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I was carried to Ohio in a swarm of bees

This weekend, at the Budweiser Stage, the greatest band ever to come out of Cincinnati (by way of Brooklyn) will be laying down a little rock, a little roll. While the local baseball team visits their home town.


The Blue Jays don't have much of a rivalry with the Cincinnati Reds - they've met just 21 times over the years, and it's gone very well for Toronto. Their 14-7 record against the Reds is their best winning percentage against any MLB team. The Jays took two of three last May, winning thanks to outstanding starting pitching from Hyun-Jin Ryu (six shutout innings) on the Friday and from Alek Manoah (eight innings, one run) on the Saturday. They didn't get the sweep because on Sunday afternoon Joey Votto broke up a 2-2 tie in the eighth inning with a solo homer off Yimi Garcia.

The Jays haven't visited Cincinnati since June 2014, but on that Friday night they played what was surely one of the most memorable games in the team's history. And I missed most of it, having once again made plans based on my need to rock and my need to roll. I was going to see the wonderful St Vincent doing a free show at the Yonge-Dundas Square. The Jays were already losing 8-0 when I hopped on the train to go downtown, so just as a bonus it looked like I'd be missing a lousy game. Annie was fabulous - of course she was - but I did start getting slightly distracted by one of the video screens in the square that was showing this very ball game. And the Blue Jays were somehow clawing their way back into it. They had cut the Cincinnati lead to 9-8 when I got on the subway heading home - at which point I naturally lost contact with the internet and could only wonder what the hell was going on. Imagine my surprise and delight when I emerged from the underground to find the Jays had somehow, unbelievably, scored twice against Aroldis Chapman to take an 11-9 lead. And Edwin Encarnacion, the former Red, was stepping up to the plate with a couple of runners on base...

An unforgettable evening in the old town, in a season that didn't leave a whole lot that was worth remembering. Eephus would give this wild, wild game the mighty recap it deserved. Needless to say, Joey Votto is the only man who played in that game who is still with the same team nine years later. A few others are still active - Liam Hendriks started that game for the Blue Jays, and got shelled. Marcus Stroman got into the game as a pinch runner. Billy Hamilton (barely) and Aroldis Chapman are still around....

I can't tell you much about the 2023 Reds. It's basically the always wonderful Joey Votto and a bunch of young guys no one's heard of. Well, Elly De La Cruz probably caught your attention for a while. Jonathan India (now on the IL) was the 2021 Rookie of the Year, and Tyler Stephenson (not having a great year) is why the Reds weren't interested in Gabriel Moreno when they were selling off Luis Castillo last summer.

Matchups!

Fri 18 Aug - Berrios (9-8, 3.53) vs Kennedy (1-0, 5.14)
Sat 19 Aug - Bassitt (11-6, 3.95) vs Williamson (4-2, 4.33)
Sun 20 Aug - Ryu (1-1, 2.57) vs Greene (2-4, 3.93)
Toronto at Cincinnati, August 18-20 | 188 comments | Create New Account
The following comments are owned by whomever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Mike Green - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 01:02 PM EDT (#434577) #
When I first heard Start A War, I thought "geez this band is special". Similar feeling to when I heard Rebellion (Lies) for the first time. Is there an oldies' station playing music from the Aughts?
I guess not- demographics have changed.

Ryu vs. Greene is a classic match up of a lefty with finesse and a righty with power. Should be fun.

Eephus - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 01:26 PM EDT (#434580) #
While it's very clearly true this Cincinnati squad is the ageless Joey Votto (who still bangs) and a bunch of kids, these Rookie Reds are not to be taken lightly. While in previous years highly ranked prospects like Nick Senzel and Jose Barrero have simply not found any level of MLB hitting success (both are indeed back in the minors yet again), much of the success of this 2023 season has been that influx of useful young major league talent. 

While none of them are really at a superstar level you have to seriously plan a game around (Elly has really cooled off since that electric debut), the Reds have a lot of guys who can hurt you. Spencer Steer, Matt McLain, Will Benson (stolen from Cleveland for a song), TJ Friedl, Christian Encarnacion-Strand (who pulverized AAA), Elly of course... and that Votto fella can still run into a long ball or two (it's really all healthy late-career Votto has done... trading a bit of his HoF-level patience to just mash the ball more).

