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The Blue Jays head to the Lone Star State for their first road trip of 2018.


Series Schedule

Friday at 8:05 pm ET - Marco Estrada (0-0, 3.86) vs. Matt Moore (0-1, 9.00)
Saturday at 8:05 pm ET - Marcus Stroman (0-0, 7.20) vs. Mike Minor (0-1, 3.86)
Sunday at 3:05 pm ET - Jaime Garcia (0-0, 1.50) vs. Cole Hamels (1-1, 3.38)

The Rangers are tied with Oakland for last place in the American League West after splitting a four-game series with the A's on the road. The Blue Jays are 4-3 after taking two of three from the Chicago White Sox at the Dome. They are tied with the Yankees for second place in the AL East, two games behind Boston.

On Deck - The Jays head to Baltimore for three games starting Monday.
Blue Jays @ Rangers - April 6-8 | 107 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
mathesond - Friday, April 06 2018 @ 06:20 PM EDT (#355677) #
Seeing my name as tonight's starting pitcher for Texas reminded me of Dock Ellis finding out he had to get his ass down to the ballpark the day of his legendary. I suspect that neither Matt Moore will be dropping acid tonight, though.
scottt - Friday, April 06 2018 @ 06:21 PM EDT (#355678) #
What a poker face!
mathesond - Friday, April 06 2018 @ 06:22 PM EDT (#355679) #
Legendary no-hitter, of course. And no, I really am not on acid...it has been almost 25 years since I last partook, although I suppose I could be due for a flashback.
jerjapan - Friday, April 06 2018 @ 06:42 PM EDT (#355680) #
hillarious.  also, is a flashback a real thing?
ComebyDeanChance - Friday, April 06 2018 @ 07:03 PM EDT (#355682) #
John Gibbons says that Solarte is starting at short to get his bat into the lineup against a lefty. And he's batting fourth. His splits say otherwise. Maybe Gibby doesn't think Moore lasts long tonight?
85bluejay - Friday, April 06 2018 @ 07:09 PM EDT (#355683) #
Top Red Sox prospect Michael Chavis has been suspended for the same steroid (CDMT) that Colabello was suspended for - Wonder if all the Jays Fans/posters who were eager to give Colabello the benefit of the doubt will feel the same about Chavis.
SK in NJ - Friday, April 06 2018 @ 07:13 PM EDT (#355684) #
Pearce in the outfield and Solarte at short. I hope Estrada is not expecting a lot of help defensively tonight.
85bluejay - Friday, April 06 2018 @ 07:14 PM EDT (#355685) #
Weird MLB schedule - several teams had Sunday off & teams now having Fridays off - Can't remember when that's happened before.
Richard S.S. - Friday, April 06 2018 @ 07:16 PM EDT (#355686) #
Playing in Texas in early April is a bonus. Winter hasnít quite given up itís grip in other places the Jays will need to play in. Pushing back playing in Baltimore another three days might help the weather. The Jays shouldnít have trouble beating Texas, the Pitchers they face arenít that difficult.
ComebyDeanChance - Friday, April 06 2018 @ 08:14 PM EDT (#355687) #
Top Red Sox prospect Michael Chavis has been suspended for the same steroid (CDMT) that Colabello was suspended for

That's a Top 100 prospect for the Sox down the tube, unless he can find a better supplier. Chavis had a .682 OPS in low A in 2015, a .684 OPS in A+ in 2016, then 'broke out' on the jump to AA, as you do, in 2017 with a .910 OPS. It's particularly unfortunate because he denies that he would ever, ever, intentionally use steroids. Plus, a lady on SOSH says she knows him and as a Christian he would never, ever cheat.

Although I'd prefer 'one and out' I know that's never going to happen, but I would like to see movement to the Olympic model of a 2 year suspension first time, out the second. That might make the much larger number of guys who don't get caught think twice. Or at least sweat a little at test time. Right now the deck is stacked against the testers and in favour of the cheaters.
SK in NJ - Friday, April 06 2018 @ 09:04 PM EDT (#355690) #
I really hope Gibbons starts to do more Pearce at DH against RHP. If the FO isn't going to (or can't) release Morales due to the money owed, then at least Gibby has the ability to manipulate playing time. With three straight lefties in Texas, we will see Pearce in LF and Morales at DH all series, but I'm not sure how much of Kendrys I can watch this season. Even if he ends up with a 100 wRC+ (which is about his projection), he'd still be around replacement level. Just frustrating to have to watch that while better players are benched or sent down because of him.
Four Seamer - Friday, April 06 2018 @ 11:19 PM EDT (#355695) #
Good thing he stopped the bleeding there or my daughter's nickname for him - Uh Oh - might have stuck.
Shoeless Joe - Friday, April 06 2018 @ 11:36 PM EDT (#355696) #
Have the Jays found something in Solarte or is this a flash in the pan? Is the power for real outside of the NL west?
cybercavalier - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 12:04 AM EDT (#355697) #
Re: SK in NJ

After the departures of Sousa Jr. Longoria, Duda, Dickerson, the Rays needs a slugging "threat". Could Morales be traded for SS/2B Brad Miller?
scottt - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 12:04 AM EDT (#355698) #
Solarte does not swing. He literally rakes.

