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Ross Atkins was talking to the media today. No huge surprises.

He more or less confirmed (without actually confirming) that Bautista and Encarnacion will receive qualifying offers.

They're not sure about anyone else at this point. Which means no, of course.

All of the coaching staff will be back with the exception of assistant hitting coach Eric Owens. Scapegoat! Scapegoat!

And voila - new thread for All Things Jays.

The GM speaks | 45 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
bpoz - Monday, October 24 2016 @ 07:18 PM EDT (#334677) #
This is great. Thanks Magpie.

Now we know a lot, maybe. Now we also don't know a lot, for sure. I guess that we should start guessing.
bpoz - Monday, October 24 2016 @ 08:33 PM EDT (#334680) #
2015 and 2016 were a great ride. No WS, but we loved it.

Can we compete in 2017? 89-92 wins gets us back in.

2016 IMO had 3 great SPS in the rotation. A healthy rotation. Sanchez, Happ and Estrada.

A great closer in Osuna anchored a mediocre, patchwork pen. A huge improvement will take the heat off the rotation and of course Gibbons.

I do not thinks that it happens too often, having 3 great SPs in the rotation and good health. Except for the Atlanta Braves. But this is the off season. So lets pretend that 2017 will have an awesome rotation.

Mylegacy - Monday, October 24 2016 @ 09:51 PM EDT (#334684) #
Our minor leaguers are underrated. Because - other teams have even better ones.

Just like Castro and Osuna came up as children (or so it seemed) next year perhaps one, or more, of Reid-Foley, Jon Harris, T.J. Zeuch, Conner Greene and Angel Perdomo might blow the spring to pieces and end up "having" to be kept in the pen as a serious late inning piece. Not to mention any Rule 5 gold the scouts might uncover.

Offensively, Urena is an all round SS who will be 21. Lots of middle infielders come up then.

Alford is one of FOUR very interesting bats who will all be be 22 in 2017 and Keith at 6'1" 215 is very close to being a breakout guy. McGuire (great behind the plate), Ramirez (born with a pretty bat), and Rowdy Tellez (in AA hit: 297/387/530/917, power, patience and OBP - this kid is way more than a big bat - he's an effective and very smart bat. I suspect he's an Encarnacion when all is said and done), Max Pentecost is 24 and hit a lousy: 302/361/486/847 in A-Ball (If he's healthy in the spring this kid WILL move quickly).

Then of course there's Vlad. 18 in March of 2017. He hit 271/359/449/808 in 2016. Griffey came up at 18, lots of "the greats" came up at 18. Perhaps, Vlads baby Vlad might just blow some doors off some cars and force his way to the show.

My point is - picture all that Shankins do this off-season and then add in a blow out spring from one, or more, of the kiddies. Could happen...perhaps.
ComebyDeanChance - Monday, October 24 2016 @ 11:11 PM EDT (#334685) #
Anybody here want to work with Dave Dombrowski? Apparently not many in the Red Sox front office do, as past GM Ben Cherington,replacement GM Mike Hazen, and now Amiel Sawdeye have all left for other teams.

Amiel Sawdeye was the SD in the fabulous Red Sox 2011 draft and more recently head of International. Boston offered him the AGM job, but he took the same job in AZ instead.
Oceanbound - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 12:10 AM EDT (#334686) #
Atkins did say that they have no plans to turn Osuna into a starter, while they're going to possibly explore that with Biagini. Not surprising again.
scottt - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 04:39 AM EDT (#334687) #
There's the team needs, the medical histories, the body types, the repertoires...

But apparently it's all up to Biagini.

uglyone - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 09:41 AM EDT (#334688) #
I'll say this - maybe i'm naive but it does sound as if negotiations with EE and Jose are genuine, and not for show.
Admin - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 09:49 AM EDT (#334689) #
In my opinion the following is the sequence of events:

The front office approaches EE's agent to see if a deal can be done. If it can they sign him and say goodbye to Jose and Saunders.

