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It only took 20 years but the MLB schedule makers finally got it right. The San Diego Padres will finally play in Toronto for the first time since interleague play was introduced in 1997. Here is your 2016 schedule.

Troy Tulowitzki will see Philadelphia in mid-June before visiting his former team in Denver at the end of the month.

The Jays will open and close their seasons on the road. They visit the Tampa Bay Rays Monday, April 4 and will close out their season in Boston on the weekend of September 30 to October 2. The Red Sox will be the opponent on Opening Night at the Dome Friday, April 8.

The Jays will take on teams from the National League West in interleague action in 2016. The first matchup features the Los Angeles Dodgers in town on the May 6-8 weekend. They will then head to San Francisco for three games on May 9-11. The Jays will host their "natural rival" Philadelphia Phillies for two games June 13 and 14 before paying a return visit June 15 and 16. They'll resume their NL West schedule June 21 and 22 at home against the Arizona Diamondbacks before going over to Arizona July 19 and 20. Troy Tulowitzki and company are also scheduled to play in Denver against Tulo's former team, the Colorado Rockies, June 27 to 29. Finally, the San Diego Padres touch down in Toronto for the first time on July 25 for the start of a three-game set.

For those of you in the West Coast, the Jays will not be in Seattle until September 19, which is a Monday. After that three game set at Safeco Field, the Jays final homestand begins with a four-game series against the New York Yankees and ends with a three-game set against Baltimore that ends Thursday, September 29.

The Canada Day matchup is set for Friday, July 1 against Cleveland. The Jays are in Minnesota for the Victoria Day weekend for a four-game series May 19-22 before getting Victoria Day Monday off. The Jays are in Houston for the Civic Day Holiday Monday, August 1 but host Baltimore over the weekend. The Jays are also on the road for Labour Day Monday against the Yankees.

The Padres visit aside, I'm not that thrilled about this year's schedule. If you begin on the road, you should end at home and vice-versa. Save for the Dodgers series, all the interleague series are scheduled during the week. I'm also disappointed about the Seattle series being scheduled during the week. I turn it over to you, Bauxites. Your thoughts.
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John Northey - Tuesday, September 08 2015 @ 03:36 PM EDT (#310853) #
Final week... at home for Yankees (4 games), Orioles, then on the road vs Red Sox to end it. So the AL East should be a good battle in one of those 3 series unless Tampa jumps out and their final Jay games are Sept 12-14. 3 off days in September to keep the team rested.

Seems odd, just 2 off days in April and 2 in May. Maybe I'm wrong but that seems less than in the past.
Richard S.S. - Tuesday, September 08 2015 @ 04:15 PM EDT (#310861) #
Nothing changes in April and May for off-days, two games each month seems normal and three games in September seem normal too, at least as far as it compares with 2015.
John Northey - Tuesday, September 08 2015 @ 05:01 PM EDT (#310867) #
I'm probably just showing my age. Back in the 80's they would have tons of April off days due to rain outs and the like so they could avoid double headers later. With better tech now they can deal with bad weather in all those open stadiums a lot better.

Again, my memory seems off...I just checked, only found 3 off days in 1985 April, and 2 in 1989's April (I'm sure those Jays wish they had more at the time).
ayjackson - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 08:07 AM EDT (#310937) #
Good news for Manitobans as Jays hit the Twin Cities on May long weekend. Should be 8-10k making the trip.
hypobole - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 08:48 AM EDT (#310938) #
If one considers the Jays, Yankees and Red Sox the East favourites next year, the schedule seems to give the Jays a very slight edge over Boston and both an edge over the Yankees.

