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The #BlueJays are in Beantown for four games.



Series Schedule / Probable Starters

Thursday at 7:10 pm ET - J.A. Happ (10-5, 4.44) vs. David Price (9-6, 4.44)
Friday at 7:10 pm ET - Ryan Borucki (0-1, 2.25) vs. Rick Porcello (11-3, 3.58)
Saturday at 1:05 pm ET - TBA vs. Eduardo Rodriguez (11-3, 3.62)
Sunday at 1:05 pm ET - Marcus Stroman (2-6, 5.90) vs. TBA

The Red Sox have won nine in a row with three-game sweeps of in Washington and Kansas City before swiffering Texas at home. They have a 3.5 game lead over the Evil Empire and 21.5 ahead of Toronto in the AL East. The 42-49 Jays split two games in Atlanta.
Blue Jays @ Red Sox - July 12-15 | 200 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
hypobole - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 06:34 PM EDT (#361664) #
If the A's still had Josh Donaldson this year, they'd probably be 12 games over .500
Shoeless Joe - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 07:07 PM EDT (#361665) #
It's interesting that they moved Diaz to 3rd and they're playing Gurriel at SS. I don't really think he is a major league SS, but I guess now is the time to see what he can do.
uglyone - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 08:02 PM EDT (#361667) #
I think Buck's lourdes-love is a bit ridiculous.....but that was a great clutch play to get Betts there.
Magpie - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 08:18 PM EDT (#361669) #
Buck's memory checks out - he only hit 58 HRs over 17 seasons, but he did indeed hit 3 off Gura and 2 off Splitorff.
Shoeless Joe - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 08:45 PM EDT (#361670) #
So do the Jays get a C level prospect for Happ now, er what?
scottt - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 08:47 PM EDT (#361671) #
Happ must have offended the baseball gods.

I really hated the pickup  play with the 9 hitter on a 2-2 count that led to the walk.
Bradley Jr is the guy you have to focus on there.

christaylor - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 08:49 PM EDT (#361672) #
Were they going to get much more than that? Apropos of nothing -- it was really loud here after that slam. Fun to be in a park where folks love the baseball.
scottt - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 08:50 PM EDT (#361673) #
The A's could use 3 or 4 starting pitchers right now. Donaldson? Chapman is their best player. Where would they play him even if he was healthy? DH?
Shoeless Joe - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 09:12 PM EDT (#361674) #
I really enjoyed Fenway, its a great baseball experience.
SK in NJ - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 09:15 PM EDT (#361675) #
Happ got screwed. Hopefully teams who were scouting him saw the type of horrible luck/defense he had behind him tonight.

This is the risk in waiting to trade players. Teams are already reluctant to part with prospects nowadays but the longer the Jays wait, the more Happís value will decline. The # of starts he can make for another team is shrinking and the Jays are keeping him long enough for him to start struggling. On the flip side teams may not have been urgent to trade for him two weeks ago when his value was at its peak.
Shoeless Joe - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 09:19 PM EDT (#361676) #
Did Buck just say Harold Ramirez was a power hitting outfielder? I think he's turning it around as a prospect, but power hitter....ummm no.
hypobole - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 09:39 PM EDT (#361677) #
Scottt, it was a joke.
cybercavalier - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 10:25 PM EDT (#361679) #
Travis is hitting 4-4 behind Pillar. Is it time to move Travis ahead of Pillar in the order?
cybercavalier - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 10:32 PM EDT (#361680) #
Missed opportunity when Morales is hitting in the top 8th with Granderson and Hernandez on bases. Still, why Martin bats with RISP when his .avg is below .200.
SK in NJ - Thursday, July 12 2018 @ 10:36 PM EDT (#361681) #
Hopefully the A's stay hot and the M's cool down. Adding another contender in the AL opens things up a bit from a trade standpoint.
ayjackson - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 12:22 AM EDT (#361684) #
Amy post game announcement on Saturday's starter? Pannone?
Mike Green - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 08:41 AM EDT (#361685) #
Lesson of last night's game: as a LHP,  you do not want to face Mookie Betts with the bases loaded.  This year he's hitting .356/.437/.767 with 8 homers and 9 strikeouts against left-handers.  You absolutely do not want to walk JBJ- if he grounds a single through the shift, so be it. 

Happ pitched Betts very well, but really the best thing for Happ is to face Betts when it does not matter as much. On the other hand, he showed how you pitch effectively to J.D. Martinez.  It's not easy, but there is a way.

It was nice to see Travis hit some balls hard.  I would probably put him in the leadoff role after the deadline.

Shoeless Joe - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 09:26 AM EDT (#361688) #
Devon Travis since his recall:

0.298/0.341/0.479 - wRC+ 122
5.4 BB%, 14.7 K% 0.182 ISO

I agree he should probably be the leadoff hitter on this team.
uglyone - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 09:38 AM EDT (#361689) #
cybercav, imo pillar should have been moved to the bottom of the lineup long ago.

Pillar's last 200pa: .179avg, .485ops, 25wrc+

In reality, he should be fighting for even to keep his starting spot at this point. And I'd view him as a #4 OF going forward.
Mike Green - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 09:47 AM EDT (#361690) #
Did Buck just say Harold Ramirez was a power hitting outfielder? I think he's turning it around as a prospect, but power hitter....ummm no.

It is a reach, but Harold Ramirez has 9 doubles and 5 homers since June 1 (130 PAs).  Or else, he was confusing him with Hanley c. 2015 (Buck is 69).
uglyone - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 10:04 AM EDT (#361692) #
Last Calendar Year

vRHP

1.LF Granderson 122wrc+
2.3B Donaldson 134
3.1B Smoak 126
4.RF Hernandez 127
5.CF Grichuk 114
6.DH Solarte 96
7.SS Diaz 94
8.2B Travis 83
9.C Martin 73

v LHP

1.2B Travis 106
2.3B Donaldson 164
3.1B Smoak 115
4.DH Morales 127
5.LF Hernandez 109
6.CF Pillar 89
7.C Maile 131
8.RF Grichuk 69
9.SS Diaz 39

B.UT Solarte 80
B.OF Granderson 25
B.IF Gurriel 22
B.C Martin 72



Last 2yrs

vRHP

1.LF Granderson 120
2.3B Donaldson 138
3.1B Smoak 124
4.RF Hernandez 115
5.DH Solarte 108
6.C Martin 105
7.CF Grichuk 98
8.SS Diaz 98
9.2B Travis 94

B.UT Morales 87
B.OF Pillar 72
B.IF Gurriel 99
B.C Maile 37


vLHP

1.2B Travis 127
2.3B Donaldson 137
3.1B Smoak 130
4.DH Morales 136
5.LF Hernandez 118
6.CF Pillar 106
7.RF Grichuk 97
8.C Maile 88
9.SS Diaz 44

B.UT Solarte 70
B.OF Granderson 72
B.IF Gurriel 22
B.C Martin 78
lexomatic - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 10:48 AM EDT (#361697) #
Article on Boruckis change on fangraphs. Can't post link from phone.

hypobole - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 11:41 AM EDT (#361700) #
link

https://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/ryan-borucki-and-baseballs-newest-plus-pitch/
cybercavalier - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 12:58 PM EDT (#361705) #
uo, if so put Grichuk at CF and promote one of our OF in Buffalo. Smith Jr., is he good enough to stay? Pillar as the 4th OF going forward means Granderson is expandable; any trade idea?

The following are my non-Granderson related idea:1) J-Leb and Jansen were playing in Triple-A Allstar game. New Hamsphire representative Jonathan Davis is promoted to Buffalo. Is it time to promote J-Leb or both to Toronto? Martin can then play his 3B-C platoon role and Solarte play some part time in LF. In cycle, these arrangements help ease the loss of PAs of Granderson in trade. Frankly, one may want Jansen to play a full Triple-A season and be promoted in September but J-Leb is what he is now. Let the Jays not waste his development; bring him up and see what he can do.

