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Around the minors...

  • talks to Ryan Borucki about his last start.
  • Sportsnet has a story on Sean Reid-Foley and another on Max Pentecost.
  • A Lansing State Journal writer wonders whether the Lugnuts would move to Double-A.
  • has a piece on Nash Knight after his five-hit game.

Tales From The Minors Monday | 66 comments | Create New Account
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Gerry - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 09:18 AM EDT (#347853) #
Shi Davidi writes about the Aoki release and possible call-ups for September. I appears that Michael Saunders will get called up, as will Teoscar Hernandez, and probably Anthony Alford. There is just one spot on the 40 man roster after Brett Anderson is added and Davidi suggests that will be taken by Carlos Ramirez. The other eligible players, such as Danny Jansen will have to wait.
uglyone - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 09:52 AM EDT (#347854) #
missed opportunity not to give jansen a taste imo. and weird they wouldn't carry three catchers in september.

SK in NJ - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 10:00 AM EDT (#347855) #
Next season's pen could be young, cheap, and almost entirely homegrown with the way things are going. Osuna, Tepera, Barnes, Ramirez, Mayza, Leone, and Loup. That is one area the Jays could use to acquire pieces to fill other holes. Something like Tepera to the Cardinals for one of their outfielders (Grichuk?), for example. There is depth there, and there will always be cheap RP's in free agency like Joe Smith who the team could take a chance on. I wouldn't expect the pen to collectively be as good next season (volatility of relievers in general and they have been ridden pretty hard this year), but assets like this could come in handy in trades.
PeterG - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 10:13 AM EDT (#347856) #
There will be 3 catchers in September as Maile is due any day as his rehab has advanced to Buffalo. They are likely just waiting till September 1 so it is not necessary to designate anyone to add him.
Mike Green - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 10:19 AM EDT (#347857) #
Shi Davidi suggests that the crowded 40 man roster would impede adding more players in September.

The 40 man includes players such as Tepesch and Valdez. It sure would be nice to have a look at Jansen, particularly if Martin is going to around the club too. 
Super Bluto - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 11:31 AM EDT (#347859) #
Would the Jays DFA Michael Saunders for the same reason as Aoki? Seems to have found his bat in Buffalo and could help someone down the stretch. You don't figure he's in the plans for the Jays for 2018. Even if no one takes him, he's not needed on the 40-man.
Chuck - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 12:24 PM EDT (#347860) #
Seems to have found his bat in Buffalo

Isn't that a bit generous? With his glove, his 278/324/421 would barely play as a major league slash line, let alone one from AAA. He's not walking and not hitting homeruns. Who'd have any interest in that?

jerjapan - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 12:28 PM EDT (#347861) #
I wonder if the Jays had some sort of agreement with Saunders guaranteeing a September call up.  We are out of the race, he isn't performing particularly well in Buffalo, and he remains a poor defender.  I agree on Jansen, and would also like some young OFers in the mix - Smith Jr. is already on the 40 man.  Clearly, the FO continues with the slow and steady approach to young players.  Frankly, I'd like to see DFAs for Montero and even Barney, but I assume there's a level of commitment to Barney at least, who's been a quality vet for us.  No idea why Montero is still around.  Lots of replacement level guys on the 40 man, in fact. 

I don't see the same pen depth you do SK.  Mayza walks way too many guys - his career WHIP is close to 1.5.  Ramirez has yet to taste the bigs.  Loup is always borderline IMO.  That's 4 reliable arms and no real enticing candidates in Buffalo other than maybe Chris Rowley.  Guys who previously looked intriguing have had poor seasons - Dermody, Girodo, Chris Smith, McFarland (injured most of the year).  Campos will be out of options.  Who's left?  Stilson?  Robson?   I'm not ready to call it a deep position, unless the org decides someone like Greene belongs in the pen. 