Kawazaki with a bit more pop. I was thinking about that myself. I love seeing Stroman dancing with him.

scottt - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 12:06 AM EDT (#355699) #
Let's forget about Morales for bit.
Martin and Travis are starting to hits. That's a good sign.

dan gordon - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 01:04 AM EDT (#355700) #
"Have the Jays found something in Solarte or is this a flash in the pan? Is the power for real outside of the NL west?"

I was surprised that people weren't more pleased with the acquisitions of Solarte and Diaz in the offseason - they both have legit power. In 2016, Diaz had 18 HR's in just over 400 AB's, playing in a moderately tough park for him. San Diego's park is a really tough one, and over the last 2 seasons, Solarte has 21 HR's in 467 road AB's. They're both capable of being very significant HR hitters.
uglyone - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 01:52 AM EDT (#355702) #
solarte us a legit good hitter. no reason to be skeptical he's a better hitter than our DH.

"also, is a flashback a real thing?"

oh yes.
greenfrog - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 06:58 AM EDT (#355705) #
Solid first road game for the Jays. A lot of positives up and down the roster.

Tough first week for Grichuk, who is now tied for fourth-worst WAR in the league (-0.3). He did almost hit a home run last night, though.
scottt - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 08:35 AM EDT (#355708) #
They Yankees drop a 14 inning game and tee up again at 13:00. Some players might go to the DL.
CC is probably OK and Sanchez might only have had a cramp. (They don't have a 3rd catcher on the 40 roster).

If things stay the same, whenever Tulo comes back, he replaces Ngoepe and Morales might lose more playing time.

Cracka - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 09:41 AM EDT (#355712) #
The Yankees/Orioles game got me thinking - if a similar situation happened to us - 14 inning game with the starting pitcher leaving early - how long could our bullpen go before having to turn to position players? We basically have 7 guys who can all go one inning each, maybe two at most if they are rested. Probably 9-10 innings max from the bullpen... then who? Luke Maile? Gift Ngoepe? Fortunately, these games don't happen very often.

The season is now 10 days old and Jays haven't made a roster move yet. This is the longest we've gone with our opening day roster in recent memory.
China fan - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 10:02 AM EDT (#355715) #
"....This is the longest we've gone with our opening day roster in recent memory....."

There will be tinkering with the bullpen at some point. The problem is that the bullpen, as currently constructed, doesn't allow an easy route for a Buffalo shuffle. I thought one or two of the newcomers might move ahead of Barnes or Tepera on the depth chart, allowing either Barnes or Tepera to be occasionally rotated with a Buffalo reliever, but it hasn't happened and doesn't seem likely now. Tepera, rather than Oh, has become the 8th inning set-up guy. Barnes still looks valuable. So the only way to make room for a new reliever is to drop someone like Axford or Clippard, and I don't think the Jays will be ready to do that for a while. Alternatively they could option Ngoepe to Buffalo for 10 days to bring up an 8th reliever, but that seems unlikely when there are still question marks about the health of Travis and the arm of Donaldson.
Mike Green - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 10:29 AM EDT (#355717) #
Another good patient game from the offence.  I wonder if Diaz comes back today, and if so whether we'll see Solarte at DH. 
scottt - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 10:45 AM EDT (#355718) #
Morales used to be a pitcher. He'd be my choice.
If the bullpen needs help, they can only send down Danny Barnes. Both Tepera and Osuna have options, but no.
There's quite a few MLB ready arms in Buffalo just waiting for a call.

Sabathia and Drury to the DL. Holder sent down.
Louis Cessa, Domingo German and Jace Peterson recalled. Cessa and German are both AAA starters.
Not sure if they have to free a 40 roster spot, but Peterson will add about another million to the Yankees payroll.
Maybe Bird to the 60DL?

Richard S.S. - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 10:49 AM EDT (#355719) #
Yankees place Sabathia and Drury on the 10-Day DL. Too soon the judge the result.

Replacing those who can be replaced is premature as only 8 games have been played. Not a big enough sample size for a fair evaluation. Any options/alternatives in the Minors have played a lot less. Hitting is about timing. The Jays are lucky they havenít needed to make any moves.

If Aaron Loup canít be effective with a seven-run lead, why is he on the Team? Because replacement-level options arenít any better. Too early to make the truly effective moves.
scottt - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 12:42 PM EDT (#355721) #
With an 8-1 lead, you don't want to use your most effective relievers.

Axford hasn't looked good in 2 of his 3 outings but he was commanding a 97 mph fastball in the spring.
He's going to get a very long leash.

Pillar is already down to a 99OPS+.. That didn't take long.

uglyone - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 01:00 PM EDT (#355722) #
i don't see why guys we just picked up off the trash heap a month ago, like axford and clippard, should have an especially long leash.
jerjapan - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 01:55 PM EDT (#355724) #
Agreed Ugly, but I assume it's a leash based on the 1.5 million Sportrac says he's making.  one of the problems of dumpster diving for 'experienced vets' at the back end of the roster is the bonus they get for making the team - like Salty and Latos last year. 

