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The Jays begin their last major road trip of 2018 tonight by visiting Fenway Park. That's where the Red Sox play, as you certainly know, and the Red Sox are really, really good. And Fenway is where the Jays have already lost 6 of 7 games in this disappointing campaign.

After that, they get to visit New Yankee Stadium, where the Yankees play. Who are really good themselves, and where the Jays have already lost 5 of 6 games in this unhappy season.

After what could amount to something quite Cruel and Unusual, the local lads get to go to Camden Yards, where the Orioles play. The Baltimores are really, really bad. Even so, the Jays have lost 4 of 6 in the house of the Oriole in this utterly misbegotten year.

But screw your courage to the sticking place, me hearties! It's baseball, right? Weird stuff can happen. (That's the best I've got for y'all.)

Matchups!

Mon 7:10 PM - Borucki (3-4, 4.39) vs Sale (12-4, 1.97)
Tue 7:10 PM - Sanchez (4-5, 5.17) vs Price (14-6, 3.57)
Wed 7:00 PM - Gaviglio (3-8, 5.25) vs Rodriguez (12-4, 3.64)

Each of the Red Sox starters has more wins by himself than the Jays' three starters combined? Swell.



Blue Jays at Red Sox | 165 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
bpoz - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 09:32 AM EDT (#365528) #
May I suggest that this is a vastly different team to the team with those poor road records.
On the pitching side we lost Osuna in early May. Happ also gone, would only pitch every 5th day.

We also have to lose the games on the field. Lets see what happens.
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 09:32 AM EDT (#365529) #
It's bad luck to run out a rotation that begins with Sale Price.  Or are they secretly trying to convey with Sale Price Rodriguez that Eduardo will be on offer once the season is over.

It is weird to be facing three lefties in Fenway.  Teoscar Hernandez has had success against both Sale and Price in his young career.  I'd like to see him DHing and Gurriel in right-field. 
Chuck - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 10:01 AM EDT (#365530) #
The Baltimores are really, really bad.

Anyways, you're being way too generous. With a .287 winning percentage, the Orioles as a team are playing below replacement level which is .296. That is quite an achievement.

What few good players they had are long gone. Just look at the current roster. Who could be brought in for free and bump existing Jays off the roster? (Darren O'Day would have to be excepted for historic reasons.)

hypobole - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 10:10 AM EDT (#365531) #
Jay Jaffe at FG on Rowdy:

https://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/the-swiftly-mounting-legend-of-rowdy-tellez/
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 10:16 AM EDT (#365532) #
Villar would have a role on the 2018 Jays.

The Orioles will have to put on a sprint to beat the 1977 Jays, but they've already passed the 1962 Mets.  I knew, of course, about Marvellous Marv Throneberry, but I didn't realize that Ashburn, Woodling, Gus Bell and Gil Hodges all played on the club (only Ashburn had any vestige of his '50s talent). 
hypobole - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 10:28 AM EDT (#365533) #
Alex Cobb has been pretty awful, especially with his contract and the loss of a draft pick to sign him.

But compared to our starting pitchers, Cobb's ERA is lower than Sanchez, Stroman, Gaviglio, Reid-Foley and Estrada's. Cobb's FIP is lower than Estrada, Reid-Foley and Pannone's,
Nigel - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 10:52 AM EDT (#365534) #
The Jaysí defence is horrible but the Oís take horrible defence to a whole different level.
85bluejay - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 10:53 AM EDT (#365535) #
Colorado Rockies are having a nice season - what a season for Trevor Story - Troy who!! and German Marquez has really emerged, looks like one that got away from the Rays. Baseball is funny - Rockies signed Desmond to that terrible contract, spent a bunch on a poorly performing BP and yet are in a pennant race - it's better to be lucky than smart.
Chuck - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 10:53 AM EDT (#365536) #
to a whole different level

You mean a whole nother level? (Sorry Dewey, just baiting you.)

Chuck - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 10:55 AM EDT (#365537) #
it's better to be lucky than smart.

And in the NL West rather than the AL East.

Dewey - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 11:18 AM EDT (#365539) #
Anyways, you're being way too generous.
C'mon, Chuck you don't have to bait me twice in one short thread.
Chuck - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 11:19 AM EDT (#365540) #
With Gibbons feeling at least a little duty bound to field his best teams against playoff-bound teams -- the Red Sox would never cough up this huge a lead to the Yankees this late in the year, right? -- does Tellez do a little sitting against the LH starters?

I don't imagine it matters much to Tellez's confidence (given what the man has weathered on the personal front) but maybe Gibbons will protect him from Sale at the very least? Or does he go all in with this baptism by fire?

Chuck - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 11:22 AM EDT (#365541) #
C'mon, Chuck you don't have to bait me twice in one short thread.

Just providing cover for the times I mess up unintentionally. Maybe you'll chalk it up to baiting and give me a pass.

Mike Green - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 02:39 PM EDT (#365545) #
It's not only Donaldson, Encarnacion and Bautista.  What a drag it is getting old
bpoz - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 03:02 PM EDT (#365546) #
Mike Green "Sale Price" I get it. Hahaha.
CeeBee - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 04:04 PM EDT (#365547) #
"It's not only Donaldson, Encarnacion and Bautista. What a drag it is getting old."

And I thought you were referring to this.

https://youtu.be/Ui0X0VQHfQc?t=19
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 04:26 PM EDT (#365548) #
One of my childhood memories was the Stones doing "Let's Spend (Some Time) Together" on the Ed Sullivan Show.  I couldn't figure out why they changed the lyric.  I also see now that I missed Mick's eyeroll (at 1:18) as he sang it.

You would guess that older hitters would have more trouble with pitchers who throw harder.  I'd like to see the breakdown.  It may also be the case that younger hitters are quicker to adapt to various kinds of off-speed pitches with the help of video and more advanced technologies. 
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 04:51 PM EDT (#365551) #
Tom Tango's Fan Scouting Report ballot for 2018 is open.  Vote!
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 04:52 PM EDT (#365552) #
Grichuk is back in the lineup tonight, and all the LHHs get a rest against Sale. 
John Northey - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 04:54 PM EDT (#365553) #
It is very rare a player is anywhere near as good in their late 30's as they are in their 20's.  For every Hank Aaron there are hundreds of George Bells, for every Paul Molitor there are hundreds more Jesse Barfields.

The 80's Jays are a great example.... 1985 -99 win team, very young with just 2 everyday players 30+..  Listing player, age in 1985, age when done.
So only 3 guys played at age 35 or older.  Whitt, Fernandez, and Mulliniks.  The "outfield of the 80's" only had one play to age 33 and he shouldn't have (OPS in the 60's as a DH that final year) despite all 3 having above average power and speed in their primes (normally expected to be long lasting with those assets).  This is a reminder of why you don't sign long term deals with guys on the wrong side of 30.  3 years is the max for anyone with a 3 at the front of their age, if it is a 4 then 2 years max accepting that year 2 might be a write off.
dan gordon - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 05:06 PM EDT (#365554) #
That's a great article about aging in baseball, Mike. Amazing how the performance of older players has dropped so dramatically in the last 15 years. Obviously steroid testing is a big part, but there are many other factors as well. It would be interesting to see his WAR by age (all time) chart beside a WAR by age chart of the last few years. The age curve may now be as steep on the downside as it is on the upside.
dan gordon - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 05:13 PM EDT (#365555) #
Hank Aaron's career path is interesting. He did have quite a decline as he aged if you correct for the 2 different home parks he played in. He played the first half of his career in a very poor hitters' park, and the last half of his career in a great hitters' park. Bill James did an interesting analysis of his home runs on the road, and it showed a very normal age curve. He concluded that if Aaron had played in Atlanta in his earlier years, he would almost certainly have hit 60 HR's in a season at least once.
uglyone - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 05:16 PM EDT (#365556) #
I'm wondering whether it's just that young players are better now.
Magpie - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 06:27 PM EDT (#365557) #
all the LHHs get a rest against Sale.