This will be Greene's first start in a few months but he of course throws very, very hard. The Jays might be lucky in this series to be missing lefty Andrew Abbott (another rookie) and Graham Ashcraft, who has been excellent since the All-Star break (after being quite awful before it). Cincinnati's bullpen shouldn't be slept on either, as their 2-6 options are all fairly solid... and the #1 guy (Edwin Diaz's little brother) is simply dynamite. 

Should be a good series! The Reds are really fun to watch with all those young guys. As a fan of both teams (and this fun Reds season especially) I'm extremely torn... leaning Jays of course but can one just not sweep the other? 
scottt - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 02:10 PM EDT (#434582) #
Tonight's game is once again not on TV.
I find that's a horrible way to start a series.

Marc Hulet - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 02:14 PM EDT (#434583) #
Just take the Apple TV two month free trial and cancel right away (you still get it for the two months)
Leaside Cowboy - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 02:54 PM EDT (#434586) #
Joey Votto is the king. Joe Burrow is the mayor. Cincinnat-ah.
jgadfly - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 03:51 PM EDT (#434589) #
RE: "deep dive into Vlad's numbers"
Thanks Gerry for the headsup ...Petriello's MLB article ( https://www.mlb.com/news/explaining-vladimir-guerrero-jr-confusing-2023-season ) is fairly comprehensive, interesting and informative. Twenty feet off the MLB average distance for 100 mph plus balls barreled is fairly substantial. I wonder how many of those would have gone for HR's with just the league average distance/carry (385')? Is there a formula that can calculate the increased distance gained by every increase in the degree of loft/launch ... sort of like the 'smash factor' number in golf ?
Also, the Dome seems to have been open more this season than in years past and I wonder if that might have some sort of negative effect on numbers ...
Also Part 2, I wonder if the new outfield renovations may have changed the air current/flow, perhaps suppressing ball flight ?
jgadfly - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 04:00 PM EDT (#434590) #
Also ... Part 3 : thanks Marc for the work around idea for Apple TV viewing. I didn't know you could do that?
soupman - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 04:53 PM EDT (#434591) #
I have been confident that the wrist injury sapped some power, but I have become less so after some quick digging.

I looked into the stat cast data with the hunch that perhaps there's a drop in the distance that he's hitting before and after he missed time. Looking just at the HR the difference is less than 5' - given the sample size, not very significant, though if we ignore his 8th HR of the year (which was a monster shot he hit off a 52mph eephus), then the gap is closer to 8ft and might help account for why he didn't hit a HR for a calendar month.

It's hardly a smoking gun and probably not significant so I'm more open alternative explanations than I was before looking into this, but it also isn't *nothing* and it is at least in line with my hypothesis.

For those interested in the #s:
HR 1-7 average distance of 404.6'
HR 9-18 average distance of 397.2'
uglyone - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 05:37 PM EDT (#434592) #

Trade Deadline Adds Tracker

The Amazing

* PHI RHP M.Lorenzen 2gms, 8.5ip/gm, 24era-, 84fip-, 123xfip-, 0.8war, 12.8war/32gms
* TEX RHP M.Scherzer 3gms, 6.7ip/gm, 42era-, 48fip-, 60xfip-, 0.9war, 9.6war/32gms
* MIA 3B J.Burger 58pa, 146wrc+, 0.8war, 9.0war/650pa
* CHC 3B J.Candelario 52pa, 182wrc+, 0.6war, 7.5war/650pa
* MIA 1B J.Bell 61pa, 173wrc+, 0.6war, 6.4war/650pa
* LAD RHP L.Lynn 4gms, 6.3ip/gm, 34era-, 90fip-, 80xfip-, 0.8war, 6.4war/32gms
* TEX RHP J.Montgomery 3gms, 6.0ip/gm, 59era-, 65fip-, 68xfip-, 0.6war, 6.4war/32gms
* TBR RHP A.Civale 3gms, 5.1ip/gm, 73era-, 54fip-, 95xfip-, 0.6war, 5.9war/32gms
* KCR OF N.Velazquez 23pa, 227wrc+, 0.4war, 11.3war/650pa
* ATL IF N.Lopez 17pa, 186wrc+, 0.3war, 11.5war/650pa