Axford has always thrown hard but he's 35 and hasn't been good since 2015, maybe?  At least he looked strong in the Spring, unlike Latos and Salty last year. 

Without a clear 'Buffalo shuttle' candidate, the org needs to be quick to pull the plug on a vet like Axford, Clippard, Loup or Oh if they looks like they can't perform - all earning between 1.5 and 1.8 million or so - or we lose the benefit of the depth in the AAA pen - a real strength of the team over the past few years.   I don't think any of those four should be guaranteed a spot if better in-house options start to emerge.  I'd hate to demote a more effective reliever simply because they have options, but I imagine we will see that here and there following a blowout where one of Barnes or Tepera is overworked - or a guy like Ngoepe, as China mentioned upthread. 

Hopefully  the 'razor thin' margin of error for our shot at the WC enables some gutsier / more progressive decision making from a relatively conservative FO.  Fingers crossed, Morales (sorry Scottt).  I haven't seen him look good once this year - ST or regular season.  At this point, he might be more useful pitching in a blowout than at the plate. 

scottt - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 02:04 PM EDT (#355725) #
Because where the Jays found them is completely irrelevant.
What's relevant is the stuff they throw on a good day and the fact they are out of options.
April numbers don't mean much. Grilli and Benoit came here after bad Aprils.

Oh is even more of a wild card because he didn't have a good spring (or a bad one) and made the team by default.
Should Loup have a longer leash? Sure he's been here a long time, but he's gone at the end of the year, so why carry him if he's having a bad year? Two of his last 3 years were bad. That's another type of trash heap.

uglyone - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 03:04 PM EDT (#355728) #
the jays didn't really "find them". they're just a couple of vet relievers coming off awful seasons that anyone could have given a spring invite to, and we happened to be the ones that did. they don't have good recent track records, they don't have encouraging projections, and nobody thought they were worth signing this offseason.

as long as they pitch well then they should keep their spots but i don't see any reason that they need to be given extra chances if they struggle.

i don't see any comparison to loup, given that loup has a good recent track record, and projects to be good again this year. and i don't think we should care much that he got babipped in a blowout yesterday, tbh.
jerjapan - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 03:07 PM EDT (#355729) #
where they were found is irrelevant, agreed - a good team scours the scrap heap, the indie leagues, Asia, you name it.  But resource management - worrying about options, in this case- is less relevant when the 'resource' is a fungible as mediocre veteran relievers.  April doesn't mean much to me either, and I'm not particularly stoked by Axford's strong Spring.  What worries me is that in the games that count he looks like the same crappy reliever he's been for years now.  Years of mediocrity is not a SSS.  The team obviously likes him and likely knows loads more than I do, but this isn't exactly an avenue that they've demonstrated good judgement on before.   

I guess I'd rank the relievers, in terms of 'fungability', Axford, Clippard, Oh and then Loup, but I'd be happy to see the FO cut bait on any one of them if a better option materializes.  Carlos Ramirez was ridiculously dominant last year, and I like Mayza's arm.  Santos and AA are both options, as are starters Biagini and McGuire.  One thing I'm hoping for is the emergence of a legit starting prospect as the 6th man in the rotation, so Biagini can be moved back to the pen, where I think he'd be our 4th or 5th best reliever right now. 

dan gordon - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 03:59 PM EDT (#355730) #
It usually takes a while to get the bullpen sorted out. The good thing is the Jays should have viable options in the minors if some of the current crew are pitching poorly. I didn't like the Axford acquisition, and figure he's not going to succeed. He hasn't had a truly good season since 2011 in my opinion, and hasn't looked good this year. I think Loup is getting near the end of the road. His WHIP has increased every year since 2012. He gives up a lot of walks and hits, a bad combination. Clippard does a better job of limiting baserunners, but he has developed a propensity for giving up home runs. Barnes is excellent at limiting baserunners, but also gives up too many home runs. I have high expectations for Oh, given how good he was in 2016, but he hasn't been sharp - maybe the lack of work in spring training. Over the next few weeks it will become clearer who is effective and who isn't, both in the majors and in the minors, and we'll probably get a couple of moves. Just hope they don't stick too long with the guys who aren't getting the job done.
Chuck - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 05:47 PM EDT (#355735) #
Morales may have flat L/R splits for his career, but he has taken to bashing LHP the past two seasons. Like, really really bashing them.

Still, he sits tonight. Just a chance to rest Donaldson at DH? Or something more significant?

Richard S.S. - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 05:55 PM EDT (#355736) #
Seung-Hwan Oh missed two to three weeks of Spring Train8ng due to Visa issues. Heís 1-0 with a save and hasnít cost the Jays a win. By the time the Jays return home, a better picture of who we have will emerge.

