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There are two teams in a race for the worst record in baseball and the number one draft position in 2019. Seven of the Jays next ten games are against these two teams. In case you didn't know, the teams are the KC Royals and the Baltimore Orioles. In between the Jays go to Yankee Stadium for three games.

With the Jays starting their Buffalo battery in tonight's game, an early start to the series thread seems to be in order. If you are giving a major league debut to a pitcher, having him start against the Royals is not a bad way to do it. The lineup he faces will be better than those he has seen in Buffalo, but not by that much. SRF then gets to face the Yankees in Yankee Stadium on Saturday, before facing the Phillies back home, assuming all goes to plan.



We are three weeks away from the end of the minor league season, at least for Buffalo, and seeing who else gets the call. There will be several pitchers recalled but other than that it will be interesting to see which outfielders are called up. Dwight smith, Dalton Pompey, Billy McKinney and Anthony Alford could all get the call but the team does not need four outfielders. McKinney will probably get called up and one other. It could be Smith because he has been up a few times this season, or Pompey because he has hit the best in a limited time in Buffalo, or Alford to groom him for next season. It will also be interesting to see if Reese McGuire or Rowdy Tellez get a look.

Monday, 8:15pm, Sean Reid-Foley vs. Brad Keller

Tuesday, 8:15pm, Ryan Borucki vs. Heath Fillmyer

Wednesday, 8:15pm, Marco Estrada vs. Burch Smith

Thursday, 8:15pm, Sam Gaviglio vs. Danny Duffy

So today will all be about Jansen and SRF. Expect multiple family shots on your TV. Jansen has a brother who conveniently lives in KC, so they Jansen's will be there. Half of Reid-Foley's family are in Ireland for a holiday so his dad will be there at least.

There is no guarantee with prospects but it brightens up a dull end to the season. And of course the front office can talk about the new shiny objects to take our attention off the tarnished regulars.

Blue Jays at Royals - August 13-16 | 99 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
acepinball - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 10:39 AM EDT (#363619) #
My guess is they hold Alford down because he's got a fair amount of service time on account of his DL stint in the MLB. This, combined with his mediocre season and the other capable outfield call-ups should pause his season. Likely AFL candidate though.
bpoz - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 11:22 AM EDT (#363622) #
Jansen is very familiar with Borucki and SRF. Maybe he becomes their main catcher for the rest of the year.


Somehow they then can get all 3 catchers getting familiar with the other pitchers for next year.


At the moment I see Stroman, Sanchez, Borucki and SRF as still being with the 2019 Jays. SRF may have to prove that he can be in the opening day rotation. I don't know the roles of Estrada and Garcia regarding the 2019 rotation.


Jansen also has to get ML experience in all facets just in case he is healthy next year and someone else is not.
bpoz - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 01:33 PM EDT (#363628) #
I listened to the noon talk show Baseball Central. I really like Kevin Barker because he mostly agrees with my thoughts. So today the co host Ben Innes was saying that the 2019 Jays team would be pleasing if they had TB's record. 2 gms over .500. Barker disagreed very strongly. He said the 2nd WC is always within reach. Seattle and Oakland were not favorites to battle for it. They were more surprises. LAA was supposed to be favored.

He also said this year 2 gms over .500 or 10 gms under does not make any difference. Seattle's .580 record is a 94 win season. If they miss out and win 94 games that is very successful but disappointing. Especially since last years 2nd WC won it with 85 wins. Their fans will feel cheated.

Barker pointed out that there are a lot of "Ifs" in baseball. The Jays had a lot of bad "Ifs", injuries. Although a lot of young players have stepped up but no old regulars.

There will be "Ifs" next year too. For all the teams. The Jay's "Ifs" may work out better. He called K Giles an "If" as the closer.

The next guest was the announcer for Buffalo. I did not hear the conversation about Jansen, Borucki and SRF. When I tuned in again he said that Vlad is incredible.
Oceanbound - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 01:58 PM EDT (#363630) #
I thought "Heat Fillmyer" was a fake name. Apparently it's just a typo.
John Northey - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 02:16 PM EDT (#363631) #
I'm expecting next year to see by May...
1B: Smoak
2B: Travis
3B: Vlad
SS: Diaz (Tulo injured again)
CF: Pillar
UT: Martin (lots of time at 3B, 1B, CA, some at 2B, SS, OF)
SuperUT: Gurriel (everyday player but all over the place)

Looks like an interesting team.  Tulo vs Dias vs Bo will be an interesting one to watch.  Other kids will push hard for a chance too.

scottt - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 02:29 PM EDT (#363632) #
Should be a very interesting series.
christaylor - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 03:07 PM EDT (#363633) #
I think that's a reasonable guess -- if that's the early May line-up then the team's record is going to entirely be upon the pitching staff's shoulders. If that's the line-up, I'd be disappointed if there's not at least one good addition to the staff (either via trade or FA signing). I have a hard time being anything but pessimistic about Sanchez and Stroman going forward.
PeterG - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 03:54 PM EDT (#363635) #
I don't see any reason to be pessimistic about Stroman. He does, however, have to be signed long term or traded by this time next season. Another Donaldson situation should not be allowed to develop.

As for obtaining pitchers, it will have to be via trade. Signing a FA pitcher to a long term contract makes no sense whatsoever for this team.
scottt - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 04:17 PM EDT (#363636) #
The Jays are not the Rays and don't need to trade their players once they reach arbitration.
There's not a whole lot of trades involving aces with years of control.
Sale was a special case. Verlander looked done before going to Houston.
Who was expecting Gerrit Cole to have those results in his 6th year?
Especially going from the NL to the AL...
A stud prospect should bring back a decent pitcher (sorta like the Marcum/Laurie trade).
Note that Marcum was good for another 2 years.
But the Jays are not yet at a point where they have a surplus of position players.