The Good

* HOU RHP J.Verlander 3gms, 6.0ip/gm, 106era-, 93fip-, 122xfip-, 0.4war, 3.7war/32gms
* LAA RHP R.Lopez 7gms, 1.1ip/gm, 27era-, 29fip-, 66xfip-, 0.4war, 3.7war/65gms
* LAD RHP J.Kelly 4gms, 0.9ip/gm, 0era-, 43fip-, 44xfip-, 0.2war, 3.3war/65gms
* LAD LHP R.Yabrough 3gms, 3.4ip/gm, 41era-, 92fip-, 104xfip-, 0.3war, 2.7war/32gms
* CIN LHP S.Moll 7gms, 1.1ip/gm, 50era-, 54fip-, 57xfip-, 0.3war, 2.3war/65gms
* NYY RHP K.Middleton 6gms, 1.3ip/gm, 28era-, 21fip-, 36xfip-, 0.2war, 2.2war/65gms
* TEX RHP C.Stratton 6gms, 1.7ip/gm, 41era-, 85fip-, 101xfip-, 0.2war, 2.2war/65gms
* TOR LHP G.Cabrera 12gms, 1.0ip/gm, 0era-, 54fip-, 103xfip-, 0.4war, 2.0war/65gms

The Meh

* SEA IF J.Rojas 31pa, 69wrc+, 0.1war, 2.1war/650pa
* CHC RHP J.Cuas 6gms, 1.0ip/gm, 0era-, 121fip-, 145xfip-, 0.2war, 1.6war/65gms
* PIT LHP J.Wolf 1gms, 5.0ip/gm, 129era-, 80fip-, 117xfip-, 0.1war, 1.6war/32gms
* TOR RHP J.Hicks 7gms, 1.0ip/gm, 96era-, 64fip-, 89xfip-, 0.2war, 1.4war/65gms
* MIN RHP D.Floro 7gms, 0.9ip/gm, 68era-, 59fip-, 82xfip-, 0.2war, 1.4war/65gms
* ARZ OF T.Pham 51pa, 96wrc+, 0.1war, 1.3war/650pa
* PIT LHP B.Falter 3gms, 4.4ip/gm, 93era-, 127fip-, 109xfip-, 0.1war, 1.1war/32gms
* HOU RHP K.Graveman 7gms, 7.1ip/gm, 55era-, 114fip-, 98xfip-, 0.1war, 0.9war/65gms
* LAA RHP D.Leone 5gms, 1.3ip/gm, 93era-, 112fip-, 104xfip-, 0.1war, 0.7war/65gms
* ATL LHP B.Hand 5gms, 1.0ip/gm, 81era-, 99fip-, 128xfip-, 0.1war, 0.7war/65gms


The Bad

* LAD UT E.Hernandez 67pa, 108wrc+, 0.0war, 0.0war/650pa
* LAD IF A.Rosario 52pa, 102wrc+, 0.0war, 0.0war/650pa
* SDP 1B G.Cooper 24pa, 113wrc+, 0.0war, 0.0war/650pa
* PIT IF A.Rivas 44pa, 99wrc+, 0.0war, 0.0war/650pa
* BOS IF L.Urias 32pa, 94wrc+, 0.0war, 0.0war/650pa
* TEX C A.Hedges 6pa, -100wrc+, 0.0war, 0.0war/650pa
* STL LHP J.King 5gms, 0.9ip/gm, 46era-, 132fip-, 97xfip-, 0.0war, 0.0war/65gms
* BAL RHP J.Flaherty 3gms, 4.7ip/gm, 167era-, 108fip-, 104xfip-, -0.1war, -0.5war/32gms
* SEA RHP T.Thornton 6gms, 1.2ip/gm, 91era-, 128fip-, 88xfip-, -0.1war, -0.5war/65gms
* CLE RHP N.Syndergaard 4gms, 5.3ip/gm, 119era-, 171fip-, 148xfip-, -0.1war, -0.8war/32gms

