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There is a little over two weeks left in spring training. The Blue Jays have 15 games left before they count. This is the time you want to see players round into form. It doesn't matter if they hit .100 over the first half, its how they end that should matter.

Spring training exists primarily for the starting pitchers to build up their stamina. The starters are now targeting close to 5 innings per start, and hope to stretch to six and seven before spring ends. The starting lineup will get an extra inning or two as well so they are ready to go nine in two weeks.

The fifth starter job is up for grabs. It seems that it's Trent Thornton's to lose. Shun Yamaguchi has been inconsistent. Jacob Waguespack hasn't been given a long look, he has been coming in in relief for a couple of innings. Anthony Kay has been good, but probably not good enough to claim a job. Nate Pearson has, of course, been excellent, but he will not make it for previously discussed reasons. Thomas Hatch is another who has pitched well. Chase Anderson is in the rotation but has been the shakiest in spring. If a starter gets injured Yamaguchi would likely be next in line, with Kay and Waguespack close behind.

On the hitting side, the outfield seems to be set with Gurriel, Grichuk and Teoscar. The infield is also set. Its the bench jobs that are up for grabs. Derek Fisher is out of options, and was traded for by this front office, so he has the inside track for the fourth outfielder spot. Jonathan Davis continues to catch the managers eye, and is a good centre-fielder, so he could grab a bench spot. Joe Panik is hitting well, do you need Drury and him? And who is your DH? Reese McGuire could pay the price for his extra-curricular activities with Caleb Joseph getting the backup job.

The Jays start the regular season with four games against the Red Sox. That is followed with the Reds, Yankees and Phillies so the Jays have to be ready to go.

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ISLAND BOY - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 07:24 AM EDT (#386247) #
Could McGuire be sent down for something stupid that harmed nobody, just his reputation? Even if his hitting regresses, he is still a quality receiver and I'd rather him pair with Jansen as a young catching duo that will develop with the rest of the team.
bpoz - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 11:11 AM EDT (#386252) #
I just looked at the Jays schedule. 31 games played by the end of April. 4 KC, 3 Os and 10 Boston. Boston and all the other teams we play consider themselves contenders. Contenders (93 wins). Competing (85 wins).

Boston and the Jays may have close to the same record but the Jays FO are not "saying" that they are competitors. Not yet. Boston IMO would never say that they expect to suck. In 2012 they did suck winning only 69 games.

What ever happens by the end of April for the Jays is sort of expected by me. Good record and 1st place or bad record and last place in the AL. If Boston is in 1st then Ok. If last in the AL not Ok. Their schedule also has 7 easy games Os 3 and Mariners 4.
krose - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 11:26 AM EDT (#386253) #
Yanks and Jays game will be broadcast on Sportsnet today for those who can watch. Roark vs Cole.
rpriske - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 12:31 PM EDT (#386255) #
From Mike Wilner:

First round of cuts from #Bluejays camp: RHP Thomas Hatch, RHP Elvis Luciano, RHP Julian Merryweather, RHP Patrick Murphy, RHP Hector Perez, RHP T.J. Zeuch optioned.

C Alejandro Kirk, INF Patrick Kivlehan, INF Nash Knight, INF Logan Warmoth reassigned to Minor League camp
Mike Green - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 12:41 PM EDT (#386256) #
McGuire is scheduled to appear in court on March 16.  If the whole thing blows over, I can't imagine him being sent down.  But if he seems to have a problem arising from it, I can see the club sending him down for developmental reasons.  My money is on the former.
Cracka - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 01:39 PM EDT (#386257) #
There's also a possibility that McGuire won't be able to immediately enter Canada, particularly if he's found guilty of something that is equivalent to a criminal offense in Canada or if there's no resolution on March 16th. Caleb Joseph or any other backup would require a spot on the 40-man roster; I can't see McGuire being demoted unless absolutely necessary.

uglyone - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 01:41 PM EDT (#386258) #
ah come on he was yerking it in a car. nothing story.
bpoz - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 02:04 PM EDT (#386259) #
Agree UO. Although hearing the court procedure/arguments should be interesting. I wonder if there will be video ( invasion of privacy?) or eye witness testifying.
mathesond - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 02:32 PM EDT (#386260) #
If there was video, TMZ would have released it by now. I mean, it's not like he 'pulled' a Robert Kraft...
bpoz - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 03:46 PM EDT (#386261) #
Good joke mathesond. Hahaha. Way back in the 60s they did this thing called streaking. Maybe that was a law breaking act. I don't know.
85bluejay - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 06:14 PM EDT (#386264) #
With 2 weeks to go. it looks like Cole & Panik are 2 non-roster players likely to make the opening day roster and I would say Alford is on the outside.
Shoeless Joe - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 07:47 PM EDT (#386265) #
Panik has looked good so far, but I don't see why you need Panik and Drury on the same team.
bpoz - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 08:02 PM EDT (#386266) #
Borucki and Dolis to the 60 day DL retroactive I expect.
PeterG - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 08:14 PM EDT (#386267) #
Borucki possibly but not Dolis. He should be good to go 2 to 3 weeks into the season and I am sure they want him active asap as he was scheduled to be the set up guy in the 8th inning.
cascando - Tuesday, March 10 2020 @ 11:02 PM EDT (#386269) #
I agree that only one of Panik or Drury should make the team, and would lean toward Panik at this point. I’d rather the Jays keep a 5th OF with speed as the 26th man. If they have Shaw, Biggio, Bichette, Guererro, Tellez and Panik, for example, I don’t really see where Drury fits. It would be nice to have a real CF like Johnathan Davis on the team. Davis might not be much of a hitter, but he could probably at least match the 45 and 66 wRC+ Drury has produced on the last two years.
dan gordon - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 12:49 AM EDT (#386271) #
Dany Jimenez had another pretty good outing for the Giants today - he's outpitching a lot of the more established bullpen candidates, and looks like he has a good shot at making the team.