Gerry - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 03:36 PM EDT (#361716) #
Dwight Smith Jr. is in Boston. Perhaps Estrada to the DL?
Mike Green - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 05:31 PM EDT (#361719) #
Gaviglio gets the start tomorrow on two days rest. Presumably it's a Johnny Wholes taffeta day.
Mike Green - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 05:33 PM EDT (#361720) #
Nice autocorrect. Johnny Wholestaff is what I meant.
cybercavalier - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 05:56 PM EDT (#361721) #
nice word clue. expendable
ISLAND BOY - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 07:02 PM EDT (#361722) #
The Boston Red Sox will be hosting a special Johnny Wholes Day tomorrow. Wholes was a slick-fielding shortstop with the Boston Red Stockings from 1871-1875, and the expression " deep in the hole at shortstop " is believed to come from people saying, " Wow, Wholes is playing really deep at shortstop!" As a high point of Johnny Wholes Day, the first 1000 people entering Fenway Park will receive a free red taffeta throwback Red Stockings cap.
lexomatic - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 07:56 PM EDT (#361723) #
I know I watch /listen to more Jay's games than those for other teams, but they just seem so much sloppier than other teams.Martin looks finished to me. He's dropped so much today. That error at the plate should have been his, he wasn't in front of that throw and waved at it. Didn't go after the ball at all. He's been one of my favorite Jays but not good. Borucki deserved better than this game.
Nigel - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 08:15 PM EDT (#361724) #
One of the hard questions that should be asked of this management team (but will never be by the Rogers reporters) is why they continue to try and put players in positions that are beyond theyíre defensive capabilities. It wrecks the value of some useful players. They have done it repeatedly in the past two years. Most obviously playing DHs in the corner OF positions. Now Gurriel appears to be the latest example. All prospect reports have suggested he canít play SS and in his major league cameos there he has looked very poor.
cybercavalier - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 08:16 PM EDT (#361725) #
Martin looks finished to me.
Is it time to promote Jansen and bench Martin? Gurriel Jr.'s OBP is .262; has the observation on him done? If so, bring J-leb up and let Gurriel Jr. learn in Buffalo.
Nigel - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 08:17 PM EDT (#361726) #
Their not theyíre
cybercavalier - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 08:18 PM EDT (#361727) #
Dwight Smith Jr. homered; is he showcasing his performance to stay in toronto?
scottt - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 08:21 PM EDT (#361728) #
I don't know about Gurriel. He's got range, speed, arm. Maybe he'll improve with repetitions?
Nobody's looked good defensively, except maybe Travis.

Interesting game, though. Porcello was terrrible.

greenfrog - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 08:33 PM EDT (#361729) #
Nice to see Smoak staying hot. Heís slashing .244/.363/.478, and he could well end up with around 2 - 2.5 WAR this year. Thatís a solid season from a player whose MLB career was in jeopardy a couple of seasons ago. There is no doubt in my mind that his option will be picked up ó assuming he isnít traded first.
uglyone - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 08:42 PM EDT (#361730) #
I mean gurriel hitting 2nd and playing SS obviously isn't based on merit, but imo to hell with it - I'd rather watch these borderline kids like gurriel/smith/bunch guys at AAA play than the epically mediocre vets. give us something to take some interest in at least.
cybercavalier - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 08:46 PM EDT (#361731) #
If they are starting Martin, let him hit 9th when his PAs influences least and his career OBP ability can still help when the top of the order come to bat. Am I right comparing Ngoepe hitting to Martin's when both contribute mostly to the performance by walks?
Nigel - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 08:54 PM EDT (#361732) #
uglyone, I have zero problem with playing Gurriel. In fact, Iím all in favour of it. But 2B, 3B and LF all look like positions that heís better suited to. Iíd actually like to see him get a run of games at 3B as I think (just subjectively) that might be his best defensive position.
hypobole - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 09:13 PM EDT (#361733) #
Gurriel, Gift and Urena have each played about the same amount of games at SS in Buffalo. Gurriel has the best fielding% and the best range factor per bbref, FWIW.
Nigel - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 09:40 PM EDT (#361734) #
I accept the eye test is fallible. But that doesnít pass the eye test. Urena looked like a capable defender at SS. Gurriel, not so much.
hypobole - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 09:49 PM EDT (#361736) #
To me, Urena didn't look good at SS when he was up earlier. Diaz looks capable.
Mike Green - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 10:14 PM EDT (#361737) #
Buck, there is no way in heaven that Smoak scores on Morales double into the right-field corner.  It's Smoak running and Mookie Betts fielding...
SK in NJ - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 10:26 PM EDT (#361738) #
After that double, Morales has bumped his wRC+ up to 100. He is making the hardest contact of his career and also walking more. I would love to admit I was wrong if Morales can keep this up and end up having an above average offensive season. He started the year about as bad as possible.
hypobole - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 10:36 PM EDT (#361739) #
Almost hate saying this with 3 outs still to go, but our pen has been pretty good for the past month.
hypobole - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 10:45 PM EDT (#361740) #
If you didn't know Dombrowki is looking for bullpen help at the deadline, you probably do now.
greenfrog - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 11:16 PM EDT (#361741) #
Smoak now has 16 HR and a wRC+ of 134. That is good. Based on the rankings in the recent Fangraphs article and his continued hot hitting, he should now be a top-five first baseman in the AL this year (in an admittedly weak field).

A Happ-plus-Smoak trade to the Yankees might make sense, although Smoak could be a useful player next year if the Jays are planning on trying to contend. His durability is an asset on this roster.
uglyone - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 11:29 PM EDT (#361742) #
Nigel - I agree that gurriel is a 3b defensively. but Urena might be, too. they are very similar out there imo.

but obviously Diaz is the one real SS.

honestly I'm well sick of solarte and his trotting to first. I hope we trade him while his numbers still look good.
uglyone - Friday, July 13 2018 @ 11:32 PM EDT (#361743) #
hypo - dombo might be looking for help at 3b, 2b, and SP too.
scottt - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 07:15 AM EDT (#361744) #
Pat confirmed the rumour Morales has bad vision in his right eye. I wonder if he's wearing contact.
scottt - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 07:20 AM EDT (#361745) #
My favourite part of last night was the face Leaper made when Morales ran to third on Martin's grounder, forcing Smoak to an out at the plate.
bpoz - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 11:08 AM EDT (#361748) #
Porcello has had 3 bad games in May, 2 in June and 1 in July. His worst last night. IMO he is definitely not a #1. Recently he has alternating very good and ok years. 2014 and 2016 were very good.
I don't know what his playoff performance is but he would face only good teams in the playoffs. If he is off Boston most likely loses. We know that D Price is a poor playoff performer. This leaves C Sale as their only reliable hope. Good surprises do happen, so Boston may have a surprise hot SP.

Last year L Severino was bad in the WC game but the Twin's pitching let them off the hook. I think the Jay's pitching would have eliminated NYY last year.

As a Jay's fan I don't fear Boston in the playoffs. I am quite confident that our playoff rotation would be better.
cybercavalier - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 11:53 AM EDT (#361750) #
I am thinking of what asset a Curtis Granderson's trade can return.
hypobole - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 11:55 AM EDT (#361751) #
With Morales dragging his behind up to replacement level, Gift Ngoepe is the only Jays position player this year with negative fWAR. Last year we had 13.
Gerry - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 12:04 PM EDT (#361752) #
Chris Rowley up, Borucki optioned to keep on routine but will be back after all star break. Jamie Garcia up and will be activated tomorrow.

Roberto Osuna pitched in the GCL today.
Shoeless Joe - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 02:20 PM EDT (#361753) #
So is Lourdes Gurriel Jr. basically Kevin Pillar as a hitter?


aarne13 - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 02:23 PM EDT (#361755) #
Stick a fork in Martin. Accept the fact that you will have to eat the contract. I just wonder how long it will take Mgmnt to pull the plug.

I think Smith Jr and Gurriel deserve regular playing time.
The last week has been really painful to watch :/
uglyone - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 02:28 PM EDT (#361756) #
osuna's not even in the top 5 oldest players to suit up for the GCL jays this year.
uglyone - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 02:31 PM EDT (#361757) #
BP's thorough catcher defense metric thinks Martin is a top 5 defensive C in baseball still, as he usually is. no reason to throw that away. the salary is irrelevant - it's a sunk cost and they don't need the payroll space.
bpoz - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 02:52 PM EDT (#361759) #
The FO will tell us as little as possible. I agree with that.


Before finalizing their plans for next year they have to go through the July 31 trade deadline and a fair part of the off season before we can know a lot of the details.


Is Donaldson here or gone and what are the details. Happ out at the trade deadline or he walks at seasons end. He probably gets a QO. Pillar possibly traded or is he too valuable to the 2019 team. He is durable, reliable and still cheap.


Quite a few questions and a long list of ready to close to ready prospects.
bpoz - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 02:59 PM EDT (#361760) #
Since Osuna is pitching in Florida, I assume that there is no legal obstacle.
Nigel - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 04:51 PM EDT (#361761) #
Hypobole, thatís an excellent stat. Itís one of the least understood issues with roster construction. This team is a mile away from contention. This isnít a team dragged down by a few black holes (like the 2015 squad) itís mediocre everywhere (with the exception of two or three starters and one maybe two position players). They need to upgrade everywhere.
jerjapan - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 05:47 PM EDT (#361762) #
Missed the game, but not crazy about Rowley pitching in extras, that's a lot of weight on a fringey guy who no doubt is feeling the adrenaline / pressure.  I get it, it was a close game the whole way, but get him in there earlier. 
scottt - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 05:50 PM EDT (#361763) #
It's not like the best team is baseball is walking over them. They are missing both Osuna and Tepera and couldn't close the 9th inning today. Pitch running for Smoak in the 10th wasn't a great idea, but they are bit banged up I think.

Guys seem to be running at will against Martin and his offense is mostly just walks. Somehow  the metrics still likes him.

Magpie - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 08:53 PM EDT (#361767) #
Kendrys Morales has a better OPS+ than Edwin Encarnacion? When did that happen?
dan gordon - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 10:50 PM EDT (#361769) #
From May 19th to now, almost 2 months, Morales is hitting .313/.369/.567/.936. He's hitting righties better than lefties this year, with an OPS of .788 batting lefty.
hypobole - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 11:03 PM EDT (#361770) #
I get it, it was a close game the whole way, but get him in there earlier.