If not they call Jose's agent and see if a deal can be done. If yes they sign him and say goodbye to EE and Saunders.

If no deal is to be done with EE and Jose, they call Saunders agent to see if a deal can be done. If it can't they give him a qualifying offer.

I think the Jays should sign one of those three players but not two. They possibly could sign one of EE/Jose and Saunders but that doesn't help the younger and faster expectation for 2017.
uglyone - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 10:20 AM EDT (#334690) #
Sounds about right.

Though "getting younger" still doesn't make sense to me as a priority, and "getting faster" is not really something that should concern us at 1B or DH imo.
SK in NJ - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 10:26 AM EDT (#334691) #
I don't think they have any intention of giving the QO to Saunders. He's not worth $17M on a one year deal. There are players with similar profiles available in free agency (LHB DH), so there shouldn't be any urgency there. They might ultimately bring him back, but I can't see it being with a QO attached.

They will need a starting RF, LF, DH, and 1B. If they follow the same philosophy as they did with the rotation last season ("diversifying risk"), then I can't see them spending a ton on one player. They have a lot of holes on offense and one player probably isn't going to fix it. They'll need to find a few bats that can improve the offense as a whole while also providing value on defense and base running where the Jays struggled a bit (base running in general and defense in the corner OF spots).
BlueJayWay - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 10:35 AM EDT (#334692) #
Atkins also said they'd be picking up Grilli's option.
uglyone - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 10:46 AM EDT (#334693) #
I don't see any more holes in the offense than any other team. The two biggest holes on the team last year were probably the defensive holes in the corner OF spots. Should be the easiest thing to upgrade on the team.
bpoz - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 10:46 AM EDT (#334694) #
They moved very fast last year, signing Happ and Estrada.

Atkins was not here then. Shapiro and Lacava completed those signings.
85bluejay - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 10:50 AM EDT (#334695) #
I will be shocked if EE/JB/Saunders return - I think the negotiations will be for PR purposes. I see a move to get more LH, speed,younger & better D - Reddick,Jay,Joyce types.I'm good with that approach.
uglyone - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 10:53 AM EDT (#334696) #
remember, we hit righties better than lefties this year. not sure adding LH hitters is a priority.
Jevant - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 11:00 AM EDT (#334697) #
I absolutely agree that Saunders won't get a QO (I don't see any reason to give him one, since there's no way he doesn't accept, and I think there are better uses for $17m).  That said, maybe he comes back, but not for $17m.

I'm not convinced they are planning on acquiring a starting DH and a starting 1B.  I think Smoak is penciled in (emphasis on pencil) for one of those spots.

Chuck - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 11:11 AM EDT (#334698) #
remember, we hit righties better than lefties this year. not sure adding LH hitters is a priority.

Yeah, but the opposite was true in 2015. Guys like Donaldson, Martin, Tulowitzki, and Bautista have historically hit better against LHP than RHP, despite their flat or reverse splits in 2016.

Chuck - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 11:27 AM EDT (#334699) #
I think Smoak is penciled in (emphasis on pencil) for one of those spots.

I agree. Despite how they played in 2016, I believe both Smoak and Upton are the Plan B starters at 1B and LF.

uglyone - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 11:42 AM EDT (#334700) #
As much as I dislike Upton having him start is not insane. He can give us plus corner OF defense and speed, and be a 2war player even if his offense isn't there.

But Smoak should never, ever be a starter for us. He is an out and out replacement player. Him even being a guaranteed bench piece is more than he merits.

Chuck - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 11:49 AM EDT (#334701) #
Him even being a guaranteed bench piece is more than he merits.

Yes, his extension is surely a head-scratcher. If a first baseman is not good enough to start, when he's not blocked by anybody, is he good enough to have on your bench?

