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One of the game's most storied and historic franchises is coming to town, for just the fifth time in† their 141 year history.

The Giants last visited in April 2019, and took both games from the Jays on that occasion, beating Trent Thornton and Clay Buchholz. The two teams split a pair at Oracle Park a few weeks later, with Thornton picking up the Jays victory. (Ah, 2019 when Trent Thornton led the staff in Starts, Innings, Ks, and Wins.) Prior to that, they came here in 2013 only to lose both games as the Jays scored in double digits twice - R.A. Dickey beat Barry Zito and the next day 39 year old Ramon Ortiz tossed seven very good innings to record his last win in the majors. The Jays took two of three in 2010, when the Giants came by in the midst of their championship run, and it was way back in 2002 when the Giants made their first visit to Toronto. The Giants knocked Esteban Loaiza out in the fourth, the Jays did likewise to Kirk Reuter in their half and hung on to win 6-5 and give Corey Thurman the first of his three major league wins. The Giants knocked four homers off Brandon Lyon to win the next day, and in the finale Livan Hernandez beat Roy Halladay. Barry Bonds, in his only career visit here, went 4-10 in the series (with 5 BB, 3 of them intentional) and homered off Cliff Politte in his final Toronto at bat.

The Giants have been a rather unpredictable outfit in recent years. Two years ago, you will recall, they won 107 games. No one saw that coming - they'd just posted four consecutive losing seasons. Their best players that season - catcher Buster Posey, infielders Brandon Belt, Evan Longoria, and Brandon Crawford - were already on the wrong side of 30. So Posey retired, and Belt and Crawford saw their production fall sharply back to earth while Longoria missed almost half the season with injuries. The Giants expected Joey Bart to slide into Posey's spot behind the plate. Which he did, but he hit .215, which won't make anyone forget Buster Posey. And so they slipped back to 81-81.

So this winter they waved good bye to Belt and Longoria, who departed in free agency. They were all set to replace Crawford at short with Carlos Correa. That part didn't work out, as you may have heard. And it turns out that Brandon Crawford at age 36 is no better than he was at age 35, which wasn't very good at all. But J.D. Davis has been able to replace Longoria's bat, even if he doesn't provide the same kind of defense at third base, and he turns out to be much better at staying in the lineup. And LaMonte Ward has quite unexpectedly been the team's best hitter while replacing Belt at first base. Ward's been very much the same kind of hitter Belt was for them. He's not a big power source, but he hits lots of line drives and takes a goodly number of walks. It's just that he's never played this well before.

The Giants began the year with Bart and veteran Roberto Perez behind the plate. Perez quickly went down for the season after rotator cuff surgery, and Bart went on the IL a month ago. And when he was ready to return, they optioned him to Sacramento. Because Patrick Bailey, whom the Giants drafted 13th overall in 2020, has taken the job and run with it. In his first 29 games in the majors, he's hitting .323/.352/.535, which is certainly unexpected - he had never played above A ball before this season. Somehow, I don't expect this to continue, but in the meantime the Giants are letting the good times roll.

The Giants took a chance on a couple of often injured outfielders this winter. Michael Conforto has been adequate, I suppose - not the hitter he was with the Mets a few years ago, but there's quite a bit of rust that needs to be shaken off. Mitch Haniger hasn't worked out so well. Two years ago, he hit 39 HRs for the Mariners. Last year he missed more than 100 games. This year, he was hitting poorly (.230/.281/.372) before a Jack Flaherty fastball fractured his arm and put him on the shelf for the next couple of months. Centre fielder Mike Yastrzemski is also on the IL with a strained hammy. Mike Yaz made his ML debut just days after after the Giants last played in Toronto. So. seeing as how he'll miss this series, that means the last Yastrzemski to play here was his grandfather Carl, way back on 30 August 1983. The original Yaz had two hits and a walk against Dave Stieb that Tuesday evening. He'd celebrated his 44th birthday a week earlier.

Besides Belt and Longoria, the Giants also lost LH starter Carlos Rodon as a free agent - they'd signed Rodon in the first place to replace Kevin Gausman, who had departed to Toronto as a free agent the year before. The Giants gave two pitchers identical contracts - two years, $25 million, player may opt out after Year One - hoping one of them could fill the spot. Neither has. Both Ross Stripling and Sean Manaea have pitched pretty badly for the Giants so far. (On the other hand, Rodon hasn't pitched at all for the Yankees.)

Stripling may have thought his swingman days were behind him when he signed his shiny new contract. If so, he thought wrong. He started and lost the Giants' third game of the season. He spent the next three weeks in the pen, making three relief appearances. Then he started three games, only one of which was any good. Back to the pen, for a couple of outings of long relief before going on the IL about a month ago. He's back now, and was loosening up in the bullpen yesterday but didn't get into the game. Manaea was coming off a dismal year in San Diego, and he's been just as dismal for the Giants, and after posting a 7.54 ERA in six starts was banished to the bullpen.