I'm not Shapiro or Atkins, but I really want to see what Stroman and Sanchez do next year before making any moves.

John Northey - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 04:26 PM EDT (#363638) #
Agreed PeterG.  5+ year deals for starting pitching is an expensive risk the Jays shouldn't take.  Even though I wanted Price back 7 years at over $30 per was nuts.  Even for Kershaw that'd be nuts as pitchers are so variable and always are 1 pitch away from a career ending injury.  And don't even consider it for a reliever beyond 3 years.

Pitching is such a crapshoot... I'd guess...
Starting: Stroman, Sanchez, Borucki, Gaviglio, a cheap free agent (maybe Estrada), with Reid-Foley a strong possibility to be there depending how he does this year and in spring.  Other minor leaguers will be fighting for that 5th/6th slot as well.
Bullpen: your guess is as good as any.  Total guess now.  Barnes, Tepera, Petricka, Biagini, Giles if not traded, and a cast of thousands.
scottt - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 06:25 PM EDT (#363639) #
Cumpton, currently in Buffalo, designated for assignment to make room on the 40 roster.
Barnes optioned to Buffalo.
SRF added to the 25.

Game on.

Gerry - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 06:29 PM EDT (#363640) #
Jansen will catch Borucki tomorrow too.
bpoz - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 08:26 PM EDT (#363641) #
That is good to hear Gerry. Now that Jansen is up, I hope he catches a lot and learns.
Shoeless Joe - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 08:30 PM EDT (#363642) #
The movement on SRF pitches is just nasty, nasty. He is getting squeezed on the strike zone early on though.
christaylor - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 08:41 PM EDT (#363643) #
I was thinking more of a Happ addition rather than something of the magnitude of a Kershaw or Price. I wrote good, not ace. Heck, the signing could even be Happ. Aiming for a 2nd WC isn't a high bar but it is worth shooting for next year. It's a real aberration of a year in the AL WC race this year. Toronto is so fickle that the fans will be back in droves if Vlad is good and the team playing meaningful games in late August 2019.
Shoeless Joe - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 08:46 PM EDT (#363644) #
I agree completely with a Happ signing, Im not very confident in Gavigilio, Zeuch could use another year and Pannome might be a better 6th starter and long man.

I could get used to seeing more of Danny Jannsen but I am not sure what to think of that hair-do. Not wearing batting gloves is bit of a throwback as well.
Gerry - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 09:20 PM EDT (#363645) #
You can see that SRF is fairly wild, his command isn't the best. Hopefully he can refine it a bit because, as noted, he has good movement on his pitches.
bpoz - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 10:24 PM EDT (#363646) #
SRF could be nerves for 1st start.
soupman - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 10:55 PM EDT (#363647) #
the angels are in a much easier division and a bigger payroll and have made the playoffs 1 time in trout's career. i think some people might be overestimating the abilities of any one player to move the needle.
John Northey - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 11:30 PM EDT (#363648) #
Given this is SRF's first game in the majors I can write off any wildness as a side effect of it - hmm, that would be an interesting study to see how pitchers first game is vs their career.

Big Jays... (all all-starts who came up in the system and reached as Jays)
Dave Stieb: 6 IP, 6 R, 5 ER, 6 H 2 BB 5 SO 2 HR, his 3rd game he allowed just 1 run over 9 Innings.
Roy Halladay: 5 IP 5 H 3 R 2 ER 2 BB 5 SO  - he was one out away from a no hitter his next start
Jimmy Key: 3 1/3 IP 0 H 0 R 0 BB 1 SO in relief, his first start the next year was also 3 1/3 IP but 6 H 3 R 2 ER 2 BB 2 SO
Pat Hentgen: 2 IP in relief 1 H 0 R 2 BB 1 SO, first start 5 IP 3 H 1 R/ER 1 BB 2 SO

Recent Jays...
Stroman: 2/3 IP in relief 1 H 1 R/ER  1 HBP, first start 6 IP 5 H 1 R/ER 0 BB 6 SO
Sanchez: 2 IP in relief 0 H 0 R 0 BB 2 SO, first start 3 1/3 IP 7 H 3 R/ER 2 BB 1 SO

So not exactly a scientific study but does show a poor first start or a meh one isn't a sign of anything.
SK in NJ - Monday, August 13 2018 @ 11:57 PM EDT (#363649) #
@ByRobertMurray
#BlueJays acquiring RHP Bryan Baker from the #Rockies, source tells The Athletic.

@ByRobertMurray
Unclear if this is to complete the Oh trade. Working to find out.

Nothing to get excited about. Turns 24 in December and in A+ right now. Typical reliever that the Shapiro/Atkins regime targets. Tons of K's but that's about it.
John Northey - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 12:03 AM EDT (#363650) #
Funny, when thinking of guys to compare using only the best the Jays have developed I thought of 2 in the 80's, 2 in the 90's, 0 in the 2000's, 2 in the 2010's.  The 00's sucked eh?