SK in NJ - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 12:01 PM EDT (#334702) #
Smoak is not good enough to start, not good enough to be part of a platoon, and does not provide any value off the bench. The only way this extension works out at all is if he starts and proves to be a late bloomer. I thought that was possible in 2015 and 2016, but I wouldn't be comfortable putting him in the lineup at age 30 after a career of replacement level performance and thinking he can be better than that. At this rate, even with a very attractive skillset (power + BB), he likely is what he is.

1B is still a need, and I hope they try to upgrade that rather than settle on Smoak. In a worst case scenario, you can live with it, but there are better options than him available right now.
Parker - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 12:02 PM EDT (#334703) #
The best hypothesis I can come up with is that the team's sport psychology department targeted him as a player who would perform better if he was comfortable.

If so, I hope they fire whoever said that. Smoak wasn't good in 2016 before the extension, but he was utterly abysmal after it.

I'm rooting really hard for Tellez.
Parker - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 12:05 PM EDT (#334704) #
Just watch Smoak hit 35 homers and bat 290/375/530 in 2017. It could happen...
bpoz - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 12:07 PM EDT (#334705) #
It is good to discuss 2 players that are definitely a part of next years team. Smoak and Upton. Neither is breaking the bank. Both are signed for 2 more years I believe.

They will obviously have to be quite good to be regulars all season. Big question mark. But Saunders was a bigger question mark in my opinion last off season.
SK in NJ - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 12:14 PM EDT (#334706) #
"Just watch Smoak hit 35 homers and bat 290/375/530 in 2017. It could happen..."

The peripherals are there. Smoak in 2016 made a lot of hard contact, hit more line drives, fewer GB's, more fly balls, and had a very good BB%. It's actually pretty surprising that he is not a better hitter than he is. I can see why the organization values him, the skills are there, but at age 30, and a long history of being replacement level, he's just not a player you invest $8M into, and certainly not a player you pencil into a starting spot in October.

He is the type of bat you sign dirt cheap and hope he pans out, not prioritize enough to sign mid-season to an extension. Very odd move.
John Northey - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 12:30 PM EDT (#334707) #
And Angelina Jolie is single so me and her could hook up but I wouldn't bet on it.
Chuck - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 12:32 PM EDT (#334708) #
He can give us plus corner OF defense and speed, and be a 2war player even if his offense isn't there.

Yeah, if he's San Diego Upton. What we saw was Atlanta Upton, which is not even replacement level. I have no idea which Upton arrives in 2017, but there's at least a little room for concern.

uglyone - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 12:36 PM EDT (#334709) #

but the rub is that worst case scenario - San Diego Upton - is Smoak's best case scenario.
Mike Green - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 12:48 PM EDT (#334710) #
Dave Cameron has an interesting article in fangraphs on post-season offence/defence platoon strategy.  The only thing I will say to the contrary is that there is merit (from the Cubs' perspective) in trying to score early and often via a long sequence offence- as the Indians will do everything they can to keep the ball in the park.  Having Heyward in the starting lineup diminishes significantly the likelihood of a long sequence multi-run inning and increases the likelihood that you will see Miller. 
uglyone - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 01:20 PM EDT (#334711) #
Here's the final 2yr numbers for the Jays final roster:

* - free agent

3B Donaldson (30): 1411pa, 154wrc+, 7.5awar/650pa
2B Travis (25): 670pa, 119wrc+, 5.0awar/650pa
CF Pillar (27): 1212pa, 87wrc+, 4.3awar/650pa
1B En'cion* (33): 1326pa, 142wrc+, 4.1awar/650pa
SS Tulowitzki (31): 1078pa, 101wrc+, 3.4awar/650pa
DH Bautista* (35): 1183pa, 136wrc+, 3.3awar/650pa
C Martin (33): 1042pa, 106wrc+, 3.2awar/650pa
RF Upton (31): 767pa, 92wrc+, 2.4awar/650pa
LF Saunders* (29): 594pa, 112wrc+, 1.4awar/650pa

