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Bryce Harper and his chums are in town.

Fri 7:07 -  Gonzalez (6-2, 2.65) vs Sanchez (3-5, 4.33)
Sat 4:07 - Scherzer (10-2, 2.00) vs Estrada (3-6, 5.09)
Sun 1:07 - Roark (3-7, 3.63) vs Gaviglio (2-2, 3.66)

Got to play it, might as well win it.
Nationals at Toronto | 158 comments | Create New Account
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Mike Green - Friday, June 15 2018 @ 09:22 PM EDT (#359989) #
Quick hook of Loup from Gibbons.  The LOOGY usage is weird with a 3 run lead, a righty and lefty due up, and Harper having reached on a bloop.  I'm not a fan.
Magpie - Friday, June 15 2018 @ 09:26 PM EDT (#359990) #
Even less of a fan now, I expect.
scottt - Friday, June 15 2018 @ 09:47 PM EDT (#359991) #
Good game.

Here's a team that could use a catcher but doesn't want to give up a top prospect for one.

scottt - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 06:55 AM EDT (#359993) #
Travis hammered an inside curveball. His strength is fastballs away and breaking balls inside. Everybody his now pitching him fastball inside, breaking balls away. 
scottt - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 07:04 AM EDT (#359994) #
The Angels are really falling apart now.
Ahead of the Jays 4 game series in Anaheim, they've placed Shoei Othani, Garrett Richards and Nick Tropeano on the DL. It helps that they had a 6 man rotation to begin with but still.

hypobole - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 07:50 AM EDT (#359995) #
Yeah, the Angels actually put 4 guys on the DL yesterday, don't remember ever seeing that. In addition to the 2 starters you mentioned, RP Jim Johnson and Zack Cozart (with a partial shoulder separation) were added.
hypobole - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 08:40 AM EDT (#359996) #
Solarte. When he was acquired, one poster mentioned being disappointed the Jays targeted a backup rather than an everyday day MI.

Guess who's had the most PA's for the Jays in 2018?
greenfrog - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 09:23 AM EDT (#359997) #
The Solarte trade has worked out very well for the Jays. Solarte is on pace for a 2 WAR season and he has provided depth and versatility — and some positive energy — to a battered Jays team. He could be a useful trade chip, especially if packaged with another piece like Happ. On the other side of the ledger, Olivares hasn’t done much since the trade (.262/.303/.409) in high-A at age 22, and his power and walk rates have fallen off since last year.
hypobole - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 09:35 AM EDT (#359998) #
Yeah, the power drop for Olivares is disconcerting considering he's hitting in the Cal league.
hypobole - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 09:44 AM EDT (#360000) #
And right after the Solarte trade, we signed Grandy for $5 mill. FO took a lot of heat for that one as well. He's played only a bit more than he should, but still tied for 5th on the team with 188 PA's thus far.

Of all our players with more than 34 PA's this season, who's been our best hitter by wRC+?
uglyone - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 09:52 AM EDT (#360002) #
liked the solarte pickup (never did think much of olivares), didn't like the grandy pickup...but both have been good.

but even with their surprising offense so far, neither is giving us the value of a quality fulltime starting mover, which was my main criticism at least.
Mike Green - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 10:45 AM EDT (#360003) #
Solarte is a fine replacement for Donaldson at third base, but otherwise he's ideally suited to DH.  Granderson is still a fine hitter against RHP, but should be in the outfield only occasionally. 

Speaking of adapting to reality, something finally sunk in last night.  I love Russell Martin and hope that he's with the organization in a leadership role after his playing days are done, but I realize that he simply can't be expected to play the majority of the time behind the plate.  He's had trouble blocking balls in the dirt all season (and last), but Difo's steal of second in the ninth was the straw that broke the camel's back for me.  It was an important base, and you could tell that Russell was expecting him to go- he was preparing to throw almost from the time Tepera released the ball.  Difo got a fair but not great jump and a halfway decent throw would have had him, but it wasn't one either in speed/power or in accuracy. 

Checking Martin's batting splits, I noticed that he's actually hit RHP pretty well over the last 3 years, but he's struggled against LHP.  Luke Maile is the exact opposite.  I would be platooning them, and giving Maile extra games to make sure that Martin doesn't play back-to-back games behind the plate at all.  I'm sure that Maile will be facing Scherzer today, and that's not the best both in terms of on-the-field performance and as a showcase.  For what it's worth, Jansen has typical small splits for a RH hitter, and McGuire has typical larger splits for a LH hitter. 
lexomatic - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 11:43 AM EDT (#360004) #
The problem with playing Maile a ton, is that He's back to hitting as poorly as ever over his last 40 pa (2/3 of the season). Numbers still look ok but he's got an ops of like 450 or somethi g brutal in his recent stretch.That's not acceptable.
hypobole - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 12:16 PM EDT (#360005) #
Mike, here's the statcast leaderboard. Martin still is a touch better than average at 2.00, Maille better yet at 1.96.

But only the Mets have allowed more SB's and we are #1 in SB's attempted. Very much suggests our pitchers are the primary problem.
cybercavalier - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 12:46 PM EDT (#360006) #
A sensitive question: Kelly Gruber was removed from Canadian Hall of Fame festivities because of his speech in a on-stage talk. Was the reason related to not being respectful to the female host? Or something else....
greenfrog - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 12:50 PM EDT (#360007) #
"neither is giving us the value of a quality fulltime starting mover"

Granderson is proving to be a much savvier pickup than Dexter Fowler (-1.1 fWAR in year 2 of his five-year contract) would have been. The Jays were wise not to outbid the field on Fowler, thereby avoiding the winner's curse we see so often with marquee free agents (see also Jason Heyward).
cybercavalier - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 01:10 PM EDT (#360008) #
It seems that Maile hits leftie much better than righties in May and June so far. Before late innings, his HRs come against LHP. His doubles and singles come also against LHSP. In late innings, his HR can come against RHP. His ability to draw walks are impartial against LHP or RHP.  An exception is the match against the Mets when the Jays scores 10 plus runs.
uglyone - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 01:17 PM EDT (#360009) #
and lorenzo cain is worth more than all our $35m in new contracts added this offseason combined.
Mike Green - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 01:38 PM EDT (#360010) #
There's pop time and there's accuracy.  Martin still sometimes delivers a strong, accurate throw, and when he does, he usually gets his man.  Unfortunately, the strong, accurate throw is happening less than 1/2 the time.  Opponents are attempting to steal almost 1.25 times per game and are successful between 75-80 per cent against Martin.  With Maile, it's under 1 attempt per game with success rate under 70.  It's a big difference. 
jerjapan - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 01:40 PM EDT (#360011) #
I definitely thought we could have done better than Solarte in this offseason of FA bargains, but I've been completely wrong on that front - the deal has turned out as well as possible. While his D may be even worse than I had feared, he's been much better offensively, and he's a lot of fun to watch.  Olivares has tanked and the replacement I wanted instead of Solarte - Zach Cozart - has disappointed and is now injured.  Even Cozart's D is at a negative fWAR - his supposed calling card after his fluke offensive season last year. 

I'd be disappointed if we traded Solarte, frankly, just because of how little spark the team has shown and how much joy he brings to the game, but his versatility and team-friendly contract make him appealing, and Gurriel Jr. is looking close to ready as the utilityman heir apparent. 

