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Today's POTD looks at a Bauxite fan favourite and a couple of former Jays with St. Louis earlier this season.

Royals reliever Tim Collins shown on Crown Vision prior to his entrance to the mound against Oakland May 8.

Tim Collins, who celebrated his 22nd birthday August 21, hangs around in the outfield prior to a May 7 game between the Royals and Athletics May 7.

Collins, who signed with the Blue Jays as a free agent in 2007, heads out to the bullpen before May 8 action against Oakland.  Blake Wood and Nathan Adcock are to Collins' left and Aaron Crow follows behind.  Louis Coleman, I believe, has the Dora backpack, yeah!  The 5-foot-7 Collins racked up 98 strikeouts and 14 saves over 68 1/3 innings with Lansing in 2008 and punched out 99 batters in 64 2/3 innings with Dunedin in 2009.

Collins continued to pile up the Ks with New Hampshire in his second tour of duty with the Fisher Cats by whiffing 73 hitters over 43 frames in 2010.  He was packaged off to Atlanta with shortstop Alex Gonzalez and shortshop Tyler Pastornicky for shortstop Yunel Escobar and lefty Jo-Jo Reyes in mid-July.  Collins' stay in the Braves organization lasted just 17 days as he was shipped off to Kansas City with outfielder Gregor Blanco and pitcher Jesse Chavez for outfielder Rick Ankiel and reliever Kyle Farnsworth.

Collins backs up the plate behind catcher Brayan Pena after allowing a run-scoring single to Coco Crisp that scored Mark Ellis.  He struck out Daric Barton to end the seventh inning in the Royals eventual 5-2 loss.

So far in 2011, Collins is 4-4 with a 3.51 earned run average with a K-BB total of 44-41 in 56 1/3 innings.  His first major league win came April 3 when he struck out five over three shutout innings to help Kansas City beat the Los Angeles Angels 12-9 in 13 innings.

Miguel Batista on the mound at Busch Stadium for the St. Louis Cardinals May 4.  A  Blue Jay in 2004 and 2005 where he collected 15 wins and 36 saves, he gave up just one hit and struck out three over 1 1/3 scoreless innings in relief of former Jay Chris Carpenter.  After a 3-2 record with a 4.60 ERA over 26 appearances, the 40 year-old Batista was released by the Cardinals June 22.  He is now with the New York Mets organization.

Trever Miller on the bump for the Cards May 4.  The 38 year-old lefty stranded Batista's runner and lasted 2/3 of a scoreless inning but the Cardinals fell to the Florida Marlins 8-7.  Miller, who went 2-2 with three saves and a 4.61 ERA in 2003 with Toronto, joined the Jays again in the Colby Rasmus mega deal before being released.  His last pitch as a Jay was a homer by Seattle's Mike Carp which resulted in a blown save and an eventual 5-4 loss August 15.  He had a 4.91 ERA in his six appearances in Toronto after going 0-1 with a 4.02 ERA in 39 contests with St. Louis.
Tim Collins & The Dis-Cards | 26 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
katman - Tuesday, August 23 2011 @ 05:51 PM EDT (#242070) #
Wonder what's up with Collins' super-high MLB walk totals?
Mick Doherty - Tuesday, August 23 2011 @ 07:35 PM EDT (#242085) #
2JB -- simply outstanding headline, sir.
Super Bluto - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 09:38 AM EDT (#242113) #
I happened to see Batista in Buffalo against the Mudhens. He looked good as a starter. 40 years old, too.

greenfrog - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 11:32 AM EDT (#242132) #
Pastornicky is having a nice season as a 21-year-old in AA/AAA (315/360/416 with 27 SB). He's improved in each of his minor-league seasons, and looks like he could be a useful David Eckstein-type of player. But as a "scrappy" SS with average-ish defence, he probably doesn't have a huge margin for error.
Mike Green - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 11:49 AM EDT (#242134) #
I don't agree that Pastornicky's upside is David Eckstein.  At age 22, Eckstein was in the New York-Penn League and didn't make the majors until age 26.  Pastornicky's upside is probably that of a batting champ middle infielder with some pop.  Hitting .315 in the Southern League and International League at age 21 is very impressive.  To give a flavour, Eckstein spent a season in the IL at age 25 and hit .246/.364/.301. 