Anthony DeSciafani is back in the rotation after missing much of 2022, but he doesn't look like quite the same pitcher who was so good in 2021 (he looks more like the guy he was in Cincinnati.) Their best starters have been Logan Webb and veteran Alex Cobb, currently on the IL and expected to be out for another week or with an oblique strain. We'll see Webb on Wednesday, and if you like seeing batters hit the ball on the ground, he's your man. This year Webb has induced more ground balls than any pitcher in the majors (last year he was second.) He doesn't walk many people, and like most sinker ballers, it's difficult to hit the ball over the fence against him. As always, if you don't give up walks or homers, you can afford to give up more hits than the other pitchers - except Webb doesn't even do that. The guy is really good.

And the team is pretty good as well. They're cruising along at 44-34, which would land them in the post-season with the second NL Wild Card - and their division is still quite tight, with the top three teams within three games of each other.


Tues 27 June - Walker (2-0, 1.89) vs Gausman (7-3, 3.10)
Wed 28 June - Wood (2-2, 5.17) vs Bassitt (7-5, 4.32)
Thu 29 June - Webb (7-6, 3.16) vs Berrios (8-5, 3.60)

San Francisco at Toronto, June 27-29 | 127 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Mike Green - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 10:27 AM EDT (#430774) #
Walker, Wood and Webb get the start for the Giants.  Bay Area tech bias hard at work. 
Leaside Cowboy - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 11:07 AM EDT (#430776) #
more W 's than the pro-wrestling business.
hypobole - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 11:39 AM EDT (#430777) #
Farhan Zaidi has to be one of the best, if not the best, dumpster-divers in the majors.

Their best position player is a failed prospect the Yankees sold for cash.
Second was traded by the Twins for Shaun Anderson. Anderson lasted 4 games/8.2 IP before the Twins dumped him. The next year he was pitching in Buffalo.
Third was a 28 year-old OF who had never played in the majors until the Giants traded for him.
hypobole - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 12:14 PM EDT (#430779) #
In keeping with their no-name status, the only Giant in the top 5 All Star voting at any position is J. D. Davis who is in 4th place at 3B. But overall, they're only 2 spots back of the 5th place Jays in fWAR, 13.5 to our 13.7.

The gap in wRC+ is a bit less close 110 to 106. It's how they do it that makes them the anti-Jays.

No one on base
Jays #3 115 wRC+, BA #2 .266
Giants #18 93 wRC+, BA #20 .234

Runner(s) on
Jays #16 104 wRC+, BA #15 .261
Giants #5 121 wRC+, BA #2 .277

Scoring position
Jays #21 92 wRC+, BA 325 .240
Giants #3 126 wRC+, BA #3 .291

Sidebar: Jays hitting .240 with RISP is a massive under-achievement considering the talent, but nothing like the Padres with Tatis, Soto, Machado, Bogaerts. Their .204 BA is dead last.

Gerry - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 12:31 PM EDT (#430780) #
Alek Manoah is pitching in the FCL today. One inning in, a ground ball single and a line drive single led to a run. One strikeout.
uglyone - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 01:07 PM EDT (#430781) #
don't recap the 2nd or 3rd innings for us gerry - please!
Mike Green - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 01:08 PM EDT (#430782) #
Manoah gave up 11 earned runs in 2.2 innings. It's going to be a while.
Mike Green - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 01:11 PM EDT (#430783) #
They really do need to either trust Francis or to get someone else to fill the 5th starter role for the time being. There would of course be nothing wrong with sending Richards out for 2 innings followed by Francis for 4 or 5 Tampa-style.
Nigel - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 01:22 PM EDT (#430784) #
I really am surprised that they sent him out to live game action so soon. I've assumed that Manoah will not be back again this year.
greenfrog - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 01:26 PM EDT (#430785) #
The Jays pulled off a stealthy trade last year when they acquired Merrifield. I hope they can find a similarly undervalued SP at the deadline this year (maybe an underperforming fly ball pitcher who would benefit from the Jaysí strong outfield defence).
vw_fan17 - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 03:40 PM EDT (#430787) #
Yeah, Merrifield has been a legit "steal", IMHO. On pace for maybe 2.5 bWAR this year? $18M is an overpay, but I wouldn't mind them doing $12x2  with the 2nd year having a buyout, or something. Seems like he can still play, is versatile, and still has speed.
hypobole - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 03:58 PM EDT (#430788) #
greenfrog, you mentioned 2 hopes earlier. Only one is realistic I believe. Getting a bat is a lot easier than getting a SP at the deadline. How many teams need a RH corner bat vs needing starting pitching?
greenfrog - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 04:18 PM EDT (#430789) #
I was thinking more of a back-rotation starter who has a chance to be a little better than that. Kind of like the Stripling acquisition (that cost Kendall Williams). Someone to help the Jays make the postseason and keep Gausman, Berrios and Bassitt (and maybe Ryu) and the bullpen fresh for a playoff series.