The Jays hardly have any LH batters - with Granderson gone, there's just Tellez, Smith and McGuire - and Gibbons has allowed his LH batters to make just 53 plate appearances against southpaws this year.

It hasn't done him a lot of good. The ex-Cardinals, Grichuk and Diaz, have both hit better against RH pitchers (and both, oddly enough have career reverse platoon splits). Hernandez has a reverse split. And Kendrys Morales, who over the last few yeats had seemed to devolve into a killer of LH pitchers who could no longer hit righties, has completely reversed that trend this season. Go figure.
85bluejay - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 06:29 PM EDT (#365558) #
I'll bet shatkins is behind that article trying to justify not signing our heroes - we could have been the Orioles of Canada - go back to Cleveland.
85bluejay - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 06:33 PM EDT (#365559) #
I would have liked to see McKinney & Tellez especially start against the LHP.
Richard S.S. - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 06:36 PM EDT (#365560) #
All the more reason to go after all the young talent you can possibly get. Basically assume the age 31 season as last year on all contracts. Be willing to sign only a one year top value contract with those who want and are worth longer ones.
Magpie - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 06:50 PM EDT (#365561) #
I'm wondering whether it's just that young players are better now.

It's probably a combination of Many Things! I also think teams are simply far less willing today to give playing time (and spend money) on older players than they were Back in the Day.
Magpie - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 06:54 PM EDT (#365562) #
I would have liked to see McKinney & Tellez especially start against the LHP.

That seems positively sadistic. I am slightly disturbed. On the other hand, it might be funny.
hypobole - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 06:58 PM EDT (#365563) #
1993 AS game Johnson/Kruk funny?
Magpie - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 07:09 PM EDT (#365564) #
Exactly. Of course, Kruk knew he had no chance and didn't care. (It was an exhibition, and the guy worked in the Other League.) But if I was a young LH batter trying to establish myself as a major leaguer and they sent me up to bat against Chris Freaking Sale - I fear life-altering consequences. Permanent trauma!
greenfrog - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 07:54 PM EDT (#365565) #
Another workmanlike outing from Workman. Kind of surprised they limited him to one inning; it didn't look as if he was labouring out there.
Magpie - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 08:07 PM EDT (#365566) #
So I was thinking that Luke Maile had given the team terrific offensive production for a backup catcher (yup, I'm starting to think about the Report Card). I thought I'd better take a tour around the league just to be sure. And Yikes. None of the AL backups and just five of the starters (Ramos, Navarez, Stassi, Garver, Romine) have an OPS+ better than Maile's 94. If you take two Boston's two catchers and add their OPS+ together it just barely beats what Maile's done by himself. (Leon 46, Vazquez 49)

This is not exactly the Golden Age of AL catchers, is it.
SK in NJ - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 09:00 PM EDT (#365567) #
In the post-PED era, players are going to decline quicker. There is no way around it. That's why three years ago it was clear that the 2015-16 roster had a short shelf life. Teams are realizing this, and it has impacted the type of contracts free agents are getting/have gotten, and obviously impacted the type of prospects that are traded nowadays.

The Jays purposely having all of their top prospects come up within a year of each other is a smart move for that reason.
Magpie - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 10:29 PM EDT (#365570) #
That's Borucki's 9th Quality Start (in 14 games). He's gone 2-3, 1.99 in those games, which is the sort of thing that could cause a fellow to start drinking heavily. It's partially because the Jays have been shut out in three of those games and been held to 1 or 2 runs in three of the others. And it's because the Jays have had exactly two good relief pitchers suit up for the team this year, but they're both working in the National League now.
hypobole - Tuesday, September 11 2018 @ 11:58 PM EDT (#365572) #
Apparently Bob McCowan stated there was tension between Shapiro and Rogers. Anyone know anything about this? Did McCowan flesh this out at all?
Magpie - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 12:14 AM EDT (#365573) #
I didn't know where the story had come from, but Shapiro (who doesn't say much anymore) made a point of coming out a few days ago and talking to the media and saying nope, no such thing.
scottt - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 06:47 AM EDT (#365574) #
What seems evident to me is that there is tension between Shapiro and the media.
He's not an easy going guy who is easily quotable.

Is Rogers upset because Donaldson wasn't healthy?
It's not like the ticket sales would have been better if they'd traded him.
Shapiro got Rogers to spend a lot of money on the spring training facility.
In any case, Guerrero should make things interesting next year and if they don't like the pitching staff, they control the budget.

scottt - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 06:52 AM EDT (#365575) #
The big difference between Guerrero and Briant is 3 years of age.
If you want to make those megabucks in free agency, maybe you skip college and hit the big leagues a year earlier.


AWeb - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 07:13 AM EDT (#365576) #
This is not exactly the Golden Age of AL catchers

Using fangraphs WAR for ease of sorting, the top AL catcher is Jan Gomes (8th in the majors). By this measure, Maile has been a top-20 catcher in all of baseball. I would have lost a lot of money if someone offered to bet on that happening before the season.

Similarly, the top AL 1B is Matt Olsen (he plays for Oakland and appears to be perfectly average at basically everything, I can't remember anything about him). Tyler White for Houston might end up leading the AL 1B position in fWAR, since he's close now with only 200 PAs. Smoak could with a few good weeks too. You'd think the league with the DH would be the one to find a way to extract value from the C/1B types, but apparently not so much.

The only advantage the AL seems to have is an extremely top-heavy group of position players (sounds like the leagues mirror player distribution), with Trout, Betts, Ramirez, Bregman, Lindor, and Chapman.

85bluejay - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 07:24 AM EDT (#365577) #
I am becoming concerned that a number of teams seem to be backing up and trying to fall below the jays in the standings - this could become a nightmare - at least the jays BP seem to be doing the right thing.
Chuck - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 08:12 AM EDT (#365578) #
Maile has been a top-20 catcher in all of baseball.

This is certainly a surprising turns of events. There is room for skepticism, surely, based on his weak 2017 season and based on the fact that his offensive numbers have dropped quite a bit in the second half of 2018.

Still, if any team in the market for a catcher sees Maile as a potential starter, the Jays should be exploring a trade. Jansen has been tabbed the catcher of the future, starting now. Martin isn't going anywhere in 2019, so may as well serve as the backup with McGuire taking his place in 2020. Maile becomes an expendable luxury in this scenario and should be moved if he can attract suitors.

scottt - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 08:15 AM EDT (#365579) #
The Yankees spent a long time without a decent 1B before they signed up Teixera which puzzled me at the time.
Often guys move to 1B/DH as they get older. Teams are often reluctant to develop a young hitter who can't field anywhere.

However, the middle spots have always required good defenders who often don't hit much.
Center field, shortstop and catchers. In high school and college, the best players often end up at shortstop, so it's probably not surprising that there's always some good hitting shortstops at the majors level. Gomes was not developed as a catcher. Martin is a converted infielder. I think Maile was originally an outfielder.

A lot of 1B are having a bad year in 2018, Morrison, Bird, etc. Could be a fluke year.

scottt - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 08:18 AM EDT (#365580) #
How do I check Gibbons' record in September?

I'm still bitter about the Orioles finishing behind Toronto last year even if I have no idea who they drafted.

James W - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 09:10 AM EDT (#365581) #
I think you'd have to look up the Blue Jays records in September in 2004-2007 and 2013-present. His BR page doesn't have managerial splits.
Magpie - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 09:12 AM EDT (#365582) #
How do I check Gibbons' record in September?