PeterG - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 12:38 PM EDT (#347862) #
I think the additional 40 man sport in September will go to Carlos Ramirez.
Ducey - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 12:44 PM EDT (#347863) #
Isn't that a bit generous? With his glove, his 278/324/421 would barely play as a major league slash line, let alone one from AAA. He's not walking and not hitting homeruns. Who'd have any interest in that? According to the MiLB site, he is hitting .349 in his last 10, with one homer, and .350 over the last 30 days. So there's that. Some team might want a LH bat off the bench? Or maybe the Jays see some changes that give them some hope for next year? Or maybe they are just tired of watching Bautista trying to avoid the Mendoza line.
Nigel - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 12:54 PM EDT (#347864) #
Bad teams shouldn't have 40 man roster problems (unless it's high minor league teams are absolutely loaded with prospects that must be added). It means you have too many bad players on the 40 man. By definition.
bpoz - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 01:05 PM EDT (#347865) #
Smoak, Morales, Pearce and Saunders are all similar in regards to position 1B/DH. That is their best position. If all are on the 2018 ML team then too many?

1B is Smoak's to lose. Injury will also take him out of the game. Anyone can have injuries. Pearce always spends time on the DL. Saunders also has spent a lot of time on the DL.

This FO is very depth conscious.
PeterG - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 01:14 PM EDT (#347866) #
Reese McGuire will play winter ball in DR it has been announced.
Ducey - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 01:18 PM EDT (#347867) #
Just looking at some stats and noticed,

In 40 games since the All Star break, Bautista is "hitting" .157/.251/.340 with 20 BB and 44 K.
GabrielSyme - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 01:33 PM EDT (#347868) #
Jer, I think it's fair to say that our bullpen outlook for next season is low on established arms, but it's still quite deep, especially from the right side.

I think Mayza has had a very promising year, improving his control significantly; and Ramirez looks like a very promising prospect to me; then you also have Taylor Cole (re-signed) and Biagini in addition to the guys you mentioned. That's quite a few options, so there is depth if not the kind of established back-end relievers you'd like apart from Osuna.

C. Ramirez
C. Smith

bpoz - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 02:17 PM EDT (#347869) #
This FO moves fast to get their man. Estrada, Happ and Morales.

I expect that Happ & Estrada are considered #2/3 level SPs. Sanchez and Stroman #2 level. We have Happ, Sanchez and Stroman for 2018.

Maybe they add 2 experienced SPs, if they can afford that. I am thinking $15 mil/yr each pitcher. Maybe more.

I don't mind if Donaldson is here or traded. 5 good SPs and this pen should be fine on paper. Good pitching, defense and speed may get us to 85 wins without Donaldson.

In July we can trade Happ and any of the 2 veteran FA pitchers. All depends on how things go. Biagini is #6 SP depth.

I believe that some of our AA pitchers will improve next year. They all should. I count on 8 SPs for the year.
Gerry - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 02:43 PM EDT (#347870) #
Going to the AFL...Max Pentecost, Lourdes Gurriel, Jonathan Davis and Javier Hernandez. Pentecost and Gurriel lost time this season so this gives them more AB's.

Pitchers going are TJ Zeuch, Jackson McClelland, Daniel Young and Andrew Case. Zeuch is also making up for lost time.
Nigel - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 03:31 PM EDT (#347871) #
Gerry, I'm not sure if you know what this or not, but isn't sending two C's from one organization a bit unusual? I thought that they tried to spread the positional contributions around the various organizations on each team.
SK in NJ - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 03:37 PM EDT (#347872) #
"I don't mind if Donaldson is here or traded."

Donaldson's amazing August has made him an interesting trade target again this winter. With only one (expensive) year of control left, I'm not sure what the Jays would be able to get for him, but punting 2018 to bridge to 2019-20 has to be considered an option. The American League aside from a handful of teams (Astros, Red Sox, Yankees, Indians) looks pretty bad so my guess is that combined with Rogers running things will mean the Jays will hold on to Donaldson, but he's brought his value back up and then some since the trade deadline. A trade that brings back 1-2 top prospects and some depth could make it easier to transition into the next core group.
Gerry - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 03:59 PM EDT (#347873) #
Two C's is unusual. But the AFL has a taxi squad of players who can only play on Wednesdays and Saturdays. I haven't seen that detail yet but I would guess that Hernandez is on the taxi squad.