The tricky part is figuring out whether you're trading a future Kendall Williams or Nick Frasso.

Mike Green - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 04:25 PM EDT (#430790) #
That's right. Potential 5th starters are out there and are regularly acquired for not much. Better pitchers will cost dearly.
Nigel - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 04:30 PM EDT (#430791) #
We just spent an offseason jettisoning RH corner OF's right and left and now we need one? Totally unpredictable:)
Michael - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 04:46 PM EDT (#430792) #
Too be fair to Manoah, it was facing mostly 17 to 19 year olds. Lol. All joking aside the results don't matter as much as the mechanics/input, but you'd assume results this bad are probably mostly the result of bad inputs (presumably the defense behind him is substantially worse than the Jays major league defense, but again likely not to be this big a difference).

In terms of target pitchers, the obvious one who is good, older, and on a bad team is Zack Greinke but he has a no trade clause. I don't think there is anyone else obvious, but would be open to suggestions.
Magpie - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 05:08 PM EDT (#430793) #
Potential 5th starters are out there and are regularly acquired for not much.

Lance Lynn makes a lot of money, but it's just for three months. Free agent at the end of the year, the White Sox aren't going anywhere.

Oakland seems interested in getting rid of anyone half decent. J.P. Sears?
greenfrog - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 05:10 PM EDT (#430794) #
Merrifield was a brilliant pickup because the general perception was that he was well into the decline phase of his career at the time of the trade. Maybe the Jays can find a similar type of player in the SP shopping bin. The Jays have done this before, not only with Stripling but also with Robbie Ray.
Mike Green - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 05:24 PM EDT (#430795) #
Lance Lynn is a nice example. He hasn't been good but he hasn't been as bad as his ERA would suggest. You probably could get him by sending a lower level prospect, and the Sox might even send a few shekels with him. He would be a reasonable target.
uglyone - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 05:31 PM EDT (#430796) #
Thing is with Merrifield is that he was a guy with a history of being an excellent hitter who was being leaned on as a guy to help carry an offense and he couldnt hack that anymore.

But there's countless examples of a guy like that coming into a lesser role on a stacked offensive team and getting their groove back.

That was hammered into my brain for years when the big budget Yanks and Sox kept picking up ex-good retreads that looked done and then thrived in depth roles for their stacked lineups.

Pitching is a bit trickier. Though the FO did pull a neat trick when they grabbed Liriano at the deadline way back when.

Still tho i'd rather they be in the market for am actual good starter if they want to contend.
Nigel - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 05:34 PM EDT (#430797) #
I'd still consider an asset reallocation trade over a 5th starter trade. A trade of Chapman to the LA Dodgers where the Jays get pretty much any one or two of the Dodger's AA pitching staff would work wonders for this team going forward. But that's founded on a belief that the 2023 Jays just aren't very good. The Tulsa team might have the greatest minor league pitching staff in recent memory. The average velocity of the starters is better than any team in the majors and their team ERA is something like 2 full runs better than any team in their league.
greenfrog - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 06:10 PM EDT (#430798) #
Lynn is a good trade target, although Iím not sure how cheap he will be. Two starts ago, he struck out 16 (and walked two) in 7 IP. Pedigree plus a decent track record of performance will elevate his price tag.
hypobole - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 06:19 PM EDT (#430799) #
People aren't realising how bad the 2 Central Divisions are. ChiSox are only 6 out of 1st and have the easiest schedule in baseball from here on out. If no team takes charge and those 2 divisions tighten even a bit, there are going to be few sellers and lots of buyers.
99BlueJaysWay - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 06:26 PM EDT (#430800) #
Iím hoping for more of a 2020 deadline, where we take flyers on a couple guys for almost nothing. A Taijuan Walker -type would do wonders.

I also like the idea of using the budget to pick up someone on low cost by absorbing salary.
99BlueJaysWay - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 06:28 PM EDT (#430801) #
Also, heard today on Jays Talk Plus that the Jays are the best team in the AL over the past 30 days - 17w 11L
scottt - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 06:41 PM EDT (#430802) #
I'd settle for Ryu in the 5th spot.

In the meanwhile, I wouldn't mind Francis getting stretched a bit more.

Magpie - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 06:54 PM EDT (#430803) #
ChiSox are only 6 out of 1st and have the easiest schedule in baseball from here on out.