I don't recall a lot of concern about the Grandy signing - quality FA, quality person, cheap contract.   Just too many DH types around to properly maximize these vets value.  I sure hope that the FO is being beyond patient with Morales because they see something of value - his .298 / .328 / . .456 slash line over the last 15 games is at least playable. 

I was never keen on Fowler, but would love to have signed Cain instead of traded for Grichuk (Cain could finish season one in MIL worth half of his contract already).  Not every veteran FA is a bad investment. 

FWIW, it appears the Cards have converted Conner Greene to relief.

scottt - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 01:43 PM EDT (#360012) #
It's too early to judge Cain as he's got another 4 years on his contract by the end of which we'll have a better idea of the value of the draft pick lost to signing him.

Cain is of course playing center field. There would have been a huge premium to get him to move to a corner spot. On turf. 

Btw Ugly, do you think the Jays should be on the market for anybody besides  vets with upside on a 1 year deal this winter?

greenfrog - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 01:48 PM EDT (#360013) #
"and lorenzo cain is worth more than all our $35m in new contracts added this offseason combined"

Cain has been great in year 1 of his contract, to be sure. But it should be noted that he (like Fowler) is on a five-year contract, whereas all of the players the Jays have acquired have been on short-term commitments that carry less overall risk as a result. Let's see how good Cain is in 2020-2022, when the Jays will be in greater need of quality veterans to augment the next wave of young talent, as opposed to a non-contending year like 2018.
uglyone - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 02:03 PM EDT (#360015) #
I doubt Cain's $16m would provide much of a roadblock in 2022, even if our team built around 23yr old Vladdy is ready to contend by then.
jerjapan - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 02:04 PM EDT (#360016) #
absolutely not too early to judge the Cain deal - he's arguably the FA signing of the offseason.  If you don't want to pay a premium to move him to RF (is there ANY proof that that is a thing?), move Pillar to right.  I'd actually be interested to see if there is any proof of a turf penalty as well - not that I doubt these ideas are possible, just not sure how you would prove either. 

Scott, to my understanding, the value of the draft pick does not depend on the player picked.  The draft pick lost is our 2nd round pick (along with the 500K international signing pool penalty) - that is it's value.  The player chosen is immaterial, in that you could be drafting Bo Bichette or JB Woodman. 
uglyone - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 02:07 PM EDT (#360017) #
"Btw Ugly, do you think the Jays should be on the market for anybody besides vets with upside on a 1 year deal this winter?"

nah. window is nailed shut for sure by now.

me I want to sell everyone over 27 and let all our young guys play and see what we have. tomorrow if possible.

I don't even think 1yr vets are worth the bother given how little they'll get at the trade deadline even if they play well.
uglyone - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 02:09 PM EDT (#360018) #
jer - don't you think we'd be dumb NOT to trade solarte right now when he's at peak value? it's not like He's a guy we want to pencil into our starting lineup next year, is he?
greenfrog - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 02:21 PM EDT (#360019) #
UO, you don’t think Liriano (flipped for Teoscar) was worth the bother?
uglyone - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 02:28 PM EDT (#360020) #
tbh if we could get Teoscar for Liriano we could have got him for pretty much anyone. .

full 100% credit to the FO for targeting Teoscar but i don't think Liriano specifically was a necessary part of that deal.
Mike Green - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 02:29 PM EDT (#360021) #
Morales DH, Granderson LF and Grichuk to the bench with Estrada pitching. Fail.
greenfrog - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 02:38 PM EDT (#360022) #
Like Liriano, Joe Smith (flipped for Pannone and Taylor) was another useful 1yr veteran addition.

Contenders can sometimes be persuaded to give up interesting prospects for players who can fill specific needs for the stretch run and postseason. The front office’s approach of adding players on short-term deals and then opportunistically trading some of them to augment the farm system is a reasonable approach right now, especially if the front office is good at identifying undervalued prospects in other organizations.
jerjapan - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 04:23 PM EDT (#360023) #
Oh for sure Ugly, I'm just being a short-sighted fan when I say I don't want to see Solarte dealt - he's a treat to watch, and it's a lot easier to get my GF to watch games with me if there's a likeable player or two.  Solarte might replace Kawasaki or EE in her heart, but he's also not likely to have more trade value than right now.
I'll tell you what else I'd find exciting to watch - a roster full of young guys, hustling and scrabbling to establish themselves in the bigs.  Let's get the veteran sell-off started already, dammit!  Greenfrog is right - specific teams will pay Joe Smith like returns for the right player, and targeting the right guys - blocked prospects, out-of-options guys, etc - could get us another Teoscar.  I think it was Marc Hulet who lobbied for acquiring Tony Kemp from Houston last offseason - he'd look great as a Jay right now, and was likely affordable.
hypobole - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 05:22 PM EDT (#360024) #
Hey, maybe Estrada DOES want to be traded. Nifty 5 innings.
Nigel - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 05:36 PM EDT (#360025) #
Travis looks all the way back, offensively and defensively.
SK in NJ - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 05:50 PM EDT (#360026) #
Unless a prospect is ready to take over and it makes sense financially to start them (service time), then one year stop gaps are perfectly reasonable pick ups. Or more Solarte types who are cheap and controllable and can be moved when the time is right (he will likely start at 3B next season so I don't think he will be moved this trade deadline or winter).

Good teams will have 40 man roster crunches, or desperation to make the playoffs, etc. Hernandez was in a stacked organization and the Jays saw an opportunity to get him. If they target the right pieces, they can get talent that other orgs might be undervaluing for any number of reasons.

At this point I don't mind if the Jays trade Happ and Estrada and then try to bring them back in the winter. Whether they, specifically Happ, want to spend their mid-30's on a transitioning team is another story, but those type of stop gaps will always have value. Worst case they bomb out and you lose nothing (possibly what Garcia is doing now) or best case you get a trade chip while biding time for a prospect to take over.
Shoeless Joe - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 05:52 PM EDT (#360027) #
Heading into today Travis had a 0.296//0.345//0.463 slash line with strikeout, walk and power numbers all within his career norm since being recalled.It's time to move him up in the line-up.

Im not really worried about his production, just want to see a strong 2nd half health wise.
uglyone - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 05:54 PM EDT (#360028) #
since I officially declared marco toast as an mlb SP, He's had 3 dominant outings. love it.
uglyone - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 05:58 PM EDT (#360029) #
SK - an issue is that there's a bunch of younger guys that I'm pretty sure will be out of options soon and who imo deserve a shot to see what they can do before putting them on waivers.

CF Pompey
RF Grichuk
LF Hernandez
3B Gurriel
SS Diaz
2B Travis
1B Tellez
C Jansen
DH Smith

I'd rather not lose any of these guys for nothing.
Shoeless Joe - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 06:11 PM EDT (#360030) #
Pompey is the only guy who is out of options after this year and he's not even healthy enough to play.

I'm all for mixing the younger guys in, but there isn't a huge sense of urgency.
hypobole - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 06:26 PM EDT (#360031) #
Although we'll need at least a couple of starters. I'd save dumpster diving for the bullpen. Preller has 3 of the best relief trade assets right now that he picked up with 2 waiver claims and a $2 million FA signing - whether he actually trades them is a question for another day.
uglyone - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 07:21 PM EDT (#360034) #
it's not like any of those guys would be being rushed, though.