The other factor is that there are a lot of pitchers on the AFL rosters. They need catchers to throw to, so some spare catchers are always needed.
85bluejay - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 04:00 PM EDT (#347874) #
I'm concerned that Dalton Pompey is not playing in the AFL - if he doesn't play winter ball, then I am going to start worrying that the concussions may sideline his career.

I would like to see Emilio Guerrero play winter ball - I'm probably the high guy on him, expecting that he could be a late Bloomer - very disappointed that injuries cost him most of this season, was hoping he could get to AAA this year.

Am concerned about the Jays latest conversion project, Emerson Jimenez, who has been lights out in the GCL - looks like he's eligible to become a 6 year minor league FA (spent the first 51/2 seasons failing to hit in Colorado's system) - if that's the case, I could see a team with space on their 40 man roster (Angles, Mariners etc.) offering him a major league contract as an inducement to sign (this has happened with several minor leaguers recently), team would still have his 3 option years to develop him & I think he could develop quicker than Carlos Ramirez - If he signs with the Jays before the Rule V draft & is not on the 40 man roster (most likely), I can see a team drafting him.
Ducey - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 04:01 PM EDT (#347875) #
I think the Jays will look very hard at trading Donaldson.

The 2018 FA class is supposed to be huge and possibly game changing (Bryce Harper, et al.). Donaldson likely will want to part of that, so re-signing for anything in Rogers' wheelhouse seems very unlikely.

If they hold onto him, the compensation for losing him has changed to either a third, or a second and a fifth (if the signing team is over the luxury tax). They can do better than that in a trade.

The decision will be whether to trade him in the offseason, or at the deadline.
85bluejay - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 04:14 PM EDT (#347876) #
I was in favour of trading (at least listening) Donaldson last winter - I don't feel strongly about it this winter because with only 1 expensive season left, I think the return will not be much different (maybe less) than if he's traded at the July deadline & I expect the return will be disappointing.
PeterG - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 04:14 PM EDT (#347877) #
I don't think that concussion is the issue with Pompey now. It's a knee injury that may yet require a minor procedure according to Atkins last month. He re-injured it during his second rehab. I would be surprised if he plays before ST 2018. HIs one remaining option was not burnt this year so he can still be sent to Buffalo without passing through waivers. It is likely he begins the 2018 season in Buffalo imo and it will be up to him to play his way into a major league look..
PeterG - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 04:31 PM EDT (#347878) #
It is being reported that Ryan Borucki is being promoted and will pitch for the Bisons on Thursday. Maybe this is to see if they think he is ready for a September call up.
jerjapan - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 04:52 PM EDT (#347879) #
Donaldson is a game-changing player, and I don't think the cost of those players has depreciated - it's the middle class that is taking a value hit, IMO.  I'm with Dave Cameron on the issue of offseason vs trade deadline - the more control left with the player, the more value.  If we can't get a strong package for him in the offseason or at the deadline, I assume we keep him.  Actually, I just assume we are keeping him.  It might be the right move to deal him, but I don't think the FO wants the PR hit. 

It's always interesting to look at the AFL players - the relievers selected are typically on the radar of someone in the org as future Buffalo shuttle candidates.  None of  Case, Young or McClelland are particularly good prospects - none of them have the K rates I look for in minor league relievers - but they are all coming off solid seasons, and Young is a lefty.  Not sure what to make of the inclusion of Jonathan Davis. 

Nigel - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 05:28 PM EDT (#347880) #
Thank you Gerry. That makes sense.
85bluejay - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 05:34 PM EDT (#347881) #
Who was the last positional player traded in the last year of his contract (an expensive one) that resulted in a substantial return?
Ducey - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 06:15 PM EDT (#347882) #
Texas got three good prospects for a few months of Darvish
85bluejay - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 06:29 PM EDT (#347883) #
I didn't know that Darvish was a positional player!
PeterG - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 06:41 PM EDT (#347884) #
jerjapan, don't you think the PR hit would be worse if JD walks for basically nothing....?