The Ugly

* ARZ RHP P.Sewald 6gms, 0.9ip/gm, 122era-, 151fip-, 74xfip-, -0.1war, -1.1war/65gms
* MIL LHP A.Chafin 6gms, 0.9ip/gm, 165era-, 157fip-, 135xfip-, -0.2war, -1.6war/65gms
* KCR LHP T.Hearn 4gms, 0.8ip/gm, 184era-, 156fip-, 120xfip-, -0.1war, -1.6war/65gms
* BOS RHP N.Robertson 2gms, 2.0ip/gm, 200era-, 135fip-, 107xfip-, -0.1war, -1.6war/65gms
* MIA RHP J.Lopez 9gms, 0.9ip/gm, 212era-, 100fip-, 125xfip-, -0.3war, -1.8war/65gms
* KCR LHP T.Davidson 5gms, 1.0ip/gm, 164era-, 144fip-, 127xfip-, -0.2war, -2.0war/65gms
* ARZ IF J.Peterson 32pa, 40wrc+, -0.1war, -2.0war/650pa
* LAA OF R.Grichuk 58pa, 50wrc+, -0.2war, -2.2war/650pa
* SDP RHP S.Barlow 6gms, 1.3ip/gm, 196era-, 108fip-, 98xfip-, -0.2war, -2.2war/65gms
* LAA RHP L.Giolito 4gms, 5.3ip/gm, 188era-, 153fip-, 118xfip-, -0.3war, -2.4war/32gms
* MIL OF M.Canha 53pa, 64wrc+, -0.2war, -2.5war/650pa
* LAA 1B C.Cron 50pa, 56wrc+, -0.2war, -2.6war/650pa
* MIL 1B C.Santana 72pa, 30wrc+, -0.3war, -2.7war/650pa
* MIA RHP D.Robertson 6gms, 1.0ip/gm, 141era-, 166fip-, 132xfip-, -0.3war, -3.3war/65gms
* COL LHP J.Bruihl 3gms, 0.6ip/gm, 431era-, 136fip-, 188xfip-, -0.2war, -3.3war/65gms
* CHW OF T.Thompson 20pa, 45wrc+, -0.1war, -3.3war/650pa
* SDP LHP R.Hill 3gms, 3.8ip/gm, 228era-, 192fip-, 114xfip-, -0.4war, -3.7war/32gms
* SDP 1B J.Choi 16pa, 35wrc+, -0.1war, -4.1war/650pa
* SEA OF D.Canzone 42pa, 61wrc+, -0.3war, -4.6war/650pa
* SFG UT M.Mathias 10pa, 6wrc+, -0.1war, -6.5war/650pa

The Oh My Dear Lord

* MIA LHP R.Weathers 1gms, 3.7ip/g, 347era-, 254fip-, 169xfip-, -0.3war, -9.6war/32gms
* PHI IF R.Castro 18pa, -31wrc+, -0.3war, -10.8war/650pa
* TOR IF P.DeJong 44pa, -77wrc+, -0.9war, -13.3war/650pa
* SFG OF A.Pollock 6pa, -100wrc+, -0.2war, -21.7war/650pa
John Northey - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 05:41 PM EDT (#434593) #
Of note: Davis Schneider since that crazy weekend is 1 for 17 (a double) with 4 walks and 8 K's. A 448 OPS. Over the past 7 days he is 1 for 4 (double) with a 900 OPS. I'd really like him to get into more games but the Jays seem determined to keep Espinal in the lineup (3 for 15 past 7 days 467 OPS). Kirk 2 for 16, DeJong 1 for 13, Springer 3 for 19 (guess he isn't fully out of his slump). Varsho is over 1000 for OPS in the past 7 days though which is nice to see at long last.
greenfrog - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 06:55 PM EDT (#434596) #
First inning, two runners on, Chapman takes a centre-cut FB, later strikes out, inning over, zero runs scored.