2019 MLB - AAA

CF Pompey 26 -- Alford 24
RF Grichuk 27
LF Hernandez 26
3B Gurriel 25 - Guerrero 20
SS Diaz 28 ---- Bichette 21
2B Travis 28 -- Biggio 24
1B Tellez 24
C Jansen 24 --- McGuire 24

OF Smith 26
IF Urena 23
C Maile 28

SP Stroman 28 --- Zeuch 23
SP Sanchez 26 --- Pearson 22
SP Borucki 25
SP R-Foley 23

I'd be much happier giving all those deserving guys a chance next year, with plenty of good (better?) kids still in reserve in AAA, rather than stock a bunch of one year part time vets again.
SK in NJ - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 07:33 PM EDT (#360036) #
Pompey is out of options after this season but no one else from that list is. Some fringe 40-man roster types will likely be moved in trades. I don't think we have to worry about losing anyone for nothing. The team will need a 4th OF next season, and given his health, that might be a best case for Pompey anyway. I'm sure he'll get a chance to win that job assuming he's in one piece by then.
Shoeless Joe - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 07:34 PM EDT (#360037) #
Gurriel, Tellez, Alford and Urena have shown either in the majors or AAA this year they still need some more time. Gurriel might be ready for next season, and Urena can be mixed in more than relied on next year.

At this point with Jannsen and Vlady next year its more or less getting two cheap vets that you can dump once service time considerations are up.

You can't count on Pompey for anything until he shows any sense of durability. At some point Dwight Smith Jr. does deserve an extended looks however.
scottt - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 07:49 PM EDT (#360039) #
I don't mind Solarte starting at 3B until they bring up Guerrero.
He can still be traded later. It's going to be hard enough to get value for one third baseman.

Still, lots of baseball to play this year that could change things.

Magpie - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 07:57 PM EDT (#360040) #
since I officially declared marco toast as an mlb SP, He's had 3 dominant outings.

With great power comes great responsibility. Use it wisely!
Chuck - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 08:21 PM EDT (#360041) #
Where does one go to officially declare someone toast? Are notary publics involved? Do you need to use a wax seal stamp?
greenfrog - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 08:38 PM EDT (#360042) #
When you go 6.2 3 0 0 2 4 and beat Scherzer, there is a good chance you're still pretty chewy and moist.
scottt - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 09:11 PM EDT (#360043) #
Cain is 32. Had the Jays signed him it would have required either more money or an extra year and he would already be on the trading  block.

I'm satisfied that they considered Cain and decided to trade for someone younger instead, even if Grichuk had a rough start.

Our second draft pick is a corner outfielder named Griffin Conine who hasn't signed yet.

CeeBee - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 09:29 PM EDT (#360044) #
Apparently he's close to signing.
Spifficus - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 09:43 PM EDT (#360045) #
And if that picture in the article is indicative of anything, he leaves a trail of bodies in his wake.
jerjapan - Saturday, June 16 2018 @ 10:01 PM EDT (#360046) #
Scottt, I'm aware of who we drafted in the second round.  My point is that who we drafted is not relevant to the value of the pick.  We would have sacrificed a 2nd round pick to sign Cain, not Griffin Conine.  Unless I'm completely mistaken, this is simple logic. 

And can you provide any evidence at all that 'it would have required either more money or an extra year and he would already be on the trading block' to sign Cain? 

That's two - or three - assertions that you continue to repeat, with zero evidence. 

I'm not trying to pick a fight here, and frankly, I think you are a sharp observer of the game in a way that I'm not - but I do find it hard to take your definitive statements on player motivation as definitive without any evidence whatsoever.
hypobole - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 12:50 AM EDT (#360047) #
"And can you provide any evidence at all that 'it would have required either more money or an extra year and he would already be on the trading block' to sign Cain."

I can provide some.

Cain had his roots in the Brewers, claimed he had good feelings that they had given him his first taste of the big league and had a good relationship with Craig Counsell. He also said once he found out the Brewers were in on him, he called his agent and told him to get things done.

On the other hand he was also given a full no-trade clause this year (and partial thereafter). Even if the Brewers falter, he wouldn't be on the block.

From that one can reasonably infer Toronto or most any other team would have had to beat the Brewer deal (and maybe by an appreciable amount especially if the Brewers decided to up their ante)) to pry Cain away.

hypobole - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 01:55 AM EDT (#360048) #
It's been a while. From ESPN:

"The Blue Jays posted their first shutout since Aug. 10, 2017 against the Yankees, snapping a franchise-long 117-game span between shutouts."

Richard S.S. - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 02:14 AM EDT (#360049) #
When the Starters don’t screw the pouch, the pressure on the Bullpen is less. When the Hitters do their job, the pressure on the Defenders is less.

When everyone does their job, the Jays win games, it just that simple. The Jays’ need to be much better when something doesn’t go right, and they can’t give up when everything doesn’t go right.

ComebyDeanChance - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 08:51 AM EDT (#360052) #
"When the Starters don't screw the pouch"

An intriguing metaphor.
grjas - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 09:06 AM EDT (#360053) #
I hope the Jays are aggressively scouting the NL as there looks to be more sellers than buyers in the AL for the first time in a while.
greenfrog - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 09:17 AM EDT (#360054) #
The number of sellers means that the Jays are unlikely to snag any elite prospects at the deadline, unless they can package Happ plus another player (Donaldson or Granderson or Solarte or Smoak) in the same deal, the way that Oakland sent Reddick and Hill to the Dodgers in 2016.

A few dominant starts over the next month would help the Jays’ cause on the trade front.
Chuck - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 09:31 AM EDT (#360055) #
Pillar is a homing pigeon. He may leave home, even for a long time, but eventually he will return to where he truly seems comfortable living.

His OPS+ since becoming a regular in 2015: 93, 81, 84, 91.

2017 OPS (by month): 844, 726, 591, 619, 725, 711
2018 OPS (by month): 903, 610, 518

He starts the year with a new attitude. Stay disciplined. Only swing at strikes. And man, he looks good doing that. And we think, he's truly changed. He said he would, and he has. Full credit to him for addressing flaws in his approach.

And then, and then, and then... it's Popeye time. I yam what I yam. Well, sort of. His OPSs the past two years are 704 and 709. Of the 9 months of performances cited above, only 3 actually look like this. The rest of the time he is way better or way worse. Year-by-year he is consistent, but not month-by-month. I don't know if his discipline wears down or if opposition pitchers adjust and he does not re-adjust.

As George W. Bush eloquently intoned: "Fool me once, shame on ... shame on you. Fool me... You can't get fooled again!'" And then he kicked in his drum set, confused over who he was.

krose - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 10:42 AM EDT (#360056) #
Thanks for the Chuck le. Went well with the coffee this morning.
hypobole - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 03:10 PM EDT (#360059) #
Grichuk looks like a totally different hitter before and after his DL stint.
BlueJayWay - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 03:16 PM EDT (#360060) #
Grichuk has arrived.
Parker - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 04:33 PM EDT (#360061) #
The Jays seem compelled to give Biagini enough rope to hang himself from the CN Tower.
Mike Green - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 04:53 PM EDT (#360062) #
Grichuk had four good PAs.  Pulling the hands in for the homers (once again), and fouling off tough pitches before getting to the mistake for a single to break the tie. 