Guys who came up in the 00's and most wins: Ricky Romero 2009 51 wins as a Jay, Brett Cecil 2009 41 wins as a Jay, Shaun Marcum 2005 37 wins here.  That's it for guys with 30+ wins as a Jay who came up here during that stretch. 
2010-2019 so far has seen Drew Hutchison 2012 get 30 wins here, Stroman 2014 get 41 and counting, Sanchez 2014 28 so far
1990-1999 was Halladay 1998 148, Carpenter 1997 49, Escobar 1997 58, Woody Williams 1993 28 (should've been more but a dumb assistant GM traded him for magic beans), Guzman 1991 76, Hentgen 1991 107

While wins are a poor measure of success, 30 is a reasonable number to divide out the one season wonders and lucky guys from those who actually did something here.  With 2 more wins for Sanchez the 2010-2019 Jays will have developed as many home grown starters as the 00's did with more potentially (hopefully) to come.
ISLAND BOY - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 07:06 AM EDT (#363651) #
Two of the best, or mediocre,I guess, of the 'oo's were Gustavo Chacin and Dustin McGowan who had 25 wins each.
scottt - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 08:18 AM EDT (#363653) #
SRF was was all nerves and couldn't feel his legs.
That led to many misses high and away.
As it was, the difference was a 2 run home run on a pitch that wasn't that bad.

Still, this was against a bad offense in a pitcher's park.
And it looks like Merrifield was held up at first, every time, you won't see that against Boston.

On the plus the fastball looked good and he didn't hang any breaking balls.

whiterasta80 - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 08:58 AM EDT (#363654) #
To play devil's advocate it was against the worst hitting team in baseball in a pitchers ballpark.

He was absolutely getting squeezed on the strike zone early but he will need to show more in the next start.
John Northey - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 09:35 AM EDT (#363655) #
Chacin and McGowan - now there is a blast from the past.  One was a batboy for the Rays, the other was a super-prospect who teased us over and over again.  Funny how both ended up with 25 wins as a Jay.

McGowan was a decent reliever as recently as last year for Miami but hasn't pitched anywhere this year.

Chacin stuck around in the minors until 2013, but last was in the majors in 2010 for Houston in the pen.
John Northey - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 09:37 AM EDT (#363656) #
Oops, just remember, it was Jesse Litsch who was the batboy for the Rays.  Funny - he got more wins than those other 2 here, at 27 but never pitched anywhere else and retired after his 2011 season here.  Always fun cheering him on back then.
Jevant - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 09:59 AM EDT (#363658) #
I'd be absolutely stunned if SRF isn't in the 2019 rotation coming out of ST, unless he absolutely faceplants over the next 6 weeks. No reason to bring him up now unless you are evaluating whether he can hack it in the rotation for next year.
John Northey - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 10:02 AM EDT (#363659) #
Chacin was the guy who did a cologne....
whiterasta80 - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 10:16 AM EDT (#363661) #
OMG Chacin cologne was possibly the best thing about the Jays in the mid 2000s.
bpoz - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 10:17 AM EDT (#363662) #
Very good parameters John N. Going by decade.

I look at it, if we draft them and develop them then our team gets the "glory". Bragging rights.

Jack Morris and D Cone. Not ours.

J Guzman acquired from LAD and we developed him. Ours.

David Wells is ours. 239 ML wins over a 20 year ML career. He is an Ace in my books.

H Alvarez, J Litsch, S Marcum, R Romero showed flashes but too short a career.


C Carpenter great career. Woody Williams nice long career. Missed opportunity.


Thor. Heart breaking.
ISLAND BOY - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 12:05 PM EDT (#363664) #
"OMG Chacin cologne was possibly the best thing about the Jays in the mid 2000s."

Chacin cologne and they still stunk.

Totally forgot about Jesse Litch. I always pulled for him because he really didn't look like a pitcher body-wise.
Cracka - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 12:46 PM EDT (#363666) #
Funny story about Jesse Litsch's big league debut -- before the game, he went over to say Hi to two Orioles (Aubrey Huff & Chris Gomez), both of whom knew him as their old batboy from the Rays... except they didn't know his name because everyone on the Rays just called him "Rojo" (Red). Huff assumed that Litsch had gotten a job with the Jays as their batboy and congratulated him accordingly... until Litsch informed him he was actually the going to be the starting pitcher that night.
bpoz - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 01:03 PM EDT (#363667) #
Nice story Cracka. Litsch was very good in his debut. Did his job and had fun. His dad was in the seats. Found a section all to himself. TV camera kept going to the dad quite often.

That is my memory. I hope it is real and not some kind of mix up.
ComebyDeanChance - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 01:33 PM EDT (#363670) #
Still, this was against a bad offense in a pitcher's park.

That was my thought too. For anyone claiming his results (3 walks in 5 innings against a team that rarely walks and is near the bottom of baseball in that category) was the result of the umpire, wait'll you see Fenway Park and YS.

A much more exciting debut against the similarly light-hitting Marlins, was Touki Toussant's. Touki gave up 1 run over 6, no homers, 2 walks and 4 k's in winning the game. It's kind of ironic that Alex should wind up with Touki, one of the many players passed over by Toronto in its terrible 2014 performance in a talent-laden draft. To see at how much better the Boston front office performed, they picked up Michael Kopech and Chavis Young with picks at the bottom of the first round after Toronto used high picks on Hoffman and Pentecost. The first was the inestimable Chad Jenkins by the 2009 Jays. Pentecost marked only the second time that a first-round pick had come out of Kennesaw. The Jays passed over Trea Turner, Conforto, Newcomb, Touki, Chapman.
Gerry - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 01:51 PM EDT (#363671) #
As I mentioned in the opening article, SRF's next two starts will be against the Yankees and the Phillies. On one hand, you have to give him a mulligan on yesterday, major league debuts are unpredictable. On the other hand, he looked like his scouting report, good stuff with erratic command.
bpoz - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 02:03 PM EDT (#363672) #
If healthy SRF and Borucki will get 8 more starts this year. A good test.