Getting ready in Spring Training is much easier if you are not trying to make the Roster at the same time. Tyler Clippard is better than last year thus far. Heís 1-0 and hasnít cost the Jays a win. It might be the next home stand before we have a better understanding of Tyler Clippard or John Axford. He hadnít cost the Jays a game either. Canít say the same time for Ryan Tepera.
SK in NJ - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 06:29 PM EDT (#355738) #
I think itís more about getting Solarte into the lineup. The fact that Gibbons is fine with taking Morales out of the lineup is a good sign. Usually he gives a lot of rope/respect to vets but if he realizes that Kendrys is a bit of a lost cause and uses him more sparingly, then itís only going to benefit the team.

Then again, maybe Donaldson is still not 100% and this was a good night to give him a day off from the field. Regardless, this is the proper way of using the DH in todayís game. Use it to rest players and have more versatile players in general on the roster.
BlueMonday - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 09:36 PM EDT (#355744) #
Seeing Rough Ned's costume tonite, as well as the Ranger in the picture above, makes me ask: Would they be allowed to play in Quebec with their faces covered?
ComebyDeanChance - Saturday, April 07 2018 @ 11:36 PM EDT (#355746) #
Not a very good outing for Stroman. Or Barnes for that matter. Luckily, the offence chose today for an off day rather than a day when the pitching was better.
scottt - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 08:18 AM EDT (#355747) #
Stroman battled in the cold. The ump wasn't giving him the bottom of the zone early on.
He made a mental mistake with runners on base. Pearce just came short of making a catch and the Rangers had a few lucky line drives alone the first base line.

I thought Odor's exaggerated kick was funny, but Stroman didn't.
I mean, does he get a base if the ball hits his leg over the plate? I don't think so.

Minor was over 15 pitches in the first with only one out and then Martin hit into a double play.
That was pretty much the game there.

I'm not sold about Solarte against lefties.

The Rangers face covering reminded me of Bazooka Joe.
Bubble gums goes with baseball cards, right?

I'm worried about Garcia, today.
It's also a big day for Morales to contribute.
Grichuk hit a few long balls, yesterday. Just need to reach the wall with those. 

scottt - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 08:32 AM EDT (#355749) #
Also Travis missed 2 or 3 close plays.
He's missed a lot of time, so that's understandable, but it all adds up.
Profar made several good play out there, but he's only got 1 hit on the year.

Richard S.S. - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 09:33 AM EDT (#355750) #
Marcus Stroman will have Starts like that throughout his carreer, the games you cannot win. Every Starter will, thatís the nature of the game. Every Team will have games like that. I donít see any problems with the Pitchers that needs fixing, itís good enough.

Bases on balls, strikeout, base on balls, grounds into double play. The Jays are given a chance to take control of the game and leave without a whimper/whisper/nothing at all. Thereís something not right with Josh Donaldson. This Josh Donaldson is playing at 80%, at best. Right now heís not really better than Yandervis Solarte. It calls into question Donaldsonís offseason, did something go wrong? Who we got is not our Josh Donaldson.

China fan - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 12:00 PM EDT (#355754) #
As of today, the Jays have eight (8) hitters with an OPS of .813 or higher.

I didn't expect that the hitters would be ahead of the pitchers at this stage of the season, but that seems to be what's happening.
China fan - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 12:26 PM EDT (#355755) #
Morales batting 5th against the LHP today. Solarte is still batting clean-up, and playing 2B. Travis and Martin both resting.
scottt - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 12:47 PM EDT (#355758) #
Morales is 3 for 9 against Hamels with 1 HR.
Martin is 5 fo 18 with 1 HR also.
Granderson is actually 5 for 15 while Pearce has only 1 double in 8 AB.
Smoak is 2 for 3 and Solarte 1 for 3.
Grichuk and Diaz are both 0 in 3.

christaylor - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 01:25 PM EDT (#355759) #
This may seem like a minor quibble but has anyone else notice how bad SN graphics look compared to the White Sox and the Texas broadcast? Both of those broadcasts seem to take a nod from modern graphic design and visualization, whereas Sportsnet airs cut-off logos and other slapdash figures. It would be nice if Rogers put more effort and thought to the at-home experience.
uglyone - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 01:28 PM EDT (#355760) #
No probs with morales hitting 5th vLH.

I was a little annoyed seeing Morales come to the on deck circle in place of pearce in the 8th last night, though, against the RH.

Morales is worse against RH than Pearce. much worse.
Chuck - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 01:29 PM EDT (#355761) #
It would be nice if Rogers put more effort and thought to the at-home experience.

I'm far more concerned by what Rogers is putting in my ears than what they are putting in my eyes.

rpriske - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 03:13 PM EDT (#355763) #
Anyone having problems with mlb.tv today?
uglyone - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 03:17 PM EDT (#355764) #
Kendrys vLHP = still golden
Chuck - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 03:24 PM EDT (#355765) #
Down 4-0, Odor bunts Choo to third base. And receives high fives in the dugout. Intentionally giving away outs when you are down 4 runs... now that should violate an unwritten rule and not be the cause for celebration.

When the defense is just as happy with the result as the offense, something is messed up.

Oh, and Odor still seems very much the punk.