Do you mean Gibbons' career record, as he struggles to finish the season (and possibly his managerial career) with a lifetime mark above .500? As we speak, his career record is 785-779 so he's got a six game cushion. But he needs the team to go 7-11 in the remaining 18 games, and in view of the opposition that could be tricky. And the Jays need to go 8-10 to avoid what would be just their second 90 loss season since emerging from Expansion Hell.

Or do you mean the Jays' September records in the seasons that Gibbons has been the manager? That's easy enough:

2004:  13-16
2005:  14-16
2006:  18-10
2007:  15-13

2013:  12-14
2014:  14-12
2015:  19-12
2016:  13-16
2017:  14-14
2018:   4-6 and counting


Doesn't mean much of anything if you ask me.
SK in NJ - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 09:16 AM EDT (#365583) #
Four catchers on the 40 man roster does seem a little excessive, especially now with Jansen pegged to start in 2019, leaving Martin and Maile in a back-up role. I think there would be a market for Maile given his defensive reputation and how he has hit this season. I doubt there is any market for Martin unless the team ate up the majority of his contract, and if that's the case, they might as well keep him until the deadline and let him mentor Jansen.
hypobole - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 09:16 AM EDT (#365584) #
I am becoming concerned that a number of teams seem to be backing up and trying to fall below the jays in the standings

Huh??? Which teams? Look at our schedule. Look at theirs. Ain't gonna happen.
Magpie - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 09:22 AM EDT (#365585) #
[Maile a top 20 catcher in all of baseball] is certainly a surprising turn of events.

No kidding! (There's a special gift for under-statement in that comment. It just dazzles and delights me.)

But it's true. And less than a year ago you suggested that you yourself might be "a notch above Maile offensively" and it was actually a pretty reasonable observation.
Chuck - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 09:36 AM EDT (#365586) #
Maile of 2017 looked like a guy batting from the wrong side of the plate, easily outmatched with no sense of the strike zone at all. And now that has changed. He is drawing walks again, like he did in the minors. And he is making decent contact. And he doesn't looked outmatched.

I don't know how this transition happened. His glove will always play as a backup. But his 2018 bat could play as a starter. The team should definitely look to sell high.

Oh, I no longer believe I could outhit Maile. He has successfully negotiated that hurdle.

uglyone - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 09:54 AM EDT (#365587) #
For catchers, I think the only site that does a reasonable job evaluating catcher defense is BP:

https://legacy.baseballprospectus.com/sortable/index.php?cid=2561630
Magpie - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 09:55 AM EDT (#365588) #
He has successfully negotiated that hurdle.

Not all of them do. But yeah, if the team can get anything at all for Maile this winter - a bag of used baseballs, a Taylor Swift autograph - they ought to take advantage.

I don't know that I'd expect Jansen to be the starter and Martin the backup. I'm expecting something closer to a job share. You could have Martin tending to the younger pitchers and Jansen working with the experienced veterans. Hang on. Do Stroman and Sanchez even count as such? Ain't no one else I can see.
PeterG - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 09:55 AM EDT (#365589) #
Catching is a high risk injury position and with Martin gone after next year (or sooner) I would prefer to maintain the depth and keep Maile. Jansen may be the catcher of the future, nut Luke is the best catcher on the roster right now. Unless, the Jays are getting a pitcher who can be in the starting rotation in return, it is far better to keep Maile than to trade him.
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 10:06 AM EDT (#365590) #
I don't know what to make of Maile.  His exit velocity is up this year (and just above league average) and he pulls the ball plenty, but his HR/FB rate is still quite a bit below league average.  He still hits a lot of ground balls and pop-ups.  It's possible that he has another gear left, with a minor swing adjustment. 
bpoz - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 10:14 AM EDT (#365591) #
I am patient with prospects. Certainly not Vlad and Bo. But Tellez, C Greene, SRF and many more. And they did disappoint me last year.
Maile was definitely rushed (see #ABs in the minors) to the Majors by TB and then given up by TB. So IMO Maile is developing his hitting skills in the Majors as a backup catcher.
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 10:20 AM EDT (#365592) #
How did I not know that Yan Gomes is the son-in-law of Atlee Hammaker?  Brings me back to 80s APBA...

Idle thought/dream/fantasy.  Wouldn't it be cool if Russell Martin retired as a player after this season, and signed a long-term contract to manage the Blue Jays?  I know that minor league managing/major league bench coach work is normally part of the modern manager's c.v. but in Martin's case, I can see a decision to forgo that. 
krose - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 10:20 AM EDT (#365593) #
MG: Are you comparing Maileís hitting with other position playersí hitting, or just with other catchers. I havenít delved into any of that data, but have watched almost every game this year and Maile looks, to my eye, like the best defensive catcher on the team. If he is good enough with the bat, he could be a very good starter....
Chuck - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 10:38 AM EDT (#365594) #
and signed a long-term contract to manage the Blue Jays?

I have heard friends muse that Martin could be a player/manager next season and then morph into a fulltime manager thereafter. Not sure how much appetite the organization might have for that sort of thing.

Magpie - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 10:47 AM EDT (#365595) #
Luke is the best catcher on the roster right now.

Well, I think him and Martin were basically even this year and that's with Maile having better fortune than usual on his Balls in Play (.349) while Martin experienced the exact opposite (.234), the worst such results of his long career. Dumb luck had something to do it.

I might also note that the team's pitchers had a 4.38 ERA working with Martin and a 5.13 ERA with Maile. I'm certain this had nothing to do with Maile, whose pitchers had actually been better working with him than the other fellow in the previous three seasons. But it does indicate that he can't make chicken salad out of the other thing. He's not Jeff Mathis back there.
PeterG - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 10:59 AM EDT (#365597) #
Maile is a far better defensive catcher than Martin imo, both statiscally and by the eye test. Apart from handling pitchers well, he is far more adept at blocking and shutting down the running game. Yankees were rumoured to be interested in him at July deadline with Jays reportedly having no interest in moving him. Having a remaining minor league option makes him even more valuable as he can be stashed in Buffalo if necessary if Martin is to remain here for all of 2019.
hypobole - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 11:00 AM EDT (#365598) #
Personally don't think any of us really have a clue as to who would or wouldn't make a really good manager.

When Maddon was still with Tampa, did any fan here, in Tampa, or anywhere around baseball think "If Maddon leaves, Kevin Cash would be a terrific hire for them."?
hypobole - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 11:32 AM EDT (#365599) #
Looks like Stroman might be shut down for this season, per Ben N-S. And Gibby has already talked to Martin that he may not play any more this year either.
Magpie - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 11:39 AM EDT (#365600) #
Wouldn't it be cool if Russell Martin retired as a player after this season, and signed a long-term contract to manage the Blue Jays?

I'll bet that hasn't happened for a long time, I thought to myself - a guy going from being a major league player one year to a major league manager the next. So I looked.

And looked.

And looked. I don't think I missed anyone, but I had to go back more than 50 years, people. I ain't going back any further!

Yogi Berra, 1964 Yankees, was the man. The Yankees, being the Yankees, immediately fired his useless ass after his team lost Game 7 of the World Series. Man oh man. Who but the Yankees could do such a thing, and who else could do it twice in five years.

It's extremely unusual for a guy to become a major league manager with just one year between his last season as a player and his first as a manager. And it's been 30 years since that happened (Larry Bowa 1987 Padres, John Wathan 1987 Royals.)

We've seen a few guys move into the manager's seat while they were still playing, but Pete Rose (1984 Reds) was the last of his kind and after managing the best team in his division to four straight second place finishes...
Magpie - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 11:48 AM EDT (#365601) #
The statistical evidence that Maile has been a better defensive player than Martin this year is pretty obscure and hard to see. It is easy to see the team has given far fewer runs when Martin was behind the plate, although I don't regard that as Maile's fault. I also think that in today's baseball being able to shut down the running game is about as important as nice table manners.
uglyone - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 11:55 AM EDT (#365602) #
what's strange is that all our guys rank very well in pitch framing, which makes our pitching woes look even worse.
Gerry - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 12:01 PM EDT (#365603) #
ADMIN NOTE:

The roster has met and decided that the term Shatkins will not be acceptable use on Da Box from now. It looks and sounds derogatory and we try to be better than that.