All the younger players are looking good.  Even Diaz most of the time. 
Mike Green - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 05:07 PM EDT (#360064) #
For Father's Day.  This is wonderful, from David Sipress. 
CeeBee - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 05:10 PM EDT (#360065) #
I agree. His rope is way too long. I think his moment of fame has come and gone.
ISLAND BOY - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 05:55 PM EDT (#360066) #
I had forgotten that Solarte's wife died of cancer in 2015 and he is the father of three daughters. I love his joyful exuberance during the games.
greenfrog - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 06:17 PM EDT (#360067) #
As I said a couple of months ago, Liriano-Teoscar could well prove to be one of the best Jays trades ever. Hernandez is currently hitting .268/.319/.550 (wRC+ 134). He's 25, and he still hasn't had a full season's worth of games in the majors.

Bichette-Jansen-Teoscar-Vlad could be a fearsome quartet of bats in the middle of the order starting around mid-2019.
hypobole - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 06:28 PM EDT (#360069) #
From the funny-but-sad dep't:

Jays just finished a 3 game weekend sweep. If Boston holds on against the Mariners, the Jays are 12 1/2 games back of the 2nd wild-card.

The Reds are dead last in the NL. The Reds are 12 1/2 games back of the 2nd wild-card.
scottt - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 06:56 PM EDT (#360071) #
Obviously, the Jays needs to make a better offer than other teams to sign a free agent.
Just matching won't do it. Just look at Encarnation. He took one year less to move from Toronto even though he was popular here and doesn't even play the field.
Encarnation came to Toronto in the middle of 2009 only because Scott Rolen asked to be traded after playing only 1 year in Toronto.

Most players prefer to play closer to home. In the US where taxes are lower.

The big contract AA was able to sign was Russell Martin who calls Montreal home.
And it wasn't at a discount.

Visiting teams like to use their 4th outfielders and the their infield bench players in Rogers Center.
The fear of getting hurt on the turf is real.

scottt - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 07:17 PM EDT (#360072) #
That was a really good series. 
Quite enjoyable.

In the end, the wild cards will probably be teams that barely missed winning their divisions.
That's how it should be.

hypobole - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 07:19 PM EDT (#360073) #
scott EE isn't a good example, because by the time it came for him to make a decision, the Toronto offer was long gone.

uglyone - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 07:56 PM EDT (#360074) #
since I dismiss all games inside the Tropicana helldome on principle, we're actually one one helluva winning streak right now.
scottt - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 08:12 PM EDT (#360075) #
I think his moment of fame has come and gone.

I'm reminded that Hutchison was released by the Phillies after less than 12 innings and is now with the Dodgers.
Was it just 3 years ago that he was opening the season for the Jays finishing 13-5?

Shoeless Joe - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 08:26 PM EDT (#360076) #
Every day big performance from the likes of Hernandez, Grichuk, and Travis keep making Russel Martin, Tulo an Donaldson more award fits on this roster. Im starting to think Tulo could be a major distraction when he comes back, at this stage in his career I don't think he'll want to play for an up and coming team.
John Northey - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 08:32 PM EDT (#360078) #
My bet on Tulo is he will play for a week or two to show he is OK then will be traded with the Jays eating most of his contract.  Must be a contender out there who needs a SS.  Of course, flip side is Diaz isn't great so Tulo might stick for 2018 and be traded in the winter hoping Bo is ready and keep Diaz as a backup ala this year.
John Northey - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 08:36 PM EDT (#360079) #
I'm seeing lots of cash cleared out this season and offseason.  Donaldson going away with just a QO and nothing more - no real effort to keep.  Tulo traded if a partner can be found.  Martin the same.  Martin the highest odds of sticking around (solid utility guy I guess - can play SS/2B/3B/1B/CA, how often do you get that combo plus a solid vet to teach the kid behind the plate next year although Maile can do that role too). 
hypobole - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 08:54 PM EDT (#360080) #
Tulo has a full no trade clause. May not mean much, but there is that option year....
uglyone - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 09:13 PM EDT (#360082) #
I would rather eat cash on martin/tulo to get some actual trade returns rather than trade them to clear money, tbh.
CeeBee - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 10:07 PM EDT (#360086) #
So who gets sent down when Pearce is ready to return?
SK in NJ - Sunday, June 17 2018 @ 10:13 PM EDT (#360087) #
I think they will keep Martin and phase him into a back up role when they call up Jansen mid-2019. Same with Tulo, who I wouldn’t mind keeping around to mentor Bichette in the spring if nothing else (trade him when Bo is ready). Chances are the Jays are getting nothing back for those two so holding on to them until a prospect is ready to take over makes sense.

It will be interesting to see how they handle playing time when Pearce gets back. Hernandez’s spot is set now and Grichuk is getting hot. Maybe this is the time Gibbons finally benches Morales for good. He will be the everyday DH again after the deadline when both Granderson and Pearce are moved so it would be a short term benching.
John Northey - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 02:15 AM EDT (#360092) #
Good question on Pearce.  If you stick to hitters....
Pearce is a poor fielder (to put it mildly) who is limited to LF/1B/DH.  Unless a trade happens, no way does Justin Smoak, or Teoscar Hernandez lose their jobs.  Curtis Granderson also is in that category at the moment.  Randal Grichuk was in danger but has been on fire in June.

I hate to beat a dead horse again but Kendrys Morales is the obvious cut here as, even in his 'hot' June he still has an OPS below 700 (697) although his 2-4 today might push him up there.  Not an impressive level and if you are a slow DH who cannot field anywhere but 1B and you have trouble getting over 700 for OPS in a good month I really cannot see why the Jays are keeping him around.  Pearce, Hernandez, and Granderson all have 120+ OPS+ and Smoak is 110+.  All of them have to share LF/1B/DH and all are better and expected to stay better than Morales at this point I'd think.  Yeah, it involves eating about $16 million (this year and next) but at this point Morales is a sunk cost and isn't going to get better at age 35 (feeding him tons of PED's notwithstanding). 

Now, cutting Joe Biagini or Sam Gaviglio (whose magic touch seems to be vanishing) would also be a good idea.  I guess Gio Urshela could be sent back down and you just use Martin as your backup IF but that seems pretty dumb imo. 

My guess is Biagini as he really is just wasted space at this point and I doubt the Jays are willing to eat Morales contract at this stage.  Maybe a trade is coming.   Get a new home for Granderson via a trade.  However, no matter how I cut it the best move for the Jays to win today and in the future is saying 'goodbye' to Morales and accept he was a waste of money, but less of a waste than Bautista or Encarnacion would've been (yeah, yeah, EE is hitting better than Morales but a 103 OPS+ isn't enough from a pure DH).
Glevin - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 03:29 AM EDT (#360093) #
Tulo and Martin wouldn't get you anything interesting even if you ate their entire contracts. The Jays are not competing so don't need excess payroll can hold on to them with no issues. The Jays got more out of Biagini than 99% of Rule V players so even if this is it for him as a productive player (which I think is too early) they still got great value.