This is true, but in the name of all that's decent... give it up! At your current pace, you're going to lose 93 games. Sell! Sell! The way I should have sold my marijuana stocks...
greenfrog - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 06:56 PM EDT (#430804) #
Thereís a good chance one of Gausman, Berrios, Bassitt, Kikuchi or Ryu goes down with an injury over the next few months. So another SP would provide valuable depth. In any event, if the Jays get a decent and controllable starter, theyíll have him for next year as well. Win-win.
Gerry - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 07:20 PM EDT (#430805) #
Jays are going with a bullpen day tomorrow. They say they want to separate Gausman and Bassitt, not sure why.
Petey Baseball - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 07:43 PM EDT (#430806) #
I loved the Merrifield trade at the time, pushed for him to get at bats over Biggio and Espinal. He was the best player on a bad team for a few years.

I've also mentioned I think Steven Matz and one of Eduardo Escobar(since traded) or Tommy Pham would be excellent pickups for the Jays. Both the Cards and Mets will be looking to dump those guys.
christaylor - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 08:07 PM EDT (#430808) #
I wonder if he was working on something specific, results be damned. I hope he was throwing slider after slider as that pitch entirely disappeared for him this year.
lexomatic - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 08:09 PM EDT (#430809) #
A lot of pitches this inning. Looking AB.
greenfrog - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 08:11 PM EDT (#430810) #
Disappointing first inning for the Jays after the Springer double (which a fan apparently prevented from being a triple) and Bichette single. Belt had a decent PA but had some questionable calls made against him by the home plate ump. Vladdy had a poor one-out PA, chasing a couple of sliders off the plate ó one way off the plate ó and failing to put the ball in play against a pitcher on the ropes.
greenfrog - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 08:47 PM EDT (#430811) #
Incredible start for Gausman. Now letís see if the Jaysí low-energy offense can muster a couple of runs.
uglyone - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 09:19 PM EDT (#430812) #
this team needs a shrink.
Chuck - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 09:27 PM EDT (#430813) #
Or an opposition outfield full of Confortos.
Nigel - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 09:30 PM EDT (#430814) #
You could blame tonight on bad luck/poor sequencing or on really really poor situational hitting. I know which I think it is.
mathesond - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 09:37 PM EDT (#430815) #
Well don't keep us in suspense, Nigel! Which is it?
soupman - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 09:40 PM EDT (#430816) #
Vlad is not doing much to cement the notion that the dome is īhis house ī.

Nigel - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 09:41 PM EDT (#430817) #
:). My Mom always taught me not to say anything at all if I didnít have something good to say. Sorry
Petey Baseball - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 09:50 PM EDT (#430818) #
They need another bat.
It just seems like without Guerrero and Chapman cooking, it's a blah offense.

I'd wager Atkins will be more aggressive in making roster changes this year seeing how a team with a similar record last year cost the manager his job.

I'd say Espinal is definitely a chip they could trade; with Merrifield here and the organization's belief in Biggio so strong he is redundant.

Short of trading Ricky Tiedemann, which depending on the Jays level of desperation could be in play, you wonder how serious the Jays will be as the deadline approaches. It's clearly a flawed team, even when healthy that much is certain.

Nigel - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 09:59 PM EDT (#430819) #
Investing in a team thatís something like the 6th or 7th best team in the AL doesnít make sense to me. Reordering the soldiers for future near term seasons does.
uglyone - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 09:59 PM EDT (#430820) #
this RISP thing is crazy tbh.

something's gotta give.
uglyone - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 10:02 PM EDT (#430821) #

This is only the ninth time in MLB history a team has had 8+ hits, with at least 5 being doubles and scored zero runs.

— James G (@james_in_to) June 28, 2023
Nigel - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 10:06 PM EDT (#430822) #
They didnít need to get hits tonight to score runs though. Just kís with runners on 3rd and less than two outs.
scottt - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 10:09 PM EDT (#430823) #
It's not about separating pitchers, it's about giving them an extra day of rest because the team is scoring less than 4 runs per games. It's much better to have 4 quality starts and roll the dice the 5th day than having 4 starters being just average.
Gerry - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 10:17 PM EDT (#430824) #
Saw this headline on TSN about Manoah "Scott Mitchell - He pitched in the 290ís last year, I heard he came into camp around 320 lbs."

David Wells could do it, but I don't think Manoah can.

scottt - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 10:18 PM EDT (#430825) #
The White Sox have been rebuilding forever. If they are selling tickets and have a shot a winning the division, why would they piss the players and the fans just to get more prospects who could struggle as much as the current ones?

If they miss the playoffs, they are still in a decent drafting spot regardless.

scottt - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 10:21 PM EDT (#430826) #
I still maintain that Manoah's velo is fine. It's the bite on his slider that's missing and I don't think that is weight related, unless the size of his fingers are affected.
scottt - Tuesday, June 27 2023 @ 10:29 PM EDT (#430827) #
There were a couple of times when a Jay hitter was getting into a hitter's count and the ump called a strike on a ball that wasn't close. Belt got a bunch of calls he didn't like.  Jansen took strike 2 and 3 down the middle in on AB and then chased 2 and 3 far away in the next one. 