If all are healthy we have 6 starters. Big IF. Stroman, Sanchez, Borucki, Estrada, Gaviglio and SRF.
scottt - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 03:57 PM EDT (#363673) #
At least, no more bullpen days for a while.
Let see if the starters can get into a groove.

85bluejay - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 04:01 PM EDT (#363674) #
A tip of the cap to the Rays - they turned Delmon Young into Matt Garza - Garza into Chris Archer - now Archer into Tyler Glasnow, Austin Meadows & Shane Baz - Wow!! - Don't hang onto declining players too long, something many clubs are guilty of.
Nigel - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 04:06 PM EDT (#363675) #
Holding on to declining players too long is only a bad idea from a baseball perspective. If you run a franchise with a view to revenue generation for your next published quarterly and annual financials it likely isnít.
grjas - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 07:12 PM EDT (#363676) #
For fans who want to Vlad Jr this year, youíll like this somewhat tongue in cheek article.

https://ftw.usatoday.com/2018/08/blue-jays-vlad-guerrero-jr-minors-promotion-mlb

Iím happy to wait.
christaylor - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 07:17 PM EDT (#363677) #
It is a good chain but if someone is rooting for the Jays to emulate the Ray's, I seriously question their thinking. The Jays aren't the Yanks or Sox but they are also not, nor ought to be, ever like the Rays.
soupman - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 08:25 PM EDT (#363678) #
dean points to AA's 2014 draft. would hate to see him dig through 20 years of the indians basically punting their drafts.
ComebyDeanChance - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 09:16 PM EDT (#363679) #
soupy I don't need to look at Cleveland's drafts. Cleveland isn't in the same division as Toronto. The more problematic thing for Toronto is how badly they were out drafted by their eastern division rivals. Boston stacked their team in that period while Toronto has little to show for it. And the other relevant thing is how much better the front office s doing now. If Ross Atkins comes up as empty in 6 years with his first picks as Deck McGuire (out of baseball), Tyler Beede (did not sign), DJ Davis (out of baseball), Phil Bickford (did not sign), Jeff Hoffman and Jon Harris, then I'll be truly disappointed because that's a remarkably poor record. I also notice that Alex failed to sign his first pick again this year. I'd be interested to see if any GM ever has ever used 3 of 7 first picks on players that didn't sign.
dalimon5 - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 09:32 PM EDT (#363681) #
Jays have Ben Cherrington who was brought here to oversee the draft with Andrew Tinnish and player development. He put together that Boston team of youngsters. Pair him with Shapkins and we have a good front office.
SK in NJ - Tuesday, August 14 2018 @ 11:31 PM EDT (#363683) #
The Cleveland drafts are irrelevant for a multitude of reasons, primarily because it's a different scouting director (and scouts in general), and a completely different CBA.

This is a quote from back when Farrell left the Jays to go the Red Sox. I thought it was accurate then, and even more so in hindsight. The shift with the farm system over the past three years has been dramatic, IMO. Farrell worked with the Indians under Shapiro in the 2000's in their player development side.

----------
"His comments were reported Wednesday by Boston-based web site, massLive.com. He was asked if he noticed a difference in how the organizations develop pitchers.

"We can have a seminar on this question ó not just because itís Toronto and Boston," Farrell said. "There are very distinct differences and it starts, I think it starts, at the top. And the reason I say that: I found Toronto to be a scouting-based organization, which to me is on one plane, one-dimensional. Youíre looking at tools. Here, itís a player-development-based system. Itís the paths of the individuals that are running the organization. And thatís not to be critical.

"We all know that thereís three different veins in this game that people advance (through): baseball operations, scouting, player development. Well, in the player-development vein, youíre going to look at things in three dimensions: mentally, physically, fundamentally to address and develop people, or develop an organization. I think as a scouting base, you go out and you evaluate the physical tools. And thatís kind of where it ends, or thatís the look at that time. That was my experience, that was my opinion."

In other words, the Jays draft players and then do nothing with them."
----------

That last statement was by the author of the article (not Farrell), but seems pretty spot on for that time period, even pre-dating AA's time.
soupman - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 01:24 AM EDT (#363684) #
at least that was part of the organizational philosophy under aa - high-upside tools, that could either make an impact (sanchez) or become a trade chip (hoffman, syndergaard, etc).

here, it looks like the front office is just afraid of making mistakes. and i agree, it's a different division - that's the issue. if this org isn't doing something 'outside the box', then the world class orgs in this division will eat them alive because they do everything top to bottom the right way, or throw money at their problem areas.

i don't think that our current FO is incompetent or bad, just that they are risk averse in a division where that's not a recipe for success. or at least historically, has not been.
hypobole - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 02:01 AM EDT (#363685) #
AA's drafts also included McGuire and Harris. And duds that never made any impact to help the big team or be trade chips - Davis and Hollon.

Woodman was a dud and Warmoth seems on that road as well, but Bichette was a risky upside pick and arguably Pearson as well. They gave Kloff the biggest bonus this year, and Groshans at 11 wasn't exactly risk averse.



Shoeless Joe - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 05:54 AM EDT (#363686) #
I think there are some who mocked the high performance department, but I think have the second best ranked system in baseball according to baseball America is an indicator that it is working.
scottt - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 06:28 AM EDT (#363687) #
Boston, NYY and Colorado made out like bandits with Pearce, Happ and Oh so far.