If Grichuk and Travis start hitting and Sanchez and Stroman come back, the Jays could be a pretty good team the rest of the season.
scottt - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 07:18 AM EDT (#360094) #
Gaviglio didn't match very well with Washington's lineup of speedy hitters.
Stroman and Garcia would likely have had similar issues.

greenfrog - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 07:59 AM EDT (#360095) #
John, I think the reason Morales hasn't been cut is because there may be a way for the Jays to trade him and thereby save some money. For example, the Jays may be able to trade a lesser prospect or two to a rebuilding team in exchange for that team taking on at least part of Morales's contract. The smaller the remaining obligation on Morales's contract (and it gets smaller with each week that passes), the more palatable that type of trade might be for both sides.
lexomatic - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 08:09 AM EDT (#360096) #
Greenfrog, I think your scenario might have worked 1-2 years ago, or with a different player, but not Morales. There's players who have more upside than him  who will cost the minimum. I don't see any scenario other than bad asset swap for a team that lost a 1B and has no better close alternative to play the season out. I can't think of any team in that situation at the moment.
I think Morales did worse than he could or should have, but at this point he's not movable. It's easier just to cut and eat the salary. MAYBE in the offseason if they need any kind of garbage innings to fill out and he's still on the team there's an opportunity there, but I don't see him lasting that long.
greenfrog - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 08:17 AM EDT (#360097) #
lexomatic, what I'm envisioning is a kind of reverse-Liriano swap. The other team takes on the undesired salary commitment (Morales) but also gets a couple of prospects (akin to Ramirez and McGuire) to improve the depth of their farm system.

For example, in the off-season, if the Padres had said, give us (say) Edward Oliveras and Kacy Clemens, and we'll take Morales's contract, would you have done that trade?

Of course, as a rebuilding team itself, the Jays might simply prefer to cut Morales and keep the prospects.
Glevin - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 08:44 AM EDT (#360098) #
"lexomatic, what I'm envisioning is a kind of reverse-Liriano swap. The other team takes on the undesired salary commitment (Morales) but also gets a couple of prospects (akin to Ramirez and McGuire) to improve the depth of their farm system."

Doesn't make sense for the Jays. The payroll will be pretty low next couple of years so they can afford to eat the contract. The Astros traded Hernandez because they had a lot of OFers they couldn't play and wanted payroll room for a WS run. The Jays should just cut Morales when Pearce is back (or if they can get something for Pearce or Granderson, they can trade them). Losing a prospect to go from $100M to $88M (or whatever) for a non-competitive year seems like the wrong move.
Mike Green - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 08:45 AM EDT (#360099) #

Of course, as a rebuilding team itself, the Jays might simply prefer to cut Morales and keep the prospects.

They might, indeed.  Donaldson will be coming back fairly soon, but might not be tradeable at the deadline for more than the value of a QO because of his injuries.  Solarte has earned some playing time, in that event, and it would be a shame if he ended up taking time from Travis.  
SK in NJ - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 09:24 AM EDT (#360100) #
Cutting Morales is the right call, but I'm not convinced they will do that. With 2019 being a transitional year, they can afford to let Morales stink it up at DH for another season to avoid dumping the sunk cost, so I figure that's what they will do. I'm hoping that Donaldson coming back, Travis getting hot, and needing a spot for Solarte will force them to dump Morales, but I'll believe it when I see it.

At this rate we need to prepare to have Donaldson until the end of the season (the injuries may have eliminated any chance of a good return).
Nigel - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 09:34 AM EDT (#360101) #
Travis being the loser in the playing time battle would be nutty. I think he’s likely to be the best position player on the team next year. Even if you disagree, the Jays have a number of prospects who profile well at 2B and the Jays need to figure out what they have in Travis. He needs to play as much as possible for the remainder of the year.
Mike Green - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 09:41 AM EDT (#360102) #
Transitional years sometimes turn out to be winning years.   In 2007, the Rays went 66-96.  In the off-season, they traded Delmon Young to the Twins for Bartlett and Garza.  They called up Longoria at the end of April, and ended up winning 97 games and going to the World Series.  It may be that the 2019 Blue Jays end up in the same position.  There are ought to be a lot of prime-age and younger talent on the club next year.  It won't happen though if management acts as though it can't happen.

uglyone - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 09:51 AM EDT (#360103) #
whether or not Martin or Tulo return anything in a trade, my point is that I would much rather eat money to get something rather than dump them to "clear salary".
uglyone - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 09:57 AM EDT (#360104) #
that goes for Morales too - eat the money, don't lose value.
uglyone - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 10:12 AM EDT (#360105) #
question for honest debate: which of these guys do we think it's a waste of time to give as much playing time as possible to next year in 2019 and/or do we think will need significantly more developing time next year in 2019?

CF Pompey 26
RF Grichuk 27
LF Hernandez 26
3B Gurriel 25
SS Diaz 28
2B Travis 28
1B Guerrero 20
C Jansen 24
DH Smith 26

SP Stroman 28
SP Sanchez 26
SP Borucki 25
SP R-Foley 23
hypobole - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 10:21 AM EDT (#360106) #
People keep bringing up Martin and Tulo as mentors on the team as their careers wind down.

I said this half-jokingly a while back, but I guess because none of us are Latino and we all speak English well, no one considers Morales as a mentor for the young Latino kids, Vlad included, that will be on the team.

If being mentored is an actual thing, I would say they need it far more that English speaking kids in an English speaking environment.
greenfrog - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 10:24 AM EDT (#360107) #
What if Rogers says to Shapiro, you have $435m (and no more) over the next three years to spend on payroll as you see fit. Then you might want to package Morales with a lesser prospect that your scouts are not especially enamoured with in order to save some payroll room for 2020 or 2021.

This is not completely hypothetical either, as Anthopoulos had to deal with a similar payroll situation in his early years in Toronto (save
money now in order to be able to spend more later).
uglyone - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 10:33 AM EDT (#360108) #
But Hypo the difference is that Martin and Tulo are still useful players, while Morales is a plain liability.

85bluejay - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 10:35 AM EDT (#360109) #
Sadly, it looks like the opportunity to acquire Jurickson Profar on the cheap (Relatively) has passed.
Mike Green - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 10:35 AM EDT (#360110) #
Martin is a catcher.  All young catchers need mentors.  Tulo is a shortstop, and a mentor at shortstop is a good thing but Aledmys Diaz will be 29 next year and is able to do some mentoring of his own at shortstop and of young Latin-American players.  Obviously, Tulo was a gifted defensive player and I'm sure has something to add. 