Any posts using the Shatkins expression will be deleted.
hypobole - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 12:10 PM EDT (#365604) #
Is catcher's ERA still a thing? I know BP's Pavlidis had some "game-calling" metric a few years back, but have heard nothing on it since.
John Northey - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 12:13 PM EDT (#365605) #
I see Maile as a easy trade piece.  McGuire, Pearson with Martin as a 3rd emergency/coach/utility player is a good setup.  If someone sees Maile as a valuable piece then take advantage of them.  Perhaps Maile as part of a multi-player deal to clear 40 man space.  Being a young cheap catcher with a good defensive rep he might be useful for a team that sucks right now and has a poor minor league system.  Some have Mariners and Royals as super-thin along with Mets, Giants, Arizona, Boston, Cubs, and Orioles.

  • The O's are historically bad this year (over 100 losses already) with horrid catching (negative WAR for their #1, 0.0 for their #2, 0.4 for their 3rd catcher (a 27 year old AAAA guy who had a 633 OPS in AAA), negative for their #4 guy.  Ugh.  Of course, their system is such a mess odds are you won't find anything worth getting beyond roster relief and maybe some cap space for international free agents (although given the shape they are in the O's would be stupid to trade that away).
  • The Mets suck, but have a few decent catchers including Mr. Injury d'Arnaud.
  • San Fran is having a bad year, and have 3 solid catchers so not a match
  • Royals suck almost as bad as the O's, but have a solid starting catcher but negative WAR from all others behind the plate.
  • Seattle has been lucky good this year, no playoffs but good record, with poor catching - net of 1.0 WAR from their 4 catchers this year. Most from their #1 guy
For comparison, Maile is at 1.0 WAR overall this year in under 200 AB, 1.1 lifetime.  However he had an amazing April which helped a ton - OPS by month is 874, 642, 700, 487, 619, 1431 (9 PA) - huh, not bad outside of July when he forgot which end of the bat to use.  Should be a solid backup for someone, still in the super-cheap years with arbitration coming after 2019, free agency not until after the 2022 season.
Magpie - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 12:21 PM EDT (#365606) #
There are eight Toronto starters who have worked 65 innings this season (why that cutoff point? Come on, just how hard do you expect to work at this anyway?) and here's how each one has performed with the two catchers.

ESTRADA    ERA   IPT   H  BB   K  HR
Martin    3.38  37.1  27   8  38   7
Maile     5.42  81.1  88  27  50  14

HAPP       ERA   IPT   H  BB   K  HR
Martin    3.71  87.1  77  22  94  11
Maile     5.74  26.2  22  13  36   6

GAVIGLIO   ERA   IPT   H  BB   K  HR  
Martin    3.45  44.1  43  15  49   3
Maile     5.92  51.2  61  15  41  10

STROMAN    ERA   IPT   H  BB   K  HR  
Martin    6.01  76.1  92  26  58   8
Maile     4.15  26.0  23  10  19   1

SANCHEZ    ERA   IPT   H  BB   K  HR  
Martin    3.83  56.1  46  34  51   5
Maile     6.17  23.1  29  11  16   3

BORUCKI    ERA   IPT   H  BB   K  HR
Martin    3.52  46.0  55  14  26   4
Maile     2.77  13.0  12   1  13   0 

GARCIA     ERA   IPT   H  BB   K  HR
Martin    8.16  28.2  39  15  28   5
Maile     4.74  43.2  36  23  38   8

BIAGINI    ERA   IPT   H  BB   K  HR
Martin    6.75  21.1  21  10  18   4
Maile     6.68  32.1  52   7  22   9


It's hard to see much advantage for Maile here. Obviously you don't want to see Martin catching Jaime Garcia ever again, but that problem's been solved to everyone's satisfaction.
hypobole - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 12:26 PM EDT (#365607) #
John, the O's system is nowhere as bad you think. FG has 34 O's prospects with a 40 FV or higher. Jays have 32. What the O's don't have are the top 100 guys like Vlad, Bo, Jansen or Pearson.
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 12:29 PM EDT (#365608) #
Yogi Berra was the guy I thought of.  Martin is obviously very focused and knowledgeable, with an even temperament.  He deals with the media well, and can do so in both official languages.  I have no idea how receptive he might be to the latest analytical information.

Krose, when I said that Maile's exit velocity was slightly above average and his HR/FB was noticeably below average, the references were to all hitters not just to catchers.  The point was not where he stands as a hitter, but about the possibility of further improvement from this year's performance (while not diminishing the risk of regression to his career averages).  It is understood hopefully by everyone that the bar for catchers is lower. 
Magpie - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 12:32 PM EDT (#365609) #
the team's pitchers had a 4.38 ERA working with Martin and a 5.13 ERA with Maile. I'm certain this had nothing to do with Maile

I'm still inclined to think that way, but I'm not quite as certain about this as I was half an hour ago.
Magpie - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 12:37 PM EDT (#365610) #
the term Shatkins will not be acceptable

Cool. I figured out how to spell "Anthopoulos", so "Shapiro" or "Atkins" (two guys with two different jobs) ought to be a piece of cake.
hypobole - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 12:48 PM EDT (#365611) #
Magpie, were Martin's/Maile's results similar last season, for pitchers that were here both years?
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 12:51 PM EDT (#365612) #
Here's a career chart for Martin and Maile with Estrada, Happ, Stroman and Sanchez:

ESTRADA IP ERA
           Maile             147 4.90
           Martin 317 3.80
     
HAPP    
           Maile 45 3.71
           Martin 349 3.40
     
STROMAN    
           Maile 80 3.81
           Martin 392 4.03
     
SANCHEZ    
           Maile 34 4.98
           Martin 341 3.30

The point isn't that Maile is a poor defensive catcher, but rather that Martin is a great one.
bpoz - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 12:59 PM EDT (#365613) #
Very enlightening discussion about defense behind the plate. We all agree that it is important, but probably don't know how important. If it makes the whole pitching staff better then it has great value.


I hope the defense discussion continues up the middle of the diamond. SS/2B and then CF.
hypobole - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 01:07 PM EDT (#365614) #
Yeah, uo has pointed out the BP stats (which are the best stats available to us) still show Martin as close to elite. 114 players have caught in the majors this season. Martin ranks 13th, Maile 14th.
Chuck - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 01:56 PM EDT (#365615) #
I hope the defense discussion continues up the middle of the diamond. SS/2B and then CF.

In CF, Pillar is clearly the team's best defensive player, even if the numbers are noting a sharp decline (perhaps an aberration). He's arb eligible the next two seasons meaning he'll still be relatively inexpensive. Thing is, he's never improved one iota as a hitter so you know what you're getting there, sadly. And, if 2021 is deemed the "year we compete", he'll be 32 and certainly well into defensive decline. (He would solve a lot of problems in Cleveland as their fulltime CF.)

So the question re CF is when to make a move and if so, to whom? Grichuk passed a subjective eye test in CF, but the numbers don't support him. But he does have almost 3 years on Pillar. Moving him to CF would open a corner OF slot, perhaps for Gurriel.

As for 2B and SS, I'm not sure who the best defenders are on the current roster (Travis and Diaz?) and even less sure who will start at those positions in the next few years. Or who should start.

I worry that the Travis we were enthused by a couple of years ago is long gone. He doesn't seem likely to survive a numbers game due to his lack of versatility. Some around here are optimistic about Tulo v2.0. Others, myself included, are far less sanguine. Those could well be your 2019 starters.