Loup has only pitched 1 inning for Philly allowing 2 ER.
Axord 6 ER in 3.1 and now has a broken fibula.

rpriske - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 08:44 AM EDT (#363689) #
It don't see if it has been noted here, but Granderson cleared waivers and can be traded.
Shoeless Joe - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 08:50 AM EDT (#363690) #
I would argue the Pearce and Oh trades have worked out pretty well for both teams.

The Happ trade is still disappointing from a Jays perspective in my opinion. McKinney doesn't excite me and who knows what Drury is.

John Northey - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 10:50 AM EDT (#363694) #
The trades this summer will only have benefits for the teams who got the players this summer but the Jays benefits should come in a few years so I'd hope the other teams look good right now.
  • Pearce: 314/430/643 in 66 PA for Boston 1.3 WAR.  Wow.
    • Jays got Santiago Espinal - playing in A+, 262/333/431 at SS/2B/3B/DH but at 23 has to get moving quick.
  • Happ: 3 starts, 1.89 ERA in 19 IP for NYY 0.8 WAR.  Yeah, he wanted to fight to get to the playoffs
    • Brandon Drury - 154/241/231 WAR -0.1 so far (age 25) and hurt - basically played as bad as possible.
    • Billy McKinney - 207/281/431 in AAA age 23.  RF/1B/DH.  Ugh.
    • Right now I suspect the Jays are wondering why they took these 2 for Happ
  • Oh: 9 games, 8 2/3 IP for Colorado 2.08 ERA 3 BB 6 SO.  Too early to know much.
    • Chad Spanberger - 278/289/500 in Lansing age 22, 276/400/483 in Dunedin, 1B/DH/RF.  Some promise shown but has to move to AA next year.
    • Forrest Wall - 295/362/426 in AA at age 22, in CF.  Very promising start.
    • Bryan Baker - just acquired, in A+ has 45 IP for Colorado, 3.80 ERA in relief at age 23 6.8 BB/9 vs 11.6 K/9.  He needs to move fast and figure out how to hit the strike zone.  Past 2 years he had his walks per 9 under 2 1/2 so he should be fixable.
  • Loup: 3 g, 1 IP 2 ER.  Ick. 
  • Axford: 3 G 3 1/3 IP 6 ER.  Ouch.
    • Corey Copping - 4 G 5 1/3 IP 0 R 1 BB 6 SO age 24 promising start.
  • Osuna: 4 G 4 IP no saves yet 1 R 2 SO 0 BB
    • Hector Perez: in AA 2 Starts 9 IP 11 BB 13 SO.  Someone give him a map of the strike zone.  age 22.
    • Ken Giles: 6 G 2 saves 5 2/3 IP 7 runs.  If a save, he is perfect, if it isn't he sucks.
    • David Paulino.: hasn't pitched in Jays system yet.
Funny, the haul for the relievers looks best so far.  We'll know better in a year or two.
SK in NJ - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 11:04 AM EDT (#363696) #
The only questionable move was the Happ trade (one of the reasons I dreaded traded with Cashman). Everything else was reasonable given the circumstances.

Espinal is actually in AA now and hitting well (.293/.376/.427, 126 wRC+, 11.8 BB%, 85 PA). If he can handle SS even at an average level, then he becomes an interesting player. Even if it's a utility IF ceiling, that's still value.
rpriske - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 11:23 AM EDT (#363697) #
I just saw a list of teams by 'Defensive Runs Saved'. Apparently the Jays are at -61, the 4th worst in all of baseball.
Shoeless Joe - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 11:46 AM EDT (#363698) #
From what I understand Espinal is an above average defender around the diamond.
bpoz - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 11:46 AM EDT (#363699) #
Thanks rpriske. I always felt defense was an issue with this Jays team. The bad thing is that I don't know how to solve that problem. I hope the FO is having better luck than me.
hypobole - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 12:22 PM EDT (#363700) #
DRS breakdown

Pitchers -10 (29th)
Catchers +10 (3rd) * Russ +8
1B 0 (Tied 13-16)
2B -13 (28th)
SS -17 (28th)
3B -2 (17th)
RF -4 (21st)
CF -7 (T22-23)
LF -19 (T29-30)

Martin C +8,

Teoscar LF -9, RF -5 Grichuck RF +3, CF -4, Pillar CF -3

Biagini -4, Gaviglio -4, Happ -4, Stroman +4, Estrada +3

Diaz SS -8, Travis 2B -5

Solarte 1B -1, 2B -4, SS -2, 3B -3

scottt - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 12:33 PM EDT (#363701) #
I find it difficult to think of of Pillar as negative on defense.
Also, I don't think Diaz is that bad.
Hernandez and Gurriel have lots of room to improve.

scottt - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 12:35 PM EDT (#363702) #
Scouts love McKinney's swing. The results are a different story.
scottt - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 01:16 PM EDT (#363703) #
What I like most about Drury is that he'll still have an option left next year.
scottt - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 01:25 PM EDT (#363704) #
Granderson clearing waivers is not necessarily a good news. If anyone really wanted him, they would have claimed him. What it means is that Granderson can be traded to anyone if a team suddenly finds a need for him.
At this point, it would just be for salary relief and to free a roster spot.
The Grandyman is an average hitter on a platoon with below average defense.