Panik over Drury is a no brainer, IMO. But the organization has a thing about Drury and they're going to have to be hit over their collective heads to realize he's not going to help the team.

The rotation is looking good. Only 1 minor injury, to Borucki. Really hoping for good health for Shoemaker. He's had more than his share of injuries, and he's pitching great.

Really disappointed that Alford has been so bad this spring. Starting to think he's not going to make it.
Shoeless Joe - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 02:17 AM EDT (#386272) #
Dany Jimenez has faced high A quality pitching in the spring so far (5.9 OppQual) and has far from dominated. Its really too early to tell if there is anything there with him. Romano and Cole have faced slightly higher level of competition (6.9 and 8.1 OppQual) and have pitched better.
scottt - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 07:38 AM EDT (#386274) #
In other news, Cal Stevenson, now with the Rays, only got 1 AB out of spring training so far.
Travis Bergen isn't close to making the team.

Now, Edward Olivares, there's a guy who has looked pretty good for a while now and I don't know if there' s room for him on the Padres.

Regardless, the Jays should try to trade someone from the 40 roster.
Or they could outright Drury. The smart move would be to release him and save the money, but at 2M, nobody is picking him up if they want to give him enough chance to bounce back.

Cracka - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 08:02 AM EDT (#386275) #
I don't think Alford going to make it either -- if there's a bright spot, it's that he might not get claimed on waivers after striking out 13 times in 23 PAs. If unclaimed, he would likely be outrighted to Buffalo for the season.
hypobole - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 09:16 AM EDT (#386276) #
MLBTR lists 8 out-of-options players to keep an eye on and 3 started as Jays and who were once top 100 prospects - Alford, Barreto and Hoffman.

ESPN posted the Ceasars Vegas lines from a couple of days ago. Jays at 76 wins, 100-1 to win the WS. Strangely, the Jays odds to win the AL (40-1) are lower than winning the AL East (50-1). Yankees are at 100.5 wins, Rays 91 and Red Sox 83. And the Jays 9 win improvement only leapfrog's 4 teams- the Mariners, Rockies, Pirates and Giants.

bpoz - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 09:51 AM EDT (#386277) #
ST with Montoyo running it is quite unimportant. For Example Roark has pitched in 2 games 6 innings total. 2 and 4 innings yesterday. He did have the flu I believe. With 2 weeks left in ST Roark should be ready to go 6/7 innings so he built up without pitching in any other official games.
Mike Green - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 10:38 AM EDT (#386278) #
It's a nice You Be The Manager question.  Name your 26 man Opening Day roster that you want the GM to give you, and put a little bit about their roles.  It is relevant that the club opens the season with 7 straight games at home (i.e no off days or weather days).   My answer:

Danny Jansen- everyday catcher- 125 games
Reese McGuire- back-up catcher
Travis Shaw- I'd have him at third base, but let's assume that the GM has instructed you to leave VGJ there- ergo first base 125 games days off against many LH starters.
Cavan Biggio- everyday second baseman
Bo Bichette- everyday shortstop
VGJ- see above everyday third baseman
Joe Panik- middle IF backup
Brandon Drury- corner IF backup and occasional start for Biggio against LH starter
Lourdes Gurriel Jr.- everyday LF
Randal Grichuk- CF against RH starter, RF against LH starter
Teoscar Hernandez- RF against RH starter,  DH against LH starter
Rowdy Tellez- DH against RH pitchers, will move to 1st base with Shaw to third in the event of VGJ out against RH starter
Jonathan Davis- CF against LH starter, late inning defensive replacement.
Derek Fisher- corner OF backup and LH pinch-hitter (I wouldn't scream too much if the GM told me to keep Alford on the roster)

Ryu, Shoemaker, Roark, Thornton, Anderson- rotation
Giles, Cole, Bass- late inning crew
Kay,- LH longmen
Waguespack, Gaviglio, Yamaguchi- RH longmen

I'm not running out a bunch of one inning relievers.  I've stretched out all the longmen to 4 innings by the end of ST.  I'm not interested in having a LOOGY around under the new rules. If Borucki was ready, I'd have him in place of Waguespack.
bpoz - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 10:59 AM EDT (#386279) #
No shortage of out of option players IMO. Also non tender. Players on minor league contracts.