Scouts apparently don't think much of Pastornicky's skill and speak in images (short scrappy fast middle infielder), but sometimes the numbers add significantly to the picture.

John Northey - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 12:55 PM EDT (#242141) #
Collins was always a bit wild, but super high K rates hid it. So far this year he has had 1 3 walk game (1 2/3 IP no runs allowed, didn't have any inherited runners, left with 2 on neither scored), 9 2 walk games (11 1/3 IP, 18 walks 9 strikeouts, 11 runs, all earned, 7 inherited runners, 4 scored, 9 of his own runners left behind), and 20 one walk games (15 K's vs 20 walks, 7 earned runs, 18 2/3 IP). Also 26 no walk games with 19 K's in 26 1/3 IP with 4 earned runs allowed.

It is interesting. If he walks 2 he is screwed but just 1 and he tends to get away with it despite not K'ing too many in those cases. One hopes he can stick around, he has been up all year for KC and he is a good story. Still, there would be no place for him here with that degree of wildness.
Spifficus - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 01:03 PM EDT (#242142) #

Pastornicky's upside is probably that of a batting champ middle infielder with some pop.

I think your man-crush is leading to some distortion of the term 'upside'. Normally, it's reserved for a reasonable-yet-optimistic ("If everything turns out as well as can be hoped") development in skills (normally by scouts, since they're more suited for projection not supported by the numbers). What you're talking about is development beyond the current ceiling (either from a numbers or scouting standpoint). To this point, he's had one year in which he's looked like anything beyond a fringe-average hitter, and a good portion of that is built on a .400+ BABIP in 117 PAs at Gwinnett. He also has an ISO in the range where you start to worry if the bat'll be knocked out of his hands a bit in the majors. I'm not saying he won't be a useful or better player for Atlanta, but right now his 'batting champ upside' is built off an outlier within an outlier. He'll probably be in the majors before we find out if he actually moved the needle, or just kicked up some noise.

Of course, man-crushes are what moves the prospect industry, so keep believing. This is more of a PSA for others to help provide a counterbalance.

greenfrog - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 01:06 PM EDT (#242143) #
Eckstein had a ten-year career, hitting 280/345/355 with 123 SB (peak of 29 SB in his rookie season). He was fourth in ROY voting and was named to the All-Star team twice (at ages 30 and 31).

Pastornicky's career minor-league line is a strikingly-similar 279/345/375. However, he has done very well for his age, improving every year, and has shown good speed, although his SB total has declined from 57 to 35 to 27 (so far) over the last three seasons. The reports I've read say that his defense is solid but unspectacular.

All in all, I don't think Eckstein is an unreasonable comp, although comps should always be viewed with skepticism. Pastornicky has performed well so far, and could end up surpassing Eckstein, but the latter isn't exactly chopped liver. Lots of touted prospects have ended up faring far worse.
Mike Green - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 01:56 PM EDT (#242148) #
To be clear, I am not saying Pastornicky could be Rod Carew.  More like Freddy Sanchez, if Freddy Sanchez could play shortstop, and that is worth significantly more than an Eckstein. And yes, there is more room to fall short of the upside and still be a valuable player.

My view is not really particular to Pastornicky.  It's a general comment about the way that scouting images can mislead.  Drew Hutchison doesn't throw 95, but I think that he can be very, very successful.  Or to take an example from the other side of things, I really like Anthony Gose, and so do the scouts.  If everything works out, he can be Mike Cameron.  But, there are many, many ways that he can fall short of that, and really the chances of him making it are about the same as Pastornicky being Sanchez at short.  But, the image of Gose is more compelling- runs like the wind, a cannon arm, the twitchy pop in his bat- and so scouts are more inclined to believe in his upside than Pastornicky's. 