Toronto has 4 vs Philly and 4 vs Zona.
Boston has 4 vs Atlanta and 4 vs SF.
Yankees has 4 vs Mets and 4 vs Colorado.

cybercavalier - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 09:04 AM EDT (#310939) #
This comment is just a thought; do not bite the messager. The Continental Basketball Association when it existed and the National Basketball Association related to each other in player transaction. In this season 4 non affiliated Canadian teams exists in Winnipeg, Quebec the city, Ottawa and Trois-Rivières. A previous discussion on this website during the start of FisherCats-Bisons-Blue Jays affiliation chain suggested that Winnipeg the city was too far from other Jays' affiliated baseball teams and baseball teams failed in Ottawa. Now with non affiliated baseball in those Canadian cities, I would like to assume those managements will be less vigorous than affiliated baseball. From this perspective, I wonder if some kind of informal relationship between the Blue Jays franchise including affiliated baseball in Canada and those non-affiliated Canadian teams would help develop baseball in Canada. Say scouting at games of those 4 teams ?
uglyone - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 11:09 AM EDT (#310947) #
why would we consider the last place team 2 years running a favorite next year, hypobole?
Kasi - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 11:42 AM EDT (#310950) #
I'd be surprised if the Sox finished behind the Orioles this year. They might pass the Rays too. Anyway the Sox have a top 3 system and a group of very talented young hitters in Betts, Bradley, Swihart, Bogaerts and some decent starting pitching in Bucholz, Porcello, Miley, Rodriguez and Kelly. They did hamstring themselves pretty badly with the Sandoval and Hanley signings, but they still have plenty of money to get a guy like Price or Cueto.

Point is good major league talent (Rays and Orioles are thin), great minor league talent and more money than the other 2 combined means it won't take long til the Sox contend again.
uglyone - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 12:05 PM EDT (#310952) #
the sox have nothing in the minors that will help them next year.

and aside from a couple babip-fuelled hit streaks their young players have been underwhelming to say the least.

and what is decent about their rotation?
Kasi - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 12:19 PM EDT (#310955) #
I'd be very happy to have a group of youngsters like Betts, Bogaerts, Swihart, Bradley and Holt. Sure you can argue that Bradley has been lucky this year, but everyone else's babip is fine for young guys with speed. They still have Ortiz and Pedroia around for a vet presence. Bucholz is a good pitcher and I think between Rodriguez, Owens, Miley, Porcello and Kelly some will improve. They're all pretty young.

They've already had a number of their prospects join the big league team this year which does mean their immediate reinforcements are down, but still they are a young team with a solid core. They're not paying a lot of money to guys over 30. Not to mention they do have the ability to get a huge payroll. The big question mark is what is going to happen with Sandoval and Ramirez. They need to provide value for them to be contenders next year.
uglyone - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 01:21 PM EDT (#310958) #
"I'd be very happy to have a group of youngsters like Betts, Bogaerts, Swihart, Bradley and Holt."

well you should be happy, because we do have a group like that.


OF Betts (22): 758pa, .308babip, 116wrc+, 4.9war/650pa
SP Stroman (24): 20gs, 6.0ip/gs, 84era-, 4.8war/650pa

SS Bogaerts (22): 1144pa, .332babip, 93wrc+, 2.3war/650pa
RP Osuna (20): 60.2ip, 51era-, 64fip-, 1.9war/65ip

C Swihart (23): 255pa, .385babip, 95wrc+, 3.3war/650pa
2B Travis (24): 238pa, .337babip, 136wrc+, 6.3war/650pa

OF Bradley (25): 587pa, .310babip, 79wrc+, 3.1war/650pa
OF Pillar (26): 664pa, .299babip, 85wrc+, 3.4war/650pa

IF Holt (27): 942pa, .348babip, 98wrc+, 3.2war/650pa
OF Revere (27): 1155pa, .334babip, 94wrc+, 2.2war/650pa

SP Rodriguez (22): 18gs, 5.8ip/gs, 97era-, 2.5war/32gs
SP Sanchez (22): 11gs, 6.0ip/gs, 87era-, 1.9war/32gs

SP Owens (22): 7gs, 5.1ip/gs, 125era-, 0.2war/650pa
CF Pompey (22): 134pa, .259babip, 77wrc+, 1.5war/650pa
hypobole - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 01:26 PM EDT (#310959) #
DD is not the hoarder Cherington was. The immense amount of talent the Red Sox have accumulated is prime trade material.

