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The Jays have won two series in a row. They go for number three over the next two nights.

Todd Redmond goes against Wade Miley today. Wednesday it's Mark Buehrle vs Randall Delgado.

Rosters have been expanded. The Jays have a load of newish pitchers in the bullpen, Kyle Drabek, Dustin McGowan, Steve Delabar, Luis Perez, Jeremy Jeffress and Ricky Romero. Word out of Buffalo is that Jeffress has changed significantly, he will bear watching. It will be a test for John Gibbons to get them all some innings. On the other hand Brett Cecil looks worn out and Casey Janssen has been less dominant recently.

I am not sure when Jose Bautista will be back. When they do come back the outfield will be as crowded as the bullpen. Who gets the at-bats? Gibbons has been rotating Gose, Pillar, Davis and Sierra through the spots, if Rasmus and Bautista come back playing time will be limited.

Game Threads 9/03 & 9/04 in Arizona | 32 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
finch - Tuesday, September 03 2013 @ 09:16 PM EDT (#278691) #
Listening to Greg Zaun just ruined my day. I can't stand him. Blah blah blah, "Stroman needs to pay your dues." UGH!!!!!!!!!!
Eephus - Tuesday, September 03 2013 @ 11:47 PM EDT (#278696) #
Is it just me or is Ryan Goins by far the best defensive 2B on this team? What great pivot on double plays.
92-93 - Tuesday, September 03 2013 @ 11:57 PM EDT (#278697) #
He's looked tremendous defensively. If AA can find somebody to eat Izturis' salary he should let him go and let Goins do the job for the MLB minimum.
Magpie - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 08:33 AM EDT (#278700) #
He's looked tremendous defensively.

Agreed - and for a guy who's spent most of his career at short, it's very impressive how comfortable he looks with the DP pivot. Not sure how much he'll hit, but as Reyes' defense continues its inevitable deterioration, it makes a certain sense to have a couple of plus defenders on either side of him.
John Northey - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 08:48 AM EDT (#278701) #
Agreed on Goins. Checking FanGraphs, in his first 90 innings at 2B Goins has a 40.6 UZR/150 which is an amazing figure (would add 4 wins over a full season).  Realistically that would come down a lot if he did play a full season, but it certainly is a good sign to start.  His fWAR is at 0.3 which is worth $1.3 mil so he certainly has earned his (league minimum) pay.  His bWAR is 1.1 which would be worth $4+ mil. 

As an FYI, in the minors he played 478 games at shortstop and 32 at 2B plus 1 game at 3B.  I'd be quite comfortable with dumping Izturis for Goins and see the Jays invest the $2.5 mil a year in savings elsewhere.

Chuck - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 09:07 AM EDT (#278705) #
Not sure how much he'll hit

And therein lies a very big question. He's already 25 and he hasn't hit much in the minors, particularly in AAA. What would be the acceptable threshold for his glove to carry his bat? 650 OPS? 600 OPS?

And, to Magpie's point, should special consideration be given to Goins' glove given Reyes' ongoing defensive decline? This would argue against evaluating Goins in a vacuum, arguing that he deserves bonus points for shoring up a leaky middle infield. Can a mathematical, pro-synergy argument be made to defend that? (I'm not saying it can't, but I'd like to hear one.)

Chuck - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 09:10 AM EDT (#278706) #
One more thing about Goins. What is the proper pronunciation? Buck has been going with go-ins but in moments of presumed fatigue, resorts to the monosyllabic goynes.
Shaker - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 09:41 AM EDT (#278707) #

Darwin Barney might be a good comp for Goins. 

Barney's career OPS (in 1700 PA) is .636 and this season he's at .589 for an OPS+ of 61.  His career BBRef WAR is +6.8 (in 450 GP) and his WAR this year is -0.1.  Last year with a .658 OPS was his big WAR year at +4.8.

Barney is 27 years old.

