Mench, I think. If you wanted Mench, Nix AND Gonzalez, I think you have to do better than Towers (he's not better than the raft of guys they have) and Catalanotto (been there, done that in Texas -- besides, where would he play?) I think Hart would ask for Wells and Lilly but settle for Wells and Batista in that scenario.
_Mick - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 09:57 PM EST (#2952) #
Jamey Newberg reports:

T.R. Sullivan of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram is reporting tonight thatn Texas is dropping out of the bidding for Carlos Delgado after he turned down the club's four-year, $48 million offer.

So ignore all the above speculation about any of the offense in Texas begin available, though Lilly or Batista could still tempt Texas on Mench, I think.
_CaramonLS - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 10:08 PM EST (#2953) #
You use Lilly and Batista as if they are interchangable or something... Sorry if I'm not as high on Miggy as you are.
_Rob - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 10:09 PM EST (#2954) #
Sorry, I thought Caramon meant Juan Gonzalez. I know, I know, but I've had the flu for two days, so give me a break. I should have known it was Adrian when he said "Gonzalez (1B)," but again, the flu.

Side note: RBI totals from the minor leagues are practically useless. Especially those from Kane County of the Midwest League from four years ago.

Okay, so Adrian Gonzalez and Kevin Mench for Vernon Wells? I still wouldn't do it. Maybe I'm too high on Wells, but I don't like to make a 2-for-1 trade where I'm giving up the best player for two lesser players. I would give serious thought to either Lilly or Batista for Mench, though. But not until at least one of Banks/McGowan/Rosario is obviously going to be in the rotation.

On another note, Mick, why are the Rangers so high on Nix? His excellent strike zone command? His 30 stolen bases per year? I guess he is only 23, though.

Finally, did Delgado turn down:
a) the 48 million dollars from Texas or
b) the 48 million dollars from Texas?
_Mick - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 10:18 PM EST (#2955) #
If Delgado is to be believed, he loved Texas, so it had to be the money. On Nix, I can't answer that, I just know it's true from hearing and reading comments from the front office guys in local media. Scott Lucas, are you out there? Is Laynce Nix The Real Deal?
_Jordan - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 10:25 PM EST (#2956) #
Can Wilson Pick It?

Yup. :-)
_Joseph Krengel - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 11:23 PM EST (#2957) #
According to the AP feed that is going out everywhere Delgado turned down the offer because they told him 75% of his at bats would come from the DH spot.
_Braby21 - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 11:36 PM EST (#2958) #
COMN for what Joey K is talking about above.

Delgado's agent is sure not afraid to speak his mind in regards to GM's that screw him over.
_Braby21 - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 11:39 PM EST (#2959) #
Or GM's that HE feels that screw him over.
Lucas - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 11:47 PM EST (#2960) #
Scott Lucas, are you out there? Is Laynce Nix The Real Deal?

I don't know.

Nix is as toolsy as they come and has much more upside than Mench. He finished 2002 in high-A and 2003 in Texas. He didn't turn 24 until last October. On the other hand, his batting eye has been atrocious, and a sub-.300 OBP is intolerable for any age at any position (unless you're Rod Barajas, ha ha). I'm skeptical he'll ever develop enough patience to be a valuable hitter, but he might have enough power to be an acceptable one for a CF.

Mench and Gonzalez for Wells? I wish.
_6-4-3 - Sunday, January 23 2005 @ 11:54 PM EST (#2961) #
ESPN is now reporting that Carlos Delgado's agent has said that the Mets are no longer interested in signing Delgado, leaving the Marlins and the Orioles as the only two teams that are bidding for his services. The Orioles are reportedly offering 4 years, "48 million plus", while the Marlins are in for 3 years, 35 million. COMN for the full story. (It's a bit odd: ESPN has direct quotes from Delgado's agent for the "Delgado's not going to Texas" part of the story, but none for the bigger "The Mets have backed down" part. I've never used the BBRRS before, but I think it'd churn out a rating of "lime jello" for this rumor)

This has to hurt for Delgado. The Marlins are offering less money and less years, and the Orioles aren't much closer to being a winner than the Jays are.
_Ryan Lind - Monday, January 24 2005 @ 01:06 AM EST (#2962) #
Oh dear god.

I haven't been paying too much attention to the Delgado thing, but it seemed sure he was going to the NL. Even Texas I could handle, but Baltimore??? ARghah.
_Caino - Monday, January 24 2005 @ 01:19 AM EST (#2963) #
I agree man, Baltimore would break my heart. If he signed anywhere else I'd probly still be a fan of his. Baltimore, I would become bitter and resentful.
_Lefty - Monday, January 24 2005 @ 01:34 AM EST (#2964) #
I'm picking Balt. as the winners in the Delgado sweepstakes. I have from the outset. Just because they have been quite at least in the media is not a reason to think they were not showing sufficient interest.

1) Everyone knew they had a ton of dough to spend this offseason.

2) It appears they have learned their lesson on taking on mega deal contracts. Therefore didn't bite on the likes of Sexson etc.

3) They entered the Delgado bidding late in order to let the other interested teams smoke out the terms and therefore didn't end up driving up his contract early.

I think they might get it done and I'll look forward to seeing alot of him next season. He might hit 40 - 50 bombs in Camden.
_Grimlock - Monday, January 24 2005 @ 10:26 PM EST (#2965) #
Argh, the Orioles? Why do all the great Jays go to Baltimore?

Alomar, Carter, Eichhorn, Guzman, Hentgen... Delgado?

Come on Carlos, go to the Mets. Me Grimlock like the Mets... they're like Starscream to the Yankees' Megatron.
_David Wang - Monday, January 24 2005 @ 10:38 PM EST (#2966) #
Grimlock, not to mention the great Tony Batista.
_Grimlock - Monday, January 24 2005 @ 10:51 PM EST (#2967) #
Not the great Tony Batista. The IMMORTAL Tony Batista!
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