If Gibby got him in earlier, the game wouldn't have made it to extras. Ideally, he wouldn't have been used at all.
greenfrog - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 11:07 PM EDT (#361771) #
It has been an impressive run for Morales, and yet he is at 0 WAR for the year and is likely still untradeable. Perhaps a contender will see him as a useful bat in a circumscribed role (somewhat similar to Pearce, albeit with less versatility and less of a platoon split), and agree to trade for him if the Jays eat, say, 75% of his remaining contractual obligation.
bpoz - Saturday, July 14 2018 @ 11:13 PM EDT (#361772) #
Close game. Lost because we are missing some pieces. I knew that an arm was needed after Friday's usage of the pen. The pen will be tired again tomorrow.
uglyone - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 01:01 AM EDT (#361773) #
"This isnít a team dragged down by a few black holes (like the 2015 squad) itís mediocre everywhere"

unfortunately, that's the FO's actual team building plan.

the only avenue to being better than mediocre for them is internal growth.
hypobole - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 01:24 AM EDT (#361774) #
Well anyone without an agenda can plainly see internal growth is the only option. The "stars" left over from the previous regime have been as much or more useless than the mediocrity from the new regime.

A guy the new regime picked up in a trade for J.B. Woodman has been worth as much as Tulo, Martin and Donaldson combined.
uglyone - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 01:26 AM EDT (#361775) #
seems to me we were able to add all sorts of non-mediocrities from outside the org in recent years.
Spifficus - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 01:50 AM EDT (#361776) #
And how many from the farm system to account for the ones lost or atrophied? You need the pipeline of cheap good players in order to afford the expensive ones you need to fill in the gaps (or a whole lot of cheap young averagish players to surround a few damned good stars, depending whether you're a stars-and-scrubs person or a balanced attack type). The core didn't hold, because of a few defections and a whole lot of age and injuries. It happens. Without significant reinforcements from the minors, things can go bad quickly.
Glevin - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 05:42 AM EDT (#361777) #
Oh yes, the old "get elite players for nothing" plan. The Jays definitely should have gone for that route.
Shoeless Joe - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 06:56 AM EDT (#361778) #
I suppose the last few years we did have to find impact talent from outside the organization. The only drafted position player to graduate from the minors was Kevin Pillar.
85bluejay - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 07:47 AM EDT (#361779) #
You guys are starting to let facts get in the way of the Kendry Morales narrative - that's not nice - Morales for EE straight up, who says no?
grjas - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 10:19 AM EDT (#361780) #
ďBP's thorough catcher defense metric thinks Martin is a top 5 defensive C in baseball still, as he usually is. no reason to throw that away.Ē

Yeah Iíd like to see Martin next year focused on helping the young pitchers and catchers rather than dumped for nothing. He has the Right skills and character to make a difference in a young career. But Iíd have him on the bench a lot of the time.
dalimon5 - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 11:00 AM EDT (#361781) #
Comparing a healthy players WAR to the WAR of three players that are injured and not playing is wrong. By that logic, Kershaw is past his prime and has fallen off a huge cliff this year and the Dodgers are stuck with him. Every team in the league would take Kershaw and that contract if they could fit it because they realize his past 12 month performance doesn't dictate his potential for a strong comeback to his norms.
hypobole - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 11:02 AM EDT (#361782) #
The one thing the current FO hasn't been is very lucky.

When Bautista was first acquired he proceeded to post a 58 wRC+ and 0 fWAR. The chatter here was whether he would even be tendered a contract. And if the team at the time was actually good, he may well not have been.

Edwin was released and picked up by the A's.

It was mentioned about a week ago smart orgs find undervalued players, like Aquilar. But it was luck Aguilar even got the playing time to prove himself. Oh, yeah and the same "smart org" that got and held onto 2.9 fWAR Aguilar waived and lost Scooter Gennett this past offseason. His 3.3 fWAR ranks 20th best among all position players this season.
Mike Green - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 11:16 AM EDT (#361783) #
Da Box participants are, unfortunately, predominantly (almost exclusively?) male and the discussion of Osuna's return could benefit from a female voice.  Here's Marissa Stapley's take. 

The question of role modelling has me wondering also about Thomas Pannone.  I guess that I could explain the PED suspension process and what it means to an 11 year old child, but it wouldn't be easy.  PED use, of course, is not as serious as partner abuse (although the suspension was comparable).
hypobole - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 11:19 AM EDT (#361784) #
"Comparing a healthy players WAR to the WAR of three players that are injured and not playing is wrong"

First Martin has been healthy. And when "stars" are injured, their replacements are almost never "stars" in their own right, so mediocre players get too much playing time. No one was talking about future value, it was a snapshot of what the team has been like this year, and the 3 have done little or nothing to raise the team out of mediocrity so far this year.
Mike Green - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 11:28 AM EDT (#361785) #
Mike Wilner tweets that Pillar and Gurriel Jr. are hitting the DL with Tepera and Garcia returning.  The Jays are running today with an 11 man pen and a 2 man bench (Granderson and Maile- two of their most valuable players so far this year).  Desperate times call for desperate measures!

I guess that if one of the infielders gets hurt, Martin will move out from behind the plate.
uglyone - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 11:40 AM EDT (#361787) #
interesting that the decision to move Diaz to 3b instead of gurriel probably cost us the game, given that so many here were discussing exactly that potential decision the day before.
scottt - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 11:44 AM EDT (#361789) #
Rodriguez on the DL with an ankle strain. I'm expecting an arm race between Boston and New York.
hypobole - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 11:48 AM EDT (#361790) #
If Gurriel is a 3B, without the ability to play even a fringy SS, does he really have any value?
uglyone - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 12:00 PM EDT (#361791) #
we'll see.

I'm obviously a stats > tools guy, but even I can give credit to gurriel for some impressive tools - he can make contact on pretty much any pitch, he has real power, he's got solid speed, and a gun of an arm.

of course he swings at everything and isn't putting up very good numbers even though pitchers haven't really starting challenging him with the nasty breaking stuff yet, and he just doesn't seem to have the hands to handle a key defensive role, so even when I squint hard and try to ignore the stats for now it's tough for me to see where the avenue is for him to become a legit quality starter.

someone here compared him to pillar at the plate, and that might be right....but maybe not, because gurriel seems to be able to adjust his swing and cover all parts of the plate better than pillars gripnrip approach no matter where the pitch is.
bpoz - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 12:16 PM EDT (#361792) #
Gurriel is definitely tradable. Can we compare the off season trades we made from the viewpoint of the other team. St Louis a serious contender and San Diego a rebuilding team.


We will be forced to move surplus parts one day. 3-5 years from now. Not just untradable contracts but decent players who have been beaten out of regular playing time.
85bluejay - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 12:30 PM EDT (#361793) #
The talking heads on Rogers owned Fan590 have mostly said they don't expect Roberto Osuna to suit up for the Jays again even after Atkins said Osuna would be the closer when he returns - with July 31st approaching and Osuna's return date of August 5th, makes for interesting times - I'd say this, the Red Sox should find a way to acquire Osuna, not only would that make for an awesome BP this fall but it would give them leverage against FA Craig Kimbrel.
Shoeless Joe - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 12:39 PM EDT (#361795) #
I'm not a huge fan of the lack of patience from Gurriel, and I personally think he is more of a back-up infielder on a good team long-term.

However with toolsy infielders like Gurriel I guess you have to wait and see what develops. Jose Ramierez wasn't much for the first few years he was in the bigs either, granted he was much younger.
hypobole - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 01:24 PM EDT (#361799) #
Kevin Pillar out 4-6 weeks. And this from MLBTR:

"Blue Jays trainer Nikki Huffman told radio play-by-play man Mike Wilner that Pillarís injury could have been a life-threatening one had his collarbone pushed in rather than out."
lexomatic - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 02:04 PM EDT (#361801) #
Kendrys Morales has a better OPS+ than Edwin Encarnacion? When did that happen?
I ended up looking at Statscast expected stats... and if Morales had performed to his expected stats, he'd be having a top 15 season for all MLB (fangraphs stats leaders)- between Goldschmidt and Shin-Soo Choo.https://baseballsavant.mlb.com/expected_statistics?type=batter&year=2018&position=&team=TOR&min=1

A number of Jays have under-performed, which I think is interesting. Not sure what some of the reasons for under-performing are... speed? shifts? hustle?Martin wouldn't be good, but he'd be passable. Same with Grichuck. Solarte would gain a bit of average, Same with Pillar and Travis. Diaz would gain a lot of average and power.
Hernandez and Gurriel get BIG power boosts. Smoak gets a little power boost.Did the team just get REALLY unlucky the first half? I'd like to know how to interpret these numbers better.
lexomatic - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 02:19 PM EDT (#361803) #
The average team is .004 worse in avg and .024 worse slg and .014 worse for wOBA compared to expectedThe Jays are .017 worse than expected in avg, .038 worse in slg and .023 worse for wOBA.
-xwOBA is tied for third worst (26th) with Red Sox, Indians, and Orioles. A's is .024 and Royals are .035!-Cards, Indians, Red Sox, A's, Royals are the only teams worse for differential in SLG-The Jays are the worst for under-performing avg (A's .010, Nationals, Indians .012, Mets 0.13, Orioles Royals .016) are the only teams worse than .01


lexomatic - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 02:26 PM EDT (#361804) #
It's a mix of good and bad teams. so not helpful .
lexomatic - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 02:38 PM EDT (#361805) #
Maybe quality of competition? AL East teams are at the extremes.
Rays and Yankees with positive (but mostly neutral ) hitting numbers - Rays most over-performing (1st, except 2nd in SLG to COL).
Jays, Red Sox, Orioles in bottom third consistently, and 2 in bottom 5 territory usually.