Every team has a #9 hitter and from what Goins has shown so far, I'm sure the pitching staff would be happy to have him suit up most days in 2014.

It's just a guess, but pronouncing his name like Owens with a G in front should do it.

Mike Green - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 09:43 AM EDT (#278708) #
I have seen him at a couple of different minor league stops, and it has always been Go-ins.  His defensive ability at second base has obviously come a long way from when I saw him several years ago.  He looked capable enough, but with uninspiring range.  I saw him as a likely utility player in the major leagues (with his bat and glove both being a little below average for a major league infielder).  I did support his inclusion on the 40 man this past off-season. 

He has not progressed at all offensively since he was in Lansing in 2010. If you look at his minor league record, you'd expect him to hit less than John McDonald.  That would make him a below average ballplayer even with very good defence at second base.

Somehow, I think that he'll end up hitting better than the minor league record would suggest and fielding not as well as his hot streak early in his major league career would suggest. 

CeeBee - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 12:07 PM EDT (#278714) #
But so far he's done a helluva better job at 2nd than any other Jay this year IMO. You don't know what you got till it's gone and apparently the Jays are figuring out, a bit late it seems, that defense MATTERS!
I'd be happy if next year the Jays went with Goins at 2nd and one of Sierra, Gose or Pillar in left next year. Defense would be a fair bit better and the offence can't be much worse than it was from those positions either..... And then there's catcher.... Jeff Mathis(insert good defensive C here), where are you when we need you.
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 12:36 PM EDT (#278715) #
I am definitely of that school.  My only point is that expecting Goins to be a Gold-Glove quality defender, like John McDonald was, may be unrealistic.

I am hoping that Pillar comes on over the rest of the season and makes it clear who ought to be the starting leftfielder next year.  The minor league records of Sierra and Gose leave little basis that either is ready for that role.  Gose at this point is a 4th outfielder. 

CeeBee - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 01:12 PM EDT (#278720) #
With Davis probably gone and hopefully Cabrera too my outfield would probably have Bautista in right, Rasmus in center and either a Pillar/Gose platoon or a Sierra/Gose platoon with the loser either being the 5th outfielder or in AAA. Even the good teams plug the occasional youngster in and unless they all prove they can't play in the majors I'm happy with giving prospects a chance. It also has to help morale in the minors if the prospects have a feeling that they will get a chance here if they perform well to say nothing of saving a few bucks to plug other holes like catcher.
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 02:23 PM EDT (#278724) #
Gose doesn't merit the majority of the playing time in left-field.  There is absolutely no reason to believe that he will hit well enough even as a platoon player with excellent defence and speed.  He hasn't hit in the major leagues and his recent minor league performance is even worse. 

Defence matters, but giving a player a job in left-field on the basis that he is an excellent defender and a very poor hitter is not a way to win pennants.  Gose will make Scott Podsednik look like Jose Cruz Sr.

hypobole - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 03:06 PM EDT (#278727) #
Haven't seen this mentioned, but with the Jays victory last night, they've won 3 consecutive series for only the 2nd time this year.

Somewhat surprisingly, all 6 teams the Jays faced in those 2 stretches had winning records at the time the Jays played them.

uglyone - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 03:35 PM EDT (#278728) #
"There is absolutely no reason to believe that he will hit well enough even as a platoon player"

Last 3yrs MILB vs. RHP:

Gose: 1126pa, .269/.354/.427/.781
Pillar: 965pa, .302/.351/.437/.788

and that's with Gose being one of the youngest players at his level every step of the way, and Pillar being old for his level at every step....and of course Pillar being 2yrs older right now.
uglyone - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 03:40 PM EDT (#278729) #
"Haven't seen this mentioned, but with the Jays victory last night, they've won 3 consecutive series for only the 2nd time this year."