The fan that reached for the first ball pretty much set the game.

Merrifield got gunned down stealing second. The Giants stole easily.

It was that type of game. 

Kelekin - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 12:30 AM EDT (#430828) #
To be fair, as you gain weight your fingers do end up cumulating a bit more fat, including at the tips. How much of an impact that would have, who knows. But as someone Manoah-sized and fluctuating up and down my whole life, everything does change, and usually without you realizing.

What I can say as a Manoah sized person is that you most definitely get winded faster. Then you add the pitch clock - it is likely affecting him way more than he'd want to admit.

I hope he is able to work through it. He has millions of reasons to want to take care of himself, same with Kirk. But for many, especially those who have been overweight a long time, or grew up in households where food quality was calorically dense and full of salt and sugar (often due to cost or time), food addiction has to be managed like any other. A lot of people shame those who struggle with it, or believe it's easy. But people have different physiological responses that are not always easily overcome.
uglyone - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 10:26 AM EDT (#430829) #

I canít wait for Manoah to get back to the MLB and make yíall eat your words. All of you clowns hating on another man is just a projection of your own insecurities and life struggles. Times likes these are when true athletes are transformed. Looking forward to his return! 🗣️

— Marcus Stroman (@STR0) June 28, 2023
Magpie - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 10:49 AM EDT (#430830) #
Thirty strikeouts in last night's game. It's the kind of thing that makes a fellow lose interest in baseball altogether.
BlueJayWay - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 11:00 AM EDT (#430831) #
Seriously. That was awful to watch. More than twice as many Ks than hits.
vw_fan17 - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 12:29 PM EDT (#430832) #
I didn't watch every pitch attentively, just kind of jumped ahead 10-20 seconds, sometimes seeing only 1/4 or 2/5 pitches. But those had to be some of the worst strike calls I've seen in a while, if ever. This one is half on that blind man masquerading as an mlb umpire, imho.
hypobole - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 12:45 PM EDT (#430833) #
I wish I hadn't been so prophetic with my RISP post yesterday morning, but here we are. It's like a disease with this team.

Varsho's 164/273/274, 56 wRC+ has been the worst. I'd like to add "by far", but I can't because by wRC+:
Espinal 58
Belt 61
Springer 67
Chapman 67
Kiermaier 68
Jansen 70

Getting back to Varsho, one might think the Jays should have seen this coming. Except the DBacks last year were almost the same as the Jays this year with RISP. Jays are at 237/313/373, 90 wRC+. DBacks hit 230/304/386, 92 wRC+.

And Varsho? 293/348/505, 132 wRC+.
John Northey - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 12:50 PM EDT (#430834) #
It was ugly - here is Umpire Scorecards...
John Northey - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 12:53 PM EDT (#430835) #
Full details on missed pitches
hypobole - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 03:08 PM EDT (#430838) #
Posters quarantining this thread, not wanting to catch the dreaded "Jays Choke Disease".
Leaside Cowboy - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 04:25 PM EDT (#430840) #
59 days. clearly, I picked the right time to quit drinking.

this team needs a shrink.

mine is all booked.

uglyone - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 07:21 PM EDT (#430842) #
batting 1.000 with RISP tonight.
greenfrog - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 07:23 PM EDT (#430843) #
Better strike while the iron is hot against Webb.
uglyone - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 07:25 PM EDT (#430844) #
feels like our biggest 1st inning of the year.

not gonna check that, tho.
uglyone - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 07:29 PM EDT (#430845) #
I said that at 3 runs for the record.
mathesond - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 07:45 PM EDT (#430846) #
I had to check one game - the Jays did score 3 in the first on opening day.
greenfrog - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 07:59 PM EDT (#430847) #
What a season Richards is having.

If the Jays can maintain a commanding lead over the Giants tonight, they can go with low/medium leverage relievers the rest of the way. That would help keep the bullpen nicely rested for tomorrow.
Magpie - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 08:02 PM EDT (#430848) #
feels like our biggest 1st inning of the year.

Can confirm.
greenfrog - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 08:14 PM EDT (#430849) #
Solo home run. No big deal.