Chuck - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 02:05 PM EDT (#365616) #
Donaldson is sitting today, not surprisingly. Ramirez is staying at 2B and Kipnis is staying in CF. The position changes seem locked in regardless of how much Donaldson can play.
bpoz - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 03:23 PM EDT (#365617) #
Thanks Chuck. So lets start at decent and try to improve to pretty good or good defense.

Jansen seems to have arrived so catcher is pretty good.

Bo and K Smith at 2B and SS hopefully arriving by 2020. They project to be pretty good.


CF is a problem. I like Chavez Young but he is too far away. Alford and Palacios are possible sooner.


Our pitchers need to be confident in the defense.


Many of these guys have to actually win the job.
rpriske - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 03:46 PM EDT (#365618) #
Personally, I think we need to make real changes up the middle... and not because of the defense.

It is time to move on from Pillar and Travis. Give 2nd to Gurriel and see what he can do with it.

For CF, go with Grichuk or someone new. McKinney deserves to keep a spot in the OF. I also don't want to give up on Hernandez, but I would much rather he was a DH. If we are stuck with another year of Morales, I think we acknowledge that OF defense is a weakness for now and trot Hernandez, Grichuk, and McKinney out there, with Smith as a #4.

Waveburner - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 04:28 PM EDT (#365619) #
I don't see any way Dwight Smith survives on the 40 man roster this winter. His AAA numbers paint a very clear picture - poor hitter, mediocre baserunning and poor defense. He's not an MLB player.

He's the hitter version of Chad Jenkins. Former top Jays draft pick who eventually made it to AAA, put up crappy numbers, got a call up due to multiple injuries and put up a fluky good performance in MLB.

Nice story for Smith but the Jays should move on, there will be better players available on minor league FA contracts.
Nigel - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 04:40 PM EDT (#365620) #
Waveburner - I completely agree.

I do understand the desire to improve the center of the Jays' defence. I wouldn't move on from Travis until seeing whether an offseason can return him to something resembling his former self, but I understand the alternative view that he's had enough time. As for Grichuk in CF, I'm afraid that that is a move that this management team would make. As a RF this year, Grichuk is likely to put up something like a 2 WAR season. Which makes him a reasonably valuable regular in the corner OF. A chunk of that value is tied to his being an above average defender in the corners. As a CF the numbers suggest that he is a below average defender in that position. Which probably turns Grichuk from being a positive contributor (this year)) to maybe a 1 WAR player? Its like signing Steve Pearce and playing him in LF.
Shoeless Joe - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 04:47 PM EDT (#365621) #
Dan Shulman talked on the broadcast last night that the Jays wanted to limit the amount of things for Gurriel to adjust to this season, so the plan all season was to only play him at SS and 2nd. I would expect to see Gurriel start to expand his versatility a little more next season and that he will get a look in the outfield grass.

However I still like the trade front for a young center fielder who has some question marks like Byron Buxton or Dustin Fowler.


PeterG - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 04:59 PM EDT (#365622) #
The eye test (I know some don't like it, but WAR, especially defensively is flawed), suggests to me that Grichuk is and will be a better CF than Pillar. I would have no problem placing him in CF and in giving him a 4 year contract as well.

WAR is also flawed in dealing with relievers. It was pointed out by someone else that Osuna had much better WAR than Giles since the trade. So, there is something wrong with that as I would prefer Gile's results than Osuna's. Giles has been perfect in save situations. What more can you ask? I don't care how many runs he gave up when just getting work in a blowout. Relievers should be judged imo by the percentage of succesful outings....that's all that really counts as far as I am concerned.
Spifficus - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 05:18 PM EDT (#365623) #
I'm with Chuck and others on being favorable to moving Pillar due to the imminent decline in defense. When I look at him and Travis, and I look at the Mets with Conforto, I could see a trade evolving out of that. If not, Cleveland would be another good fit for Pillar (as he would have this summer before he got injured), as Chuck mentioned. Then I'd have Grichuk cover CF until they decide on Alford. That should open enough playing time to figure out what they have in both the outfield, including McKinney and Hernandez, and the infield, clearing 2B for Gurriel to try to find a home.

If Maile has decent value, I'd deal him as well, since Martin should be able to cover backup C until McGuire is ready.
PeterG - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 05:34 PM EDT (#365624) #
Catching is a high injury risk position and Martin will be gone after next season or sooner. I think Maile is worth far more to the Jays as insurance than whatever they would get for him.
Spifficus - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 05:38 PM EDT (#365626) #
I get the risk concept, but given that next year is a consolidation and introduction year and not a competition push, a tolerably competent backup option in AAA (aside from McGuire) is probably all that's needed. If he has no value of note, though, then sure, keep him.
PeterG - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 05:50 PM EDT (#365627) #
I would only include him in a trade for a pitcher capable of being in the rotation....nothing else. If we want to develop the pitchers, we need catchers who know how to handle them not minor league fillers.
Glevin - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 05:56 PM EDT (#365628) #
If Pillar is obviously losing value, how are the Jays going to get anything for him? Teams see everything we do and much more and I canít see anyone giving up much for him. Heís a 4th or 5th OF on a contending team and a rebuilding team wouldnít be chasing a declining 30 year old. Conforto is 25 and has 6.5 WAR in the past two seasons, youíre not trading a couple of edge pieces to get him. Even the Mets arenít that badly run. Youíre not getting a mid rotation starter for Pillar either. Youíre getting at best, a decent prospect in the lower minors. I would take that if I were the Jays. Itís time to see what other guys can do.
PeterG - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 05:59 PM EDT (#365629) #
Pillar would have to be part of a package that might include a 1 or 2 good, but redundant, prospects.
hypobole - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 06:20 PM EDT (#365630) #
Then you've cut your trading partner(s) to only teams without their own roster crunches.
PeterG - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 06:30 PM EDT (#365631) #
Prospect(s) don't necessarily have to be rule 5 eligible. The point is that Pillar alone won't bring a back end starting pitcher imo unless it is a bad contract. In a package, a young starting pitcher might be acquired.
Spifficus - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 07:14 PM EDT (#365632) #
I think my wording on Pillar may have been a bit alarmist-sounding, which isn't really where I'm at on it. I don't believe Pillar is on the precipice of becoming a below average defensive CF or anything. I just think he'll settle in to being above average instead of very good. I still see him as an average-to-above average player going forward, a 2-3 WAR sort. Travis is more risk, but I don't believe his defensive skills have deteriorated like his stats imply they have, and his bat has been about average since his recall in late May. Conforto has been volatile over the past few years, and may have caused a degree of frustration despite him looking like an above average corner outfielder with the chance for more. Neither he nor Nimmo are true CFs, though, which is important in Citi Field and potentially opens an opportunity.
hypobole - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 07:18 PM EDT (#365633) #
I don't think of non-rule 5 eligible prospects as redundant, hence my comment. Do agree Pillar won't bring back anything worthwhile on his own.
PeterG - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 07:20 PM EDT (#365634) #
I think trades made in the off season should be targeting starting pitchers. I think team is ok depth wise in other areas.
soupman - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 07:24 PM EDT (#365635) #
from the other day, but i didn't see it posted here:

https://mlb.nbcsports.com/2018/09/11/of-course-the-mets-are-interested-in-mark-shapiro/
hypobole - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 08:27 PM EDT (#365639) #
Probably wouldn't have been as much of a hatchet job if Shapiro wasn't being linked to the Mets.
Spifficus - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 08:35 PM EDT (#365640) #
I was thinking the same thing. It sounded like a narrative in search of a target. Not saying that narrative is wrong to apply to the Wilpons, but it definitely seemed like it was coming from a particular bent.
Richard S.S. - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 08:39 PM EDT (#365641) #
Randal Grichuk Plays a very good RF and he can play CF almost as well. Time played in both positions is comparable. His Bat will play anywhere. He's worth signing through age 31.