How are Yankees and Rays in pitching and defense?Yankees, Red Sox, Rays all top 10 in pitching WAR , two top 5 and 15 for the Rays for xFIP
Yankees, Red Sox, Raysfrom 11-16 in Defensive Runs on FGRed Sox (4) Yankees (7) Rays (14) UZR/150
scottt - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 03:22 PM EDT (#361806) #
Leone is on the 60 DL and might come back in August. He's been replacement level in 16 games.
Conner Greene seems to be pitching out of the pen in AAA.
Woodman is in A+. Doing OK, but still striking out a lot.

And of course the Cards just fired their manager, so they are exactly celebrating these trades.

scottt - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 03:25 PM EDT (#361808) #
Kinda scary for a guy whose value hinges on punishing his body.
jerjapan - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 07:52 PM EDT (#361809) #
Hypobole, ultimately, I don't get the logic of calling up a player that has no utility other than filling the 25th man role.   It just seems cruel to a fringe player.  The teacher in me would never expose someone to situation that they are likely to fail in, and extras felt like that with Rowley. 

I get it - he was never supposed to be needed.  And is this necessarily bad for his development?  Not at all.  Rowley is most likely super stoked to have had the call.  I really do see the other side of this,

I just don't like it. 
jerjapan - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 08:08 PM EDT (#361810) #
The article Mike links too above is definitely worth reading.  The response Marissa Stapley got for posting her opinions on social media is appalling.   I disagree, ultimately, with her thesis that the Jays shouldn't play Osuna until his court case is resolved, and I dislike how she speculates that Osuna's girlfriend is perhaps being paid off - that seems like victim blaming.  But  I agree with her completely when she says this:

"Perhaps I wouldnít feel this way if the team had communicated that Mr. Osunaís lost wages were going to be put into a domestic-abuse-prevention fund. If fans had been assured that the team was more committed than ever to educating players about domestic violence, to supporting their players in every possible way Ė not just on the field, but with mental-health awareness and action, the kind of action that may stop this sort of thing from happening with such alarming frequency."
dalimon5 - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 09:02 PM EDT (#361811) #
And how exactly, do Tulo and Donaldson contribute when they are injured? Do you think it makes sense to compare Tulo's "numbers" (from zero played games) to a player who is playing?

Instead of making it sound like Donaldson and Tulo are getting outperformed by other teammates why don't you just say something less deceptive like "Teoscar Hernandez has more value to this team this year than Donaldson or Tulo or Martin who have either been injured or in the case of Martin simply outperformed."
bpoz - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 09:12 PM EDT (#361812) #
It would not have mattered at all, but I honestly think that the Jays could have won this series.
hypobole - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 10:21 PM EDT (#361814) #
dalimon - It's deceptive to not point out Tulo has missed the entire season? I think posters here are all fully cognicant of that fact with or without me pointing it out.

And since he's missed the entire season thus far, he has contributed exactly nothing to the 2018 Toronto Blues Jays baseball club. Good players actually being able to play is somewhat important, because otherwise mediocre players get far too much playing time.
scottt - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 10:30 PM EDT (#361815) #
In the long run, losing might be better, but there's a clubhouse hit.
It sounds like Stroman wasn't happy about the defense behind him today and swore at a reporter who was asking about his time in Vancouver.

dalimon5 - Sunday, July 15 2018 @ 11:09 PM EDT (#361816) #
Hypobole,

While what you say is true, what you said was not. Pointing out something obvious (that Tulo hasn't contributed anything this season) and stating so properly after the fact doesn't address the fact that you tried painting a picture with your original post where Tulo's and Donaldson's on field performance (combined) was already eclipsed by mediocre players. If a player isn't playing a single game or missing the bulk of a season to injury...does it not follow that WAR is a useless Stat to reference? Even more useless to compare said players WAR to another players WAR who actually is playing?

I don't know...if somebody can't work in the work force due to an injury and is out of work on leave for 6 months...does it make any sense to say that the actual workers that are not injured (and working) have contributed more to the company in that time that the others are injured? Not disagreeing with your point or message just how you said something completely different from what you've now clarified.
hypobole - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 12:55 AM EDT (#361820) #
"If a player isn't playing a single game or missing the bulk of a season to injury...does it not follow that WAR is a useless Stat to reference?"

No. WAR represents contribution to team wins. A player that doesn't play contributes nothing. He has been of no use in that time period.
scottt - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 06:57 AM EDT (#361822) #
The last guys that were brought in were complement pieces, guys who can produce 1 or 2 WAR.
The guys that are injured or underperforming where part of the core. Sanchez, Stroman, Tulo, Osuna, Martin and Donaldson have been contributing over 20 WAR collectively when the team was reaching the playoffs.

bpoz - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 10:09 AM EDT (#361825) #
Well summed up scottt. The past 20 WAR contributed to our playoff appearances. Your analysis seems accurate. I also agree with your suggestion that the reduced WAR for 2017 and 2018 compared to the 2015 & 16 seasons are directly related to the terrible results.

A few Bauxites have suggested that those contributers should have been traded after 2016. Their suggestion has a lot of merit. Our results would have most likely been similar anyway.

I did not expect such bad contributions. I had a lot of hope.

Mike Green - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 10:42 AM EDT (#361826) #
It is weird. The best position players in baseball are all in the American League- Trout, Lindor, Ramirez, Betts, Judge, Altuve.  The best pitchers- Sale, Scherzer, Kluber, Severino, deGrom, Nola, Verlander and Bauer- are more evenly divided but still more in the American League.  And yet, the NL is more than holding its own in inter-league play- 102-85 with a significantly positive run differential.  The bad teams in the American League are really bad, and it is particularly true for the AL Central. The converse is true for the NL Central.   I wonder what a wRC+ adjusted for strength of schedule would do to the way we look at Lindor, Ramirez, Kluber and Bauer.   And on the other side of it, perhaps it's time to recognize (for instance) that Matt Carpenter is having a great year- maybe even better offensively than his outstanding 2013 once you adjust for strength of schedule. 

bpoz - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 11:27 AM EDT (#361827) #
I expect or at least wonder if/they are discussing the plan for the rest of the season.

I heard that Garcia will start off in the pen.
vw_fan17 - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 04:26 PM EDT (#361838) #
Mike - maybe the AL is full of star players, but due to larger contracts, the teams can't always get / sign as many above-replacement-level complementary players?
The AL (just a guess) may also have more dead-weight contracts. I can name quite a few off the top of my head, such as Albert Pujols, Russel Martin, Tulo, Hanley Ramirez, Pablo Sandoval, Miguel Cabrera, Prince Fielder, Kinsler (IIRC), Pedroia (?), Price, and on an on. That's probably just because I'm way more familiar with the AL, so it's just a quick thought and could easily be wrong.
Nigel - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 05:17 PM EDT (#361839) #
I think the inter-league quality/record issue is explained by the number of AL teams that made a conscious choice in the past offseason not to try to field a competitive team: Oakland, Texas, KC, Chicago, Detroit, Minnesota, Baltimore, Tampa, Toronto. These clubs are somewhere between mediocre/bad to terrible. In fact, there is only one AL team, the Angels, that could be said to have made an offseason attempt to compete and is currently failing in that attempt.

In the NL, the list is much shorter: San Diego, Cincinnati, Miami, and Pittsburg (maybe the Mets).
James W - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 05:20 PM EDT (#361840) #
Oakland may not have tried to be competitive, but they've achieved it. They're now 55-42, winning 21 of their last 27 games.

The Mets were trying, many projected them as a wild card candidate before the season. Of course, many thought Atlanta and Philly weren't good enough to compete.
hypobole - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 05:36 PM EDT (#361841) #
The Twins and Orioles definitely go into the trying to compete bucket. I think they both spent more on Free Agents than we did, including one QO guy each (Cobb and Lynn).
dalimon5 - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 05:43 PM EDT (#361842) #
"If a player isn't playing a single game or missing the bulk of a season to injury...does it not follow that WAR is a useless Stat to reference?"

"No. WAR represents contribution to team wins. A player that doesn't play contributes nothing. He has been of no use in that time period."

Actually you're wrong. That's not what WAR represents (hint: Wins Above Replacement). It has nothing to do with measuring team wins. Some people take WAR figures to add up to a total predictable number of team wins, which is similar to what you're doing by comparing WAR figures from different roster players with no regard to games played which is insane.