ComebyDeanChance - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 01:59 PM EDT (#363705) #
here, it looks like the front office is just afraid of making mistakes. and i agree, it's a different division - that's the issue. if this org isn't doing something 'outside the box',

This front office is trying to build an organization and thus build a good major league team. That's what our rivals do. Our rivals draft well and they make smart trades for good young players like Didi. The last FO didn't even try. Their entire business model was to draft pitchers to trade for other teams' older, safer ex-stars in their decline as salary dumps'. When our competitors built from within, Toronto didn't . In 2011 both Boston and Toronto had lots of picks. Boston took Betts, Bradley, Holt, Swihart, Danny Barnes, and Travis Shaw. The Blue Jays used their first 10 picks to take 8 pitchers (including Beede who didn't sign( and two outfielders - Jacob Anderson (out of baseball) and Smith Jr. Boston ran the table partly because Toronto didn't even try to compete. Boston then finished up by drafting Benintendi, and they signed Boegarts and Devers internationally, picking up Leon for cash. Not trying to compete for good young talent only made it easier for Boston.

Advocates for the past front office never seem to wonder why the organization has to go outside for all of its outfielders,all of its infielders and almost all of its pitching. They never seem to ask why there are no players internally. They appear to think that's normal.
Nigel - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 02:15 PM EDT (#363706) #
Is there anything else to like about Drury about other than his optionability?

I totally agree that the Yankees and Red Sox have been well run teams for most of this decade and have generally drafted well (particularly the Sox in the middle part of this decade). But to pin their success on that versus having one of the top 5 payrolls in baseball over that span is a stretch. Size of payroll correlates to winning over the long run. Nobody (over the long run) has been able to out draft payroll. None of the above is to suggest that many of the critcisms of the previous management's draft record aren't on the mark. It's just to say that a plan to draft well (and develop those picks) is neither a unique plan nor likely to be successful over the long run without dollars being added. And, frankly, it is a plan that has more chance of short term success and more credibility if there had been a real attempt to sell expiring assets for more prospect capital.
Chuck - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 02:41 PM EDT (#363708) #
What I like most about Drury is that he'll still have an option left next year.

Oof. That's faint praise.

The food may not be any good at this restaurant, but the portions are huge!

John Northey - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 02:50 PM EDT (#363709) #
I think most have forgotten how bad the system was when AA took over.  I was a fan at first of JPR but boy did he screw the pooch with his drafting strategy.
2002: 8 reached, just 3 with positive WAR, one at 0.0 (Russ Adams) Dave Bush  was easily the best at 3.6 WAR
2003: 7 reached, 5 positive, 3 good - Aaron Hill  23.7, Shaun Marcum 13.5, Ryan Roberts  5.7.
2004: 7 reached, 4 positive, 3 decent - Adam Lind 11.9, Casey Janssen 7.4, Jesse Litsch 3.9
2005: 3 reached, 2 positive, 1 of note - Ricky Romero 9.9 - Brett Wallace drafted but DNS with negative lifetime WAR anyways
2006: 5 reached, 1 positive - Travis Snider 4.3 WAR.  Will always be a 'what if' guy.
2007: 8 reached, 4 positive, 3 of note - Brett Cecil 7.1, Marc Rzepczynski 3.1, J.P. Arencibia  2.0
2008: 8 reached, 3 positive, - Eric Thames 2.1, Danny Farquhar 1.0, David Cooper 0.1
2009: 13 reached, 10 positive - James Paxton 10.6 (DNS), Yan Gomes 10.4, Jake Marisnick 9.5, Aaron Loup 4.1, Ryan Goins 3.1, Ryan Schimpf  2.4, Ryan Tepera 2.2, Chad Jenkins  1.4, Jake Barrett  0.9 (DNS), Drew Hutchison 0.3

Note: 2009 was JPR's last draft.  His 2nd round pick, Jake Eliopoulos, who didn't sign passed away in 2013.  He was drafted later by the Dodgers and the Jays but never did sign.  He went into a deep depression and committed suicide.  It is a sad story. 

Back to baseball.  So in JPR's 8 years we saw one star (Hill), 5 solids (Paxton, Gomes, Romero, Lind, Marcum) but hardly a core for a champion.  More a batch of good pieces with a lot of guys who should've been findable on the scrap heap.  At this point only his last draft might get better as Paxton is looking like the best outside of Hill and still building his resume.  Too soon to judge AA's drafts IMO plus his best choice was an international free agent born in Toronto probably who will be up in 2019.
John Northey - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 02:52 PM EDT (#363710) #
Oops, meant to say born in Canada, not Toronto (it was Montreal).
Shoeless Joe - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 03:15 PM EDT (#363711) #
The best prospect in the Jays system when AA took over was Zack Stewart .... it was pretty bad.

If you look at the progression of the franchise for sure AA advanced the scouting department from the lean years of JPR, but it really does seem that Shapiro/Atkins/Cherington have taken it to the next level in player development.

scottt - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 03:55 PM EDT (#363714) #
I' m not convinced about the need to sell assets in a rebuild.
I don't know what assets  Boston sold.
The Yankees sold a catcher who was blocking a star prospect for Albert Abreu and Jorge Guzman.
They traded Carlos Beltran for Nick Green, Erik Swanson and Dillon Tate.
They traded Chase Headley for Jabari Blash.
They didn't trade Teixeira.
They didn't trade Arod.
They released Eovaldi.
Nobody will go near Ellsbury.
They're holding on to Brett Gardner.
They resigned Sabathia.

They did get Feyereiser, Justus Sheffield, Clint Frazier and Ben Heller for Miller but that hasn't help them much so far.
They got Rashad Crawford, McKinney, Glebber Torres and Adam Warren for Chapman, but they also sent 4 prospects to get him the previous year and at that point he was just a rental, so it wasn't a bold trade.
It's just that the Cubs overpaid and won a World Series out of it.