Feels like Francis could become a useful member of the pitching staff in some capacity.
Nigel - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 09:23 PM EDT (#430851) #
Iíve liked Francis pretty much every time Iíve seen him this year. I thought he was excellent tonight.
Mike Green - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 09:35 PM EDT (#430852) #
7 innings from Richards and Francis is a whole other kettle of fish. You can work with that, and not wear everyone else out.
greenfrog - Wednesday, June 28 2023 @ 09:47 PM EDT (#430853) #
I have a theory that every successful Jays team has at least one unheralded pitcher appear on the scene to play an important role during the season. Think Tom Filer, Tom Henke, Juan Guzman, Marco Estrada. I think Bowden Francis could be that pitcher this year.
Michael - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 02:39 AM EDT (#430854) #
Why are they never letting Richards pitch more than 3 innings. I get that in some sense we are lucky Richards and Francis have been pitching as well as they have. But based on what I've seen, I'd think you could try stretching Richards out even more given how good and consistent he's been.
ISLAND BOY - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 05:05 AM EDT (#430855) #
Greenfrog, I think an unheralded pitcher for the Jays last year was Ross Stripling. He looked better for the Giants last night but has had a poor start overall. Apparently as soon as he arrived at spring training the Giants started to tinker with his changeup which was his best pitch the year before. As Buck Martinez said, if you like a pitcher enough to sign him for two years, why try to change him? Sometimes baseball teams overthink things.
scottt - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 08:04 AM EDT (#430856) #
Richards going 3 innings might already be optional. This way he can throw an inning or two in his off day.
Francis, on the other hand, could go as much as 6 innings, as long as he's effective. He has 3 decent pitches and throw strikes. It's just a matter of attacking each hitter according to the scouting report and letting the defense do the rest.

Thornton should be able to do 3 innings if needed too.
There's no need to get 2 strike out per inning. Just make the hitters swing and mix it up.

hypobole - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 09:19 AM EDT (#430858) #
Just dawned on me that the Richards/Francis piggyback combo also arrived as a combo - the return for Rowdy.
uglyone - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 10:12 AM EDT (#430859) #
Funny greenfrog - i was going to say Richards is the guy that looks like he might pull a Stripling.

Richards actually has a similar MLB track record as Stripling had and his numbers don't seem to have a ton of fluke in them at the moment.

The underlying numbers think the career minor leaguer Francis is mostly lucky so far.
greenfrog - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 10:24 AM EDT (#430860) #
I thought of Richards and Kikuchi as contenders for that mantle. But I couldn't really call them "unheralded," as they've already had some success in the majors across several seasons (albeit with some poor stretches).

Even if Kikuchi has been somewhat lucky this year (89.5% LOB), he deserves a ton of credit for trimming his walk rate from 5.19/9IP last year to 2.68/9IP this year. He has been pretty good, all things considered.
SK in NJ - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 10:51 AM EDT (#430862) #
I'd definitely try to stretch Richards out and make him a starter the rest of the way. I don't like the idea of counting on Ryu roughly 12 months after Tommy John Surgery, and Manoah may not contribute again for the rest of the season. The other option that I wouldn't be against is just starting Francis and seeing what he has, but the org seems reluctant to do that.
scottt - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 10:54 AM EDT (#430863) #
Half of the Giants are career minor leaguers and they are still doing well.
Francis doesn't walk hitters. He gives his share of homeruns but 1 solo shot every 3 innings is fine with me.
He doesn't get shaken if a hitter reaches. The fastball is average. The curve has a large drop. He locates both breaking balls well. Hitters don't sit on his pitches and I haven't seem many line drives.

There's no way Richards can keep putting zeros if he faces the lineup 2 or 3 times.
He's a bit like Gausman but he doesn't have the velo.
So, Richards is better, but only has long as you don't overstretch him.

Leaside Cowboy - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 11:06 AM EDT (#430864) #
the Yankees . . . Leaside Cowboy pity those fools.
99BlueJaysWay - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 11:18 AM EDT (#430865) #
They canít stretch our Richards because they canít afford to lose his contributions in the bullpen. Like it or not he is one of their most trusted arms back there and so they still need those late shut down innings as well
greenfrog - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 11:59 AM EDT (#430866) #
Iím OK with a Richards/Francis tandem for the time being. It seems to be working. And the Jays have some other options in the bullpen, including Thornton and Pearson and Jackson. And Ryu and Green are getting closer.

I still think the team should add a #4-5 SP, though.
Nigel - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 12:03 PM EDT (#430867) #
Just because they have Thornton doesn't mean that they should be using him:)
scottt - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 12:22 PM EDT (#430868) #
I was flipping to the NHL draft to see if the Habs were going to pick up a Russian and it turned out to be quite memorable.
hypobole - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 12:28 PM EDT (#430869) #
They have been using Thornton and he's been excellent so far. Pitchers of his ilk are much like the plummeting sky diver whose chute won't open. Everything's OK so far! But you never know. Sometimes they keep plummeting for quite some before the inevitable. :)
scottt - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 12:30 PM EDT (#430870) #
Richards is the fabled Golden Goose.

Interesting that the Giants forced Stripling to alter his changeup and turned him into a pumpkin.

greenfrog - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 12:39 PM EDT (#430871) #
Thornton has yet to give up a hard-hit ball or a walk this year.
Nigel - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 12:39 PM EDT (#430872) #
To carry that analogy further though - as a friend of mine who is a base jumper frequently says - the ground is closer than you think.
uglyone - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 12:45 PM EDT (#430873) #
Fact is richards is putting up a 36.5k%.