I've never seen a younger player on the bench approaching Morales, and there's really nothing about the game that he is clearly ready to teach about.  Maybe I have missed it.  Hernandez, Solarte and Diaz are all prime-age Spanish-speaking ballplayers who are available to mentor.  They seem sociable, friendly, hard-working, as well as adding something on the field. 
whiterasta80 - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 10:51 AM EDT (#360111) #
Nevermind that if mentorship is a legitimate concern we can always sign someone in free agency.
Mike Green - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 11:16 AM EDT (#360112) #
Machado and Harper are the prizes of the free agency crop, but neither looks quite as good as I thought they would.  After his injuries, Machado simply cannot play shortstop.  I don't know whose idea it was to let him try.  Bryce Harper looks like a classic "old player skills" player at age 25- maybe he, like Machado, is trying to do too much.  At this point, the best player on the Nationals is an open debate between Rendon and Harper.  I know that I'd rather be facing Harper with the game on the line and no place to put the batter. 
AWeb - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 11:18 AM EDT (#360113) #
I think it's fair to call any claims that a player is on the roster because of "mentorship" bull until proven otherwise. That sounds like a crazy way to manage a team, especially in the current roster environment where you only get 4 or 5 bench position players. The franchise employs dozens of coaches in the minors and majors who have the literal job of helping young players succeed by offering advice and leadership. Just because players will talk about mentors being a thing doesn't make them a thing. If the Jays need coaches who speak Spanish, then hire a few. Otherwise, I can't see hypercompetitive young athletes looking at veterans sopping up playing time like old dirty mops (with about the same effectiveness) as a good thing. Leadership and mentorship are "just so" stories that sportswriters love to build narratives with

So I'll throw this out there - who are the terrible players the Yankees and Red Sox have held onto the last two years that helped the rest of their rosters become so good? Or in the other direction, which players in recent Blue Jays past would have turned out better if only they had an on-roster mentor to help them?
uglyone - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 11:52 AM EDT (#360114) #
Last Calendar Year Update:

1.LF Granderson 484pa, 121wrc+, 2.8war650
2.3B Donaldson 547pa, 130wrc+, 5.0war650
3.RF Hernandez 333pa, 133wrc+, 3.3war650
4.1B Smoak 673pa, 119wrc+, 2.0war650
5.DH Pearce 327pa, 111wrc+, 0.8war650
6.CF Grichuk 388pa, 103wrc+, 2.9war650
7.2B Solarte 532pa, 103wrc+, 1.5war650
8.SS Tulowitzki 131pa, 94wrc+, 1.5war650
9.C Martin 393pa, 86wrc+, 1.7war650

B.UT Travis 131pa, 84wrc+, 1.0war650
B.OF Pillar 633pa, 84wrc+, 1.6war650
B.IF Diaz 212pa, 67wrc+, -0.3war650
B.C Maile 174pa, 77wrc+, 3.0war650

B.UT Morales 547pa, 84wrc+, -1.4war650
B.OF Smith 53pa, 124wrc+, 0.0war650
B.IF Urena 94pa, 62wrc+, -1.4war650
B.IF Gurriel 70pa, 42wrc+, -3.7war650
Mike Green - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 11:53 AM EDT (#360115) #
I looked ahead at the schedule.  There are many off-days from now through the end of July., but they play 28 games in 29 days between July 27 and August 22 inclusive.  There's some planning required for that one- you'll definitely want to have one bullpen spot available for pitchers with options to eat up some innings and then go back to Buffalo.  And ideally, by then, you don't have an everyday DH and you use that spot on the roster for players who can fill in at a spot or two in the lineup. 
Chuck - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 12:15 PM EDT (#360118) #
maybe he [Harper], like Machado, is trying to do too much.

His BABIP is .212. All his other rates (flyball, line drive, etc.) seem to be in keeping with his career norms. Is there any indication that his off-season is due to anything more than bad luck?

Chuck - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 12:21 PM EDT (#360119) #
I don't know whose idea it was to let him try [Machado playing SS]

Could that have been a concession on the part of Orioles' management to perhaps entice Machado to stick around long term?

Will there be suitors who consider him a viable option for shortstop? My guess is yes, though I do agree that 3B is likely his optimal position.

Chuck - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 12:25 PM EDT (#360120) #
I'm with AWeb on mentorship. It sure sounds good but I'd like to see some evidence.

Remember when Halladay was considered a mentor and someone (Marcum maybe?) said something to the effect that Halladay doesn't really talk to the young pitchers, that any leadership he provided was by example.

uglyone - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 12:32 PM EDT (#360121) #
Pitchers last calendar year:

SP Happ 33gs, 78era-, 4.3war32
SP Stroman 27gs, 97era-, 2.1war32
SP Sanchez 17gs, 109era-, 0.5war32
SP Estrada 33gs, 117era-, 1.5war32
SP Garcia 27gs, 132era-, 0.3war32
SP Gaviglio 13gs, 110era-, 1.1war32
SP Biagini 14gs, 158era-, -1.0war32

RP Osuna 53.1ip, 81era-, 1.9war65
RP Tepera 78.0ip, 83era-, 0.6war65
RP Loup 58.2ip, 99era-, 0.4war65
RP Oh 60.2ip, 95era-, 0.3war65
RP Barnes 64.1ip, 94era-, 0.0war65
RP Axford 42.2ip, 105era-, -0.1war65
RP Clippard 67.0ip, 119era-, -0.1war65
RP Gaviglio 6.1ip, 66era-, 2.1war65
RP Mayza 27.0ip, 122era-, 0.0war65
RP Petricka 28.0ip, 150era-, -1.2war65
RP Biagini 22.2ip, 167era-, -1.9war65
uglyone - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 12:33 PM EDT (#360122) #
Replace the word "mentorship" with the word "coaching".

I can't imagine a better catching coach than Russell Martin, for example. And the key is of course is that he's still a useful player, too.
hypobole - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 12:45 PM EDT (#360124) #
I'm not a proponent of mentorship, but IF it is a thing, then I would say the young Latino's need it more than the young Americans.

Absolutely right that it doesn't need to be Morales, there are plenty of vet Latino options throughout baseball, who are still positive contributors.

Martin and Tulo have been replacement level, not good, while Morales has been sub-replacement, bad.

And as to the "I haven't seen it, so it doesn't exist", there is this:

“The talent’s there, there’s no doubt,” Morales said through team translator Josue Peley. “He’s full of talent. He’s not just good and disciplined on the field but off the field, he’s been really, really professional about everything he’s doing.”

With his locker near Gurriel’s in the Jays clubhouse, Morales has willingly taken on the role of mentor to his compatriot. The veteran slugger seems to relish the role."
hypobole - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 12:49 PM EDT (#360125) #
"And the key is of course is that he's still a useful player, too."

Replace the word "useful" with "replacement level player I like".
uglyone - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 12:54 PM EDT (#360126) #
eh both WARs have him above replacement even this year still.

and that's with both having questionable catching defense parts - the more comprehensive BP catching metrics still like him quite a bit.
hypobole - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 01:05 PM EDT (#360128) #
Yeah, technically 0.1 fWAR is above replacement.

Anyway, Steve Adams of MLBTR on J.A. Happ and the supposed interest from both Yankees and Mariners.
uglyone - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 01:09 PM EDT (#360129) #
0.1 fangraphs
0.4 b/r
0.6 bp
Mike Green - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 02:20 PM EDT (#360136) #
His BABIP is .212. All his other rates (flyball, line drive, etc.) seem to be in keeping with his career norms. Is there any indication that his off-season is due to anything more than bad luck?

Harper's K rate is up 3%.  His range in the OF is down and his infield hit rate is down (i.e he's lost speed).  He's hitting more fly balls- plenty of them are leaving the yard, but the ones that don't are going to be caught disproportionately.  He's being shifted more than ever, and hasn't adjusted well to that.  He is pulling the ball more than ever, and I don't think it's an accident that more of his line drives are being caught than before. 