UT Smoak (29): 669pa, 99wrc+, 0.7awar/650pa
OF Carrera (29): 502pa, 87wrc+, 0.5awar/650pa
IF Barney* (30): 336pa, 89wrc+, 3.4awar/650pa
C Navarro* (32): 526pa, 66wrc+, 0.0awar/650pa

UT Colabello (32): 392pa, 127wrc+, 0.3awar/650pa
OF Pompey (23): 105pa, 78wrc+, 2.8awar/650pa
IF Goins (28): 624pa, 70wrc+, 1.4awar/650pa
C Thole (29): 188pa, 30wrc+, -3.5awar/650pa

SP Sanchez (23): 41gs, 74era-, 4.2awar/32gs
SP Happ (33): 63gs, 84era-, 3.8awar/32gs
SP Estrada (32): 57gs, 81era-, 3.6awar/32gs
SP Stroman (25): 36gs, 95era-, 3.6awar/32gs
SP Liriano (32): 60gs, 101era-, 2.0awar/32gs
SP Dickey* (41): 62gs, 100era-, 2.0awar/32gs

RP Osuna (21): 143.2ip, 63era-, 1.7awar/65ip
RP Cecil* (29): 91.0ip, 73era-, 1.2awar/65ip
RP Benoit* (38): 113.1ip, 65era-, 1.1awar/65ip
RP Biagini (26): 67.2ip, 72era-, 1.0awar/65ip
RP Grilli (39): 92.2ip, 89era-, 0.8awar/65ip
RP Floyd* (33): 44.1ip, 86era-, 0.7awar/65ip
RP Feldman* (33): 52.1ip, 98era-, 0.3awar/65ip
RP Tepera (28): 51.1ip, 76era-, 0.1awar/65ip
RP Loup (28): 56.2ip, 111era-, 0.1awar/65ip
RP Schultz (30): 59.1ip, 99era-, -0.1awar/65ip
RP Barnes (26): 13.2ip, 92era-, 1.2awar/65ip
eudaimon - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 01:24 PM EDT (#334712) #
Here's hoping they can trade Upton somehow. I like Carrera a lot better as a 4th OF, even if only because he's a more useful bench player due to his ability to bunt. He also strikes out less.

Saunders will definitely not be back at 17m. I could see them offering him a one year deal at 8 million or so.

uglyone - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 02:03 PM EDT (#334713) #
Saunders to me seems like a guy who could well turn himself into a good defensive 1B.
SK in NJ - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 03:45 PM EDT (#334719) #
I prefer Upton to Carrera as 4th OF, but if both are on the roster next season it's probably not a good sign as one will be starting.

It will be interesting to see how Shapiro/Atkins do in free agency. The Jays now have consecutive ALCS appearances and have 3-4 holes in their lineup that need to be addressed. They also play in a park that has a reputation of favoring hitters. They should in theory be a pretty desirable spot for hitters given the environment combined with opportunity. For hitters looking for short-term deals or possible bounce back candidates (Gomez, Holliday, etc), the Jays might be the type of situation that would benefit them. That's a much better spot to be in than last season when they needed SP's, which I'm guessing is a much harder draw for Toronto.
scottt - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 07:00 PM EDT (#334728) #
I was thinking that maybe Upton can at least be a solid platoon option, but in his 2 bad Atlanta years he had reverse splits, so, well, there's the defense.

The 2016 team was  bad at hitting lefties and  even Carerra and Saunders had reverse split.
It was just a lineup construction nightmare to the point that Bautista was able to force himself in the leadoff spot.
For most of the year, the strategy was to play whoever was healthy.

I remember the TBS crew mentioning that Saunders was a good 2-strike hitter.
Holy smoke! He had an OPS of .535 with 2 strikes,  1.074 with 0 strikes.
He was actually a great first pitch hitter batting .326 and very dangerous when ahead in the count, OPS 1.076.