A big arm is always a tempting add. A Gose and A Perdomo.

There are Elite contenders like LAD, Houston and NYY. Then non-elite contenders like Minnesota and the Phils. What we need to do is see if ANY of their regulars are glove first players. I think probably not. If so then glove first is for the bench.
Glevin - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 11:33 AM EDT (#386280) #
"Kay,- LH longmen"

I'd be shocked if the Jays do this. Kay will almost certinly be in AAA starting every 5 days and will probably be first starter up if someone gets hurt.

Don't see Alford making the team. He's been bad for 2 straight years and is bad in spring. Don't have a lot of faith in Fisher but at least he hit at AAA.
Ryan Day - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 11:47 AM EDT (#386281) #
Could McGuire be sent down for something stupid that harmed nobody, just his reputation?

It's not necessarily accurate to say he "harmed nobody", because I think many people would find it quite upsetting to come across a guy masturbating in the front seat of his car in a busy parking lot while they were doing some shopping.

But that aside, McGuire just showed staggeringly bad judgment, and I think the organization should have some serious concerns about a man who shows bad judgment about about when and where he pulls out his penis.

Not that he needs to go to jail - though McGuire should thank his lucky stars that someone with kids didn't cross his path, because people have ended up registered as sex offenders for stupid stuff like this. And he doesn't necessarily need to be released. But a few months riding the AAA bus and being periodically quizzed on the appropriate times & places for masturbation wouldn't hurt.
hypobole - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 12:11 PM EDT (#386282) #
I'd keep Espinal as Panik's backup. Send Drury to Buffalo. He can play every day there. And if he can't hit there, dump him.
Mike Green - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 12:27 PM EDT (#386283) #
Espinal instead of Drury makes a lot of sense. I'd give him some work at third base in the spring. 

The club will indeed probably use Kay as a starter in Buffalo.  I wasn't asking what the club was likely to do, but what you think the manager ought to ask for.  If I were Charlie Montoyo, I would be thinking that Kay could help the club and could develop equally well as the only left-hander in a pen following a rotation with 4 RH starters, especially under the new rules.  I'd bet that he would be able to get regular long work to use his full repertoire, but in a somewhat less pressured environment than just being thrown in as a starter.  This, to my simple mind, seems ideal.  Call it the Key/Sale plan. 
Mike Green - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 03:54 PM EDT (#386285) #
It's the spring, but always good to beat the Yankees and always good to get the lead out.  Chase Anderson had his first decent appearance- although I guess you have to put an asterisk next to it because of Orioles magic. 
Nigel - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 03:59 PM EDT (#386286) #
If it were what I would do rather than what they will do, then I would (relative to what Mike set out) probably punt Drury and Fisher in favour of Espinal (so that you have a true SS backup) and keep an 8th reliever (given the historical health of the starters I think you want to ease the starters into the season). I would be keeping Kay in the pen for the start of the season knowing that you are likely to be able to use him for 2-3 inning stints in April and he's probably the only other viable LH reliever right now). If the starters are healthy and performing you can always return Kay to Buffalo later. Keeping Davis over Fisher is just my personal foible for wanting someone on the roster who can actually play CF.
Mike Green - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 04:25 PM EDT (#386287) #
Here's an interesting piece on Charlie Montoyo from Alexis Brudnicki. 
Cracka - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 05:05 PM EDT (#386288) #
I would not be surprised to see the start of the baseball season disrupted or postponed because of COVID-19. Today, the NCAA announced that its March Madness basketball tournament will be played without fans. The NBA's Warriors are playing without fans tonight. NCAA's Ivy League has cancelled ALL spring sports. Seattle's XFL team will play without fans on Sunday. All of these things were announced in the past 24 hours.

MLB still has time to monitor and make alternative plans - teams are scheduled to break camp in ~10-12 days. However at this point, I expect some disruption.
dan gordon - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 05:16 PM EDT (#386289) #
Interesting question, Mike. Surprised you don't have either Font or Romano in your bullpen. Anyway, here is how I see it:

C - Jansen and McGuire. Jansen plays against lefties and roughly 55-60% the time against righties, roughly 115-120 starts for Jansen. McGuire plays the other games. If Jansen has a breakthrough with the bat, like I expect, then he plays more like 125-130 games.

1B - Shaw is the regular. I would like a good righty bat to platoon with him, but the team doesn't have one.

2B - Biggio plays basically every day.

3B - Vlad plays most games, with maybe 20 games at DH.

SS - Bichette plays basically every day.

OF - Gurriel LF, Grichuk CF, Hernandez RF most days. Fisher gets some starts in RF against righties and Hernandez DH's. If Hernandez doesn't hit similarly to what he did in the 2nd half last year, and other players are hitting well (Fisher, Tellez) then Hernandez' playing time is reduced.

DH - Tellez would be the main DH. Some games Vlad DH's and Panik plays. In that scenario, you could play Panik at 2B, Biggio at 1B and Shaw at 3B. When Fisher is in RF, Hernandez would usually DH.