Spifficus - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 02:16 PM EDT (#242151) #

If Freddy Sanchez is your notion of batting champion upside, I think we're on different scales. Sanchez is a perennial .280-290 hitter that had a fluke season. I don't know if I'd equate upside with fluke. I think of it more as what's the highest you expect him to do year in and year our. With this, I'd say batting champion upside (on the scouting scale, probably a strong 60 or above on projected hit tool) would be someone I'd expect to hit .320-.330 most years.

On Hutchinson, I think the scouts like him, too. Came in throwing high 80s and projectable, with good command and secondaries. Now, he's actualizing some of that projection, and is in the low '90s. To me, any time you're talking about projectable bodies, that's a scouting pick. Otherwise, we're left with a changeup specialist 'blowing away' inexperienced hitters, and almost always doesn't translate well.

Gose... Man, he could be a monster, if he can just get his bat to a bit above average. He's made some progress this year, but I hope they take it easy with him next year and give him time to develop his hitting.

dan gordon - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 02:32 PM EDT (#242153) #
I think Sanchez is a fairly reasonable comp for Pastornicky, except that Tyler will steal a lot more bases than Sanchez.  Sanchez has actually hit over .290 in 5 of his 7 mlb seasons (he only had about 70 mlb AB's before 2005) and his career B.A. is .297 so calling him a .280-.290 hitter understates him a little.  In my view, Pastornicky is very likely to have quite a good mlb career, and I wouldn't be at all surprised to see him play in a few all-star games.
uglyone - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 02:42 PM EDT (#242156) #
I love Pastornicky. His performance adjusted for age every year has been damn impressive, and given that his defense is projected to be good enough to stick at SS, he should be considered an upper-tier prospect, IMO. I'd put him on par with our top position prospects.
Spifficus - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 02:44 PM EDT (#242157) #
yeah, I realized that (the .280-.290 undersell) after I wrote the post. I make soooo many errors, though, that I can't go back and correct each one :)
Mike D - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 03:00 PM EDT (#242161) #
I love Pastornicky. His performance adjusted for age every year has been damn impressive, and given that his defense is projected to be good enough to stick at SS, he should be considered an upper-tier prospect, IMO. I'd put him on par with our top position prospects.

Assuming that Lawrie is no longer considered a prospect...I think Pastornicky would still be clearly behind D'Arnaud, Gose and Marisnick.  But he would be on par with any other top position prospects in the Jays' system.

That said, even with the benefit of hindsight, I would make the trade with the Braves again.
John Northey - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 03:09 PM EDT (#242163) #
Agreed that the Pastornicky & Collins & A-Gon2 for Escobar & Jo-Jo Reyes trade is still a good one in hindsight even if Pastornicky becomes all he could be.

Escobar: a 28 year old shortstop with a 113 OPS+ 289/366/419
A-Gon: 71 OPS+ over 1 1/2 seasons, now 34
Collins: LH reliever with 41 BB vs 45 SO in 56 IP
Pastornicky: now in AAA, hitting 315/360/416

Escobar is hitting for a better OBP & Slg than Pastornicky and doing it at the ML level rather than the AA/AAA level. I'd love to still have Pastornicky in the system as he'd have been #1 for 2B next year if Johnson doesn't resign. But I'd much rather have Escobar here.
Mike Green - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 03:22 PM EDT (#242167) #
I don't disagree.  My concern at the time about the Escobar-Pastornicky trade was the timing.  I foresaw all kinds of difficulties in the Jays competing in the short-term because of the Wells' contract.  Then, poof, the contract is gone, and the trade becomes "a bird in the hand" success, in my view. 
Gerry - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 03:50 PM EDT (#242175) #
AA was on the TV last night during the game.  I am sure I heard him say that Yunel is playing a great shortstop and Hechavarria is a shortstop and he doesn't see either of them playing second base.  What he didn't say is that one of them will have to be traded.
Matthew E - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 04:23 PM EDT (#242182) #
He also didn't say, "if you're going to move a guy out of his position to make room for a young player coming up, you wait until you're ready to do it before you discuss it with anybody. No point in making Escobar unhappy before you have to." But I wouldn't be surprised if that's what he meant.
dan gordon - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 04:44 PM EDT (#242186) #
I thought that was a great interview with AA on the broadcast- he went over so many of the team's pitching prospects.  Even mentioned a guy like Casey Lawrence, who wasn't even drafted last year (although AA mistakenly said he was a late pick). but who has done very well.  He was asked who had been the biggest positive surprise in the farm system this year and he mentioned Nestor Molina.  He said the team was asked about Molina at the trade deadline, but they refused to trade him - their scouts think he has really big upside and they'd be very, very afraid to trade him.  He really spoke glowingly of Nicolino and Syndergaard as well.  Nice to hear him say that McGowan will be up with the Jays in September for sure.  He also made an interesting comment regarding the starting/relieving decision-making process, saying they find it easier to go and get a 4th or 5th starter than a late inning bullpen guy, so if a guy is looking like a 4th/5th starter type, they will consider whether he can be a back of the bullpen guy.  This was in response to a question about the roles of Alvarez and Perez.  Also mentioned Carreno as a guy who could be in the pen next year.
bpoz - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 05:07 PM EDT (#242190) #
Thanks Dan Gordon. Sounds like AA said some definite things. McGowan coming up in Sept is a definite statement.