WAR is a counting stat...you need to be playing in order to be measured above replacement level otherwise there is nothing to count. Comparing Donaldson or Tulo's total WAR for 2018 season to a player that has played half a season to far is like comparing Vladimir Guerrero's WAR and saying he "has contributed nothing and has been of no use to us so far." It's completely irrelevant to the stat and using the stat to make that argument is weak imho.

Surely you see the shortsightedness of using WAR to unfairly grade players who are not playing games by comparing them to other players that are playing games.
scottt - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 07:11 PM EDT (#361844) #
I guess it depends on how you look at it. You can use WAR to measure potentiality--or quality of effort if you will. In that version of WAR you want to record potential outcomes rather than actual outcome, smoothing out what seems to have arisen from chance and aren't injuries flukes?

I prefer a WAR that measures what actually happened without worrying if the outcome is repeatable. Just like you can add up career WAR for a player without having to worry about if a guy was brought up too soon or too late or was blocked for too long by an inferior declining player.




bpoz - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 08:20 PM EDT (#361848) #
Oakland is on pace to win 92 games. Seattle 97 wins. Great battle for 2WC.
Shoeless Joe - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 09:04 PM EDT (#361849) #
So how many more starts does Happ have in a Jays uniform? 1 or 2?
bpoz - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 09:36 PM EDT (#361850) #
2 starts for Happ, my guess.
SK in NJ - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 11:29 PM EDT (#361854) #
Happ's next two starts are scheduled to be against Baltimore (28-69) and the White Sox (33-62). I would hope he could pad his numbers a bit in those two, though at this point opposing GM's know who Happ is, so as long as he doesn't completely bomb or get hurt, he should be fine either way.

The Jays have a lot of players they can move. It will be interesting to see who is the first domino for them. I wouldn't expect much for Granderson, Clippard, Loup, and Estrada, but Happ and Oh are the pieces that might/should get decent returns.
hypobole - Monday, July 16 2018 @ 11:35 PM EDT (#361855) #
Whether it's fair or unfair, a guy who was pencilled in as our starting shortstop has been injured all year and contributed nothing to the 2018 Blue Jays. That's a fact.

dalimon5 - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 12:16 AM EDT (#361856) #
And to that point (no mention of WAR) you are right and I have to agree.

I wonder sometimes if it would have been better for management to say that Tulo is fighting a career ending injury and won't be back at all for 2018 so fans aren't expecting a June return as was reported by media. Clearly the front office knew he had significant injuries if they went out and got Diaz and Gift and Solarte. I guess we will never know. Tulo/Longoria/Pedroia all came up around the same time and played against or on the same teams in college and all three are facing the challenge of staying relevant in the new MLB. While Longoria is a bit younger, Pedroia and Tulo are both trying to come back from career ending type injuries. They've both said recently that these injuries are not ones they want to push too hard to come back from because they've been told by their doctors that if they don't completely heal "that could be it."
Shoeless Joe - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 06:08 AM EDT (#361857) #
I would hope that we get a similar to return for Oh, as we did for Joe Smith.
ISLAND BOY - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 06:21 AM EDT (#361858) #
I don't know if the front office knew for sure that Tulo would be out for the whole season, but they knew that he and Travis were injury prone and were likely to miss games. They also felt that Goins and Barney were inadequate replacements the year before and didn't bring them back. I much rather watch Diaz and Solarte.
scottt - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 06:55 AM EDT (#361859) #
What the Jays really need is a top pitching prospect. Last year the Mets got, I think 7 fringe pitching prospects for a bunch of players. Not really worth the effort.

I'm not sure Oh is really that valuable. He's got an extra year of control, but it's not like you can' resign Clippard if you wanted to. Oh has been used strategically. Gibby doesn't like to bring him up against the heart of a lineup, so you have to take his ERA with a grain of salt.

Mike Green - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 09:21 AM EDT (#361862) #
John Lott has a fine piece in the Athletic on Arashi Madrani's question and Marcus Stroman's rant, with an interesting digression about Ted Williams.  I always learn when I read John Lott's column's.  The only thing I would add to his column is a remark about the influence of Mark Buehrle on Stroman.  WWPBD are probably good initials too.
Shoeless Joe - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 11:41 AM EDT (#361868) #
It looks like Machado will be the first major player on the move ahead of the deadline. The Dodgers are the favorite to land him, and Baltimore is reviewing medicals from an unknown team.
dalimon5 - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 11:47 AM EDT (#361869) #
I agree with Scott that what this team really needs is a top pitching prospect, but I would go one further and argue that it will be easier to acquire an MLB ace.

Front offices are loathe to trade controllable years. We need to go and get a legit SP Ala Houston with Verlander and Cole. If I were GM I would be offering the likes of Bo, Borucki, Alford, Reid Foley, Danner or Warmoth for Syndegaard or de Grom.

I'd spend on bullpen signings in free agency and more depth signings. I'd bring back Donaldson and role with a team like this by May/June:

RF Hernandez
DH Guerrero
3B Donaldson
1B Smoak
CF Grichuk
C Jansen
2B Travis
LF Smith

De Grom/Syndegaard/other strong 1A or 2 starter
Stroman
Sanchez
Pannone/ leftover minor capable starter after trades
Garcia/Gaviglio type

Best bullpen you can put together. I would build It around Osuna although I don't think this will happen.


Let Donaldson and Osuna be traded next trade deadline if we are not in the race.
dalimon5 - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 11:49 AM EDT (#361870) #
*roll
Shoeless Joe - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 11:57 AM EDT (#361872) #
Acquiring an ace pitching is what you would call putting the cart before the horse.
hypobole - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 12:08 PM EDT (#361873) #
I have to agree that a package of Bo, Borucki, Alford, Reid Foley, Danner or Warmoth should definitely be able to land Thor or deGrom.
grjas - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 12:18 PM EDT (#361876) #
That would leave us with a team similar to 10 years ago with one all star pitcher surrounded mostly by scrubs.

No I like the approach of adding more pitching depth in the minors rather than selling the house and furniture for one arm that might get injured.
rpriske - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 12:44 PM EDT (#361879) #
I have never been so happy that a poster is not the GM...

:)

dalimon5 - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 12:47 PM EDT (#361881) #
Grjas,

It's a fair point you make, but if we follow that path then it likely follows we trade or let Donaldson walk, trade Osuna at a lower sale price and essentially give up on Stroman/Sanchez/Smoak who are all good core pieces in my book.

My reason for staying competitive while letting overstock from the farm be traded/graduate is based on two things:

1) it's a business and likely makes little sense for a corporate owner to tank and give away business my not fielding a competitive team

2) the NYY quick turn around as well as BOS. If you include our current core that's younger then we have as strong of a crop as the NYY or BOS when they "transformed."

Stroman
Sanchez
Osuna
Guerrero
Bichette
Smoak
Jansen

Wild Card/Vets: Tulo, Donaldson, Biggio

That's half a line up and half a rotation's worth of young quality players.


Back it up with strong minor players:
Pearson
Groshans
Kloffenstein
Conine
Smith
Noda
Reid Foley

I thought the whole idea of having Toronto as your market instead of Cleveland was that it meant you could go after high salary players (or expensive ones) like Liriano/de Grom/Syndegaard.
dalimon5 - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 12:51 PM EDT (#361882) #
Rpriske...

What would you do? Who would be your #1 starter for the next 3 years?
rpriske - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 02:55 PM EDT (#361890) #
Trading that incredible overpay for a single pitcher? No pitcher is worth crippling your future over.
Spifficus - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 03:17 PM EDT (#361895) #
I'd be open to the concept of making a deal something like that (damned fine prospects for a few years of an ace) if he were the finishing core piece to a potential powerhouse team. That's not where this team is at though - it's significantly more than one ace from competing with NYY and BOS, so they need to gather as much frontline talent as possible. Then, once they have a deep and talented core in place, they can push in with an overpay.
dalimon5 - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 04:36 PM EDT (#361899) #
I would never offer ALL of those prospects for a single pitcher. I said I would offer the likes of...meaning a combination of the listed players not every single one of them...come on guys do you really think I would offer all of that while at the same time referencing the Verlander and Cole trades that required much less?

I would trade all of those prospects listed only if I got back 2 ace pitchers like deGrom/Syndegaard.

Spifficus - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 05:08 PM EDT (#361900) #
That doesn't change that they're not in a position to trade for an ace at full price (or more). Aces cost quality and quantity, which means Bo+++ (and given that list, Bo was definitely a requirement). They need to add more to their frontline core at this point, not shuffle it.
Mike Green - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 05:55 PM EDT (#361903) #
Who did the Astros trade for Verlander again? Daz Cameron, Franklin Perez and Jake Rogers.  About #75 MLB (Cameron), About #45 (Perez) and a longshot ticket.  Seems fair.  No top 20 prospect though. 
hypobole - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 06:43 PM EDT (#361905) #
Verlander was older and makes a lot more than either Mets ace.
Spifficus - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 06:43 PM EDT (#361906) #
Well, in fairness Verlander had more recent history as Not Ace as Ace, and came with about $65M and a vesting option left.
bpoz - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 07:35 PM EDT (#361909) #
How about the Halladay trade. I remember we traded him to the Phillies before the 2010 season. We receive DeGrom or Thor + $10 mil for 1 top pitching prospect, Jansen and whatever M Taylor was worth.