That's a nice cushion to fall off from if you start pushing him longer and harder.
hypobole - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 01:47 PM EDT (#430875) #
Getting dawned on a lot today. Last night was the season midpoint. 44 wins - 88 pace. Bit worse than preseason expectations, but considering horrific Manoah and blah Vlad, not bad.
uglyone - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 02:03 PM EDT (#430876) #
Exact same record as last year at the halfway point.
Gerry - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 02:48 PM EDT (#430878) #
Kirk is back, Heineman optioned.
scottt - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 03:17 PM EDT (#430879) #
Richards' ERA is 3.26, not 0.5.

His career ERA is 4.32.

By month, he's allowed 4, 5 and 5 runs and pitched 11.1, 12.2 and 14.2 innings.

There's nothing that suggest to me that he's going to pitch 30 innings in July and allow only 3 runs.

His next start is against the White Sox. They don't have many left bats.
I wouldn't push him.

hypobole - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 03:41 PM EDT (#430880) #
Found a sportsbook's preseason over/unders. There are 5 teams substantially worse and 6 better than opening lines.

20 win better pace - Orioles, DBacks, Reds. 17 win better - Rays, Rangers, Marlins.
The top 3 also have excellent deep prospect pools. Their SP's rank 12th, 22nd, 25th at FG. If there are any good controllable SP's available at the deadline, good luck outbidding them.

20 win worse pace - Mets, Cards, Royals. 17 win worse - A's, Padres.

Mets and Padres are the hubris twins. Cards proof no man lives forever. The most pathetic of the bunch may be the Royals.

hypobole - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 03:49 PM EDT (#430881) #
Fangraphs looks at this years top defensive teams. Includes a highlight reel of KK's 5 greatest catches... in the 1st 3 weeks of June!
hypobole - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 04:06 PM EDT (#430882) #
Interesting that the Giants forced Stripling to alter his changeup and turned him into a pumpkin.

Teams don't force pitchers to alter effective pitches. The Giants suggested and Stripling tried a 2nd changeup that they believed would have more swing and miss. Didn't work. He ditched it.
Nigel - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 04:48 PM EDT (#430884) #
I've actually enjoyed watching this year's team more than most it seems - partly because I had lower expectations than most about the quality of the team but mostly because I enjoy watching good defensive teams. This year's squad might be best defensive team in my 51 years of following the Jays. Certainly the OF defence is the best. Devon White is the only CF in the team's history to be comparable to KK but Devon was never consistently flanked with good corner OFs.
greenfrog - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 05:05 PM EDT (#430885) #
There have been some great pitching performances this year by all four of the SPs ó and also by several of the relievers.

Some of the other first half highlights include the outfield defense, Boís stellar hitting, and KKís overall performance and positive vibes.

I think the team has a good chance to do well in the second half. Iím going to go out on a limb and predict they catch the Oís.
hypobole - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 05:48 PM EDT (#430886) #
Pirates win 5-4, sweeping the Padres.

Ryan Borucki came into a 2 out bases loaded situation with the Pirates down 4-1 in the 5th. Got the out, then pitched a clean 6th. That lowered his ERA to 13.50.
hypobole - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 06:15 PM EDT (#430887) #
Kikuchi and his 20 long balls no longer in 1st place.

Angels with 3 off Lance Lynn, who's now at 22.
greenfrog - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 06:22 PM EDT (#430888) #
I think it's a mistake for Vlad to enter the home run derby. He should use the All-Star break to rest his body.
Magpie - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 06:46 PM EDT (#430889) #
I think it's a mistake for Vlad to enter the home run derby. He should use the All-Star break to rest his body.

I bet he's hoping it might help him rediscover his home run stroke.
Magpie - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 06:54 PM EDT (#430890) #
This year's squad might be best defensive team in my 51 years of following the Jays.

A little confused at how you've been following the Jays since 1972, but no matter. Agree about the outfield defense. Kiermaier is roughly equivalent to White and Pillar in CF; Springer isn't quite Jesse Barfield in RF, but he's still awfully good out there; and Varsho is the best defensive LF by an order of magnitude. I can't think of anyone even close. George Bell circa 84-85 (before the knee and shoulder injuries) was actually pretty good. But nowhere near this good.
uglyone - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 07:11 PM EDT (#430891) #
Eh Jesse had a gun but i wouldn't have wanted to see him try CF.
uglyone - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 07:13 PM EDT (#430892) #
Maybe the most encouraging thing this year tbh is Bo's defense at SS.
Nigel - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 07:40 PM EDT (#430893) #
At my age thereís little difference between 51 and 46:(. Numbers are not my friend today.