John Northey - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 03:56 PM EDT (#363715) #
Good point Shoeless here is the 2010 top prospects.  So after JPR's last season here it is...
2009: Top 30 Prospects: #10 - #1 - Stewart was #1.  Ugh.  #20 was Eric Thames, #10 Tim Collins, Henderson Alvarez #3, #29 Jake Marisnick, and that is about it for guys of note in the top 30.

For the current crew, the top 10 is here...
Batter's Box Interactive Magazine - Blue Jays 2015 Top Prospects: 10-1: #1 Anthony Alford, Vlad is #2, SRF is #3, Danny Jansen is #16, Borucki  #23.  Yeah, I'd say AA left the system a lot better stocked.  The current crew seems to be building it up more but the cart wasn't empty when AA went off.
hypobole - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 04:12 PM EDT (#363716) #
The other area that all of the Yankees Red Sox and even the Rays have outspent us is in the IFA market. AA left a huge gift for the new regime in Vlad. But both regimes have basically kept to the budget. Even with Vlad, where his signing alone was a 2 year ban, prospects were traded to cut the penalty down to 1 year, instead of going all in like many other teams have done - even the penurious Rays.
John Northey - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 04:17 PM EDT (#363717) #
Yeah hypobole that drives me nuts too especially in the AA years when the penalty was minimal - 2 years limited signings plus cash.  The Yanks and Rays were smart to jump on that.  Now the penalties are a lot stronger as many clubs noticed and the advantage started to vanish.  I'm surprised they haven't traded for more space to sign guys as that is the easiest way to build a farm system quickly.  Heck, I'd try to get some cash space in every trade if possible.  Even a few thousand might help get that one more quality prospect who can be flipped in a few years for more value in the majors or becomes a useful part in a contending team here.

Still, there is an advantage to being on the market every year with your cash.  Smart also to keep an eye for guys who develop after age 16 but no one noticed.  I think the Jays grabbed a few of those.
Shoeless Joe - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 04:33 PM EDT (#363718) #
The Jays jumped on the IFA bandwagon heavy when AA first got here and had great hauls in 2011 and 2012 including Osuna, Barreto, Lugo and Urena when it was still a truly free market. They spent money and received pretty much nothing in 2013 and 2014, but Yennys Diaz might salvage at least some hope.

The fact the Jays didn't go so high into the tax in 2015 allowed the Jays to get Paradinho, Hiraldo and Jiminez in 2017 which outside of Vlad all by himself is the best haul of prospects since 2011-2012.
Gerry - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 04:47 PM EDT (#363719) #
Mayza up, Pannone down.
bpoz - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 05:42 PM EDT (#363721) #
Can someone produce the math for why signing Vlad produced a 2 year penalty and O Martinez this years big fish has not produced any "written" about penalty.


Vlad $3.9 mil I believe and O Martinez $3.5 as far as I know. Only $400,000 less.
acepinball - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 06:20 PM EDT (#363723) #
Vlad didn't yield a two year penalty. They traded Tim Lecastro for international bonus signing money from the Dodgers. I think that brought it down to one year of minor penalties.
bpoz - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 07:38 PM EDT (#363725) #
Thanks. Do we have a penalty for 2019.
hypobole - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 07:47 PM EDT (#363726) #
Jays pool in 2015 - 2,324,100 before Dodgers trade

Jays pool 2018 - 4,750,000
hypobole - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 07:49 PM EDT (#363728) #
bpoz, there are no more penalties. Pools are a hard cap now and the only way to go past the limit is to trade for more space.
hypobole - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 07:58 PM EDT (#363729) #
Aaron Sanchez pitching for Dunedin
bpoz - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 08:08 PM EDT (#363730) #
Thanks hypobole.
scottt - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 09:21 PM EDT (#363734) #
The guys that were left after AA where in low minors though. There wasn't a lot of guys that could be called up in 16/17.
hypobole - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 09:30 PM EDT (#363735) #
Maybe Grandy does want to be traded
Shoeless Joe - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 09:38 PM EDT (#363736) #
I was thinking about it more today and it seems that under AA once prospects started to fail they did not really bounce back. They pretty much had a linear path of growth or washed out.

The Jays in the last year or so have seen many prospect who's star had faded come back into the light such as Biggio, SRF, Tellez, Harold Ramirez, or Danny Jannsen the year before. I think this also speaks to how much better the development team is.

John Northey - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 09:59 PM EDT (#363738) #
Yeah Shoeless, I agree the current team seems far smarter on the development side.  AA put tons of emphasis on scouting at all levels (both for drafting and trading players).  The current team seems to put an emphasis on spending on training players which I've thought for years was a big potential.  In the past players in the minors were given nearly nothing under the 'they got to be hungry' theory.  However, that has been shown to fail as guys who had HOF resume's and years under their belts like Rickey Henderson kept playing and playing even in indy ball just to keep going.  Instead the smart move is to feed the kids properly and build them up physically via proper training.  I'd be tempted to have a dedicated trainer for each of a teams top 10 prospects in an effort to really make sure those guys are 100% focused and building up to their maximum potential.
cybercavalier - Wednesday, August 15 2018 @ 10:14 PM EDT (#363739) #
If Martin starts, shall he bat lead off? Granderson bats behind him. Given today's order, it would have been:3B MartinDH Granderson1B SmoakLF HernandezRF GrichukCF Pillar and the rest.Am I toying with the idea appropriately?
hypobole - Thursday, August 16 2018 @ 01:46 PM EDT (#363759) #
FG with an interesting take on the Rays use of an opener and the various types of starting pitchers who've reached AAA or AA and who could benefit by having a reliever open for them.