Chuck - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 03:27 PM EDT (#355766) #
Kendrys vLHP = still golden

Yeah, you wonder if at this stage of his career, for whatever reason, he might actually be two different players (one vs. LHP and one vs. RHP). As has been mentioned recently, his career L/R splits are flat but of late, he has shown all the traits of a lefty-killer.

christaylor - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 03:30 PM EDT (#355767) #
Agreed on the ears, but at least that can be muted. Overall it'd be nice to see them put thought into the TV broadcast... no evidence of effort there... thankful that I'm an mlb.tv subscriber.
China fan - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 03:59 PM EDT (#355768) #
Bases loaded, one out, and Grichuk hits into a DP.

It's early, but he is turning into the most frustrating hitter on this team.

At least his defence has been good.
mathesond - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 04:14 PM EDT (#355769) #
Over in Pittsburgh, Jameson Taillon threw 110 pitches in 35F weather for a complete game shutout. Gabe Kapler certainly ain't his manager.
Chuck - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 04:38 PM EDT (#355770) #
Solarte is simultaneously the team's de facto cleanup hitter... and a "backup" player. So tomorrow's lineup could be interesting. The team is facing a RHP (Bundy). Travis will be at 2B, today being his rest day. Donaldson will presumably be at 3B. Happ, a left handed groundball pitcher is starting, so Diaz will presumably be at SS.

So will Solarte DH? Will the team's cleanup hitter be on the bench? Or might Donaldson DH with Solarte playing 3B?

I think if Solarte DH's vs a RHP ahead of Morales, we will definitely be seeing a sign of something.

Chuck - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 04:46 PM EDT (#355771) #
Will the struggling Grichuk get a day of rest tomorrow with Solarte being jammed into an outfield corner to keep him in the lineup?
China fan - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 04:53 PM EDT (#355772) #
Solarte is one possibility for the OF, or how about Granderson in RF and Pearce in LF in some games?

In that last AB, Grichuk struck out on 3 pitches and didn't seem close on any of them. He looks lost.
China fan - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 05:00 PM EDT (#355773) #
Or how about Pearce at DH and an outfield of Granderson-Pillar-Solarte?
BlueJayWay - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 05:14 PM EDT (#355774) #
Bases loaded, one out, and Grichuk hits into a DP.

It's early, but he is turning into the most frustrating hitter on this team.

At least his defence has been good.


Yeah. I know it's incredibly early and Grichuk is streaky, but if he goes on long streaks like this I can see why the Cardinals tired of him.
Chuck - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 05:51 PM EDT (#355775) #
Ohtani is perfect after 5 against Oakland. A far away Kapler paces nervously, worried about a starter being left in so long.
ISLAND BOY - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 06:02 PM EDT (#355776) #
Wow, Yankees have the bases loaded, none out with Judge and Stanton to bat, and somehow come away empty-handed and lose. What a Jay's thing to do !
China fan - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 06:10 PM EDT (#355777) #
The Jays bullpen seems to be constantly playing with fire. In and out of trouble all the time, even though they usually escape the worst. Now they are depending on Osuna for the 4-out save. I think this bullpen will need bolstering at some point. Maybe fairly soon.
uglyone - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 06:17 PM EDT (#355778) #
Osuna beaning Odor.....

greenfrog - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 06:17 PM EDT (#355779) #
The way the Ohtani is performing in the early going, the Jays could be in tough in the race to the postseason.
uglyone - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 06:26 PM EDT (#355780) #
china - our 2nd best reliever is in buffalo for some reason.
ComebyDeanChance - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 06:38 PM EDT (#355781) #
Wow, Yankees have the bases loaded, none out with Judge and Stanton to bat, and somehow come away empty-handed and lose.

Stanton goes 0-7 with another Platinum Sombrero. Those Yankee fans are not afraid of being critical.
China fan - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 06:43 PM EDT (#355782) #
"....our 2nd best reliever is in buffalo for some reason...."

You're just trolling now. He's in Buffalo for a very good reason, as we have discussed at great length.

Also, he's not the team's 2nd best reliever.
uglyone - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 06:43 PM EDT (#355783) #
i still say the yanks overachieved hugely last year and that none of their studs are exactly reliably studly juzt yet.
uglyone - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 06:44 PM EDT (#355784) #
but he is our 2nd best reliever.

and what's the very good reason again? i forget.
scottt - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 06:46 PM EDT (#355786) #
He beaned his jersey, anyway.
China fan - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 06:47 PM EDT (#355787) #
"...Osuna beaning Odor....."

Didn't you see it? Osuna ticked the very edge of Odor's jersey, almost imperceptibly. In fact Odor smartly left his jersey in position to be ticked by the pitch, so he got to 1B without even feeling it.
scottt - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 06:56 PM EDT (#355788) #
Tomorrow, I'd play Granderson in right, Solarte in left and rest Grichuk.
However, Happ is not a ground ball pitcher.
Hopefully, it's not too cold.
mathesond - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 06:56 PM EDT (#355789) #
I would have thought Aaron Sanchez was Toronto's second-best reliever.
uglyone - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 07:22 PM EDT (#355791) #
i pictured a beautiful beaning off of gameday.
cybercavalier - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 07:24 PM EDT (#355792) #
Amendment to scottt's order suggestion for tomorrow, shall Gradnerson and Solarte bat leadoff and second? Shall Donaldson beat cleaup?\

Now my question is that when a batter is pinched hit for, what statistics or criteria shall be used to determine which pinch hitter?