I think all avenues will be explored in the off season including extension but I am sure we agree that outcome is unlikely. Whether or not he is dealt will depend on what is offered I think. As one who prefers not to delay the inevitable, I would prefer a trade if the offer is strong.
scottt - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 06:46 PM EDT (#347885) #
Everybody wants an extra ace pitcher. The trade value of a position player making 25M on a one year contract is a lot lower.
Guerrero could be knocking on the door around the trade deadline next year.
Either the Jays are in contention and they keep Donaldson or they're not and they promote Guerrero as they trade him which would satisfy all the fans. Trading him before that just to plug a warm body at 3B would be very disappointing.

They've collected several candidates for the 5th start job. I expect that position won't be filled until the end of spring training.
They would probably put a guy without options as the long man and still have 3 or 4 guys with upside at Buffalo.
It's looking a lot better than this year. So they just need to pool all their money on the best 4th starter available.

Alford and Hernandez could make a nice outfield with Pillar. The only question is do they need more power?
Saunders could be a 4th outfielder or just a left bat on the bench. I'm not really fond of that option myself.

Pompey is too old for the AFL. He could still play in a winter league somewhere once he's healthy.

Ducey - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 07:18 PM EDT (#347886) #
Ok, then, how about JD Martinez. Three prospects including once upon a time baby Jay Dawel Lugo.
hypobole - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 07:39 PM EDT (#347887) #
Actually, the return for Martinez was almost universally described as underwhelming. Cespedes did yield Michael Fulmer 2 years ago, although he was only a #50 prospect at the time. Lucroy got Brinson, a 20-30 ranked prospect.

But how many teams will need a 3rd baseman next deadline? Every contender will usually want pitching - that's where bidding wars, thus good prospect returns, occur.
PeterG - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 08:25 PM EDT (#347891) #
I agree that it is possible there will be no market for a 3b at the deadline. There should be a market in the off season. I can still hear Dan O'Dowd on the MLB network deadline show saying that the return could be "staggering". I think that was an over statement but a return even close to that is one that should be accepted. If it doesn't happen, then hold on to him. I don't think that perceived fan reaction will or should be taken into account.
SK in NJ - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 08:49 PM EDT (#347893) #
If the Jays decide to go for it in 2018 and things go south again, then the deadline will be a "take what you can get" type of deal with Donaldson. Maybe there will be a desperate team that needs a 3B and won't mind overpaying for a rental, but that is definitely a risk. The 2017 team has not been good, and while better health and some upgrades might be able to put them in the 80-85 win projection range next season, that's still ultimately a one game WC at best scenario. The winter will probably bring the biggest return for him, but the question becomes how many teams that can afford to pay Donaldson $20+ million need a 3B? The one team that was speculated during the summer was the Cardinals. They have an outfield glut and some pitching prospects. There might be a fit somewhere in there. The Yankees will probably just wait a year and try for Machado after next season. The Red Sox have Devers. The Dodgers don't need a 3B. The Angels could be a fit but their farm system looks awful.

The Jays have to decide in the winter what direction they want to take. IF they decide to hold on to him and see what happens in 2018, then be prepared to lose him for nothing. If they make the playoffs then it's probably worth it even if it hurts 2019-20, but if they don't, then it will be a big waste of an asset.

One thing is for sure, don't listen to the fans. Rogers cares about optics and filling the stadium, but I think the fans might be more open to a rebuild than ownership thinks. Not to mention they can still try to compete after trading Donaldson. It will be a lot harder obviously, but if you want to sell hope, then it's still possible to do so while maximizing the return on an asset you won't have for much longer and who doesn't fit the team's next timeline.
Nigel - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 09:02 PM EDT (#347895) #
SK, serious question. The front office was in a similar position last offseason as to whether to go for it or not and elected to punt on that decision. Why do you think they will do something different this offseason? I think they will punt again, but I will happily listen to signs that suggest the front office will actually invest in a particular course. One way or the other.
jvictor - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 10:14 PM EDT (#347900) #
Regarding Donaldson: i would like to see the Jay's try something innovative. An attempt to buy out the decline phase of a career. Just spit balling here, but how about 40 million, 35 million, 30 million and options of 20 and 15 million, or something like.
Gerry - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 10:47 PM EDT (#347903) #
The unknown is what kind of contract Donaldson is looking for. There are affordable and non affordable contracts.