That's 12 position players. If Alford can start to show something positive in the next couple of weeks, I would keep him around, and use him as an occasional player in RF, against lefties, with Hernandez moving to DH and Tellez playing 1B, Shaw on the bench. Alford could also pinch run and perhaps be used as a defensive replacement in RF late in games for Hernandez if his fielding improves. Otherwise, I guess Drury is the 13th guy, and can be used as a defensive replacement for Vlad, and occasional starter at 3B or 1B vs lefties.

The same rotation as you have, Mike - Shoemaker, Thornton and the 3 new guys. Borucki (once healthy), Pearson, Kay starting at Buffalo gives some very nice depth in case of injury. Expect Pearson to be called up by late May and the least effective guy not named Ryu moves to the pen. Yamaguchi could also move to the rotation in case of injury.

Bullpen, assuming Dolis is on the IL to start the season, is Giles, Yamaguchi, Bass, Romano, Font, Gaviglio, Pannone and whoever looks the best of Cole, Waguespack, Miller, Bergen, Moran, Baker, Tice. Let's say it's Cole for now. Dolis bumps Cole (or Pannone if he pitches poorly), when he is healthy. I would like to see SRF tried as a late inning reliever in AAA, and I would like to see Giles signed to an extension.
Mike Green - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 05:25 PM EDT (#386290) #
Romano and Font have very good arguments.  It's an interesting question how you shape your bullpen vis a vis length of average outing.  I'm going long for four of them, but I suspect that I would end up in the minority. 
GabrielSyme - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 05:25 PM EDT (#386291) #
I'm not sure I follow Nigel's math.

You can keep an 8-man pen, and have room for 5 bench/DH options - backup catcher plus four others. If Tellez starts in Buffalo, that's room for two outfielders and two infielders; otherwise, three between IF/OF. So you could keep at least Davis and Espinal plus one of Drury or Fisher at a minimum.
dan gordon - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 05:32 PM EDT (#386293) #
I certainly hope we don't see a disruption to the season due to Covid-19. There are roughly 1,000 people in the USA who have been diagnosed with the illness. That's about 1 out of every 360,000 people. In a typical baseball stadium, there would be nobody with the virus. If roughly half of those people with the virus know it, and are staying home, that means you'd have to attend roughly 20 games to be in the same stadium as somebody who had it, and the chance you would be sitting beside, in front, or behind that ill person would be about 1 in 8,000 if there are 32,000 at the game. Multiply that out, and you have a 1 in 160,000 chance of sitting beside, in front of, or behind somebody with the virus. Say that gives you a 50% chance of catching it, now you're at 1 in 320,000. The advanced mortality stats out of South Korea indicate the mortality rate is about 0.6%, which would mean a roughly 1 in 53,000,000 chance of getting catching the virus and dying from it if you attend a game. Of course, you are more likely to die in a car crash on your way to and from the game.

I suppose that disrupting the schedules of major sporting events may help to slow the spread of the virus, but in my opinion, there is a pretty major overreaction to this virus. People getting in fist fights at stores over toilet paper. Ridiculous.
pubster - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 05:43 PM EDT (#386294) #
Unlike a car crash, COVID-19 is infectious and being around people increases the number of cases which in turn makes it a bigger and harder problem to solve.

Also there are 15 games being played a night (roughly). That means every 2 days there would be a person with COVID-19 attending a game.
dan gordon - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 05:47 PM EDT (#386295) #
Yes, like I said, it may help to slow the spread. The question is to what extent does society want to disrupt things to accomplish that? We don't do it for flu, which kills way, way more people than Covid-19, and is easier to catch. Roughly 30,000 people a year die from flu in the USA every year, but no games are disrupted because of flu.
GabrielSyme - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 05:53 PM EDT (#386296) #
The US has 1000 confirmed cases now. There are real questions about how many unconfirmed cases are out there. More importantly, the question is what to do to limit the extent of the epidemic. Maybe we keep it under control with current measures, or maybe we're just a couple weeks behind Italy (~100x the intensity); and it's hardly unthinkable for Covid-19 to infect a substantial portion of the population. Korea is doing great comparatively, but the overall estimate is 3.4% mortality; Italy is over 6% already.

Frankly, disrupting major sporting events is the low-hanging fruit for limiting the spread of Covid-19.
pubster - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 06:24 PM EDT (#386298) #
There's a vaccine for the flu.

I'm sure once there's a vaccine for COVID-19 things will be different.
85bluejay - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 06:37 PM EDT (#386300) #
Not only is there a vaccine for flu but COVID-19 is proving to be much more infectious at this stage - I heard the Mayor of NY estimate that it's likely until September before NY gets control of the spread - I don't think the season will be delayed but rather be played in empty stadiums for the broadcast revenue - the luck of the NFL - crowds are probably back for the NFL regular season.
scottt - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 07:08 PM EDT (#386304) #
It's hard to predict because of the US health care system--or lack thereof.
Hardly anybody is being tested in the US.
Testing, when available cost a few grands, but it's not even widely available because the US decided to develop their own version of the test which turned out to be faulty.