What else is new?
John Northey - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 07:24 PM EDT (#434597) #
FYI: did a small search and found it for free online - https://strfi5h.blogspot.com/2023/08/d84323.html - no apple TV subscription needed.
greenfrog - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 08:04 PM EDT (#434600) #
Time to ďgive creditĒ to another mediocre opposing starting pitcher, I guess.
hypobole - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 08:15 PM EDT (#434601) #
29 yr old career minor leaguer. Never heard of him before today.c
Chuck - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 08:44 PM EDT (#434602) #
Will Benson? More like Wonít Benson.
krose - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 08:46 PM EDT (#434603) #
Why no infield fly rule?
Chuck - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 08:48 PM EDT (#434604) #
There was only a runner on first, thus no IF rule.
christaylor - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 08:49 PM EDT (#434605) #
The ump washing using the softball infield fly rule?
Polite Nate - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 08:54 PM EDT (#434606) #
That's why you need two runners on for the IFF rule to come into effect - there's no way the batter can't reach first safely on a pop up like that for it to matter. Unless of course, you foolishly stop running.
krose - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 08:56 PM EDT (#434607) #
Thanks guys. Makes sense. Has that been a rule change over the decades?
James W - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 09:05 PM EDT (#434608) #
The infield fly rule has not changed; it's always required first and second base to be occupied.
greenfrog - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 09:08 PM EDT (#434609) #
Mís up 1-0 in the fourth on a Rodriguez home run.
greenfrog - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 09:17 PM EDT (#434610) #
After nine frames, the Jays hitters are 3/30 with a double and 2 walks in this game.
James W - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 09:19 PM EDT (#434611) #
Rodriguez is now 9-9 in his last 9 AB, and 12-14 in his last 3 games.
greenfrog - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 09:21 PM EDT (#434612) #
Ballgame.
lexomatic - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 09:23 PM EDT (#434613) #
86 mph down the middle.
3rd pitch down the middle that at bat and 2 wild balls.
Really poor pitching for that HR.
greenfrog - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 09:24 PM EDT (#434614) #
Why is Hicks getting beat in a critical situation throwing 85 MPH breaking balls when he throws 100+ MPH?
Gerry - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 09:25 PM EDT (#434615) #
He hangy, they bangy.
Leaside Cowboy - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 09:26 PM EDT (#434616) #
" Ex-Rogers CEO Joe Natale seeks $24M from company for wrongful dismissal. "
John Northey - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 09:41 PM EDT (#434617) #
Love that Vlad was alert enough to see the DP opportunity there, sad that the Jays bats were dead quiet again. Someone needs to talk with Hicks about why he doesn't use his 100 MPH heat more often, seems odd how rarely he uses it.
lexomatic - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 09:55 PM EDT (#434618) #
I'm guessing he was trying g to change up speed and there was some back and forth location, but that's where he gets hit the hardest per statscast. Dunno if it's the pitch calling, or thr execution.
Waveburner - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 10:56 PM EDT (#434619) #
Seattle wins again. Jays no longer in a playoff position.

At some point in the remaining 39 games the Jays will need to go an extended run to make it. Not sure this putrid offense is capable, but the pitching should give them a chance.
electric carrot - Friday, August 18 2023 @ 11:33 PM EDT (#434620) #
I have two words for what this team needs going forward and the first one is"Bo."
Dr B - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 02:43 AM EDT (#434621) #
Derek? Duke? Geste? Give us a clue, Electric Carrot.
Leaside Cowboy - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 07:32 AM EDT (#434622) #
Bo Bichette deserves a promotion from Buffalo.
bpoz - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 07:53 AM EDT (#434623) #
Our O has to improve the rest of this year. There will be a lot of talk about how 2024's O will be reconstructed this off season.
Leaside Cowboy - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 07:56 AM EDT (#434624) #
Rick Jeanneret (voice of the Buffalo Sabres) passed away. Rest in peace.
hypobole - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 08:54 AM EDT (#434626) #
Help us, O Bo-wan. You're our only hope.
Leaside Cowboy - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 09:15 AM EDT (#434627) #
Nathan Lukes Skywalker.
Petey Baseball - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 09:56 AM EDT (#434628) #
There was some resignation in Vlad's face/body language last night. A couple of missed scoops at first recently plus the struggles at the plate taking it's toll. Heads up play in the field last night but at the plate he's lost.

SK in NJ - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 11:33 AM EDT (#434629) #
The Jays missing the playoffs in 2021 was heartbreaking because you had a sense that if they got in, they had a real chance of going far. I almost get the opposite feeling this season. If they got the 3rd Wild Card, I wouldnít be confident at all that theyíd be able to hit the Twins pitching enough to get past the Wild Card round. Iím not sure whether I should be disappointed if the Mariners beat the Jays out or excited that maybe it would facilitate some change. I suspect the change would be relatively minor, maybe a new hitting coach and a greater emphasis on power/offense in off season moves, rather than something more significant (ex. a GM change) but status quo canít be an option.

Regardless itís going to be a tough last month and a half. The Jays are essentially 1.5 games behind the Mariners due to the tiebreaker, and both teams are fairly evenly matched (good pitching, mediocre offense). Bichette is going to have to carry this team.
uglyone - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 11:43 AM EDT (#434630) #
Missing this year would be the worst disaster of all, given they're the best run prevention team in baseball and are stacked with offensive talent.

It would also be a very good lesson that they should have gone more all-in to win jn previous years when they had very good performances but glaring holes to fill. Because you can never foresee when those good performances can fall off. Now that we have no real holes on the roster we're getting destroyed by a big number of key underpeformers - most of them young guys that you wouldn't expect it from like Vlad Manoah Kirk Varsho, and only one from seeming age decline in Springer.