Our new Ace goes on to win the Cy Young.
dalimon5 - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 07:41 PM EDT (#361910) #
They acquired Gerrit Cole for Moran, Feliz, Musgrove and Martin. I think with the Mets not ready to compete and needing to pay big dollars to keep those two starters they would be willing to move them for a fair haul.

Syndergaard for Reid Foley, Pearson, Vicuna, Warmoth
De Grom for Bichette, Alford, Panonne and Taylor

The farm has lots of prospects especially in the lower minors to acquire pitchers of that calibre and the market is big enough here in Toronto that Shapiro could sign them long term.
grjas - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 07:58 PM EDT (#361912) #
The issue is one of timing. We appear to have boatloads of talent coming through the system, but none are yet proven, and even the likes of stroman and sanchez now have a lot of question marks.

Iíd rather build up a decent, proven core of young talent and look for the home run trade a few...and hopefully just a few.. years down the road.
Mike Green - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 08:10 PM EDT (#361913) #
The Verlander trade is the one that you want to make first.

I don't want the club to be trading for a proven ace and paying accordingly for that.
Shoeless Joe - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 09:47 PM EDT (#361914) #
I think it's very ironic to try and trade prospects to get an "ace" in Thor, when we could have still had him had we not traded him for an "ace" ourselves.
Spifficus - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 09:51 PM EDT (#361915) #
Thanks Shoeless, now my head hurts from getting hit with the irony 2x4.
dalimon5 - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 10:27 PM EDT (#361919) #
It's as ironic as every other baseball move that didn't work. It's a reach to pretend that we could have kept Syndegaard and contended with him as our ace in 2012 when he wasn't even done with minor league piggy back starts at that point.

Dickey was dominant. Syndegaard was not an ace. There's no reason to expect not to have irony without the benefit of hindsight. Therefore I find it odd that it's funny to you how we would try to acquire a pitcher now (2018/2019) that we were developing in 2011/2012).
bpoz - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 10:50 PM EDT (#361920) #
I was sad to lose Syndegaard. 2013 was a disaster IMO.
Spifficus - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 10:54 PM EDT (#361921) #
We don't have Syndergaard as our Ace because we traded him to get an Ace, and the proposal is to acquire Syndergaard to get an Ace. Unlike a lot of what people call irony these days, that's pretty clear cut, and with the nuance of a bat to the head.

Of course that has no bearing if I'd want to trade for Syndergaard now, one way or another. I just also happen to think it's the wrong time for such a move (I mean, unless the Mets were to sell him cheap for some insane reason). They need to collect as much frontline talent as possible, and dealing Bo (who again, is unparalleled in your list, and would be a required part of either package) isn't how I'd start.
dalimon5 - Tuesday, July 17 2018 @ 11:35 PM EDT (#361922) #
Fair enough Spifficus.

I'm not optimistic that waiting things out is the way to go. I feel if you wait 2,3 or 4 years then you're going to have to trade for some help anyways except it will be after Sanchez, Stroman and Osuna leave not to mention Donaldson. Look at the Dodgers, Red Sox and Yankees...they all need to make moves to augment their core similar to the Astros last season. Why punt the next few years? If you have talent ready to come up next year (which we do) and you have more in the pipeline to replenish as your current core departs...why not now?

Stroman/Sanchez/Osuna is greater value than Bichette, Reid Foley etc...we aren't talking about dealing Vlad, Pearson, Pardinho, Groshans etc
Spifficus - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 12:12 AM EDT (#361923) #
No worries on the irony 2x4 matter. I don't judge (except in its misuse).

As for the deals themselves, I just don't think there's enough frontline talent to be realistic. The Yankees have 6 position players on pace for 3+ WAR (some way more) an ace and a shutdown bullpen, the Red Sox have 5 players over 3 already. The Astros also have a good core 4 by 4 (position and starters), and the Indians have their MVP-level left side of the infield to go with that dominant starting rotation. The Jays only have 1 player projected to be around 3 WAR (Happ), and he presumably won't finish the year with the team. The core is rusted out, and it needs an mass influx of frontline talent. It's not about waiting everyone else out for me, it's about getting a core of cheap players in there producing above average (or better, or WAY better), and then supplementing it with the final pieces. Next year's going to be a "Well, if everything gels and I squint, maybe-possibly" year with Donaldson, so why dish Bo+++ to waste a year of deGrom/Syndergaard. If you want to talk about trading lesser parts below Bo, Jansen, Pearson, SRF (and the newly signed ones who won't fetch what they're worth to the organization, like Pardinho, Groshans, etc) to try to get decent-to-good parts, that's different, but don't deal the frontline talent.
Spifficus - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 12:32 AM EDT (#361924) #
In that vein, with Danny Duffy looking like he might have turned a corner in KC, I'd be giving them a call to see if there's something that could be worked out that doesn't touch the Jays' frontline prospects that would get them out from a $50M commitment over 3+ years.
Shoeless Joe - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 06:30 AM EDT (#361928) #
There is a real chance that Reid-Foley and Borucki pitch better than Stroman or Sanchez next year between shoulder and blister issues.
scottt - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 06:49 AM EDT (#361929) #
Syndergaard wasn't ready for 2013, but they could have signed whoever was available for a comparable salary in the offseason and called it a day. Even the signed free agent turned completely useless by 2015, the Jays would have had Thor by then and would have easily won the World Series, probably without having to acquire Price. '

When the Phillies acquired Doc, their core was 30-31 year old. The time to trade prospects for an ace will be when they have too many prospects blocked by All-Stars in the big club. Just look at the Yankees. Their lineup seems set, but they've only got 1 solid starter. The trade for Sonny Gray looks like a bust. If they are afraid to overpay for  3 years of an ace who might not stay healthy, why should the Jays with their terrible record do it?

bpoz - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 09:44 AM EDT (#361934) #
Very good point scottt. How old was the Astros core when they traded for Verlander?
Keep in mind that in 2016 they had an 84-78 record. On July 31 2017 the record was 69-36 and 80-53 Aug 31 2017.That was a good team adding a big piece made sense.


The Jay's record at the end of 2012 was 73-89. 4th place ahead of Boston with 69 wins. The big trades that off season made us the favorite by acquiring 3 all stars.
dalimon5 - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 10:55 AM EDT (#361936) #
Good posts. I'd like to keep the conversation focused on the current core team more so than 2012 core which wasn't my intention (not that I'm moderating this). Spifficus, I have issue with the way you compare Boston and NYY to Toronto since you're only using this year as a reference point. This is a terrible year for the Jays and Sanchez/Stroman/Osuna/Donaldson/Smoak etc all. I think if you compare the Yankees before they brought up Judge and traded for Torres or compare Toronto to Boston 2 years ago when their prospects were just joining or getting their first or second seasons under their belts...that would be more conducive. I don't disagree with you, but I think you're making the Jays look worse by only using 2018 as a reference.

I think we are in the same line of thinking though in that we would trade for someone like Duffy without touching our core/top end prospects. My only difference of opinion is the inclusion of Bo Bichette who I don't think is at the same level as a Vlad, Benintendi, Torres etc. To me I think he will be average to above average and nowhere near someone like Brendan Rodgers who has improved in the minors. I could be wrong, but I would be happy to include Bo for a Yellich/de Grom/Syndegaard type controllable player (that management resigns).

Who else do you see out there available besides my recommendation of Mets pitchers and your better recommendation of Daniel Duffy (better because you wouldn't have to include Bo) - which we can both agree is better than having to.
hypobole - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 11:26 AM EDT (#361938) #
What do you think of Gibbons? Jeff Sullivan at FG wants to know.

https://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/what-do-you-think-of-your-teams-manager/

FWIW, I agreed with the majority.
bpoz - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 11:30 AM EDT (#361939) #
The current 2018 core is Opening Day and April, Mid year (now) and the end of the year Sept to finish.

2018 core missing in action, all or part of 2018. We know who they are. Core improvements for 2018 T Hernandez, Grichuk and Borucki so far.


So is our current core about 8 players with additions in 2019 and 2020.
Spifficus - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 12:14 PM EDT (#361940) #
Yeah, last night's post was more of a quick-and-dirty, so I just went with what I could quickly look up. I wasn't trying to say we had no front-line talent, but just that it does pale in comparison to those other AL teams, who seem to have pretty deep cores. With his recent history, I think the working assumption has to be that Donaldson's MVP days are over (though he could still be a 3-5 WAR player). Sanchez and Stroman are more 3-5 WAR types - Part of the Solution guys, but not MVP level that are going to carry lesser performers on their back like Sale, Verlander, Severino, or Kluber. Another perspective might have been to look at the ZIPS projections coming into the year. Boston projected 7 position players with 2+ WAR (Astros 6, Yankees 5, Pitching-Rich Indians 3), whereas Toronto had 2. Top 10 WAR totals might have been another way - I saw a Jeff Sullivan article on this recently... it did not look good.