Kevin Pillar is still a very good CF, maybe a bit better, where he once was elite. His bat will not play anywhere else. It's possible he's reaching his "best before date" very soon. His solo value is low but in the right combination, could bring back something special.


PeterG - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 08:41 PM EDT (#365642) #
Regarding non rule 5 eligible prospects, perhaps surplus might be a better word than redundant. There is a surplus of good middle infielders in the system so one could be traded without hurting prospect depth. Kevin Vicuna could be of interest to someone as part of a package as even though he is rule 5 eligible it is highly unlikely he would be taken.
SK in NJ - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 09:05 PM EDT (#365643) #
Pillar has always been in a weird spot; valuable to the team he is on during his cheap years, but not valuable enough to get anything meaningful in a trade. Teams know that Pillar is a bad hitter whose value is driven almost entirely by defense, and he's at an age now where defense can slip overnight. I'd have no problem moving him, and he may have been already had he not gotten hurt around the deadline, but the value coming back likely won't be much.
Thomas - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 09:24 PM EDT (#365645) #
My initial inclination would be that the Jays should hang onto Pillar. I'd be open to dealing him, but I don't think the Jays are getting anything of real value back for Pillar this offseason, as every other team is going to look at Pillar and see a defence-first outfielder who did not have a great defensive season and posted his lowest OBP of his career.

Despite all of this, Pillar was the third most valuable Jay by WAR, if you give that stat any credence.

However, if I'm a contending team looking for an outfielder, I'm almost certainly shooting higher than Pillar and, if I'm not a contending team, I'm not sure Pillar is a worthwhile addition, especially if my team is a couple of years away from contending.

The Jays don't have the same depth as CF as they did before, as Pompey won't be around and Alford struggled. My thought is that the team would get more for Pillar at the trading deadline, potentially, if a contending team lost their starting CF during the season.

The Indians gave up a decent prospect having a down year to get Leonys Martin, but they wouldn't have paid the same price before the year, when they expected some combination of Zimmer or Naquin to be patrolling CF, with Chisenhall having the ability to play there, as well.
John Northey - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 10:07 PM EDT (#365650) #
I see Pillar as a guy the Jays could trade or not depending on return.  No pressure to trade but also no big value in keeping.  This is probably as valuable as he gets right now so I'd try to trade him but if he doesn't get a good return no biggie.  He still helps the pitching staff and is a good example for the kids.  I could see him being valuable to a team with poor outfield defense as he upgrades that drastically, which can help young pitchers.

Wonder if a team could use both Pillar and Maile thus taking away 2 defense first guys.  Ideally for a young pitcher still in the minors but at least in A+.
Magpie - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 10:26 PM EDT (#365651) #
Randal Grichuk Plays a very good RF and he can play CF almost as well.

With a bunch of young pitchers trying to establish themselves in the league, I'd be inclined to put the best defense possible behind them. I don't think Grichuk can give you that in CF. I think he's a guy who can slide over there when your regular needs a day off.
Spifficus - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 10:45 PM EDT (#365652) #
I think he could play there and be fringe-average.

Of course, if they wanted to put their best defensive OF out there, they might be best off handing Alford the time.
dan gordon - Wednesday, September 12 2018 @ 11:23 PM EDT (#365653) #
Looking at some defense numbers on B-Ref, Pillar is +9 in Total Zone runs saved per 1,200 innings this year as a CF, Grichuk is -9 as a CF. Pillar is -6 in BIS defensive runs saved per 1,200 innings as a CF, Grichuk is -19 as a CF. Pillar has a range factor of 2.75 this year as a CF, Grichuk is 2.16 as a CF. All give Pillar a decided edge on Grichuk, whose numbers don't look good in CF. Clay Davenport's stats show Pillar as a 0 (average) in CF, whereas Grichuk is -3 in just 22 games as a CF.
Nigel - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 12:21 AM EDT (#365654) #
One of the recurring themes with this roster in the past two years has been an attempt to put players in positions farther along the defensive spectrum than they are capable of playing. Itís had a material impact on run prevention and has eroded the value of some otherwise sensible signings or transactions. I really hope that stops.

In 2019 when the team will have real difficulty in not being bad, why would you take Grichuk, one of the few position players who has a shot at a being a league average player (i.e. a positive contributor) in the corners and turn him into yet another 1 WAR regular in CF? What is the point? As Magpie said you also risk negatively impacting the young pitchers with yet more poor defence. In the next two years most of the current roster will be turned over, why wouldnít you try and put them in positions to have the most value they can possibly have?
Richard S.S. - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 01:53 AM EDT (#365655) #
1. When you consider Grichuk's CF playing history, 191.1 of his innings as CF were played with Toronto, while 1289.1 of his innings as CF were played with St. Louis.
2. When you consider Grichuk's RF playing history, 668.2 of his innings as RF were played with Toronto, while 715.1 of his innings as RF were played with St. Louis.
3. When you consider Grichuk's LF playing history, 6.1 of his innings as LF were played with Toronto, while 842.2 of his innings as LF were played with St. Louis.


Must be a really crappy Management Team in St. Louis to see him primarily as a CF. Do they know something we don't?
Jonny German - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 05:09 AM EDT (#365657) #
FG has 34 O's prospects with a 40 FV or higher. Jays have 32.

Is there a way to see a simple list of all Jays prospects with FV on FanGraphs? I can only find "Top 22" and such.
scottt - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 06:01 AM EDT (#365658) #
Alford is still a top prospect. Pillar is good enough to hold the fort for now and is popular with the fans.
I have no idea what Alford's defense looks like.

Maybe at some point you trade assets for a better CF, but that's probably not before 2021, if it gets to that.
Davis looks more like a 4th outfielder. Forrest Wall is another possibility. Lots of speed. Weak arm.

scottt - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 06:04 AM EDT (#365659) #
Ramirez is willing to move back to 2B, but he said he's not wiling to move back and forth.
Hence a bench player took over at 3B. Donaldson came off the bench to hit into an inning ending double play.

scottt - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 06:08 AM EDT (#365660) #
If the A's can beat Baltimore once more, the Yankees' lead in the wild card race will drop to half a game when the Jays take the ball in the Bronx. This could be fun.
Magpie - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 07:44 AM EDT (#365662) #
Must be a really crappy Management Team in St. Louis to see [Grichuk] primarily as a CF.

Not at all. This was mostly 2016 and Grichuk really was their best option in CF that year, Matt Holliday and Stephen Piscotty being their other two outfielders. They promptly went out and got Dexter Fowler that winter and moved Grichuk over to the corner.
Glevin - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 07:59 AM EDT (#365663) #
I'm fine with Grichuk in CF mostly because the Jays don't have any other internal options right now (hopefully, Alford bounces back). Obviously, you'd prefer to have better defense as well but very often the choice is between bad defense and bad offence. Is Grichuk in RF and Pillar in CF better for the Jays long-term than Grichuk in CF and McKinney in RF? I don't think so. You take Hernandez out of the OF and move Gurriel to full time 2B and the team defense is OK.
Chuck - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 08:12 AM EDT (#365667) #
the Yankees' lead in the wild card race will drop to half a game when the Jays take the ball in the Bronx. This could be fun.

Not sure where the drama lies. The Yankees are heading to the WC game if even as just the road team. The only potential drama in the AL is Oakland's pursuit of Houston for first place.

hypobole - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 08:14 AM EDT (#365668) #
Is there a way to see a simple list of all Jays prospects with FV on FanGraphs? I can only find "Top 22" and such.

Yes. Use Leaders dropdown. - Prospects THE BOARD! - Team dropdown
hypobole - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 08:19 AM EDT (#365669) #
Chuck, you and I may not give a hoot whether the WC game is played in a Stadium or Coliseum, but some do.
Chuck - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 08:25 AM EDT (#365670) #
Chuck, you and I may not give a hoot whether the WC game is played in a Stadium or Coliseum, but some do.