You can say it's unlucky, but that's why you go for it when all those guys are playing great, and don't dick around waiting for everything to eventually come together.
greenfrog - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 12:03 PM EDT (#434631) #
Here is a large part of the story of the season:

Team batting .258/.329/.412 (741 OPS) (rank: 12th in MLB)

Team batting with RISP .246/.324/.371 (695 OPS) (rank: 27th in MLB)

How many more wins would the Jays have this year if they'd had a 741 OPS with RISP?
greenfrog - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 12:14 PM EDT (#434632) #
Also remember that with every win the Mís pile up against teams like Houston, theyíve got six games upcoming against Oakland. Theyíll probably win five or six of those games.
John Northey - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 01:25 PM EDT (#434633) #
Y'know, a 500 team should have a 7 game winning streak at some point of a season. The Jays longest is a 6 game back in April. 5 times they've had a 4 game streak (in addition to the 6 gamer). At some point they need a 7-10 game streak.

2 more vs Cincinnati, 3 vs Baltimore, 3 vs Cleveland, then comes the stretch vs teams playing out the string since April (Washington, Colorado, Oakland, KC) from August 28th to September 10th. That is the big chance for a winning streak. After that it is tough to the end (Texas, Boston, NYY, TB, NYY, TB). Basically if the Jays aren't in a safe playoff slot by September 10th I don't like their odds.
Leaside Cowboy - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 01:46 PM EDT (#434634) #
Luis UrŪas launches a grand slam off Gerrit Cole in the 2nd inning. Red Sox 4 - Yankees 0.
uglyone - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 02:27 PM EDT (#434635) #
dejong DFA'd.

hypobole - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 02:34 PM EDT (#434636) #
The DFA opens up a 40 man spot for Green.
Glevin - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 02:45 PM EDT (#434638) #
Really don't unseratand what Espinal has to do to get sent to AAA or even for the team to stop playing him. It's an obscene level of confidence in someone who doesn't deserve it.
ISLAND BOY - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 03:12 PM EDT (#434639) #
Looking at the career stats of Paul Dejong and you have to wonder what the heck happened to him. He was age 23 his rookie season, hit 25 home runs and had an OPS of.857, and finished second in Rookie-of-the-Year voting to Cody Bellinger. This wasn't a one off as he hit 19 home runs the next year, and the year after played 159 games, hit 31 doubles and 30 home runs.

After that his games played and stats went down sharply, and in his stint with the Jays he showed no power and, in fact, hardly got the ball out of the infield. Was injuries the reason for his steep decline? I never investigated that far but what an upgrade to replace him with Bo Bichette.
uglyone - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 03:13 PM EDT (#434640) #
I'm not 100% sure Espinal is safe from Clement stealing his job tbh.
92-93 - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 03:16 PM EDT (#434641) #
Silly DFA. Whatever their scouts saw in him 2 weeks ago that warranted spending 2.5MM on him instead of just using Espinal shouldn't have been erased by two bad weeks.
uglyone - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 03:27 PM EDT (#434642) #
It is probably the worst 2 weeks in jays history tho.
SK in NJ - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 03:33 PM EDT (#434643) #
DeJong had a -0.9 WAR, -77 wRC+, 40.9 K%, 50% GB rate, and no extra base hits in 13 games. The Jays lost 4 games in the standings to the Mariners over that stretch. If they didn't DFA him, then I would have been pretty disappointed. It's a small sample size, but you can't keep running him out there hoping numbers will normalize when you only have a month plus left in the season and now are on the outside looking in. I agree that Espinal should also be demoted (if he can). He's been awful for well over a year now offensively, and now his defense has slipped as well.
Dr B - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 03:35 PM EDT (#434644) #
Should they have used Espinal and not acquired Dejong? Sure. But 2.5M is sunk cost. The decision to DFA should be independent rather than just doubling down on a bad decision.

My guess is a) they didnít know how long Bichette would be out for (not long) and b) that Dejong would be noticeably better than Espinal (he isnít).