The other aspect is that many believe Manny Machado will be traded this winter. Machado has one year to go on his contract and will not resign with Baltimore.

How will the market be if two all-start third basemen are being shopped?
SK in NJ - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 10:49 PM EDT (#347904) #
The front office did go for it last off-season. It just did not work out for various reasons. They got much better value out of free agency the year before with starting pitching than they did with the bats this past winter.

To me, 'going for it' would be keeping Donaldson. They will likely make mid-level free agent signings regardless of which direction they go in since that's how they operate in terms of free agency, but Donaldson is really the key to the whole thing. If they keep him, then chances are they feel they have a chance in 2018. If they move him, then they are conceding '18 for future seasons. I'd much rather do the latter if a good deal presents itself, but I share the same skepticism about ownership allowing it to happen. I don't think they will.
scottt - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 10:54 PM EDT (#347905) #
They've just done a top 40 Blue Jays. Honest question, how many of those 40 players were brought over by a rebuild?

Bautista was acquired for a player to be named later, Robinson Diaz.
Donaldson was traded for Lawrie and 3 prospects.
Encarnation is close. Well, not really. He was a throw away in the Josh Roenicke/Zack Steward for Scott Rolen trade.
He was an out of option third baseman hitting at replacement level with bad defense who got non-tendered.

Alomar and Joe Carter for Fernandez and McGriff wasn't a rebuild.
Henke was a free agent compensation pick? I don't remember how that worked.
I find it funny that Alex Rios was on that list. They dumped him for nothing.
Halladay brought basically nothing. Vernon Wells?

Rebuilds are for revenue sharing clubs who load up on cheap players.
The Jays just went through 25 years of low attendance.
It's pretty clear that the fans don't want to see the team lose while the players they know burn another year of control.
Donaldson would bring a draft pick at the end of the second round. That's not nothing.
Rogers is probably worried about the loss of Donaldson. Smoak does not have the same pull.
The return would have to be huge and immediate to trade him.

John Northey - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 11:02 PM EDT (#347907) #
I'd think a huge 2018 FA class would make it a poor one to be part of because the big hitters will use up their budgets on Bryce Harper, Manny Machado, Clayton Kershaw (opt out), among others. The smart move for the Jays might be to trade Donaldson and live with the fallout, or to let him play out his last year and let him leave. Odds are Harper will set a new benchmark for top salary (I expect close to $40 per over 7 to 10 years as whoever gets him gets his prime years from 26 to whatever). Kershaw could do the same on the pitchers side. Machado will also be just entering his age 26 season and will get crazy money ($30 per at least over 7-10 years).

I don't see any of those 3 signing before next winter except maybe Kershaw just because the Dodgers can give him anything he wants pretty much. Harper won't sign for sure, and I don't see Baltimore ponying up the bucks for Machado. With Vlad charging up fast at 3B as a potential star for the ML minimum the cheap choice and probably smart one is to trade Donaldson and get a stopgap for 2017. The alternative is to sign Donaldson long term ASAP this winter (5 @ $25 per might work as he has 'only' made $34 mil so far in his career and having $125 locked in might be appealing). I'd see if he is willing to look at playing at 1B in a year or two if needed as Smoak is signed for just 2 more years and most of us expect him to become a pumpkin again (95 OPS+ over 2887 PA vs 142 over 522 this year).

If the Jays can clear out Morales and let go of Bautista (I now expect him to go at the end of the season, the Jays might try to get him to retire and do a ceremony on the final game and use kids for the 6 final games on the road) then the DH slot would be open too.