22 yr olds Betts and Bogaerts have been worth 7.5 fWAR. And they have more than enough offensive talent to contend.

I don't see the Jays Starting staff next year any better than Boston's.

Biggest question for Boston next year will be can DD finally build a bullpen?
uglyone - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 01:34 PM EDT (#310960) #
"2 yr olds Betts and Bogaerts have been worth 7.5 fWAR. And they have more than enough offensive talent to contend."

that's been enough to get them..... last place.
Kasi - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 02:04 PM EDT (#310964) #
You could say the same about us til this year. All hyperbole and I are saying is that the Sox have a lot of young talent, both in the field and in rotation. You asked how they could contend. Well they have top young talent and a ton of money. I certainly like their short term potential more than the aging Yankees or the disasters that are the Rays and Orioles. (One can't develop starters and the other is playing JPA and Sizemore)
uglyone - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 02:48 PM EDT (#310967) #
"You could say the same about us til this year."

and if the red sox are able add Donaldson, Price, Martin, and Tulowitzki for next season, then i'll change my opinion on their chances.
hypobole - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 02:50 PM EDT (#310969) #
Yes Boston is crappy this year. Jays were pretty crappy last year. Has little to do with this year.

uglyone - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 02:51 PM EDT (#310970) #
and i don't get how the rays and Os are disasters when they have more prime impact players AND their young guys are performing at a much higher level than the sox' kids.
uglyone - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 02:57 PM EDT (#310971) #
"Yes Boston is crappy this year. Jays were pretty crappy last year. Has little to do with this year."

Boston has been thoroughly crappy for 2 years now.

Jays were only mediocre last year, and had to add star talent all over their roster, and overhaul about 75% of it, to improve this year.
uglyone - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 03:18 PM EDT (#310972) #
Here's what the red sox have control over heading into next year, with next year's ages and the last 2yrs of stats:

Porcello (27): 54gs, 6.3ip/gs, 102era-, 103fip-, 96xfip-, 2.1war/32gs
Buchholz (31): 46gs, 6.2ip/gs, 111era-, 92fip-, 97xfip-, 2.3war/32gs
Miley (29): 61gs, 6.1ip/gs, 110era-, 102fip-, 97xfip-, 1.9war/32gs
Rodriguez (23): 18gs, 5.8ip/gs, 97era-, 104fip-, 102xfip-, 2.5war/32gs
Kelly (28): 40gs, 5.6ip/gs, 113era-, 112fip-, 106xfip-, 1.2war/32gs
Owens (23): 7gs, 5.1ip/gs, 125era-, 130fip-, 130xfip-, 0.2war/32gs

Uehara (41): 104.2ip, 59era-, 75fip-, 73xfip-, 1.7war/65ip
Tazawa (30): 121.1ip, 77era-, 76fip-, 88xfip-, 1.1war/65ip
Layne (31): 61.1ip, 74era-, 92fip-, 97xfip-, 0.7war/65ip
Varvaro (32): 65.2ip, 77era-, 88fip-, 90xfip-, 0.6war/65ip
Machi (34): 115.2ip, 107era-, 111fip-, 103xfip-, 0.0war/65ip
Ross (27): 72.0ip, 118era-, 98fip-, 96xfip-, -0.1war/65ip
Wright (31): 36.1ip, 96era-, 111fip-, 96xfip-, -0.1war/65ip
Cook (28): 57.2ip, 148era-, 114fip-, 104xfip-, -0.4war/65ip