Pillar was very very good but I donít think heís in quite the same class defensively as peak White and KK and thereís zero shame in that.
Mike Green - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 08:20 PM EDT (#430894) #
Jesse had 544 innings in CF in his youth. He was, to my admittedly biased eye, good put there. Total Zone had him as +14 for his time in centerfield. It's not a great metric, but it's unlikely that he was significantly worse than average.
Magpie - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 08:29 PM EDT (#430895) #
Bell and Barfield both ran well enough to cover CF when they arrived here. A couple of years of running around on the concrete at the old Ex took care of that, of course.
Leaside Cowboy - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 08:42 PM EDT (#430896) #
the Shaker!

Reed Johnson / Vernon Wells / Ńlex RŪos.

Leaside Cowboy thinks Rickey (No. 1) / Devo / Joe.
uglyone - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 08:46 PM EDT (#430897) #
I guess CF Barfield was before my time.

by the time i was there Jesse always looked a bit be anything other than a corner OF.

but even though i missed that, I can't see any Jays OF that had 3 quality defensive CFs at the same time.
hypobole - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 08:48 PM EDT (#430898) #
Maybe just thinking of the derby helped him rediscover his home run stroke.
lexomatic - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 08:50 PM EDT (#430899) #
So many strikeouts
Nigel - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 08:52 PM EDT (#430900) #
Just like people forget that Bell was a very good LF in his first couple of years, they forget that Barfield was more leggy antelope in his first couple of years than the stately slugger he was in his later years.
Nigel - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 09:20 PM EDT (#430901) #
Amazing play by both Kirk and Espinal. Incredible.
uglyone - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 09:20 PM EDT (#430902) #
now that is a big caught stealing.
uglyone - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 09:24 PM EDT (#430903) #
fucking umps
uglyone - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 09:41 PM EDT (#430904) #

Kevin Gausman & Chris Bassitt of the @BlueJays each have 6 games with 6 IP & 0 ER before July.

Only 1 other pair of teammates has done that since ER became official in 1913: Dutch Leonard & Rube Foster of the 1914 Red Sox.

H/T @EliasSports

— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) June 30, 2023
scottt - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 09:49 PM EDT (#430905) #
That was a stressful 9th inning.

They got their share of calls tonight.

Bassitt had a great game while fighting the clock.
It's a tough balance. Most of the time he knows what he wants to do and is better calling it directly.
It's just when he's in the rope that he needs help and he's still going to shake a ton.

Vladdy had the big hit.

I think Vladdy is using the interpret for the extended family's benefit.

greenfrog - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 09:56 PM EDT (#430906) #
45-37 with a net negative contribution from Manoah (so far) is pretty good.

Do we have an ETA for Ryu and Green?
Kelekin - Thursday, June 29 2023 @ 11:04 PM EDT (#430907) #
Great game. That could've gone a completely different direction - Slater was given two meatball sliders down the middle and mistimed both of them. Nice to see Espi reminding people what he is capable of as a defender.
Leaside Cowboy - Friday, June 30 2023 @ 12:12 AM EDT (#430908) #
Let's make it happen: the Chairman of the Board requests a personal favour from President Trump. The deep-state investigates MLB umpires. A conspiracy to subvert the Toronto Blue Jays Baseball Club is linked to the highest levels of the U.S. government. Finally, incontrovertible proof of clandestine sabotage. Liberty!
hypobole - Friday, June 30 2023 @ 11:09 AM EDT (#430910) #
Knew about Bailey, who looked impessive, and Winn but didn't realise until I checked FG this morning 4 hitters and both pitchers SF used are rookies.

On the other side of the bay, the A's gave up double digit runs for the second day in a row, but at least didn't get perfect gamed yesterday. Highlight for the A's was a leaping catch over the CF fence by defensive whiz Ruiz to rob a HR. Or at least he would have robbed a HR if he didn't drop his glove with the ball in it over the fence.

Nonetheless the Yankees lost a game in the WC race, as per the unwritten rule, since they only took 2 of 3.
Nigel - Friday, June 30 2023 @ 12:42 PM EDT (#430911) #
It's really a game and a half in the WC race - against the A's you really should take 4 out of 3:)
James W - Friday, June 30 2023 @ 12:43 PM EDT (#430912) #
only took 2 of 3

So, just as well as the Blue Jays did. Roger that.
hypobole - Friday, June 30 2023 @ 12:48 PM EDT (#430913) #
So, just as well as the Blue Jays did. Roger that.

check the post right before your's. 2 of 3 is not doing well whatsoever.
James W - Friday, June 30 2023 @ 08:27 PM EDT (#430930) #
I see the post. It was posted while I was typing.

If you're going to disparage the Yankees for losing to the A's, get the pitchforks out for Toronto too. And for Tampa, for losing 2 to Oakland.
hypobole - Saturday, July 01 2023 @ 02:35 AM EDT (#430940) #
James, it's an inside joke from near the tail end of the Oakland thread.
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