I can see an argument for keeping Dejong over Espinal, but they've both been better in the past and they've been useless as of late. One had to go. Take your pick. The one left standing won't play all that often.


uglyone - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 03:46 PM EDT (#434645) #
Would be annoying if another contender picked him up and he got hot tho.
92-93 - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 03:49 PM EDT (#434646) #
You mean the Rays, who have gotten nothing from SS since Franco got outed?
uglyone - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 03:52 PM EDT (#434647) #
Though looking closer at dejong the only thing that made him look useful was a hot streak to start the season.

After a laughable 55wrc+ season last year (with two 80-somethings the 2yrs prior), he came out this year and put up a 167wrc+ in his first 97pa. He's put up a 38wrc+ in the 253pa since.
John Northey - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 04:59 PM EDT (#434649) #
uglyone can't remember 1987 I guess. For me that is burned in - I worked at McDonald's then (I was a teen) with a co-worker who was a big Tigers fan. He was so happy that week. 7 game winning streak, up 3 1/2 games at the end of it, followed by a 7 game losing streak, 2 games out at the end of that. Ugh. That one hurt a LOT.
John Northey - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 05:37 PM EDT (#434650) #
I give the Jays credit for not keeping the sunk cost DeJong around. He clearly wasn't doing well and probably would've hated being benched for Bo. He has 1 game at 2B since 2018 (2017 was his rookie year and he had 20 games there then), 0 games anywhere else outside of SS. He was about as good as it got for SS's available at the trade deadline and there was a temporary need which has now expired. The easy move would've been sending Schneider down. This though was the right move.
hypobole - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 05:52 PM EDT (#434651) #
Cards are covering half DeJongs salary plus the $2 million 2024 buyout.
Leaside Cowboy - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 05:56 PM EDT (#434652) #
" St. Louis will pay Toronto $1,475,806 US, covering half the $2,951,613 remaining in DeJong's $9 million salary this year. If DeJong's $12.5 million team option for 2024 is declined, the Cardinals would pay the Blue Jays $1 million to cover half the $2 million buyout. "
Glevin - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 05:58 PM EDT (#434653) #
I don't care very much about dejong but he's a very good defender and I just don't know what Espinal brings to the team other than versatility. Being bad at three positions seems to be more useful to this team than I think it should be.
vw_fan17 - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 06:25 PM EDT (#434655) #
uglyone can't remember 1987 I guess.
I read it as the worst individual 2 weeks in Jays history, not team results.
lexomatic - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 06:49 PM EDT (#434656) #
<br>Dejong and you have to wonder what the heck happened to

I'm guessing covid. Anyway his contact ability has catered. Somw of it may be how he's being pitched, but that he's slowed enough or eyes have been damaged to not recognize
Petey Baseball - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 07:06 PM EDT (#434657) #
Been big on body language lately, not one to read too much into stuff since we don't know these guys personally... but DeJong looked blindsided by the trade from day one and my guess is he was reluctant to leave St. Louis. His bat had dropped off the last couple years (as discussed) but the abysmal short tenure as a Jay might have been affected by just simply not being very comfortable.
uglyone - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 07:42 PM EDT (#434659) #
Don't look now but Varsho's on a 20ish game really good streak at the plate now.
scottt - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 07:47 PM EDT (#434660) #
I only like Biggio at 2B.
Gerry - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 07:54 PM EDT (#434661) #
Davis Schneider...three true outcomes.
uglyone - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 07:54 PM EDT (#434662) #
Yeah maybe try keeping the kid in the lineup, coach.
uglyone - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 08:36 PM EDT (#434663) #
Another unnecessary quick hook. Hope it doesnt burn us.
greenfrog - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 08:37 PM EDT (#434664) #
Seattle is taking it to Houston again. Now 6-2 in the fifth.
uglyone - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 08:41 PM EDT (#434665) #
Honestly i'd rather see houston lose and keep two teams within our sights.
uglyone - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 08:56 PM EDT (#434666) #
14 pitch inning for Hicks.

Not a one under 100mph.
greenfrog - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 09:16 PM EDT (#434667) #
Leadoff walk by Romano? Yikes. Bad call on his first pitch by the ump.
uglyone - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 09:23 PM EDT (#434668) #
Romano is so legit. Not rattled even a little bit.
greenfrog - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 09:41 PM EDT (#434670) #
Phew! Needed that win.

Itís an interesting argument about Houston. Which team are the Jays more likely to pass ó Houston or Seattle?

Houston does have 9 games against KC and Oakland in September.