CF Betts (23): 758pa, .308babip, 116wrc+, 4.9war/650pa
2B Pedroia (32): 950pa, .307babip ,102wrc+, 4.1war/650pa
DH Ortiz (40): 1138pa, .260babip, 134wrc+, 2.6war/650pa
1B Ramirez (32): 942pa, .292babip, 114wrc+, 1.0war/650pa
3B Sandoval (29): 1113pa, .288babip, 98wrc+, 0.9war/650pa
SS Bogaerts (23): 1144pa, .332babip, 93wrc+, 2.3war/650pa
LF Castillo (28): 245pa, .337babip, 104wrc+, 3.5war/650pa
C Swihart (24): 255pa, .385babip, 95wrc+, 3.3war/650pa
RF Bradley (26): 587pa, .310babip, 79wrc+, 3.1war/650pa

UT Shaw (26): 142pa, .281babip, 126wrc+, 5.5war/650pa
OF Craig (31): 572pa, .255babip, 62wrc+, -2.6war/650pa
IF Holt (28): 942pa, .348babip, 98wrc+, 3.2war/650pa
C Hanigan (35): 444pa, .283babip, 90wrc+, 2.8war/650pa

UT Cecchini (25): 40pa, 107wrc+, 1.6war/650pa
OF Brentz (27): 26pa, 89wrc+, 0.0war/650pa
IF Rutledge (27): 399pa, 90wrc+, -0.8war/650pa
C Vazquez (25): 201pa, 70wrc+, 1.9war/650pa

it's not an especially good team or an especially young or cheap one. there won't be any mlb ready prospects in AAA, and they'll have about $30m in free non-luxury tax payroll to work with.
Kasi - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 03:30 PM EDT (#310973) #
The Yankees have good young pitching, but their position players are worse than the Sox going forward. They have Didi, Bird and a couple prospects for young players. Everyone else is old (good but old) and aren't going to be getting much better.

Rays have a decent pitching staff but their lack of payroll makes them an utter non entity. They need another few years of finishing last to get another run in them. That offense there is not very good. Their pitching will keep them in games but that lineup is bad.

Baltimore has some decent hitters but they're likely not resigning Davis so that leaves them pretty slim and they have even less prospects coming up that can help. Not to mention they can't develop pitchers. Machado and Jones are great, but two players doesn't make a team.

Look I don't think anyone is saying that Boston will be as good as Toronto next year. Toronto should be the easy favorite for 2016 in this division. But they are probably better going forward than the rest of the division.
uglyone - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 03:49 PM EDT (#310974) #
yankees have been worlds better than the sox the last 2yrs, and aren't losing anybody.

and both the yanks and sox have a similar group of key players whose old age is reaching a critical level.....Arod and Tex for the yanks, Ortiz and Uehara for the sox.

and i daresay the yanks' youth - tanaka, pineda, eovaldi, severino, bird, gregorius, murphy, judge, sanchez - is looking every bit as good as the sox' kids.
Richard S.S. - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 04:44 PM EDT (#310976) #
Jays were only mediocre last year, and had to add star talent all over their roster, and overhaul about 75% of it, to improve this year.

We had a Catcher, a 3B, a 1B, a Closer plus many others we were happy with last year. Some had their injury issues and small drawbacks, but they were all good productive players. Prior to this year, upgrading at any of these positions would be extremely expensive in prospects and money. Right then, A.A. had Talent and Upside despite their issues.

Somewhere along the line A.A. realized he had to change the type of players he acquired, because as good as they were, they weren't winning; they weren't good enough.
He let Melky Cabrera, Casey Janssen and Colby Rasmus leave as Free Agents because they weren't good enough Player to be worth what they were asking. That cleared $20.0 Million.
He declined options on Sergio Santos, Brandon Morrow and Dustin McGowan because they weren't good enough to keep. That cleared another $14.0 Million.
He non-tendered John Mayberry Jr., Andy Dirks and Justin Smoak (later signed for $1.0 Million) because he was unwilling to keep them. That cleared $6.0 Million.
By trading away Anthony Gose, Adam Lind and J.A. Happ he saved another $4.0 Million.
So whatever A.A. was working on, it's not because he was short with money.