Obviously, he's got a lot of talent and is going to have to adapt. 
hypobole - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 02:37 PM EDT (#360137) #
2015: .257 average on ground balls

2016: .213 average

2017: .359 average

2018: .171 average

That's 12-for-70 with just one extra-base hit. And, yes, that's a lot of grounders pulled into the shift -- in part because he's pulling a lot more grounders. Check his percentage of ground balls to the right side:

2015: 54.6 percent

2016: 51.2 percent

2017: 48.1 percent

2018: 72.9 percent

Just 4.3 percent of his ground balls have gone to left field, compared to 18.3 percent last season.
hypobole - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 02:42 PM EDT (#360138) #
More from David S.:

One thing that's interesting to me, however, is that Harper's slump coincides with less plate discipline. Harper sees the fewest percentage of pitches in the strike zone of any hitter in the majors, but check the decline in his walk rate:

Through April: 29.0 percent walk rate, 25.1 percent chase rate

Since May 1: 7.7 percent walk rate, 30.6 percent chase rate

The walk rate isn't all related to the chase rate; as he has struggled, pitchers are throwing more pitches in the zone (38.8 percent in April, but over 46 percent so far in June). Maybe that's the biggest concern of all: Pitchers are less afraid of Harper than they were two months ago.
Chuck - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 02:42 PM EDT (#360139) #
Thanks to all for the comments on Harper. I don't think I've seen even a single AB from him this year.
hypobole - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 02:47 PM EDT (#360140) #
We should all take solace in the fact that our FO will not make the mistake of signing Harper to a mega-contract.
Mike Green - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 02:53 PM EDT (#360142) #
Thanks, hypobole.  The pulled ground balls information is more extreme than I thought. 
Mike Green - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 03:21 PM EDT (#360145) #
I missed this interview last week with Sam Gaviglio on developing his split/fosh.  The seam difference between the major and minor leagues is a bigger deal than I realized. 
hypobole - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 03:34 PM EDT (#360146) #
" The pulled ground balls information is more extreme than I thought."

Maybe Harper spent his offseason being mentored by Kendrys. :)
hypobole - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 03:45 PM EDT (#360147) #
I never realised until recently when a pitcher rehabs, like Stroman in Dunedin, he is allowed to use major league balls, while the other pitchers in the game throw milb ones.
Mike Green - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 03:46 PM EDT (#360148) #
I thought it, you said it. :)

Your daily Mike Trout update.  The four BBRef WAR leaders through age 26 are Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, Mickey Mantle and Mike Trout.  Trout will be ahead of them all if he plays the rest of the season at his career to date rate.  Age 26 for Ruth was 1921.  Ruth had a few pretty good seasons left, so the bar is high.  But, youneverknow. 
ISLAND BOY - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 04:00 PM EDT (#360149) #
That's interesting, hyperbole. I never knew there was a difference in the balls used in the minors and majors.
hypobole - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 04:12 PM EDT (#360150) #
Yeah, America's pastime gets it's MLB balls from Costa Rica, minor league balls from China.
Magpie - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 04:32 PM EDT (#360151) #
All young catchers need mentors.

Which is why it's nice to have an old catcher nearby. Ideally, that someone would be on the coaching staff - former catchers do often populate the ranks of managers and coaches. Don Wakamatsu comes to mind. But since letting him go, the Jays have only had their manager and managers generally have too much else on their plate. You'll recall that Arenciba's game, such as it was, went completely into the toilet as soon as Wakamatsu was gone.
Magpie - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 04:35 PM EDT (#360152) #
I realize that's probably a classic case of the post hoc, ergo propter hoc fallacy.
Mike Green - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 04:38 PM EDT (#360153) #
And sometimes they move from the older catcher mentor role into the coaching role like Girardi.
Mike Green - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 04:46 PM EDT (#360155) #
The Astros extended Jeff Luhnow through 2023.  It's a reminder that it will not be easy for the Jays to rise to the top of the league in the early 20s (ouch, I'll always think of the 20s as "the roaring twenties" and the new one is only 18  months away).
scottt - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 06:12 PM EDT (#360163) #
Not sure if you're suggesting that Martin becomes the highest paid coach in history.
dan gordon - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 06:19 PM EDT (#360164) #
The age 26 WAR comparison is interesting. Ruth, of course had a not insignificant portion of his WAR by that age as a pitcher. He didn't become a full time OF until his age 24 season.
grjas - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 06:26 PM EDT (#360165) #
the Jays have a number of prospects who profile well at 2B and the Jays need to figure out what they have in TraviS..

I think this is one more reason why Solarte May be traded in July. He can spell the regulars on a winning team, fill in for an infield injury and is a good bat off the bench. While he is a likeable player, the Jays have enough optionscoming up through the system.
scottt - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 06:38 PM EDT (#360166) #
So I'll throw this out there - who are the terrible players the Yankees and Red Sox have held onto the last two years that helped the rest of their rosters become so good?

That's a loaded question. It took the Red Sox a long time to drop Panda. Ortiz stayed until he reached 40.
Pedroia is still there and hasn't contributed.

The Yankees took several years to drop all their vets. They still have Ellsbury and Gardner. They signed an old Matt Holliday to DH just last year. He wasn't any good.

Or in the other direction, which players in recent Blue Jays past would have turned out better if only they had an on-roster mentor to help them?

Smoak, obviously.  Here's what he said just yesterday.

I've been part of a teardown in Seattle and we had a team of nothing but young guys and no veterans. And as a young guy coming up in that situation, it's not easy because you don't have too many guys that can help lead you. So you need those guys to help the news guys coming up.

When Pompey was handed the job in 2015 and failed, the other outfielders were Bautista, Valencia, Carrera, Pillar, Collabelo and Saunders, sorta.

Magpie - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 06:40 PM EDT (#360167) #
Oh, I really like this Juan Soto story. The Washington outfielder and general teen phenom made his major league back on the 20th of May. Today the Nats and Yankees resumed their suspended game from May 15, and young Soto hit a pinch-hit homer to win the game.

Five days before his major league debut. I have to see how bb-ref deals with this!
hypobole - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 06:47 PM EDT (#360168) #
Here's Elias' take on Soto's HR.

"According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Soto's blast will not be considered his first major league homer, but it will be counted as a home run hit on May 15."
Shoeless Joe - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 07:18 PM EDT (#360170) #
I think Solarte sticks around as the bridge between a Donaldson trade and Vlad Junior call-up. His positional flexibility is good for a rebuilding club as he can shift around as young guys get called up, get injured or get demoted. I mean this only if marginal talent is offered for him.
92-93 - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 07:45 PM EDT (#360171) #
This obsessive fixation on cutting Morales is funny. He has outhit Granderson for like 5 weeks now (and Smoak, really). The team is carrying 8 relievers, and in their typical fashion Preston Guilmet hasn't pitched in a week. With today off and another off-day each week until the All-Star break, 7 relievers should be more than enough. If you need a fresh arm, you option someone down and call up Mayza or another Bison. Gio Urshela has brought nothing to the table so far. In the unlikely event that everyone else is healthy when Donaldson is ready to return (and that Pearce has actually made it through the games leading up to that point), then maybe you consider dumping Morales. At that point, though, the Jays would be far better off capitalizing on the value that people here seem to think Granderson/Pearce have and pick up a prospect than they would be simply casting Morales aside. The dropoff would be negligible.
bpoz - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 07:54 PM EDT (#360173) #
Makes a lot of sense 92-93.
Magpie - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 08:01 PM EDT (#360174) #
Ortiz stayed until he reached 40.