Richard S.S. - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 07:28 PM EDT (#355793) #
1) Randal Grichuk doesnít seem to be seeing the pitches very well despite all his hard work in the Offseason. The Jays first need to consider if his vision problem is correctable with glasses/contacts. If not, the Jays have to consider when they are making a change. With Buffalo getting ďsnowed outĒ so often, any options to replace him are still getting their timing back so it might not be anytime soon. I donít expect anything done before/until they return home.

2) With a four-run lead, Aaron Loup canít get more than one out before getting replaced with runners on 2nd and 3rd. Is he done or just badly prepared? The Jays may see this differently, but I think heís finished on this Team. Unfortunately the Relievers in Buffalo arenít any more ready than hitters so any change might be quite a few days to get ready. Something might get done around the next homestand.
Richard S.S. - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 07:55 PM EDT (#355794) #
The Baltimore Orioles are not expected to do well despite their Offseason. As long as the Jays donít push too hard, theyíll do well. They need to beat the Teams they must beat, of which the Orioles are one. A successful record verses the A.L. East gives a Team a good heads-up for the Postseason. With Happ, Sanchez and Estrada pitching the next three games I like the Jays chances. Iíd just like to stop wearing out the Bullpen.
Mike Green - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 07:59 PM EDT (#355795) #
Three comments about today's game:

  • Luke Maile's PA in the sixth was great.  Working the count well and hitting a tough pitch the other way for a double.  He may not hit .280 over a season, but he does look quite a bit better than last year.
  • Roberto Osuna's approach is a whole lot better than last year.  He doesn't need to nibble to succeed, and he seems to have regained the lost confidence so he doesn't feel he has to.  I'm glad Gibbons brought him in the eighth
  • Josh Donaldson ran out the ground ball in the top of the ninth as though it was a routine grounder (which it was not)- it could have easily cost the club a baserunner.  I wonder if his calf is OK.

whiterasta80 - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 09:00 PM EDT (#355798) #
I'm with ugly on this. Unless there are 7 better relievers on the team (there aren't) biagini should be up.

I've seen no real evidence that AAA is a better place to learn how to start than MLB RP. Also, it takes maximum 3 starts to "stretch out". Seems excessively cautious to me. Either that or we aren't serious about putting the best team on the field.
greenfrog - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 09:04 PM EDT (#355799) #
The O's bullpen really got worked this weekend in the Yankees series (23 total innings from their relief corps). Hopefully the Jays can take advantage in the series starting tomorrow.
greenfrog - Sunday, April 08 2018 @ 09:06 PM EDT (#355800) #
* 23 innings in the three games from Friday to Sunday (the O's also played the Yankees on Thursday; including that game, the O's relievers pitched 26 innings against New York in the series).
dan gordon - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 01:18 AM EDT (#355802) #
Maile does indeed look like a different hitter. His minor league record would indicate that, while he's not exactly Buster Posey, he shouldn't be as monstrously inept as he was last year. Grichuk looks lost, and could probably benefit from a day off. Not a fan of seeing Solarte in the OF - that was tried in 7 games back in 2014 and the results were bad enough that nobody has dared try it again. I'd rather see Pearce in LF and Granderson in RF for a day. With 3 Oriole righties on tap, I could see DH'ing Solarte twice, and playing him at 2B to give Travis his rest day in the other game.

It really is getting to be a problem that Buffalo isn't playing games. The AAA guys will need a week or two to get sharp before being called up. Loup is looking to me like an early candidate for replacement if he doesn't pick it up in the next couple of weeks.

Looks like the brutal spring training Ohtani produced was a mirage - he's the real deal. I mentioned a while back that when I looked at Japanese league stats for Ichiro and Matsui at the same age as Ohtani, his hitting was comparable, with more power and less average than Ichiro, and more average and less power than Matsui. He's got truly nasty stuff as a pitcher. We're seeing a historic player here, first guy since Ruth to have a shot at being a star at the plate and on the mound. It's still early, but if he develops into that player, I hope people appreciate the magnitude of his accomplishment.
bpoz - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 07:55 AM EDT (#355803) #
Agreed dan gordon. LAA received a huge asset. They should develop into a very strong team.
grjas - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 08:17 AM EDT (#355804) #
Josh Donaldson ran out the ground ball in the top of the ninth as though it was a routine grounder (which it was not)- it could have easily cost the club a baserunner. I wonder if his calf is OK.


Yeah I had the same reaction when I saw him trot to first. It was clearly going to be a close play and JD wouldnít have missed that. Somethingís up.
scottt - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 08:36 AM EDT (#355805) #
Biggest contributors: Morales (.195 WPA), Tepera  (.113), Garcia (.112) and Osuna (.110).

So far, Garcia has been great. I'd be surprised if Morales doesn't DH today.

Underperformers: Grichuk (-.090). Loup  (-.072).