I don't know if fans will want to expose themselves in stadium, but the key to keeping the season intact is to keep the players secluded from the population so they can at least play in empty stadiums.
It's just a matter of extending the netting a little bit more to keep the fans from the players.

In other news, Baltimore is gearing up for an historically bad season.
Home games in Baltimore and Tampa are normally played in empty stadiums anyway.

GabrielSyme - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 07:41 PM EDT (#386310) #
ugly, I think we should get back to baseball. Obviously politics is not going to be a reasoned area of discussion.
grjas - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 07:45 PM EDT (#386311) #
The US is assuredly not outperforming Europe; like Canada, America has simply had fewer interactions to date with travelers from affected regions than many of the European countries. Meanwhile cases have already doubled in both countries ina short period of time.

Were we slow off the mark. May be. What is clearly appalling is that Trump continues to hold mass rallies, encourages hand shaking, and downplays the seriousness of the situation.

Unfortunately there is too much focus by many on the absolute number of deaths to date and debates about the true mortality rates. The broader issue is the high proportion of people who get seriously ill, requiring extensive hospital care and specialized equipment that is in short supply. Neither Canada nor the US have the resources to deal with a geometric rise in cases.

Some how I think this is more important than attendance at baseball games.

uglyone - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 08:05 PM EDT (#386312) #
Oh I will show the reasons every step of the way, gabriel.
GabrielSyme - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 08:10 PM EDT (#386314) #
Neither Canada nor the US have the resources to deal with a geometric rise in cases.

Some how I think this is more important than attendance at baseball games.

Agreed grjas. I'd add that nobody has the medical capacity to deal with this outbreak if it really gets going - it's not just Canada & the US. As for US/Canada relative to Europe - I suppose time will tell, but the US and Canada are both still at roughly a tenth the incidence of even non-Italy western Europe. We might still get to that point, but it's been a slightly slower rise than we've seen in Europe. But you're right, it's too soon to make any conclusions about how things will shake out.
John Northey - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 08:15 PM EDT (#386317) #
OK gang - time to stop with the Covid 19 stuff outside of 'crap, we can't go to baseball games' or 'did you hear player xyz is sick from it now'.  This is a baseball site, not a politics one or a medical one or any other kind of one. 
uglyone - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 08:18 PM EDT (#386318) #
NBA has just banned fans from all games.
uglyone - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 08:22 PM EDT (#386319) #
Oklahoma players pulled off court.

Suspected illness amongst players.
uglyone - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 08:25 PM EDT (#386320) #
That censorship might get people killed, John Northey.
uglyone - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 08:40 PM EDT (#386321) #
And here's why the players were pulled off and the game cancelled:
uglyone - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 09:31 PM EDT (#386322) #
Rudy Gobert tests positive for covid:

And this is him infecting all the media before the game:

And of course, all his teammates.
uglyone - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 09:32 PM EDT (#386323) #
Cracka - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 09:54 PM EDT (#386324) #
~5 hours ago, I posted "I expect some disruption". Now, I think there's 100% chance of it. The logical assumption being that the start of the season will be delayed and games will either be postponed or canceled. Maybe everyone just stays put in Flordia or Arizona until travel can resume as normal.
bpoz - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 10:18 PM EDT (#386325) #
Thanks UO.
John Northey - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 10:32 PM EDT (#386326) #
uglyone - Not to be rude, but if someone is so dumb as to be using a baseball blog to get health information then they aren't long for this world.  The basics are damn simple - wash your hands, if you have symptoms call a medical professional for advice, if told you have it then you need to stay isolated for 2 weeks and take whatever medicine you are told to (get it delivered to your door).  If the local medical unit says to stay home then stay home, if they say it is OK to go out, then go out.  Use real news media (IE: not Fox News or other junk ones) and NEVER listen to a politician who minimizes it.  Charts, and political commentary are not needed here.  Facebook, Twitter, and comment sections on news sites are built for that.

Now, a valid question for this forum is should MLB be canceling games or requiring empty stadiums as logically a stadium full of 50k fans would be a high risk thing for it to spread.  Or should they wait until the local medical units in each area say to go that direction?  I personally say to wait for the medical professionals to make the call.  I know I am not an expert nor would I pretend to be.  I suspect we'll be seeing a lot of games before empty parks very soon and after the NBA went nuclear tonight (canceling games) I wouldn't be shocked if this is the quietest MLB season start since 1995 (tail end of the big strike).  What about the minors?  Smaller crowds (especially in places like Dunedin) so maybe they don't need to close down the parks as fast but I suspect whatever happens in MLB will automatically go to the minors.  2020 could be a lost season or a half season.
uglyone - Wednesday, March 11 2020 @ 10:42 PM EDT (#386327) #
if this is where they have to get the information to counterract their disinformation, then its as good as anywhere.
hypobole - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 12:38 AM EDT (#386330) #
I'm OK with the conversation uo FWIW.
Spifficus - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 02:04 AM EDT (#386331) #
While I find the discussion fascinating, and want to chime in myself (for example, we'd probably be pretty close in alignment on containment thoughts, UO, and I have thoughts on an apples-to-apples mortality rate and flu reporting). At the same time, it's probably best to not clutter the thread with them (especially the charts, illustrative though they were). These things can grow unweildly-big when we stay just on the topic of baseball, forget it if we drop off-topic landmines all over the place.