Ortiz hit .315/.401/.620 when he was 40, with 38 HRs and 127 RBI. I would have kept him.
hypobole - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 08:18 PM EDT (#360176) #
Actually, the past 30 days Urshela has outhit all of Martin, Granderson, Diaz, Pillar and Maile.
scottt - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 08:21 PM EDT (#360177) #
Ortiz, while being good, still filled the need of having a mentor to young Latin hitters.
Hanley Ramirez was filling that need earlier and he wasn't hiding it.

Prospects need to be brought up when they are ready, not all at the same time.

hypobole - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 08:25 PM EDT (#360178) #
Actually, the past 30 days Urshela has outhit all of Martin, Granderson, Diaz, Pillar and Maile.

Just to set the record clear, this was not meant as a compliment to Urshela.
vw_fan17 - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 08:27 PM EDT (#360179) #
And sometimes, catchers become managers, and then broadcasters.. Wonder if Buck would be willing to help mentor a kid or two? He seems to still enjoy the game and would probably love to feel "needed"..
Shoeless Joe - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 08:35 PM EDT (#360180) #
The Nationals just acquired Kelvin Herrera for two FV 40 or C+ prospects with strong defence at 3rd and CF with average at best-ish bats. I would probably argue Samad Taylor is a fairly comparable if not better prospect than either of them.

The overall market for sellers seems to be fairly weak. This years sell-offs will rely on the teams scouting department more so than ever.
92-93 - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 08:49 PM EDT (#360182) #
"Actually, the past 30 days Urshela has outhit all of Martin, Granderson, Diaz, Pillar and Maile."

No, he hasn't. Even with his luck string of rinky-dink infield singles.
scottt - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 08:51 PM EDT (#360184) #
Yeah, that doesn't look like  a great return.

I guess Houston would rather get someone with at least another year left.

Shoeless Joe - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 08:59 PM EDT (#360185) #
In all honesty I would toss a few C grade prospects KC's way to try and get Danny Duffy from them. It looks like they are honestly just trying to drop payroll and the Jays need a cost controllable starter for the next few years.
jerjapan - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 09:18 PM EDT (#360187) #
This obsessive fixation on cutting Morales is funny.
Seriously, what else are we going to talk about?  This team sucks.  I don't find the 7 man / 8 man bullpen debate any more interesting.  Day-to-day, the single easiest thing to do to improve this roster right now is to release Morales.  I know that if he gets released, I will feel happy, so I guess I'm looking forward to that. 
Gerry - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 09:57 PM EDT (#360188) #
Stroman was due to start for New Hampshire tonight but the game was rained out.
Gerry - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 10:06 PM EDT (#360189) #
Stroman has tweeted that his next start will be in the majors.
John Northey - Monday, June 18 2018 @ 10:33 PM EDT (#360190) #
B-R has a great feature that lets you see the past 28 days ...
OPS over 1000 : Randal Grichuk, Sam Gaviglio (1 for 3, a double) - Grichuk has quickly brought his OPS+ up to 89 and OPS over 700.
900+: Dwight Smith (4 for 13, 2B, HR), Teoscar Hernandez, Josh Donaldson (7 games), Devon Travis
800s: Kendrys Morales (315/338/479 for a sOPS+ of 126, solid but if that is as good as it gets in a hot month for a pure DH...ugh)
600s: Curtis Granderson, Justin Smoak (689, 677 respectively or about 130 points less than Morales in their worst month vs his best), Russell Martin (603)
500s: Aledmys Diaz (lets get Tulo back), Gio Urshela, Kevin Pillar (dang)
worse: Luke Maile (065/194/194 for a 388 OPS a sOPS of 10)

So why do I want Morales gone?  Because at his BEST he is an acceptable DH.  His overall numbers though have an OPS+ of 75 which is about midway between Martin (a CA/IF) and Diaz (a SS).  When your DH hits like a gold glove catcher who is slumping and worse than a shortstop having a poor year offensively you have problems.
Glevin - Tuesday, June 19 2018 @ 02:43 AM EDT (#360192) #
Definitely a light return for Herrera. Not sure why the Royals moved him so early. Where's the incentive unless someone blows you away? There are more sellers than buyers this year but ace relievers should get you back more. Every team would happily take Herrera and I would think another team would give up at least a top-100 prospect in a package for him.
scottt - Tuesday, June 19 2018 @ 06:01 AM EDT (#360196) #
Duffy is signed for 3 more years at 15M and hasn't been great this year.
That would be quite a gamble.

Alternatively, this is probably a winter in which the Jays have another go at the Rule V draft.

christaylor - Tuesday, June 19 2018 @ 08:18 AM EDT (#360197) #
I wouldn't hate a Rule V pickup for a pitcher -- my preference would be trying prospect for prospect trades (maybe FO are/have, who know). I'm aware they're not common but with teams collecting prospects/tanking, it's probably worth exploring as preparing for future success. It might be hard to overcome the endowment effect but one would hope that at least a few GMs would be willing to go that route.
hypobole - Tuesday, June 19 2018 @ 08:30 AM EDT (#360198) #
Any team trading for Danny Duffy better be sure they can fix him because 3 more years at $46 million is an awful lot for a sub-replacement level pitcher.

I'd pass.
85bluejay - Tuesday, June 19 2018 @ 08:54 AM EDT (#360200) #
I think fans make too much of a big deal about where the prospect is ranked - if you are confident in the FO/scouting personnel of your team then you have to trust them - maybe KC really liked the guys they were offered .
uglyone - Tuesday, June 19 2018 @ 10:09 AM EDT (#360204) #
I agree that the rankings are a long, long way from gospel.
jerjapan - Tuesday, June 19 2018 @ 02:16 PM EDT (#360214) #
I wouldn't hate a Rule V pickup for a pitcher
I was going to say I would - I think it's a worthy gamble for a team without much prospect capital, or a lot of space on the 40 man, but thought ours would be fairly crowded next year.  But taking a closer look, there's no roster crunch.  guys I currently think we should add include SRF (obviously), Jordan Romano, Angel Perdomo, Kevin Vicuna, Travis Bergen and Jonathan Davis, guys we should at least consider adding including Jon Harris, Justin Shafer, Conor Fisk, Patrick Murphy and maybe Danny Young / Yeltsin Gudino. 

If we just wave goodbye to FAs, we get seven spots (I sort of see JD back on the QO).  that's without addressing roster detritus like Petricka, Guilmet, Guerrieri, Urshela, Morales and possibly Maile, or fringe prospects like Tellez / Smith.  doubtful that Garcia's option is picked up.
So yeah, grab a rule v pitcher if the right guy is out there.  We are going to have tons of options this offseason, with just under $70 million in salary commitments, some cheap options to pick up in Smoak and Solarte, and pretty much all the arb-eligible guys aside from Pillar underperforming, injured or suspended.   maybe $125 million or so in commitments, $145 if JD takes the QO?

With our farm system reinvigorated, and more prospects likely on the way at the deadline, I'm feeling pretty good about this team in a year or two. 
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