I think the major difference is how we see Bichette - I think he's a core frontline guy. He's not a virtual untouchable like Vlad, Acuna, or Torres but it just doesn't make sense to deal him with where they're at (probably a .500 team with Donaldson and Happ if I worked it out on a cocktail napkin). I see him as a .280/.350/.500 average defensive SS (or maybe trading some ISO for AVG, with his opposite field hitting ability). That's a star, 4-5 WAR player. Basically a this-year Bogaerts (or an amped up normal Bogaerts). And if he can max his avg to reliably .300+ and 30HR power, whoo boy! That's MVP level stuff.

As for decent players to take a chance on in the Duffy mold, Hrmm... I'd be checking in with the Mets to see if they'd soured just enough on Conforto. When trading Pillar was an option (maybe with Solarte), I was thinking Kipnis was a reasonable contract to take back to elevate the prospect package, but he's been hitting again over the past month or so. Of course, these types of pick-ups have the risk that they won't bounce back (for example, I always thought that Brandon Maurer would have been a good pickup...). There are potential decent options out there for those that aren't risk-adverse in a retooling/rebuilding year.
Spifficus - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 12:47 PM EDT (#361942) #

This was the Sullivan article I was thinking of (which was actually breaking apart positive and negative WAR contributions, not top-10 WAR contributions like I thought I remembered). Coincidentally, Kiley McDaniel posted his 30-21 part of the trade value series, which has both Syndergaard and deGrom in it. Bo was an Honerable Mention, along with other strong prospects Adames, Jimenez, Rogers, Senzel and Whitley (with Tucker, Robles and Tatis Jr making the actual list). Vlad still hasn't made an appearance yet.

bpoz - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 01:16 PM EDT (#361943) #
Red Sox have 1 more year of C Sale. They hardly ever produce Ace pitchers. They trade for them. Josh Becket.

Hope Vlad is not a disappointment. I expect him to bat in the heart of our lineup. I also expect him to play at 3B while in his 20s.


I think our core pitching is far ahead of our core position players.
dalimon5 - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 01:19 PM EDT (#361944) #
Well said Spifficus. This coming off season will be very interesting indeed. Some how some way I don't think Shapiro and Atkins have the guts to punt 1-2 years (or more) away until competitive again ala Ricciardi and AA.

I truly think if they can keep doing what they've been doing but amp it up (acquire 2 T. Hernandez/Liriano type trades instead of 1) then this thing can turn around quickly.

One thing we haven't quite focused on is managers. Does anybody think there's anybody out there that breaks the mould that could be available to the Blue Jays? To me this means someone that has an edge with intelligence or at least relies on their departments to take risks and take chances that "old school" managers would not. This is not to disparage old school managers or even "modern old school" managers like Gibbons. I'm talking about Kevin Cash who I've been really impressed with or Jon Maddon 10 years ago.

Is it even reasonable to assume that the manager will have that impact independent of the front office? Look at my example...both coaches of the same front office mentality...
dalimon5 - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 01:22 PM EDT (#361945) #
bpoz I think Vlad's absolute rock bottom floor is a J. Bell (PIT) or Santana (Phi). I'm not so concerned with him so much as I just really would love to start fielding the most competitive teams that we can starting by next year when he arrives.

If management maintains payroll then they will have plenty of space to bring in more bad salaries to increase the prospect capital for both depth and decent players.
bpoz - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 01:45 PM EDT (#361947) #
Expected moves for the Jays:

1) Vlad comes up in 2019 unless he struggles in AAA.
2) Jansen makes the Opening Day roster if room is created for him. It will be interesting to see how the details are worked out.
3) Similar to Grichuk, T Hernandezand and Gurriel a few others will become a part of the young core during the 2019 season. Auditions should start after the trade deadline moves out some veteran players.
4) 2-3 SPs will get a chance in 2019. Many relievers will get a chance.

The slow pace of promotions means that prospects are getting more minor league preparation. So current Dunedin players who open with NH next year can be called up if their performance is wow. Mainly pitchers I think. P Murphy, Y Diaz, Z Logue, A Perdomo. Taylor Saucedo and N Pearson have a chance in 2019, but likely 2020.


Does anyone have an opinion on Taylor Saucedo, now in NH? His recent numbers look good for a 6'5" lefty SP.

christaylor - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 04:49 PM EDT (#361950) #
Josh Bell is a 0.1 WAR player this year, so yeah, that probably is Vlad's floor.
dalimon5 - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 05:04 PM EDT (#361952) #
christtaylor,

If you look at Vlad's body type it's not hard to image that he can be a sinkhole defensively and that his SB skill set won't translate to the majors. That puts him at a huge disadvantage (in this worse case scenario) to put up huge WAR figures.
scottt - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 05:05 PM EDT (#361953) #
Right now, they are an average offense, so Vlad and Jansen would make them a better than average offense.
The pitching is always the wild card and the defense will not improve next year.
Ground ball pitchers depend on good defense, so there's probably hard times ahead for Stroman, Sanchez and Borucki.
Tepera, Biagini, Mayza will still provide a good relief core, as long as the starters give them enough innings.
I'm hoping to see at least a couple of fresh faces in September.

I don't there's a need to worry about service time with pitchers.
You can always send them down to reduce their inning total and protect their arm...

bpoz - Wednesday, July 18 2018 @ 09:11 PM EDT (#361957) #
M Machado to LAD.
dan gordon - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 12:14 AM EDT (#361958) #
Quite a haul the O's got for Machado. Jays could have gotten something close to this for Donaldson if he hadn't gotten hurt. Oh well, should be interesting to see what Happ fetches.
Glevin - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 02:47 AM EDT (#361960) #
"Quite a haul the O's got for Machado. Jays could have gotten something close to this for Donaldson if he hadn't gotten hurt."

Bad timing for Donaldson and for the Jays. Best case scenario is Donaldson comes back and rakes and looks like his old self and they can trade him in August. The qualifying offer pick would have been very valuable two years ago. Now, the Jays would get a pick likely in the 75-80 range.
scottt - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 06:15 AM EDT (#361961) #
75-80 is a great range to pick an HS pitcher. It's all about the scouting.

I'm not sure an August trade of Donaldson would bring back that much. The Dodgers know that Machado has been healthy and productive all year and he replaces an injured player.

greenfrog - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 07:41 AM EDT (#361962) #
Also, Machado is in his prime, can play shortstop, and is having a career year at the plate.

The Jays should make Donaldson a QO, though.
Shoeless Joe - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 08:05 AM EDT (#361963) #
I don't think the haul Machado received was still as previous years.
85bluejay - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 08:12 AM EDT (#361964) #
By far, my biggest disappointment with this regime is that after the disastrous start to 2017 & given the age of the roster, the FO didn't aggressively begin the selloff last July & speed up the rebuild - any gate & TV ratings lost would be more than made up by a quicker return to relevance - and with the unfortunate happenings to potential selloff candidates this year, it's 2 years lost.
bpoz - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 09:18 AM EDT (#361965) #
What you said about 2017 and starting the rebuild 85bluejay is correct now. But are you using hindsight or was that a firm decision. Please note I am not looking to argue with you.

On July 31, 2017 KC had the 2nd WC and then faded. They were 6 gms over .500. We were 7 gms back, Twins 4.5 Oakland 9 back of the WC. Twins 3 gms below .500 and Jays 8 gms.

If we had traded Donaldson we would have been weaker. Fan complaints are probably more because some would have pointed to the Donaldson trade especially if he was playing well for his new team. Secondly the 85 win Twins would suggest that the 2nd WC was winnable.


I think selling at the 2017 deadline is definitely a CWS, Twin and Oakland philosophy. IMO they seem to do that.

KC and Seattle faded. The Twins had given up I believe, because they sold at the deadline.

I expect this situation to repeat itself fairly often and the same teams will follow their usual philosophy.

dalimon5 - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 09:55 AM EDT (#361966) #
I agree bpoz. In hindsight it's easy to say what we should have done. Question is if the poster was championing that move last year. At the same time, who cares what they should have done BJW? Does it matter what they should have done with Morales, Price, prospects, Donaldson...now...after its all blown up. I think everyone prefers not to beat the dead horse.
bpoz - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 10:12 AM EDT (#361967) #
85bluejay said it well. None of us get our wishes. I am happy we got Donaldson and Martin just before the 2015 season. Disappointed that we picked Deck McGuire instead of a harder throwing lefty pitcher. C Sale. As time goes by my disappointment grows. So always happy and sad.


We do have a trade deadline coming up. I expect the FO to follow their selling philosophy. That philosophy could be a little complicated.
rpriske - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 12:13 PM EDT (#361968) #
Seeing that Hand deal, I wish we were first in line at the Cleveland trading window.

The Padres made out like bandits.

85bluejay - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 12:50 PM EDT (#361969) #
Step up Houston - Roberto Osuna can be yours!
dalimon5 - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 03:08 PM EDT (#361970) #
Yes...wow...if Hand gets you Mejia then please trade Osuna and throw in Happ. That's a huge score for SD.

grjas - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 04:33 PM EDT (#361973) #
Interesting to see the good year alumnus Eric Thames is having. SN has a write up in their Ex-files column. Always rather liked the guy and good to see him doing well.
jerjapan - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 04:34 PM EDT (#361974) #
Things have changed a lot in the last few years.   No way does the description 'made out like bandits' apply to San Diego getting one prospect - even if he is a top 25 prospect - for two quality relievers.  Cimber has FIVE years of control left and has an impressive K%, Hand has been borderline elite the last two years and is very good again this year , with 2 years, $13.5 remaining plus an option. 