As for the PSAs for those who only get their CORVID-19 news here: wash your hands frequently, sneeze into your elbows avoid large gatherings and limit travel. Get ready for some social distancing (as a work from home addict, I've been practicing social distancing for years from germy work environs). Get ready for empty stadiums and baseball disruptions. And stop touching your face! Damned near impossible for a chronic beard-stroker like me. No, I said beard. B-E-A-R-D. It's not a euphemism, Reece.
Chuck - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 08:54 AM EDT (#386333) #
Why not mimic BTF and put up an off-topic thread for COVID-19? That will let people choose to participate or not at their will.
ISLAND BOY - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 09:21 AM EDT (#386335) #
With the events of the last 24 hours, it's hard to ignore COVID-19 and just talk baseball as a singular topic. The NBA has suspended its season, and I wouldn't be surprised to see the NHL do the same later today.

What implications does this mean for MLB ? I think the opening of the season will be delayed, but for how long? Would MLB go with an abbreviated season ? It's pretty hard to play longer into the fall in the colder states. Would players stay at the spring training sites and keep practicing, and then would there be a short round of exhibition games to build up the pitchers again?

For baseball to shut down is not unprecedented if you think of the lockouts but even then the minor league players were able to play. If MLB shuts down this time because of fear of spreading or catching the virus, it will be from top to bottom I would think. I would much rather be discussing what the Jays are going to do with Brandon Drury and who is going to win the last spot in the bullpen, but it seems COVID-19 and it's implications are going to render these discussions moot, for a while at least.
Chuck - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 10:07 AM EDT (#386338) #
it's hard to ignore COVID-19 and just talk baseball as a singular topic

I hear you, but that is a different conversation. How COVID-19 is affecting MLB is one thing. The topic of COVID-19, in and of itself, is another. The latter is fascinating, to be sure, and many here surely visit any number of sites to stay informed. I was just suggesting that if people here felt inclined to discuss COVID-19, in and of itself, then a separate, devoted thread would accommodate that.

John Northey - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 10:15 AM EDT (#386339) #
Yeah, with the NBA shutting down, World Figure Skating championships cancelled, Women's World Championship of Hockey canceled, and I think most soccer in Europe canceled it is going to hit MLB sooner rather than later.  The lowest minors might keep going (where crowds of 250 aren't unusual) but that'd be about it.  A closed park with no fans for games could work for TV but would they do it?  Just keep going in the Florida parks to keep costs low - TV revenue is the top thing anyways.  I suspect MLB would just shut down (no player salaries that way) and do multiple minor league games in that case.  Perhaps keep workouts for the ML players on one of the diamonds - basically a very extended spring camp. 

I personally would rather they did the games with little to no crowd - perhaps limit ticket sales to the first 1000 or whatever the local limit for gatherings is and ask every fan to sit at least 3 seats away from those who they didn't come with in order to minimize the risk.  Cost for those few seats would jump but it would be interesting and I generally watch on TV anyways. getting curious as to what the most tasteless promotion post-crisis will be.  Free hand sanitizer for everyone would be OK, but a face mask day would not.
Mike Green - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 10:23 AM EDT (#386340) #
I agree with Chuck.  Covid-19 deserves its own thread, as it has already affected the baseball season and surely will do so to a greater extent in the coming weeks and months.  Some discussion of the underlying science will be necessary for an informed discussion of the baseball effects.

It is quite likely that social distance will be an important part of containment efforts.  That makes online discussions more important than before, whether at Batter's Box or elsewhere.  Can we redouble our efforts to be more civil to each other here, knowing that there may be many fewer conversations with acquaintances or even friends in person?
SK in NJ - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 11:06 AM EDT (#386341) #
The absolute best case for MLB would be playing in empty stadiums for the first month or so in order for the games to still be televised and the season uninterrupted, but even that seems very unlikely at this rate. Most likely they are going to have to bite the bullet and suspend the season until it is deemed safe to start playing again in front of crowds. This impacts MLB more than the other sports league since baseball is played outdoors and pushing the season into Nov-Dec is just not a realistic solution. Another potential drawback from a business standpoint is if the NBA extends their season into July/August because of this, then that's more eyeballs off MLB in the summer, which is exactly what they do not need.

Manfred is in a no-win situation here.
AWeb - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 11:22 AM EDT (#386342) #
The NBA just showed how impractical the "play with no crowds" plan is - one player with a confirmed case, and now apparently two of his teammates already confirmed. The NBA, best case, is skipping to the playoffs from here. Likely the same with the NHL.

Baseball teams play every day - if a single team is quarantined, the whole schedule breaks. No sense pretending otherwise. Playing real games in the spring training stadiums sounded vaguely reasonable, except what do you do with the minor leagues? Current baseball also breaks without minor leaguers being ready and available.