Anytime you can acquire one of the very best Players at his position, at a price you can afford, you'd be a fool not to. This year, so very much just fell into A.A.'s lap. Not just because of the work he's done, but by asking the right question at the right time. It's never about the hard work done without adding the timing/the persistence. Right now, I consider A.A.'s judgement to be far superior to 99.999999999% of the population.

The biggest Issues this season were:
1) Freak injury to their #1 Starting Pitcher and their Left Fielder;
2) Aaron Loup, Brett Cecil and other underachieving in the Bullpen;
3) Jose Reyes' worsening defense.
If none of 1, 2,and 3 happen, what does A.A. do at the Non-Waiver Trade Deadline?
uglyone - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 05:13 PM EDT (#310979) #
again using 2yr stats and next year's age:

SP Cobb (28): 27gs, 6.2ip/gs, 78era-, 87fip-, 88xfip-, 4.2war/32gs
SP Archer (27): 61gs, 6.3ip/gs, 83era-, 80fip-, 84xfip-, 4.0war/32gs
SP Smyly (27): 33gs, 5.7ip/gs, 89era-, 105fip-, 99xfip-, 3.1war/32gs
SP Odorizzi (26): 54gs, 5.7ip/gs, 101era-, 94fip-, 100xfip-, 2.8war/32gs
SP Karns (28): 28gs, 5.6ip/gs, 98era-, 107fip-, 98xfip-, 2.2war/32gs
SP Ramirez (26): 37gs, 5.2ip/gs, 112era-, 117fip-, 110xfip-, 1.1war/32gs

RP McGee (29): 106.1ip, 56era-, 50fip-, 67xfip-, 2.2war/65ip
RP Colome (26): 36.1ip, 66era-, 68fip-, 94xfip-, 1.3war/65ip
RP Cedeno (29): 48.2ip, 63era-, 87fip- 79xfip-, 1.1war/65ip
RP Boxberger (28): 118.2ip, 74era-, 89fip-, 73xfip-, 0.9war/65ip
RP Beliveau (28): 26.2ip, 99era-, 79fip-, 86xfip-, 0.9war/65ip
RP Gomes (31): 85.1ip, 95era-, 114fip-, 114xfip-, 0.3war/65ip
RP Romero (25): 19.2ip, 119era-, 57fip-, 91xfip-, 0.3war/65ip
RP Geltz (28): 67.0ip, 102era-, 114fip-, 112xfip-, 0.1war/65ip

CF Kiermaier (26): 832pa, .308babip, 107wrc+, 6.8war/650pa
2B Forsythe (28): 882pa, .305babip, 110wrc+, 2.7war/650pa
3B Longoria (30): 1270pa, .296babip, 109wrc+, 3.6war/650pa
LF Jennings (29): 650pa, .298babip, 101wrc+, 3.4war/650pa
1B Loney (32): 966pa, .307babip, 100wrc+, -0.2war/650pa
RF Nava (32): 565pa, .311babip, 89wrc+, 2.8war/650pa
DH Souza (27): 374pa, .281babip, 98wrc+, 1.7war/650pa
SS Beckham (26): 178pa, .290babip, 104wrc+, 1.1war/650pa
C Casali (27): 197pa, .243babip, 103wrc+, 2.6war/650pa

UT Butler (30): 269pa, .366babip, 100wrc+, 0.2war/650pa
OF Guyer (30): 614pa, .316babip, 114wrc+, 4.1war/650pa
IF Franklin (25): 168pa, .215babip, 30wrc+, -3.9war/650pa
C Rivera (32): 638pa, .267babip, 75wrc+, 2.2war/650pa