I get that each team would prefer to be the home team (and their owners all the more), but I would guess that each team will prioritize resting its players in advance of the post-season to going all out to earn home field advantage.

Jonny German - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 08:35 AM EDT (#365671) #
Thanks hypobole.

Wow, do they like Forrest Wall - he's #10 on their list, not top-20 on mine.
rpriske - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 08:44 AM EDT (#365672) #
"I would guess that each team will prioritize resting its players in advance of the post-season to going all out to earn home field advantage"
Like Toronto did when they clinched last year.

I disagreed with it then and I disagree with it now. Giving up home field advantage is a mistake. It is worth fighting for.
uglyone - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 09:38 AM EDT (#365676) #

Pillar @CF: +2.0uzr150, -8.8drs150 (average)

Grichuk @CF: -11.0uzr150, -21.1drs150 (very bad)
Grichuk @RF: +4.8uzr150, +2.0drs150 (good)

Teoscar @RF/LF: -11.9uzr150, -25.9drs150 (very bad)

McKinney @RF/LF: -7.8uzr/150, 0.0drs150 (average/poor)



a Grichuk/McKinney/Teoscar OF would be a bit of a disaster defensively I think.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 10:06 AM EDT (#365677) #
I don't take the fangraphs leaderboard seriously, as an up-to-date system evaluation.  Whether you like Wall a lot or a little, an ETA of 2019 with "medium" risk (for comparison, Bo Bichette is marked as an ETA of 2019 with "high" risk) is not currently credible.  Wall hasn't yet held his own in double A, although he did take a small step forward with New Hampshire.  Or to take another example, Jon Harris is listed as having an ETA of 2018 (and that hasn't been plausible since 2016).

I'd look at Sickels, Law, BA, BP and a few other sources first for outside looks, and right here for an inside look. 
uglyone - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 10:24 AM EDT (#365678) #
prospects we trade for always seem to rank highly when we get them and then suddenly drop off the map.

it's the Toronto effect.
hypobole - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 11:02 AM EDT (#365679) #
Happens a lot everywhere. Teams have a lot of info on prospects and much more willing to deal those with flaws.

Look at the prospects Jays have dealt away - save for Thor, the more well thought of prospects have seen declines, some precipitous.
hypobole - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 11:15 AM EDT (#365680) #
Right at the top of scouting sites for me is Nigel, even if it's only NWL.
Jevant - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 11:17 AM EDT (#365681) #
You know it's a rough September on the field when we are 125 comments in and there really hasn't been any reference to the 2 games that have happened during the intent of this gamethread.

Not complaining, just a "made-me-chuckle" comment.

Kimbrel got away without his best stuff last night. If that ball 4 had been called on Gurriel, could have been an entirely different inning. Ah well. Just hate seeing the Sox win. That said, I have this weird feeling that they may have trouble getting past two of Cleveland/Houston/NY/Oak in the playoffs.
hypobole - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 11:21 AM EDT (#365682) #
As for last nights game, it was great to see Sanchez finally look like he did back in 2016. Now the question is whether he can string together a few more solid performances.
Chuck - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 12:26 PM EDT (#365683) #
there really hasn't been any reference to the 2 games that have happened

We're just killing time until 2021.

Nigel - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 12:32 PM EDT (#365684) #
Thank you hypobole that is very kind. However, I would say that the only thing that I can offer from a prospects perspective is volume viewing. I tend to get to 10-12 C's games a year (although life got in the way a bit this year). In that vein, the one thing that I think distinguishes quality prospect analysts from others is their transparency about what their views are based upon. Someone who makes clear that their report is based upon one viewing versus five or is based upon talking to scouts versus first hand viewing has a leg up in my world. I can then understand what parts of the report are likely to be better than others. For example, a report from one viewing may be excellent to describe a pitcher's arsenal of pitches but shouldn't be given much if any weight with respect to a position player's defence. FWIW, I think this explains the scouting reports on Hernandez's defence. If you watch him once and see the running speed and all that athleticism you could come away and see a good defensive OF. Its only after a large number of viewings that you come to realize that he's a terrible defender.
snowman - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 01:52 PM EDT (#365693) #
Given Pillar's sub-.300 OBP this year (and not great in past years either), I'd be inclined to trade or non-tender him, rather than pay the $5 - $6 million to keep him, and just put Pompey in there. The offense can't be any worse, and the defense should be pretty close. If he gets hurt, Alford hopefully will be ready sometime in 2019, or can at least fill in for a while.
hypobole - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 02:11 PM EDT (#365698) #
Think the org is done with Pompey. Pillar's $5-6 million is meaningless since the Jays aren't going to be spending any real money this offseason.

The guy who may get a chance though is Davis.
snowman - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 02:16 PM EDT (#365699) #
Yeah, but are they just going to throw Pompey away? He still has a chance to be something, with some eventual trade value. It would literally cost nothing to give him half a season to show what he's got. Pillar's salary may not matter, but I wouldn't mind seeing some open payroll used to extend some guys, especially Stroman and Sanchez, as there aren't so many high-end pitchers in the system. Might even be a buy-low opportunity, although I suspect they both would be willing to take their chances on the open market in free agency.
Richard S.S. - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 02:44 PM EDT (#365703) #
Consider that while the available money the Jays have to spend may not decrease, Shapiro and Atkins will not be spending as much money as last year. Spending big money to not make the playoffs is hard to justify. Buying out Martin or Morales is not an option and their trade value is minimal even eating most of the money. Explaining to the Rogers Board why they were paying someone(s)multi-Millions to play for another Team the whole year, will not be a success. Therefore they are unlikely to be traded. Players not worth their salary might not remain as Jays - traded, non-tendered, options rescinded, released. Who that might be will be a discussion for another day.
Petey Baseball - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 04:00 PM EDT (#365705) #
For me, the offseason begins with a question; how to they trade Russell Martin? He has no place on the 2019 Blue Jays, and I don't buy the talk of him being a backup catcher and infielder. There are just too many younger guys who the Jays need to play everyday. You're not going to want to sit Brandon Drury in 2019 to let Russell Martin play 2nd or 3rd base. I think before any talk of Pillar being non-tendered or dealt, you're going to see them make a move with Russ, and will have to eat a lot of salary in order to make it happen.
John Northey - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 04:06 PM EDT (#365706) #
Easy to see them trying to do a trade ala the 2 Francisco Liriano trades - first to get Harold Ramirez (minors) and Reese McGuire while eating the salary of Liriano, then paying Liriano's salary while sending him off to Houston for Nori Aoki (a salary eatting) and Teoscar Hernandez.  That would be very easy to sell to Rogers as paying for Liriano resulted in 2 good prospects who are in the majors now and a third who might be soon.  Do that or something along those lines while eating Martin's salary or mid-season Tulo's and that should be able to be accepted.
krose - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 04:16 PM EDT (#365707) #
Donít the Jays still have too many catchers even if Martin were to be traded? If Jansen is to be the long term primary catcher, perhaps a decision about who will be the backup should be made. If that competition is between McGuire and Maile, why not keep Martin for one more year and let him job share with Jansen in 2019. Then bring up the backup and trade the other. The timeline for this approach could vary.
Richard S.S. - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 04:21 PM EDT (#365708) #
Anthony Alford doesn't have power, doesn't hit well and strikes out a lot more than he walks. That said, he's a very good CF, throws well and has stolen base speed.