On the assumption that the schedule is severely impacted, I'd be curious what an 81 game schedule looks like - maybe within division games only? Certainly interleague play should be cut out of any short season. I'd almost prefer a tournament bracket set up for September-October, seeding the 32 teams into a bracket of 9 or 11 game series based on 2019 records (top teams get a bye in 1st round). Every team plays every round to get more or less equal seasons for everyone. 5 rounds determines a champ. Do something insane and different on purpose, because it looks like that is being thrust upon MLB whether they have acknowledged it yet or not.
Chuck - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 11:22 AM EDT (#386343) #
The absolute best case for MLB would be playing in empty stadiums

That would protect the fans from each other. But what about the NBA scenario where a player tests positive?

Not a good year to hold the Olympics. Apparently SARS-1 was not seasonal like influenza, meaning that SARS-2 may not be either. There may be no magical summer reprieve.

ISLAND BOY - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 11:43 AM EDT (#386345) #
In saying it was hard to ignore COVID-19, I meant more in the way it will affect baseball. As usual it will be the little guy that will be affected most - the concession worker, ushers, parking attendants, clubhouse workers etc., not to mention workers in restaurants and hotels near the ballparks, all of whom rely on those jobs.

Of course, it will also hurt the ones who pay for everything, the fans. Just think how we've passed the last few months on here talking about prospects, evaluating free agent signings, complaining about the antics of the Houston Astros, and looking forward to a season that now may not come for a while. Sure, baseball is not important compared to things going on in our lives and the real events of the world, but often it is a much-needed distraction from life's problems. Now it seems like COVID-19 is forcing its way into our baseball sanctuary.
Mike Green - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 12:05 PM EDT (#386348) #
COVID-19 and baseball: my take.  Soon enough, governments will likely prohibit social gatherings of more than 1000 people (or maybe somewhat less than that).  There may also be restrictions on air travel also, particularly international travel to and from Canada. My understanding is that the virus is likely to come in waves in the spring and in the fall here. 

One "business" option is to play in empty stadiums.  Another is to treat this situation as a short-term loss but an opportunity to introduce the game to younger fans.  Have many fewer games June 21-September 1 in smaller outdoor parks (of Christie Pits size) with teams relatively close to each other so road trips in personal vehicles are possible.  Limit attendance to 200 fans or something and reserve half the wristbands for kids 6-16.  Allow people to bring in their own food.  Televise the games and make them freely available online.  Call it the Field of Dreams season or something like that.  Another option is to cancel the season entirely. 

I would be interested to know what players think.  There probably would be a variety of different perspectives. 
hypobole - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 01:04 PM EDT (#386349) #
Anyway back to baseball. Kiley at ESPN has the AL East team prospects up. The Jays:

1. Nate Pearson, RHP, 60 FV (No. 6 on the Top 100)
2. Jordan Groshans, 3B, 50 FV (68)
3. Simeon Woods Richardson, RHP, 50 FV (70)
4. Alek Manoah, RHP, 45+ FV
5. Alejandro Kirk, C, 45+ FV
6. Gabriel Moreno, C, 45 FV
7. Orelvis Martinez, SS, 45 FV
8. Anthony Kay, LHP, 45 FV
9. Miguel Hirado, 3B, 45 FV
10. Thomas Hatch, RHP, 45 FV

2020 impact: Nate Pearson and Anthony Kay
Ranked breakout pick: Orelvis Martinez
Unranked breakout pick: Dasan Brown
uglyone - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 01:13 PM EDT (#386350) #
Jesse McKinley @jessemckinley

.@espn reporting that Major League Baseball is suspending operations.
hypobole - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 01:24 PM EDT (#386351) #
AWeb - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 02:01 PM EDT (#386352) #
Hope everyone here gets through the next few weeks and months OK - Canada's numbers are going to get much, much worse in the next little while, and it's likely a few of us here will be in self-quarantine at some point.

Late March/early April is normally a great time to be home sick, as far as that goes, thanks to sports being at a yearly peak (nhl and nba playoff drives, playoffs, march madness, early baseball!). Aside from the very serious risks associated with the virus, it's become an extra bad time to be isolated at home all day. As trivial as baseball is I still love it, and hope it can get back to a new normal as soon as possible.
Michael - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 02:34 PM EDT (#386353) #
I recognize there are much more important things than baseball in a time of a global pandemic.

However, question for people:

If there is a player suspended for 50 games and the first 45 games of the season end up cancelled due to corona virus and we play a shortened season, do the cancelled games count for the suspension? I.e., is the suspended player back for the 6th actual game or do they need to miss 50 games on top of the 45 games that were cancelled.
bpoz - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 02:36 PM EDT (#386354) #
It is good that so many Bauxites are informed and very intelligent. I am not one of them. I don't want to insult Manny and Yogi but they said a lot of strange things and were not ALWAYS wrong.

The old people and people with weak immune systems are at the highest risk level of dying if they get the virus, from what I have heard. The survivors will have developed an immunity to this virus. When a person gets the disease, the symptoms don't show up for 5-10 days.So we probably have all been exposed by going shopping, church, a bar, the bus etc. As well the people in our lives/family have exposed us by going to school and work.