amazing what just a little bit of starting pitching can do, even when you have a patchwork lineup and with the bullpen a bit shakier than usual.
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 04:19 PM EDT (#278730) #
Uglyone, you have to discount the Las Vegas numbers considerably for Gose.  If you look at 2012 and 2013 (which is the most you should really put any weight on for a young player), Gose is much behind Pillar even against RHP. That is not necessarily where they are likely to be in the long run, but it is normally a very bad idea for a club to give a promotion to a player who has not performed well for two minor league seasons in a row.
John Northey - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 04:28 PM EDT (#278731) #
I wouldn't be shocked by a Pillar or Sierra mixed with Gose platoon in LF in 2014, but I'd hope the Jays are looking for something better.  Ideally they find someone to take on Lind (the Jays just keep letting him hit vs LHP [591 OPS so far this year] and he keeps slumping at the end when he is hot at the start) and get someone else to DH or (if they must) use Cabrera there and have a mobile outfielder in LF. 

One wonders if AA will go for defense and pitching this winter after focusing on offense and pitching last winter.  LF, 2B, CA, rotation ace are the ideal areas to fix.  Goins might be a good backup infielder (mixed with Kawasaki and DeRosa) while I'd like Davis to return as the 4th outfielder but Pillar or Sierra or Gose could probably cover that if needed.

uglyone - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 04:41 PM EDT (#278732) #
I'd like to ditch Davis and Thole and Izturis.

keep Derosa as the UT I guess.

give Cabrera another shot at LF, with all of Pillar/Gose/Sierra in reserve.

let goins and kawasaki (or similar replacement) cover the bench IF position, and go out and get a starting 2B somwhere.

move JP to the bench, and get a starting catcher if possibe.
Beyonder - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 04:57 PM EDT (#278733) #
I've been pessimistic about Gose for a long time, but even I'm not ready to give up on him by asking him to platoon. I'd give him full time at bats at AAA. I also think Pillar could be a very good hitter at the major league level, despite his slow start here. I would let Rajai walk, install Melky in left again, and let Pillar back up.

I think JP has to go. I don't see him accepting a back-up role quietly.
uglyone - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 05:02 PM EDT (#278734) #
I have no idea where this character assassination of JP started. By all reports he's a super friendly, hard working humble guy, not some arrogant entitled prick.
Beyonder - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 05:14 PM EDT (#278736) #
Geez. You have a pretty low bar for what constitutes character assasination.

JP should go because he is awful. Despite being awful, I think he sees himself as one of the faces of this team. So I think he will have a very hard time accepting a back-up role.

As far as being entitled goes, isn't he the guy who thought he was entitled to have Zaun and Hayhurst say nice things about him because they were Rogers employees -- and then went on to mock them both for being marginal players?
Beyonder - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 05:17 PM EDT (#278737) #
Oh yes. then there was this tweet in response to a radio host that dared to suggest JP was off to a bad start this year:

“Please have one more donut, looks like u need it!” the catcher wrote on his own Twitter account. He followed it with a message referring to the photograph Mirlis has attached to his Twitter account: “#HowManyChinsYouWorkingWith.”
uglyone - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 05:38 PM EDT (#278738) #
the JPA hate is out of control.

He wasn't good this year, but he was nowhere nearly the disaster Thole is.
China fan - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 06:20 PM EDT (#278739) #
I don't think JPA is "super-entitled" and I don't think he is "lazy" and I don't think he deserves anyone's hate. But that being said, he's had a terrible year offensively, and he's not really showing any signs of improving defensively, and there are hints from his coaches that he might be: a) somewhat stubborn in his reluctance to make adjustments; b) somewhat distracted by his feud with the media and his numerous off-field commitments.

Offensively, he should be improving. He's into his third year in the league, he's at his peak age, he's got all the credentials (minor-league MVP etc). Instead he continues to decline. In the first half of this season, his OPS was a mediocre .675 with 98 strikeouts. In the second half, he was actually much worse, with an OPS of .527 and an OBP of .209.