Loup is the one I'd let go for the Buffalo shuttle. Except, Buffalo has been frozen out all week and the pitchers there might be rusty. Loup seems to be hitting his spots but the batters are hitting him anyway. His the deception gone? The velocity down? At least Grichuk is catching the ball.
Cracka - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 09:43 AM EDT (#355807) #
The problem is... Loup has 5+ years of service now and would need to be DFA'ed to be sent to Buffalo - he could also elect free agency and would be entitled to his full $1.8M salary and an immediate opportunity elsewhere. This is not a good "shuttle bullpen" - the only logical candidate with options is Danny Barnes. So eventually, one of the vets will likely have to go... or maybe spend time on the DL.
uglyone - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 09:52 AM EDT (#355808) #
I guess I have to just accept that Loup will continue to be hated, but there's no way he's going anywhere. Not only is he an established quality LHRP, and the only lefty in the pen, but even in his tiny sample this year his underlying numbers suggest he's pitching very well, not poorly, despite the era, and is just getting babipped to death so far. His fips are great, he's not getting hit hard, he's kept the ball on the ground, his velo is all there, and he's not throwing balls.
hypobole - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 09:52 AM EDT (#355809) #
Of the 206 position players on FG's WAR leaderboard, the 3 worst thus far (Piscotty, Fowler and Grichuk) are a combined -1.4 WAR.

Those 3 also happened to be the Cardinal's opening day outfield last season.
whiterasta80 - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 10:06 AM EDT (#355810) #
I know that he is the best comparison that we have, but I am getting a little tired of the narrative that Ruth was a great hitter and pitcher at the same time.

From 1915 to 1917 he was a great pitcher who averaged 132 at bats per season (For comparison Zack Greinke had 70 last year). Hitting was good, but not frequent enough to matter.

By 1918-1919 he was scaling back on the mound and scaling up his hitting. He had 380 at bats in 1918 which is probably what we might expect Ohtani to get this year if everything goes right. But Ruth was down to 20 starts at this point and the pitching skills started to erode. By 1919 he was the greatest hitter this world has ever seen. He set the record for HRs in a season (and then broke it in each of the next 2 seasons). Pitching went the way of the dodo at this point.

Ruth was an amazing pitcher and an amazing hitter, but he was at his best with each of those when he focused on them near full-time. He was really only a dual threat for 2 seasons.

Ohtani won't be the "first player since Ruth". He'll be the "first ever" if he even partially replicates his 2016 season in MLB.
whiterasta80 - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 10:09 AM EDT (#355811) #
Agreed. Loup is currently being BABIP'd to death.

Clippard and Axford are the smoke and mirrors at the moment but I don't think anyone has earned a demotion as of yet.
bpoz - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 10:22 AM EDT (#355813) #
SSS. Stanton is struggling 47% K rate. But the NYY cannot bench him.
John Northey - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 11:05 AM EDT (#355815) #
If he can do both for more than a year or two, oh yeah. 

Babe Ruth WAR...
1915: P: 2.5  H: 1.7
1916: P: 8.8 H: 1.6


1917: P: 6.6 H: 2.1
1918: P: 2.3 H: 4.7
1919: P: 0.8  H: 9.1

In 4 other years Ruth pitched, but net innings for those 4 years was 31 IP over 5 games, 4 starts, -0.3 WAR.  In 1914 he was a negative in WAR for pitching and hitting.(hey, he was just 19).

For a Jays connection it is a shame John Olerud never pitched as a pro (15-0 in college one year).  I remember when the Jays signed him some debates existed about if he'd pitch as well, but nothing ever came of it.  I was certain he'd be stretched out in spring at least but his bat was too good to risk I guess.

Ohtani so far is 0.4 WAR for pitching and 0.4 WAR for hitting so he is well on his way to joining Ruth as one of the few with over 1 WAR in each in the same season.

Madison Bumgarner is worth noting as he has cracked 1 WAR twice for his hitting - 2014 and 2015 and nearly did it again in 2016 (0.9) (pitching WAR those 3 years of 3.9, 5.1, 4.8).  I'm sure others have done it for one year or two such as Carlos Zambrano (2006: 1.2 WAR hitting, 4.2 pitching).  Wes Farrell cracked 2 as a hitter in 1935 (2.4 hitting, 8.4 pitching).  Trick is getting up to 2+ in both at once, I'm sure Ferrell was a big exception there, lets see if Ohtani can do it once, then if he can do it multiple times.
whiterasta80 - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 12:16 PM EDT (#355817) #
Yes there was the big caveat in what I was saying that Ohtani had to "keep it up" for more than a year.

My point was just that when Ruth pitched his hitting suffered, and vice-versa. He was as close as we've come to "doing both", but there's another level that Ohtani achieved in Japan and could achieve here (however unlikely).

In terms of good hitting pitchers- Ken Brett went over 1 WAR twice in his career (and another year at 0.8 WAR). Dontrelle Willis also had a very good hitting year back in the late 2000s.
pubster - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 12:44 PM EDT (#355818) #
Ruth obviously was great. However, he played in an all white league at the time. So clearly he wasn't competing with all the best players in the world the way Ohtani is right now.
ComebyDeanChance - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 01:10 PM EDT (#355820) #
I was certain he'd be stretched out in spring at least but his bat was too good to risk I guess.