Cleveland got a LOT of years of cheap quality relief pitching for a guy who may not stick at catcher.  I like the deal for both teams, but this is not a robbery - those days are gone. 

Interesting to contrast the quantity over quality package the O's took for the Machado rental - which makes sense for a barren minor league system - vs. the Padres giving up more to get a potential elite talent.  And what a system they have - 10 of the top 100 prospects in the game, three of the top 15. 
dalimon5 - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 07:27 PM EDT (#361976) #
Jer,

The Padres got a prospect better than Bo for two relievers pitching in a pitchers paradise. Although Hand is VERY good, Mejia is a huge coup and the best prospect traded since Torres to NYY.

He will stick at catcher and has already gone on record to reject promotion to the bigs (Cleveland wanted to promote him to play another position). He's really really good and just set the longest hit streak in the minors...ever, I think...something like that. His numbers are gaudy and he's a catcher. Imagine a prospect somewhere in between Bo and Vlad that plays catcher...thats a huge get for SD.
dalimon5 - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 07:34 PM EDT (#361977) #
Bo Bichette minimum for Hand+ is what Jays equivalent would have been.

Vlad
(Big drop)
Eloy Jimenez
Tatis
Senzel
Robles
Rodgers
Bo
Mejia was 15th but has had a great year, the best so far after Vlad and Tatis... so I view him as a #3 after Tatis and then a drop to Senzel.

Soto was in the category of these guys and look at what he's doing in MLB. Rodgers and Bo are elevated due to their SS eligibility...Mejia and Tatis have had huge years and that's ignoring their positions.

I reference positions because SS/C are two key positions where defense and non offense grades are hugely important.
scottt - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 08:35 PM EDT (#361979) #
James Wagner of the New York times, tweets that... "Some of the best prospects in baseball are in organizations -- such as TOR, CHW, SD -- that aren't in contention now."

BA--I think--describes Vladdy as a potential MLB .400 hitter. That's not putting it mildly.


jerjapan - Thursday, July 19 2018 @ 08:41 PM EDT (#361980) #
Dalimon, I assume you are of the 'best player wins the deal' school? 

you sound like you follow prospects outside the Jays more closely than I, I certainly don't follow them well enough to attempt a re-ranking for the top 20 prospects, and perhaps you are right and Mejia sticks behind the plate - he does have a good arm.  But I've heard lots of skepticism about him sticking- it's certainly not a given, or at least, not a given that he can play the position well.  I just listened to an interview with Preller where he lauded Mejia's ability to play 3B and OF, so perhaps the Pads don't even see him as a slam-dunk catcher. 

And both Hand and Cimber have huge K% - pitching in SD will help keep balls in the park, but it's not going to affect your K rate. 

I still think it's a fair deal, and I do think there would have been more prospect value included even just five years ago, but the game has changed.
Preller has a track record of going for one elite prospect over a package as well - he did the Drew Pomeranz straight up for Anderson Espionaza deal two years back, and I remember that raising eyebrows at the time.  Doubt anyone would find that unusual today. 
Spifficus - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 12:10 AM EDT (#361981) #
Am I crazy for seeing prime Brett Cecil in Hand?

As for the deal itself, I think the Padres did really really well to combine up on this, especially for relievers (which they seem to develop. Prospects this good aren't often available at all, let alone for relievers. To get one for a waiver-wire converted starter and a 27 year old rookie is quite the feat. I say that not to disparage what they are now, but to show the capricious nature of relievers.
dalimon5 - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 01:21 AM EDT (#361982) #
Mejia has the 2nd best hit tool out of all the prospects. He's all offense and only guy better offensively is Vlad and maybe Jimenez. The bat will play anywhere.
scottt - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 05:57 AM EDT (#361983) #
Maybe they really like Yan Gomes and Perez, who haven't been very good this year.
Maybe they don't care for a catcher with defensive issues.
One thing is for sure, Cleveland is in a win now mode and Cody Allen is a free agent in the fall.
Seems to me Cleveland could use an outfielder or 2, but they probably don't want to sacrifice defense.

hypobole - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 08:31 AM EDT (#361984) #
Gomes and Perez have been very good defensively. Gomes has also hit well enough to be a Top 10 catcher in baseball per FG.

As for Mejia, his bat to ball skills may be elite, but the FG guys have serious questions about his pitch recognition.
Mike Green - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 08:47 AM EDT (#361986) #
Mejia's stat line is pretty good but not great.  He's hitting .279/.328/.426 with 18 walks and 58 strikeouts in triple A as a 22 year old (he turns 23 in October).    He was better in all departments last year in the Eastern League.  At this point he's quite a bit behind Bo Bichette (for instance) as a hitting prospect.  He's 6 months younger than Danny Jansen, and behind him offensively as well. 

The Indians are a pretty savvy organization and may very well have decided that he's not the #15 prospect in baseball, or anything close to that.  Still, San Diego did well to acquire him. 
rpriske - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 08:53 AM EDT (#361987) #
I don't know how this is even a discussion. A top 5-10 prospect league-wide for a couple of relievers is a steal.

Has Hand been good? Sure. Does Cimber have potential? Well, a bit... but way less than Mejia.

This doesn't make this a bad trade for Cleveland, as a couple of relievers is exactly what they need to make a serious run at a World Series, but from San Diego's perspective this is a CLEAR organizational upgrade.

If you could give up two of Toronto's relievers, and I mean ANY two, for Mejia it would be a snap trade.

Spifficus - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 09:10 AM EDT (#361988) #
THIS! this is pretty much exactly how I feel, rpriske.

As for Mejia's year, he started ice cold (apparently while learning new positions), but has gone nuclear since June 1st (or an average Vlad Jr). I personally have him lower than Bichette given his aggressiveness and below average catching, but in the same general tier, though.
Mike Green - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 09:12 AM EDT (#361989) #
Mejia has an excellent arm, but apparently the Indians did not believe that he was very good at the other aspects of catching.  It's unusual to have a great hitting catcher without injury problems who you try to move third base at age 21 (which is what the Indians did last year).  The typical thing to do would be to try to trade Gomes (as the Twins did with Pierzynski when they had Mauer coming up). 

Again, I would certainly make the deal from San Diego's perspective but it's important to realize that there are difference of opinion in prospect evaluation. The signals point in a variety of directions in Mejia's case. 


Mike Green - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 09:21 AM EDT (#361990) #
Any resemblance between Mejia's June and Vladdy was coincidental. Yes, he hit 14 doubles in the month, but he hit 4 homers, walked 3 times and struck out 14 times.  It was a good month but the slash line is deceptive.  In July, he's been back to bad again.  The seasonal line is reflective of what he has done.  On the other hand, you can believe (for scouting reasons)  that, like Gary Sanchez, his batting line does not reflect what he's likely to do in the Show. 
hypobole - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 09:46 AM EDT (#361991) #
The signals point in a variety of directions in Mejia's case.

One possible direction is a better version of Kevin Pillar. Pillar can get his bat on a lot of pitches, but a lot of those on not good pitches to get his bat on.
Mike Green - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 10:21 AM EDT (#361995) #
Fangraphs has an interesting study on persistence of success for relievers.   The study looks at relievers of all ages with one year of success and compares them with starters and position players in a similar situation.  Hand is 28 and is well on the way to his third consecutive year of success.  One would assume that relievers in that position would statistically do a lot better than the one year types (like Cimber).  I'll venture a guess that the Indians have acquired one significant mid-term asset and one one-year asset. 
Cracka - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 10:27 AM EDT (#361997) #
Am I crazy for seeing prime Brett Cecil in Hand? Cecil in his prime (age 26-28) was considerably better than Hand's age 26-28 seasons according to FIP metrics (Cecil: 2.88/2.34/2.34 vs. Hand: 3.07/3.03/3.17). Hand also has considerably larger splits vs. LHP & RHP, which is not ideal for a closer.
Spifficus - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 10:29 AM EDT (#361998) #
It absolutely is coincidental and certainly not instructive - I was just taking the moment to ruminate on the wonders of Vlad Jr.

And I'm not worried about a 12 game slump after that June - there are natural ebbs and flows. It was the 2 month prolonged slump (and the K rate) that was concerning and out of character. Even in his slump of a July, his K rate is less than half of what it was through May 30th.

As for the volatility of Mejia (will he catch well enough, and will his aggressiveness work against him), that's what was likely enough to knock him to the mid-to-lower part of the top 10/20 lists. Of course, it's the tiers that count, and team valuations are always going to be different (and far more up to date) than the public ones, anyway.

Mike Green - Friday, July 20 2018 @ 10:56 AM EDT (#362002) #
The ZiPS projection for Mejia is .251/.293/.409.  That does look a lot like Kevin Pillar.  Of course, Mejia is only 22 so he could easily take a couple of leaps forward from that. 
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