I really love AA's style, the silence lets him work & get the results we are all impressed with. He did say he was trying to get players that can immediately help the ML team. Then he got Rasmus. He also said he would try to trade for soon to be FAs, he saw a benefit to this but I cannot remember & I am not sure what it is.
acepinball - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 05:28 PM EDT (#242192) #
The Jays may very well have to trade one of their two shortstops. Even if neither of them emerges as an elite shortstop, having two very good shortstops is probably a better trade chip than flipping one of them and hoping he can play second.

Realistically though, Yunel looks like he has a few more years before his body isn't that of a SS. Then again, he's always 'looked' big and slow despite showing good range and an ability to move around the basepaths.
92-93 - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 05:37 PM EDT (#242193) #

I foresaw all kinds of difficulties in the Jays competing in the short-term because of the Wells' contract.

And by this you mean - because of Rogers' unwillingness to spend an average amount on their MLB payroll. Wells' contract should never have prevented them from doing anything, and I laugh when the same writers who claim "the money will be there when needed" try and paint the Bautista extension as something that came about only because of the Wells trade. If that's true, the Jays will have a hard time ever competing in the AL East.

Jonny German - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 06:00 PM EDT (#242195) #
"Wells' contract should never have prevented them from doing anything"

Wells makes $21M per year. If your entire lineup makes that you're spending $189M on 9 players. No biggie, let's sign up a great rotation and closer too. 15 x $21M = $315M.

Not even the Yankees spend like that.

If the Jays carry Mark Teahen for the sake of $7M next year, then we'll have something to complain about.
92-93 - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 06:35 PM EDT (#242197) #
If somebody had advocated spending 20m per roster spot, that response might make some sense. Since you are responding to me, however, it didn't, considering I was discussing whether Wells' contract should have been preventing the Blue Jays from contending with a competitive payroll.

The Red Sox are spending 50m this year on Lackey, DiceK, Drew, and Cameron.

The Yankees are spending 60m this year on Burnett, Posada, Soriano, Feliciano, Marte, and Igawa.

The 21m per year commitment to the team's best CF option and 2nd best hitter in 2010 wasn't preventing the Blue Jays from doing anything.
Thomas - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 06:49 PM EDT (#242199) #
AA was on the FAN and made similar comments re: Hechavarria and Escobar. He stated that Hechevarria will need a full year in Vegas and, even then, will likely need to be optioned before he comes up to the big leagues to stick for good. He said that he didn't foresee their timelines overlapping at all (which I can't believe if AA is, at this point, predisposed to pick up Escobar's two options). He did praise Hechevarria's defence, but he also raved about Escobar and said he's a Gold Glove-calibre defender (despite Mylegacy's opinion that his range diminishes daily).
Kasi - Wednesday, August 24 2011 @ 08:37 PM EDT (#242207) #
Royals have sure made our best pitchers look like chumps the last two nights. Morrow got knocked around a bunch, and Romero is damn lucky he's not behind now.
Tim Collins & The Dis-Cards | 26 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.