UT Shaffer (25): 38pa, .375babip, 139wrc+, 5.1war/650pa
OF Mahtook (26): 52pa, .296babip, 152wrc+, 5.0war/650pa
IF Elmore (29): 170pa, .234babip, 49wrc+, -4.2war/650pa
C Arencibia (30): 252pa, .227babip, 82wrc+, -1.8war/650pa

this "disaster" of a team looks better than that boston squad to me.
Kasi - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 06:38 PM EDT (#310984) #
Their pitching is good, but unless you think Kiermaier is the best defensive player of all time (or at least 50% better than anyone else in baseball) that lineup looks decidedly mediocre. But sure they have some good stuff in there. Then again the Red Sox have triple their payroll. They'll add players in the offseason (like we did last year). The Rays can't.
uglyone - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 07:29 PM EDT (#310985) #
" Then again the Red Sox have triple their payroll. They'll add players in the offseason (like we did last year)."

they literally handed out over $500m in contract committments last year.

and they're in last place.
cybercavalier - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 08:25 PM EDT (#310992) #
[...] lineup looks decidedly mediocre. But sure they have some good stuff in there.

One distinctive transaction aspect of AA management is to acquire unexpected performer on the cheap. Joey Bats cost a minor league catcher. Colabello is a minor league signee. Hague is another. Chris Heisey had been released by and was then traded back to the Dodger while the Jays earned some assets in cash or a player.
Kasi - Wednesday, September 09 2015 @ 08:28 PM EDT (#310993) #
That has been a real strength of the Rays for a while. But did they lose that when they lost Friedman? Not too impressed they picked up JPA and Sizemore this year. Kinda reeks of desperation.
Jevant - Thursday, September 10 2015 @ 07:55 AM EDT (#311034) #
Because I'm a 4 year old, apparently, my first thought when I looked at this was "LOL - Aaron See Bee AH!!"
cybercavalier - Friday, September 11 2015 @ 12:47 PM EDT (#311100) #
From the NY Times, Blue Jays’ Swift Rise in the A.L. East Was Built on Patience and Prospects.

Its content is a praise of AA but how about the Vernon Wells trade that provided much needed payroll relief and the Yunel Escobar one that provide a serviceable shortstop and set up the subsequent trade for Buerhle and Jose Reyes who then net us Tulo. IMO, AA's player transactions need to be seen as string of events so that creating the Roster Tree Route Map make sense.
jerjapan - Friday, September 11 2015 @ 02:45 PM EDT (#311111) #
That's a great read Cyber, thanks for posting! 

I love the Ben Revere quote on the LF D before he arrived:

“Some plays I make, I can hear the crowd kind of hold their breath,” Revere said. “I make it like it’s routine, and they’re jumping up and clapping. I’m like, ‘What’s going on?’ And they’re telling me: ‘That would have been a double if you weren’t there. It was that bad.’ It’s an honor when a team needs you like that.”

The roster tree is also awesome - further illustration of the genius of AA when you can see all those comp picks for guys like Scott Downs, Barajas and Burnett turning into significant assets down the road. 
bpoz - Saturday, September 12 2015 @ 11:19 AM EDT (#311155) #
Nice discussion on the 2016 season. I am enjoying it.

For my part, I know that there are some teams that spend a lot of money. I do not include the Jays in that group.

Take the LAD they signed Z Greinke and blew past all Intl spending restrictions. So they may add players via the FA route. We have pending FAs D Price & M Buehrle. Those 2, pitching for the Jays in 2016 is an unknown. Losing either or both could easily happen.

2016 is still in our window of contention because of the very powerful offense.
It is our 2016 pitching that I see as the area to be addressed. This will be obvious when/if Price and Buehrle declare Free Agency.

I expect Sanchez and Osuna to be put into the rotation. So while talented, that rotation will be young and inexperienced. The pen will also be much weaker without them.

Many of us in the off season believed that the pen needed to be strengthened with 1 or 2 high leverage right handed relievers. When this did not happen, I and others were shocked.

The trade deadline moves shocked me a second time. If AA does not address this possible pitching weakness in the off season, it will shock me for the 3rd time.

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