Type 1: Huge stuff, some issues when left in a game too long. Possible durability and/or track-record concerns.

Hector Perez
Sean Reid-Foley

Type 2: Standout fastball, starter-quality command, not enough offspeed to get through an MLB lineup three times.

T. J. Zeuch

Type 3: Solid-average stuff with above-average command and some funk/deception which, during the third time through the order, becomes less effective against MLB hitters.

Thomas Pannone

https://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/the-next-prospects-who-could-pull-a-glasnow/
AWeb - Thursday, August 16 2018 @ 09:36 PM EDT (#363781) #
I think the creeping tendency towards having starters throw fewer and fewer innings is a good way to play the odds on your player development, but also drastically limits your upside. It's certain that a lot more pitchers can be effective in 4-5 innings rather than 6-7 innings. Especially if you develop and train pitchers to aim for that. You should be able to "flatten" your pitching results by using pitchers as evenly as possible. Have most "starters" (or seconders, or however you want to allocate them) pitch 150 innings, and they will almost definitely do better (on a per inning basis) than the same group when you attempt to push them to 180 or 200 innings apiece. The back end of the bullpen would have to be pretty good though, to make it worthwhile.

But there are a few pitchers around at any given time who are just as effective with a lot more innings (Sale, Scherzer, Kluber, Verlander). If your top pitchers give you 220 innings instead of 180 or 150, that basically saves you from having to find one or two more pitchers (30-40 innings is a pretty standard back of the bullpen load these days, so replace two of your worst pitchers with your best one). Yes, even the best pitchers are likely to be a bit better with fewer innings, but that would be hard to offset with filler relievers doing only slightly worse.

It does seem certain that a pitcher, once trained, comfortable, and effective, with 150 innings a year, won't be stretched out later. But if it comes to pass, that basically ends the era of pitchers being among the most important and valuable players in the game. If your best players aren't starting or ending the game, that's a major problem for a sport which at its heart is an entertainment business.  Not something that a particular team should worry about, and I don't think there's a rule change you could make to address it, but it will be a shame.
scottt - Thursday, August 16 2018 @ 09:51 PM EDT (#363782) #
I don't know about Perez, but SRF is only 22 and he's an emotional guy.
It's going to take him a few reps at the major level before he can execute repetitively.
The stuff looks good, though.

soupman - Friday, August 17 2018 @ 03:09 AM EDT (#363794) #
toronto's pitching heavy strategy was at least a zig when other teams zagged - an effective reversal of JPR's 'never look at HS pitchers' dictum (and popular understandings of 'moneyball dogma'), in a way. time will tell how attempting to copy the red sox in terms of player development while spending less will pan out. seems to me that the jays should do something different, better, or spend more in some area(s) if they're to surpass the division. maybe they're doing that?if they are it's not clear to me where or how.
scottt - Friday, August 17 2018 @ 05:08 AM EDT (#363798) #
I like their strategy of focusing down the middle, Catcher, shortstops and some center fielders.
It's not like AA was hitting gold with first round pitchers. I do love the Pardinho signing.

When you trade prospects for pitching, you're more likely to get experienced pitchers.
That has worked well for Boston, but it's too early to look at that for the Jays.

scottt - Friday, August 17 2018 @ 05:16 AM EDT (#363799) #

Hernandez keeps looking bad in the outfield. It really looks like he has dibs on the DH spot once Morales is gone.

For now, you probably want him to play winter ball somewhere and give him a last look next year.

hypobole - Friday, August 17 2018 @ 10:13 AM EDT (#363802) #
The Royals, despite Merrifield and Mondesi are a bad baserunning team on the whole, ranking 28th with -8.6 runs on the basepaths.

The Marlins are 29th at -11.5 runs. And dead last with a whopping -17.8 runs are your Toronto Blue Jays.

The play last night, where Diaz took off for 2nd and Perez caught the pitch, took time to look back the runner at 3rd and still threw out Diaz (who never bothered to slide) was just another addition to this gong show.
cybercavalier - Friday, August 17 2018 @ 10:16 AM EDT (#363803) #
Another aspect of promoting Jansen is his apprenticeship under Martin. Has it been going forward already?
JohnL - Friday, August 17 2018 @ 03:29 PM EDT (#363816) #

Another aspect of promoting Jansen is his apprenticeship under Martin. Has it been going forward already?

Laura Armstrong's article in the Toronto Star is mainly about the challenge of the Jays' catchers getting to know the raft of new pitchers (30 pitchers used to date.) At the end she mentions Jansen's situation and said "he plans to lean on his counterparts."

ďObviously itís hard, these guys are veteran guys and I havenít talked to them much yet, but Iíll try to talk to Russ and Luke and see what they do and try to learn as much as possible so I can hit the ground running.Ē So... not yet?

Gerry - Friday, August 17 2018 @ 03:44 PM EDT (#363817) #
Luke Maile is going on paternity leave, Billy McKinney coming up.
scottt - Friday, August 17 2018 @ 04:39 PM EDT (#363820) #
McKinney in New York. That sounds like a good idea. It's a great park for lefties and ironically McKinney has only played in Rogers Center so far.
Chuck - Friday, August 17 2018 @ 05:10 PM EDT (#363821) #
Granderson is playing RF tonight, almost as if he is being showcased for a team that is playing Walker in RF.
ComebyDeanChance - Saturday, August 18 2018 @ 01:28 PM EDT (#363853) #
And Neil Walker says "I got this."
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