Magpie - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 08:21 PM EDT (#334733) #
He was actually a great first pitch hitter batting .326

I dunno. Everyone looks like a good first pitch hitter because it's impossible to complete a strikeout on the first pitch. And Saunders made an ungodly number of his outs via strike three.
King Ryan - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 08:58 PM EDT (#334735) #
One thing is for sure - if it were possible to strike out on the first pitch, we would have seen it this season. Haha.
scottt - Tuesday, October 25 2016 @ 10:22 PM EDT (#334740) #
So true.
uglyone - Wednesday, October 26 2016 @ 09:45 AM EDT (#334749) #
BA Blue Jays Top-10:

1. V.Guerrero
2. A.Alford
3. S.Reid-Foley
4. C.Greene
5. R.Urena
6. R.Tellez
7. T.Zeuch
8. B.Bichette
9. J.Harris
10. J.Maese

my 2 cents:

Too High: Greene, Harris
Too Low: Tellez, Maese

Only Vlad's report available without a subscription:

"Scouting Report: Guerrero does just about everything evaluators want to see in a teenage hitter. He has tremendous hand-eye coordination and bat-to-ball skills, to the point he seems to have been born to hit. His special hands allow him to manipulate the barrel and square up pitches of all types. He has excellent strike-zone judgment for a 17-year-old, walking nearly as often as he struck out and showing an ability to lay off breaking balls that will be further tested at higher levels. He has tremendous raw power and showed the ability to drive the ball to all fields at an advanced rate for his age. Guerrero covers the plate well and should be an above-average hitter with 30-plus homer potential down the line. Some club officials have compared his overall offensive profile to that of Edwin Encarnacion, though with more speed, as hes actually an average runner. Like Encarnacion, Guerrero has a chance to be a third baseman early in his career. Defense was rarely a focus of his as an amateur, and moving to third base from outfield has prompted Guerrero to work harder on all aspects of that side of the ball. He has improved his short-area quickness and arm strength the most. If he keeps working on his defense, he should have average range. Once owner of a below-average arm, he now flirts with a plus tool. His footwork has improved as well, and he made the routine play with some reliability in his debut. Guerrero has gotten his stocky body in better shape since signing, but it will always be a concern and is his biggest weakness as a prospect."
bpoz - Friday, October 28 2016 @ 12:43 PM EDT (#334843) #
Our 40 man roster has 4 OFs that can be considered 4th OFs. Carrera who is Arb eligible. Pompey, Upton Jr and H Ramirez.

If we acquire another OF, someone better, then the 40 man is more crowed IMO, with OFs.
A Alford has to be added to the 40 man, rule 5 protection. He is a 2012 HS draft pick. As is R Borucki.
scottt - Friday, October 28 2016 @ 06:48 PM EDT (#334861) #
Dickey, Benoit. Cecil and Feldman are off the roster along with EE, Bautista and Saunders.
There's no immediate crunch.

The Rule V draft isn't until December.

bpoz - Friday, October 28 2016 @ 07:25 PM EDT (#334863) #
You are right Scott.
scottt - Friday, October 28 2016 @ 07:53 PM EDT (#334865) #
To put things in context, they used Cecilliani, Pompey and Lake during the year.
Lake is gone and it's doubtful that Cecilliani has a future here over Pompey or Ramirez.

Petey Baseball - Sunday, October 30 2016 @ 09:13 AM EDT (#334892) #
A dream off season for me would not even be signing Encarnacion. Up the payroll by 20-30 mil (which is coming anyway I'd wager) make 3-4 year offers to Reddick and Kenley Jansen, sign them both, and then engineer a trade with the Reds to get Votto to play 1st.
PeterG - Sunday, October 30 2016 @ 05:16 PM EDT (#334903) #
No team would take Borucki in Rule 5. It is not necessary to add him to 40 man.
bpoz - Sunday, October 30 2016 @ 05:34 PM EDT (#334904) #
I agree Peter G. Borucki is to far down in the minors to be worth a Ml spot.
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