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Dirk Hayhurst has announced he wonít be returning to the Blue Jays organization for 2011. However, he left an undeniable mark on the Toronto sports scene during his two years in the organization and I am sure most Blue Jays fans wonít forget Dirk Hayhurst for a long time.

He made 15 appearances for the team in 2009 and didnít record a decision, while posting a 2.78 ERA out of the bullpen. While those contributions should not be overlooked, many fans will remember Hayhurst as well, if not more, for his thought-provoking and honest writing and eloquent radio appearances.

Many baseball players, understandably, are reluctant to speak out about many issues and with the current social media, players are and likely will become more guarded. However, Dirk was more than just an uncommon baseball player willing to speak his mind.

He was perceptive about his place in the sport and baseballís place in society. He was aware of his own limitations, but also determined to succeed as a professional baseball player. He gave fans details of his struggles and successes, but also also opened up a whole new world of Garfooses to previously unknowledgeable fans, myself among them. Furthermore, Dirk isnít a good writer for a baseball player. Heís a good writer. Period.

If you havenít yet, please check out his book, The Bullpen Gospels. I own a copy and it sits proudly next to Jim Boutonís Ball Four and Pat Jordanís A False Spring as the baseball autobiographies I own.

Finally, please read his blog post where he announces that he wonít be returning to the Jays. It demonstrates his class, humility and fantastic writing talent and his genuine love of the organization and city shine through.

Dirk, we enjoyed every radio guest spot, every Garfoose reference and every inning you were on the mound. Best of luck going forward and youíll be missed.

Gone But Not Forgotten: Dirk Hayhurst | 13 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Craig B - Tuesday, January 04 2011 @ 12:20 AM EST (#228325) #
The book, which is very fine, is The Bullpen Gospels. It is an odd book, though, and the Garfoose is an odd person. I would go so far as to call him a very odd person. And all the more enjoyable for that. I will always remember him fondly, and I will always pull for him wherever he goes. But I have not a little sympathy with an organization who would, having stood by him when he was hurt, rather not have him around as a distraction and wild card.
Thomas - Tuesday, January 04 2011 @ 12:23 AM EST (#228326) #
Thanks, Craig. My bookshelf is at my parents' home and I was recalling the title from memory. Incorrectly, but that memory lapse should not be seen to detract from my comment.
Dave Till - Tuesday, January 04 2011 @ 09:21 AM EST (#228329) #
I have a copy of The Bullpen Gospels - I enjoyed it very much. My impression, while reading it, was that Hayhurst intends/hopes that the book will be turned into a movie - it's structured like a movie script.

I thought it was a little unusual that the Jays would release him, given that they could use another reliever or two - perhaps they see him as too much of a distraction, or maybe they figure that right-handed relief pitchers aren't too hard to find. It's good to know that Hayhurst and the Jays part on good terms.

I look forward to reading more of his writing.

rpriske - Tuesday, January 04 2011 @ 10:18 AM EST (#228331) #

I hope that the Jays released him due to his ability to throw a ball rather than this 'distraction' that you have mentioned.

He should be lauded for that 'distraction', not condemned for it.

 

I am disappointed that he is leaving as he is one of my favourite people who also happens to be a baseball player. I hope he gets an in with another organization quickly.

dan gordon - Tuesday, January 04 2011 @ 10:57 AM EST (#228332) #
I see the Jays have signed former closer Chad Cordero to a minor league contract.  He's coming back from shoulder surgery, pitched a little at the end of 2010.  Still just 28 years old, and was excellent before he got hurt.  Had 47 saves in 2005.  Career ERA under 3.00 and WHIP about 1.20.
Mick Doherty - Tuesday, January 04 2011 @ 11:04 AM EST (#228333) #

Very nice nod,, Thomas. Hayhurst strikes me as a guy who will still be pitching (and writing about it), somewhere, in 2025 or so -- be it MLB or an Indy league somewhere ...

P.S. what is "The Garfoose"? I know it's Hayhurst''s Twitter handle. but where'd it come from?

John Northey - Tuesday, January 04 2011 @ 11:13 AM EST (#228334) #
Just posted on his blog about how this isn't a shock (the Jays being buried in young pitching right now) but still a sad thing. Hoping that he returns as a coach or broadcaster at some point in the near future.
85bluejay - Tuesday, January 04 2011 @ 01:04 PM EST (#228335) #

looks like  Beltre will sign with Texas - good match - hoping AA is calling Tony Reagins - Hey, you need a power

hitting 3rd baseman to hit in the middle of that lineup - I've got  just  what you're looking for - let's put together a

package for the low price of a high ceiling prospect. 

Mick Doherty - Tuesday, January 04 2011 @ 01:06 PM EST (#228336) #
TangoTiger has featured Dirk in his THE BOOK blog, here. The headline is "Dirk Hayhurst on Canadians" ...
kinguy - Tuesday, January 04 2011 @ 01:19 PM EST (#228337) #
I know it's nitpicking, but IIRC, Hayhurst's contract expired, so rather than releasing him, the Jays just chose not to re-sign him. 

With all the post-season player shuffling in the bullpen, I would have thought that he'd at least get a minor league deal and an invite to spring training and a chance to be minor-league fodder.

In any event, a tip of the cap to Dirk, thanks for an enjoyable read and best wishes for the future.

Parker - Tuesday, January 04 2011 @ 03:14 PM EST (#228342) #

P.S. what is "The Garfoose"? I know it's Hayhurst''s Twitter handle. but where'd it come from?

According to Hayhurst's website, a Garfoose is "a fire breathing, magically empowered, indestructible, wifi enabled, half giraffe half moose."

He gives his wife the bulk of the credit for its creation.

http://dirkhayhurst.com/garfoose/

GregH - Wednesday, January 05 2011 @ 11:52 AM EST (#228368) #

I first became aware of Dirk Hayhurst a few years ago when somone on this site referred to his blog, The Non-Prospect Diaries.  I found his writing to be excellent and the subject matter fascinating and became a regular reader. 

My sons and I could not get to Opening Day this past year, but went to the game the next night.  Hayhurst was sitting in front of the Jays Shop autographing copies of The Bullpen Gospels.  He not only autographed the book, he drew a Garfoose and spent more than15 minutes talking to my sons, then 14 and 15, who are Rep baseball players for the town where we live.

The man has class, is immensly entertaining, both in person and on the radio, and writes very well indeed.  I understand he has been given a contract to write more books and I will look forward to reading them.  I also wish him luck in possibly returning from his injury.

Doom Service - Sunday, January 23 2011 @ 12:27 AM EST (#229295) #

Dirk signed a minor league contract with Tampa Bay. It's a bullpen with a lot of changes, so I guess a decent opportunity for him.

Gone But Not Forgotten: Dirk Hayhurst | 13 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.