Kevin Pillar is a lot older, costs a lot more, but has more power. That's the difference between Pillar and Alford. And the $5.0 Million they save for someone else.
Richard S.S. - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 04:28 PM EDT (#365709) #
Would Russell Martin make a good Manager? If he would, transfer him to Assistant Manager to John Gibbons while paying him all that money owed. Then in one year's time make a decision on both.
Petey Baseball - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 07:45 PM EDT (#365718) #
Agreed, and Maile has certainly earned a chance to be the backup again.
CeeBee - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 07:49 PM EDT (#365719) #
Does anyone in baseball amble up the first base line with the authority of Solarte?
greenfrog - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 08:05 PM EDT (#365720) #
I think Martin has value for a rebuilding team. He brings catching skill, leadership ability, and a lot of experience (including extensive post-season experience). Unless he would be unhappy staying in Toronto, I would keep him around. And, as Mike Green suggests, he might be a good managerial candidate for the Jays someday (sooner rather than later, perhaps).
hypobole - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 08:26 PM EDT (#365721) #
Nunez was doing a pretty good Solarte impersonation up the 1st base line until he realized Solarte had thrown the ball 10 ft wide. Small wonder they're neck and neck in suckitude.
Petey Baseball - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 08:39 PM EDT (#365722) #
I don't see the need for Martin. They have veterans in 2019 in Smoak (who they should keep because he's still pretty good) and Morales (who is even harder to trade than Martin, and thus won't be) and Tulowitzki (probably impossible to trade).
hypobole - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 09:04 PM EDT (#365723) #
Smoak (who they should keep because he's still pretty good)

Smoak is good, the Jays are bad. Smoak has value and won't be around and probably won't be good by the time the Jays are good again. If Atkins can get fair value, Smoak should be traded this offseason.
Gerry - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 09:47 PM EDT (#365724) #
That is an awful play by Solarte, just a microcosm of his laziness.
uglyone - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 10:00 PM EDT (#365725) #
it's a bit of a disgrace that solarte still gets to play, really.

He is one helluva combination of awful, lazy, and not giving a hoot.
SK in NJ - Thursday, September 13 2018 @ 10:55 PM EDT (#365727) #
On the bright side, Solarte has team options after this season, so they can (and hopefully will) cut bait. He's not only redundant on this roster, but he's been awful this season. Laziness on top of that is icing on the cake. Drury is five years younger, cheaper, and better option at this point.
dan gordon - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 01:08 AM EDT (#365730) #
That play by Solarte on the pop up looked exactly like the play I've seen happen in my mixed slo-pitch leagues thousands of times, where the 2nd base person, usually one of the weaker fielders on the team, can't catch a pop up that's even a few feet behind where they are playing. Pretty bad when a major leaguer looks like a below average slo-pitch player. I'd be amazed, and disappointed, if they picked up his option.
Glevin - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 03:46 AM EDT (#365731) #
Don't see how Solarte is back next year and they shouldn't give him more than a few ABs a week IMO. I'd much rather give ABs to Travis to make a determination on what to do with him next year or Gurriel to get him reps. Jays have Tulo, Martin, and Morales who have large contracts and are untradable without eating salary. They have Travis and Solarte who have no trade value. They have Pillar and Smoak who IMO both have a little value and still are pretty decent players. None of those guys figure to be with the Jays long-term. You don't need to/can't realistically move on from all of them, but you really want to whittle down those numbers.
hypobole - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 05:22 AM EDT (#365732) #
"I'd be amazed, and disappointed, if they picked up his option."

My thoughts also, Chuck, although disappointed would be too mild a term if he's a member of the team next year.
hypobole - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 05:23 AM EDT (#365733) #
Oops, by Chuck I meant dan.
uglyone - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 08:04 AM EDT (#365735) #
I wouldn't be amazed at all if they picked up his option, tbh.

they're still playing him regularly for some reason, after all.
scottt - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 08:08 AM EDT (#365736) #
If you're the Yankees, resting does not mean traveling to Oakland for an away game and then, if they win, traveling back to Boston to start the next series.

Also, back in 2016, maybe the Jays don't win the wild card game if it's played in Baltimore as they  bring their closer early since there is no save situation at home once the game is tied after 8.

Of course, Baltimore won and the Yankees are back to a more comfortable 1.5 lead.

John Northey - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 08:16 AM EDT (#365738) #
I suspect the Jays hope Solarte gets back to his April/May form and impresses someone like he used to impress the Jays so they can trade him.  If he flops, you lose a few September PA's for someone who you are probably keeping in the majors in 2019 anyways (Travis & Gurriel).

Thats the only logic I can see.
scottt - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 08:24 AM EDT (#365739) #
I don't think they can trade Solarte, but they have time to work on that.

In the list of teams trying hard to pass Toronto in the draft order I see San Francisco has lost their last 10 games and Minnesota is just 2 games behind the Jays.
Still on target for the 10th pick, right after AA's mulligan.

Thomas - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 08:28 AM EDT (#365740) #
After this season, I can't see anyone trading for Solarte, given that it's been clear for a while that he was the most likely candidate to be non-tendered. However, stranger things have happened and there's not much of an opportunity cost (it may have been different if Drury was healthier).
Chuck - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 08:29 AM EDT (#365742) #
they're still playing him regularly for some reason, after all.

I think Gibbons is rewarding Solarte for the player he was early on, hitting well and being a good teammate. I agree with others that those AB could be better spent on other players at this point.

hypobole - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 08:50 AM EDT (#365743) #
I wouldn't be amazed at all if they picked up his option, tbh. they're still playing him regularly for some reason, after all.

Two different "they's"

Gibby was pitching Garcia regularly until the FO released him.

uglyone - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 09:32 AM EDT (#365745) #
"I suspect the Jays hope Solarte gets back to his April/May form and impresses someone like he used to impress the Jays so they can trade him. "

problem is that logic continues right through to picking up his modest option for next year.
Chuck - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 10:14 AM EDT (#365752) #
problem is that logic continues right through to picking up his modest option for next year.

But that would have to be with the idea of trading him, no? Even ignoring his drop in performance, there's just no room for him on the roster.

It would be something if the Jays picked up his option and then traded him, sending a few million to the recipient team (who might see him as a 5M asset, say) just to get some kind of meaningful return. Would any team even see him as a 5M asset after the year he had?

CeeBee - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 10:47 AM EDT (#365757) #
Well, he did hit a few home runs so his jogging to first bast wasn't an issue on those plays at least.
pooks137 - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 10:54 AM EDT (#365758) #

Pillar's salary may not matter, but I wouldn't mind seeing some open payroll used to extend some guys, especially Stroman and Sanchez, as there aren't so many high-end pitchers in the system. Might even be a buy-low opportunity, although I suspect they both would be willing to take their chances on the open market in free agency.

Sanchez hired Scott Boras last year to represent him. He's not re-signing or coming cheap. He only has two years of control left. He probably should be traded next trade deadline is he's not hurt, which is a big if.

Nigel - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 11:58 AM EDT (#365762) #
Glevin - I agree with all of that, very well put.

If they resign Solarte and decide to run with Grichuk as the everyday CF next year it will: a) make me lose (what very little is left) of my mind; and b) confirm my growing concern that, contrary to what Atkins says in almost every interview, this management team doesn't actually place much value in defence. If that is the case, then maybe with shifts, K's and launch angles they ultimately will be right but I don't agree with that philosophy (particularly with the 2019 and 2020 Jays pitching staffs looking to be light on K's).
PeterG - Friday, September 14 2018 @ 04:33 PM EDT (#365782) #
I agree on Solarte but not Grichuk, who can play CF better than Pillar imo. Take away the offensive stats prior to the return from the 2nd injury and he is having a terrific season. I would have no problem giving him a 4 year contract in the off season.

One guy no-one is discussing and should be is Gaviglio. I said about a month ago that he should not be on 40 man in off season and took flack. I will say it again. With a possible crunch coming, DFA him after the season. We can do better and if anyone thinks he can be a depth piece, he still will as it is highly likely he will go unclaimed and be outrighted to Buffalo. He does not have one pitch that is major league calibre. Kudos for going out there when needed but it is what it is. He is not needed beyond this season.
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