Olerud of course, had survived a brain aneurysm and wore a batter's helmet in the field. While there may have been other considerations as well, even in their absence I think it was unlikely that John would have been placed 60.5 feet from the batter's box in the 'Happ' line of fire in the majors.
GabrielSyme - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 01:26 PM EDT (#355821) #
Madison Bumgarner is worth noting as he has cracked 1 WAR twice for his hitting - 2014 and 2015 and nearly did it again in 2016 (0.9)
Of course, offensive WAR for pitchers has been measured against other pitchers. Ohtani is being compared to other DHs, which makes the standard much harder to meet.

One interesting question is whether he will start increasing his playing time at some point. He's young, of course, and coming from a once-weekly starting schedule, playing in a new league with longer travel, fewer off-days, and a longer season. I'm sure neither the Angels nor Ohtani want him to be worn down and ineffective if they get to the playoffs. But I shouldn't be surprised if next year he starts taking another day at DH and moving to a normal five-day rotation schedule.

If the Angels were really trying to maximize his value, I think you want to try him out in right field, and have him hit when he starts. I think he might be able to do SP, off day, RF, RF, DH, SP...
China fan - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 03:33 PM EDT (#355822) #
As a couple of us speculated yesterday, Grichuk is getting benched tonight (a "rest day" for him, officially) and the Jays are trying an outfield of Pearce, Granderson and Pillar.
China fan - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 03:39 PM EDT (#355823) #
Morales at 1B and batting 5th, despite the RHP on the mound, while Smoak is the DH. I suppose even first-basemen need a bit of a break sometimes. Travis batting 8th.
Mike Green - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 03:46 PM EDT (#355824) #
Bad choices all the way around in tonight's lineup.  The team defence is likely to be abysmal, and with no offensive gain for it. 
cybercavalier - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 03:55 PM EDT (#355825) #
cf, not to be boastful but I mentioned deploying the Pearce Pillar Granderson outfield from left to right few threads back...

Given that Grichuk and Ngoepe are helping off the bench and Diaz and Maille slowing down their hot batting, they are very likely to staffing the bench and thus all the veterans are left in the batting order. For the purpose of developing young players, that sighting looks less helpful. In other words, how can young players be developed beyond the Triple-A level baseball in the majors?

Cracka - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 04:00 PM EDT (#355826) #
I don't like this either - Morales is a huge downgrade defensively. Since he got hurt in 2010, Morales has only made 114 starts at 1B - defensive metrics don't speak kindly about him.
Solarte has made 31 starts at 1B and is presumably an option as a defensive replacement tonight.


China fan - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 04:14 PM EDT (#355827) #
Mike, how do you figure there's no offensive gain in benching a guy who has only 2 hits in 34 ABs and was showing absolutely no signs of breaking out of that abysmal slump? Anything is better than an automatic out. Pearce and Granderson have both been hitting very well, so a shuffle that gets them both in the lineup has got to be a positive, despite the obvious defensive risks.
ComebyDeanChance - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 04:19 PM EDT (#355828) #
Bad choices all the way around in tonight's lineup. The team defence is likely to be abysmal, and with no offensive gain for it.

Agreed. I'd rather Granderson than Pearce be in right. I'm good with Grichuk getting some bench, though I'm not sure I'd simultaneously DH Smoak, and I'd rather have Solarte than Travis playing 2b.
uglyone - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 04:25 PM EDT (#355829) #
Eh it's a reasonable lineup imo. Everybody needs a break, even smoak, and our roster is built to do just that.

I like pearce going vs a righty - he's too good a hitter to be just a lefty platoon guy.

Only thing i don't like is morales that high vRHP. But even there pearce slotted ahead of him is a good sign.
China fan - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 04:31 PM EDT (#355830) #
It is a bit surprising to have Pearce in RF and Grandy in LF, rather than the reverse, since Granderson seems to be the better defender of the two. I'm sure Gibbons will be asked about it today.
ComebyDeanChance - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 04:39 PM EDT (#355831) #
Dylan Bundy has an ERA+ of 589 coming into tonight's game. Odd game to sit one of your hottest hitters in Solarte.
dan gordon - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 04:44 PM EDT (#355832) #
I think the point about Ruth isn't whether he excelled at pitching and hitting at the same time, but that he was good enough at each to be a star in the big leagues. Nobody else has done that since. Nobody. The fact that he didn't do both at the same time is irrelevant to me. It would be like a guy who was one of the best goalies in the NHL moving to forward and becoming the top scorer in the league. I couldn't care if he was playing goal and forward in the same season, it would be an astonishing accomplishment, and amazing to see it happen.

whiterasta80 - Monday, April 09 2018 @ 06:58 PM EDT (#355837) #
Dan,

I didn't mean to diminish what Ruth did in any way. I just don't like the comparison for what Ohtani is trying to do.

What Ruth did is unprecedented. But that doesn't make him a precedent for what Ohtani is trying to do (or did in Japan).
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