FYI: what reason does Bautista have to stick around other than a shot at a WS? He is less than 90 hits from 1500, at 328 HR no milestones are in reach, his 917 RBI is in eyeshot of 1000 as are his 956 runs scored and his 954 walks. None of those milestones would get him into the HOF though nor are any ones that players dream of afaik. Getting to 1000 runs/RBI's would be nice but might need 2 more seasons. At this point retirement makes a ton of sense for him. He will probably look to sign with someone in the winter, but might not find a taker.

Nigel - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 11:21 PM EDT (#347908) #
Thanks SK I appreciate the response. I do understand that perspective.

I think you and I have a definition hurdle. Going for it - to me that involves a significant expenditure of assets (cash or prospects) to fill needs. Given that the year over year budget was only marginally increased, no long term contracts were entered into and no prospects of signifance were moved, i don't see the past offseason as one in which the front office was going for it. I do accept that If you view keeping the core together and not going for a rebuild as going for it then I agree that they went for it in that sense.
Glevin - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 11:33 PM EDT (#347909) #
"SK, serious question. The front office was in a similar position last offseason as to whether to go for it or not and elected to punt on that decision. Why do you think they will do something different this offseason? "

Because last year the Jays made the playoffs so selling a needed rebuild was impossible to a fan base who refused to see the signs of decline. This year, the Jays are 61-71 with -96 run differential and a rebuild is more more palatable for the base. You almost always need a team to actually be bad before fans accept that it will be bad (and even then, there will still be a lot of holdouts).
John Northey - Tuesday, August 29 2017 @ 11:57 PM EDT (#347910) #
Part of the issue is how weak the AL is right now. The 2nd wild card team is Minnesota at 68-63. Jays are now 7 1/2 back and no longer part of the pack chasing them (within 4 games are Baltimore, LAA, Seattle, KC, Texas, and Tampa Bay) instead the Jays are now closer to the also rans who are 10+ out (Oakland, Detroit, ChiSox).

Basically at this point if they can trade away any vets they should and start planning long term 2018 and beyond. Yes, with stopgaps they could contend in 2017 but that would require a lot to go right. More than you should count on.

Going into last offseason the Jays had just reached the ALCS and had what looked to be a very strong rotation. Now we know that was an illusion. Next year's rotation looks to be Stroman/Sanchez/Happ/?/?. If Osuna wants to try it I'd stretch him out in spring and see if he can be a starter - worst case is he gets up to 4 or 5 innings and then has to be pulled back to 1 again. Biagini we know they will try again with. In 2017 we'll see a few kids in the outfield for sure. Hard to know what to expect elsewhere.
uglyone - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 12:19 AM EDT (#347912) #
agreed, glevin, it was a good idea to sabotage the team to prep fans for a rebuild.
lexomatic - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 07:36 AM EDT (#347915) #
One Donaldson option is a 2-year deal for 18/19. I don't think it's likely, because 1 year might be enough for teams to not want to give him a long deal, but it does shift his FA window to one with less major competition, and makes him more tradeable for the Jays He might consider it for the fact it would still be significant money. I'd consider it if it's actually possible for a reasonable price. I just don't think Donaldson would do it. 3-60 is less appealing than 5-100+ (I have zero idea about numbers so I'm just throwing that out as a comparison of years/dollars).
Glevin - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 10:06 AM EDT (#347921) #
The Jays didn't sabatoge Tunis season. They made one bad signing and had a core that has gotten bad very quickly. Anyway, this is what I hate about online commentators. Ugly, you would have signed price and Bautista to long term expensive contracts. You would have cut smoak to play teller every day. The Jays with your suggestions would be done for a decade and be a much worse team this year. But as a commentator online, you can just keep hammering on relatively small moves because you want to believe this ludicrous idea that AA left this team in great shape. And you don't have to live with your suggestions. The Jays have made mostly good moves in the past two years and not signing older players to long term contracts despite lots of pressure has been their best.
Ducey - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 11:00 AM EDT (#347928) #
I'd like to see the Jays keep their pitching intact this offseason, but punt as many of their hitters as possible.

Keep Stro, Sanchez, Happ, resign Estrada, and cobble together 5/6 starter. The bullpen is fine. I'd sell Loup if anyone would have him.