I hope all of you and your families stay safe.

On a personal and lighter note I will be 68 in a few days. So I am old. It shows in my mental abilities. I KNOW that I will not get it. SARS, 2003, had no effect on me and I was exposed to it a lot at work. I did a ton of overtime. There was a scare in the fall of 2009 about a bad flu. I don't know its name.

To be clear I am NOT a scientist. I get the flu shot. It does not cover everything. I never get the flu because I put a table spoon or so of the cheap vinegar in a large glass of water and drink it. No flu and my cholesterol which is always good improved to excellent. Vinegar is safe in pickles and salad dressing. Once again good luck to all of us.
John Northey - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 03:29 PM EDT (#386355) #
New thread up for the virus now the MLB is suspended as well. 
mathesond - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 04:42 PM EDT (#386364) #
"The survivors will have developed an immunity to this virus".

I understand that at least one survivor got the virus a second time, so not so sure that they will develop immunities.
bpoz - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 04:47 PM EDT (#386366) #
Thanks mathesond. This is helpful to know. This survivor can continue to infect others.
bpoz - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 04:54 PM EDT (#386367) #
I don't know how accurate the ST stats are but so far SRF has much improved bb numbers.

Maybe the ball is not juiced.
John Northey - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 05:41 PM EDT (#386370) #
Well, now that spring is done the Jays got a win to finish which was nice to watch (was on Sportsnet) vs Pittsburgh.  Also pounded poor team Canada but I'm sure those kids were happy to play a ML team.  A 12-6 record vs ML teams is nice, tied for 2nd overall, tops in the AL.  #1 in the Grapefruit league with 120 runs scored.
hypobole - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 06:21 PM EDT (#386373) #
Yesterday , I posted the Vegas betting line for the Jays at 76 wins. With the season looking like it will be truncated by multiple weeks, what happens? Are all bets off or are the betters who took unders going to win pretty well every bet? I don't gamble, just curiosity.
hypobole - Thursday, March 12 2020 @ 11:02 PM EDT (#386383) #
Jesse Barfield's son moving up in Arizona. From MLBTR:

"Josh Barfield was promoted to the role of farm director for the Diamondbacks this offseason, as The Athletic’s Zach Buchanan (subscription required) looks at how the former big league infielder has quickly climbed the ladder during his five-plus years in Arizona’s front office. Hired as a scout by former D’Backs general manager Dave Stewart in the 2014-15 offseason, Barfield has moved from assistant director of pro scouting to assistant farm director to his current position. Barfield’s rising star hasn’t gone unnoticed around baseball, as current GM Mike Hazen told Buchanan that other teams have tried to hire Barfield away. A future position as a “manager or GM might not be far behind” for the 37-year-old Barfield, Buchanan writes."
John Northey - Friday, March 13 2020 @ 12:37 AM EDT (#386386) #
Cool - would love to see Barfield's kid get to the majors as a manager or something.  A shame his kid couldn't have been as good a ballplayer as his dad was - that was so much fun watching Jesse in RF throw guys out at the plate.
Chuck - Friday, March 13 2020 @ 10:53 AM EDT (#386399) #
Yesterday, I posted the Vegas betting line for the Jays at 76 wins. With the season looking like it will be truncated by multiple weeks, what happens?

Everyone takes the under?

hypobole - Friday, March 13 2020 @ 12:17 PM EDT (#386404) #
I actually found my answer in a basketball story. If a team doesn't play at least 81 of the 82 game schedule, the bets are nullified.
bpoz - Friday, March 13 2020 @ 12:48 PM EDT (#386410) #
Bringing back some baseball talk. Michael asked some V good questions about PED suspensions etc... Sorry I don't have any answers.

I can add some questions. Based on a 2 month delay if that happens.

1) 60 day DL for Borucki can be postponed and hopefully will not apply.
2) Would Pearson still be kept down for service time? Pearson's innings limit should not be an issue.
3) Over the next few days the media will inform us about how player salaries will be handled.

4) Rule 5 selections minimum time on the 26 man roster is affected somehow?

Other stuff:

1) C Sale had arm trouble. If surgery is required they will find out and do it 2-3 months later. So he will miss 2020 and a bigger part of 2021.

2) L Severino's surgery is done. So NA?

3) M Betts value is reduced to LAD.

4) SWR and Kay somehow will be more ML ready if development is not shut down.

5) Postpone/delay the draft?
hypobole - Saturday, March 14 2020 @ 09:38 AM EDT (#386444) #
Anyone else here have MiLB TV? Figure I'll use my sports downtime to catch up on some of last years archived games involving our prospects. Just wondering if there is a quick way to navigate the site to find games of interest( e.g, Pearson starts)
mendocino - Saturday, March 14 2020 @ 12:46 PM EDT (#386462) #
Hope this helps
hypobole - Saturday, March 14 2020 @ 12:51 PM EDT (#386463) #
Thank you, mendocino
ayjackson - Sunday, March 15 2020 @ 09:56 AM EDT (#386487) #
Without an escrow mechanism, I doubt the players get paid for services not rendered.
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