The Jays have 69 wins with six games left, three more against the Yankees and three with the Twins. But this team is not going quietly into the night, Omar Vizquel created a brouhaha today with some comments.
Chad Jenkins starts today in a big test for him. Jenkins is likely to start in the last game of the season against the Twins. He could do well in that game, the Twins will be hacking to get out of town ASAP and Jenkins sinker could be hit into the ground again and again.
Omar Vizquel gave an interview to Steve Simmons, published today, and he had some pointed comments:
Vizquel, who called his only season in Toronto a personal disappointment, said he believed the Jays run too loose a ship, let too much go throughout the season and need to “jump on mistakes” more often than they have in John Farrell’s second season as manager, Vizquel’s only season here.
Those comments set the cat among the pigeons and Vizquel appeared to be hauled over the coals by John Farrell. The Jays had a 30 minute closed door meeting this afternoon. Farrell suggested Vizquel's comments pushed him over his tipping point. Vizquel appeared to apologize for going public with his comments, but maybe not for the comments themselves. Vizquel's comments come after similar comments by Greg Zaun a few weeks ago.
I am writing this in the second inning of Fridays game and the Jays have had two baserunners eliminated in bad plays already tonight. Brett Lawrie and Yunel Escobar made baserunning mistakes similar to ones they have made before. Do these mistakes validate Vizquel's comments?
There are several ways to interpret Omar's comments and the reaction:
1. Omar is generally unhappy with his role on the team this year and that unhappiness made him unhappy with the team and its performance generally.
2. Omar and Zaun are old school and don't like what they see from the kids.
3. John Farrell is feeling vulnerable and he didn't like Vizquel piling on. He reacted to the comments because it weakened him when he is worried that his job might be in jeopardy.
Omar is right and Farrell just didn't appreciate the public comments.
I don't know which one, or which combination it was. Do You?
Meanwhile the Jays have six games left. Three with playoff implications and three that truly just play out the string. There is probably not much to be learned in these last six games. Adeiny Hechavarria has been relegated back to the bench. Will Bobby Korecky or Shawn Hill get to pitch? Will there be any more unusual plays like the catch made by Chad Jenkins tonight?