Bautista and Barney should be gone.

Donaldson should net a decent return.

Selling on Smoak likely is selling high. They have another year, plus an option. Maybe he has turned the Bautista/ Encarnacion corner. I think its just as likely that he turns back into a pumpkin. In any event, by the time the Jays are ready to contend, it won't matter.

If someone wanted to give me something for Pillar, I'd trade him too.

I think they are stuck with Tulo, Morales, and Martin. Keep Pearce, Carrera, Goins. Audition some young outfielders. Find a stopgap 3B or move Tulo there.

The Leafs sold the rebuild. They are different franchises (the Leaves never have to worry about attendance) but I don't see any reason the Jays can't market a rebuild too - especially with all the hype two of their prospects are getting.
China fan - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 11:50 AM EDT (#347931) #
"....this ludicrous idea that AA left this team in great shape...."

It's not a ludicrous idea, no matter how many times you hammer it.

Anthopoulos certainly left the team in excellent financial shape -- its biggest audience, ticket sales, TV revenue and merchandising revenue in decades.  He transformed the Jays into a hugely popular attraction for a new generation, bringing in an entirely new audience of young people who will help build this franchise by creating long-term sustainable revenue. Before AA, this franchise was falling into hopeless long-term decline with little fan interest. By bringing the team into baseball's final four in 2015 and creating the foundation for the 2016 final-four team, he transformed the energy and future of the franchise. 

As for the major-league team:  there's still a great core of hitters and pitchers, most of whom were acquired by AA, who can be kept or traded.  Any team with a core of players like Donaldson, Martin, Smoak, Travis, Stroman, Sanchez and Osuna has a good foundation to build on.  It's up to the current management to fill the gaps.

And while the farm system was mediocre for a couple of years, it's in excellent shape now, and many of the top prospects were acquired in the AA era.

You might disagree with these points, and you're entitled to your views, but to dismiss the case as "ludicrous" is just insulting.  It's a perfectly reasonable case for anyone to make, and for others to debate.
uglyone - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 12:01 PM EDT (#347932) #
A great roster with next to no longterm deals. A system that took only a year or two to get back to the top.

It was a sweet situation they inherited, no doubt about that.
ISLAND BOY - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 12:58 PM EDT (#347934) #
I think that if management had known that Justin Smoak was going to break out the way he has,( and who saw that coming? ), then only one of Pearce/Morales would have been signed. Like others have said, age regression and injuries have hurt big-time this year. A teams strength is supposed to be up the middle, so if you lose your starting shortstop, second baseman and catcher for a good portion of the season, not to mention the best starting pitcher from the previous year, then it's no wonder the team is 10 games under .500.

I'm guessing Shapiro/Atkins saw that the team was good enough to make the playoffs the last two years and hoped that if they added a few players to make up for Encarnicion's lost production, then the Jays might make it again.It will be interesting to see what they do this offseason.
jerjapan - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 01:18 PM EDT (#347938) #
Agreed 100% with Nigel on 'going for it' - "to me that involves a significant expenditure of assets (cash or prospects) to fill needs."

Who was the last positional player traded in the last year of his contract (an expensive one) that resulted in a substantial return?

Great question!  anyone with examples other than Lucroy and Cespedes (both solid returns)?

PeterG, I think the 'PR hit' applies more to the casual fan who may know enough players to say that JD is their fave, not us nerds who can name the AAA starting IF - I think you and I agree on this, but not the weekend summertime fan. 

And while I say they don't want to take the PR hit, I also think they don't want to give up their handy excuse for taking the conservative, middle of the road approach - 'These fans demand a winner!  They deserve it!'  To which I say prove it (with Nigel's definition of going for it).

Scott, the Halladay deal did net us D'Arnaud, so about 1/3 of RA Dickey, and ultimately Devon Travis - Taylor for Wallace, Wallace for Gose, Gose for Travis. 