Defensively, the Jays are trying to improve his performance against base stealing, yet he continues to throw from his knees, which is one of the reasons why his CS percentage is so poor. Just a couple days ago, Sal Fasano made some very blunt comments about JPA's tendencies: "I would like to see him using his athletic ability more often.... I just want him to use it more. I think [it's important] to get him off of throwing from his knees, and maybe get up and use his athleticism to get his body rotated so he can make a good throw to second base.... I've seen only one or two guys that can throw better from [their] knees than they do standing." Despite those very blunt comments and clear direction from his coaches, JPA was again throwing from his knees in tonight's game, and was extremely lucky that the results were not disastrous. In the 8th inning, when Bloomquist tried to steal, JPA threw from his knees and the throw was way offline. Only a miraculous play by Goins (who tagged Bloomquist from mid-air in the middle of his leap for JPA's throw) prevented the throw from deflecting off the runner into the outfield. It seems odd to me that JPA would just ignore the advice from Fasano and continue throwing from his knees.

On the distractions in JPA's life, Fasano made the following diplomatic comments, wherein he hints at a problem, he hints that JPA has too many distractions, and then he finds a way to stay positive by saying that JPA "does work" despite the distractions. Although he ended the comment on a positive note, the negative implications seemed clear between-the-lines. Here's what Fasano said, according to Sportsnet:

"We can just get caught doing all of the other things,” Fasano said. “Media stuff every day. You’re trying to be a good guy, going out to the community. The bottom line is if you don’t perform on the field, you’re probably not going to be around. So we have to really get him to buy in to what it’s supposed to be. We have to work hard. We have to work hard on a daily basis and, really, to his credit, he does work.”
Lylemcr - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 06:27 PM EDT (#278740) #
It was nice to see L. Perez today.  I really like him as a LHP out of the pen.  Our pen is loaded with good LHP.
Thomas - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 06:29 PM EDT (#278741) #

Thole has not impressed at the plate (statistically or to the naked eye, at least from what I've seen), but he appears to be noticeably better at catching the knuckleball than JP.

China fan - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 06:30 PM EDT (#278742) #
Jeffress hit 100 mph in his final pitch, according to Gameday. And allowed the winning run on the same pitch. Jeffress at his best and worst, in the same moment.
John Northey - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 06:38 PM EDT (#278743) #
Jeffress is proof that a 100 mph fastball isn't enough to succeed in the majors.  Perez meanwhile K's 2 and gave up a single while all pitches were 92 and less.  Santos threw one pitch over 92, a 95 MPH fastball that led to a run (sac fly).

Jeffress is one of those guys scouts love, but stats people just shake their heads at.  Killer heat, can K anyone anytime, but also wild and unlikely to ever be more than a 12 man on a staff.

China fan - Wednesday, September 04 2013 @ 06:42 PM EDT (#278744) #
Some rather astonishing comments here by Marty Brown, manager of the Bisons, in explaining how Jeffress improved during the course of this season -- and how his attitude was perhaps his biggest problem this year:

“In the early part of the year, he was an ass—-,” Brown says bluntly. “And from the middle part of the year on, he’s been a great teammate, he’s done everything we’ve asked of him, and I’m very pleased with how he’s progressed. I think he felt, ‘My (stuff) is too good to be here.’ And in some ways, you look at it now and think it’s pretty damned good. But initially, he rubbed some people the wrong way with his attitude, and his attitude got better, he cleaned everything up, he’s been great. He’s been up to 99 m.p.h. with a really sharp curveball at times. He really slows the game down, holds runners well, is quick to the plate, understands himself way better as a pitcher. I’ve really been surprised at how just how well he’s calmed down.”

ayjackson - Thursday, September 05 2013 @ 01:41 PM EDT (#278753) #
On the road for Minneapolis at the moment. I'm taking the family to the Saturday Jays game. Any idea how to get autographs from the players pre or post game? What time do they usually warm up? We're left field line which I think is the road team at target field.
Game Threads 9/03 & 9/04 in Arizona | 32 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.