Mike Green - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 02:37 PM EDT (#347944) #
Nate Pearson gets the start in Vancouver this afternoon.  Any Vancouver Bauxites going?
Mike Green - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 02:56 PM EDT (#347945) #
John Lott has an excellent article on Randy Pondler and Maximo Castillo in the Athletic.  Castillo is 18 years old and has a fastball that sits at 93 and a changeup at 83 that drops (and described by his pitching coach as probably the best in the league).  Pondler is 20, and from the Buehrle/John family of left-handed ptichers.  There's a lot more detail (as you would expect from a John Lott article)  If you haven't subscribed, I highly recommend it.

Anyways, Gerry was right.  Castillo certainly belongs in the top 30 consideration set. 
scottt - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 05:35 PM EDT (#347948) #
Scott, the Halladay deal did net us D'Arnaud, so about 1/3 of RA Dickey, and ultimately Devon Travis - Taylor for Wallace, Wallace for Gose, Gose for Travis. 

I'm pretty sure the Mets would have taken anyone instead of D'Arnaud in the Dickey deal.

Halladay left after 2009. Travis started in  Toronto late in 2015.  That's a huge gap.
In fact, Travis is a college player who was drafted in the 13th round in 2012.
Makes me wonder, who would the Jays have drafted in the first round in 2011 had they kept Halladay another year.
They got Musgrove, Smith Jr and kevin Comer in the supplemental that year. Jackie Bradley Jr went 40th, Michael Fulmer 44th, Trevor Story 45th, Blake Snell 52th.
hypobole - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 05:54 PM EDT (#347950) #
"I'm pretty sure the Mets would have taken anyone instead of D'Arnaud in the Dickey deal."

Why exactly do you think that?
jerjapan - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 06:48 PM EDT (#347951) #
Yeah, I recall D'Arnaud being equal to Syndergaard in terms of both the industry and those of us on the Box.

I have recently committed to learning how to spell Syndergaard as a personal protest on that stupid nickname. 

uglyone - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 07:09 PM EDT (#347952) #
D'Arnaud was the headliner in that deal. Consensus top-25 guy while Noah was not even a clear top-100 guy.

many on the box liked thor better though.
hypobole - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 07:14 PM EDT (#347953) #
At time of trade rankings, BA - BP - MLB
d'Arnaud 23 - 15 - 6
Syndergaard 54 - 28 - 29

uglyone - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 08:20 PM EDT (#347954) #
those rankings all came out after the trade actually, and it was pretty amusing to see Thor skyrocket up the ranks right after being traded, despite the likes of Keith Law dismissing him as an RP all the previous season.
Super Bluto - Wednesday, August 30 2017 @ 11:17 PM EDT (#347960) #
I like Keith Law but man, he can make some bad calls.

I'm remembering during Bautista's break out season he was calling on the Jays to trade him at the deadline. Said the season was an outlier and wouldn't be repeated.

ayjackson - Thursday, August 31 2017 @ 08:08 AM EDT (#347963) #
Bautista's breakout was a fantastic anomoly. Law was right to doubt he could repeat it. Most did. That's why we got his 5 best years for only $60m.
greenfrog - Thursday, August 31 2017 @ 08:42 PM EDT (#347984) #
uglyone, didn't you think Devers (#17 MLB Pipeline prospect) was way overrated headed into this season, while Tellez was ranked way too low? It seems to me that anyone can be made to look bad by focusing on this or that prediction. (I'm a good example of this, having touted failed prospects like Wallace and Gose, and expressed doubt about successful ones like Travis.)
uglyone - Friday, September 01 2017 @ 10:57 AM EDT (#348019) #
yep. I did.

and he's had a great year no doubt. as good a year in AA as Tellez did last year even. That's impressive.

Unbelievable first 20gms in mlb too (198wrc+ w/.408babip), but not so great since (12wrc+ w/226babip).

but maybe he proves me wrong and brings my track record back in line with Law's.
hypobole - Friday, September 01 2017 @ 12:04 PM EDT (#348026) #
One reason Law is such a lightning rod for disdain, over and above his abrasive personality, is he's very opinionated and rarely fails to express his opinion. Contrast that with a guy like Sickels who's far less definitive in his analysis.

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