The bottom line is that the Jays need to get on a roll. The competition is stiff and I doubt the Jays are going to be able to back into the playoffs this year.
Marc Hulet - Saturday, August 19 2023 @ 09:41 PM EDT (#434671) #
The Jays need Schneider's bat in the lineup for the pop he possesses (to help with the pop that everyone else has oddly lost)... And the strikeouts tonight we're very likely a byproduct of being stapled to the bench recently. Just let the kid play.
John Northey - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 01:07 AM EDT (#434676) #
It is fun looking at the scoreboard and seeing the Yankees get pounded day after day. Cole giving up 6 runs in 4 innings is always fun. The Angels won (barely) over the Rays, then the Rays slaughtered the Angels in game 2. Mariners pounding the Astros tonight, and the O's pounded the A's. 3 double headers today to prep for the storm about to hit the west coast (Hurricane Hilary - did Trump fans name it? - just joking). Oakland will be the only team playing at home on the west coast on Sunday.

So bottom line? Jays 8 1/2 back of the O's in the AL East, 1/2 a game behind the M's, 2 back of Houston, 6 back of Tampa who I keep expecting to see fall apart soon (lost their top starter, their superstar SS, 4 more hitter on the IL, 5 other pitchers on the IL. Like come on - eventually this has to wear on that team doesn't it?
John Northey - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:17 AM EDT (#434677) #
Just for fun I checked AL leaders to see how Bo was doing (still #1 in hits) and noticed Seattle has the top 3 in batter K's yet still are ahead of the Jays, so much for the 'they strike out too much' theory. Teoscar is #2 in the AL at 156 K's vs 27 walks (732 OPS). The batting race is a 2 man race right now between Bo (319) and Yandy Diaz (325). Ohtani is #3 at 306. FYI: Ohtani leads in OBP and Slg (and of course OPS), plus leads in 3B & HR and is 3rd in RBI (3 back) and #2 in R (1 back of Semien).

Other Jays of note: Chapman is #1 in doubles (by 1), KK is 6th in triples despite playing a LOT less than the guys ahead of him (2 back of the lead). Bo is 8th in OPS, Varsho 8th worst among qualified batters.

For pitching 8/9/10 for ERA are Gausman-Berrios-Kikuchi, Bassitt is 16th out of 25 qualifiers. Romano is 3rd in saves, 3 back of the lead. Gausman is tied for #1 in K's, Manoah is #3 in walks, Bassitt #2 in HBP, Bassitt is #2 in wins (1 back of Zach Eflin), Bassitt is #3 in Quality Starts (16, 2 back of Cole). Swanson leads in Holds at 27 (tied with Cano of Baltimore), Manoah leads in balks at 3, Gausman is #1 in K/9, Bassitt is #4 in CS (1 back of lead with 6).
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 10:36 AM EDT (#434684) #

Varsho Last 20gms: 63pa, .302babip, 141wrc+
92-93 - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 11:16 AM EDT (#434686) #
Iím not a fan of building the lineup primarily in a way that separates the lefties as much as possible. Beltís slashline is an empty one, and Iíd rather have him hitting ahead of Bo than behind.

Nice looking lineup today though, even if the great Babe Schneider is on the bench.
Leaside Cowboy - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 11:24 AM EDT (#434687) #
Hyun-jin Ryu game-log:
Aug. 1st - 5 innings vs. Baltimore - 80 pitches
Aug. 7th - 4 innings vs. Cleveland - 52 pitches
Aug. 13th - 5 innings vs. Chicago Cubs - 86 pitches

90 pitches today, perhaps.
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 11:28 AM EDT (#434688) #
Probably agree with you on the order, but how is Belt's linr an empty one? He leads the team in walk percentage and 2nd in xbh percentage.

Though my preferred change to the order would be to move Bo and Belt to #1 and #2 i think.
92-93 - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 11:35 AM EDT (#434691) #
He doesnít drive in many runs, so Iíd rather have Bo up to drive him in.
ISLAND BOY - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 11:46 AM EDT (#434693) #
Julio Rodriguez has an insane 17 hits in the last 4 games. Hopefully when he cools off the Mariners will, too. It would be nice if any hitter got hot for the Jays.

The vagaries of baseball : The Phillies Michael Lorenzen tossed a no-hitter against the Nationals on Aug.9. The other night he faced them again and got knocked out of the game after 3.1 innings and had 6 earned runs scored against him.
greenfrog - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 01:33 PM EDT (#434694) #
Rodriguez hit a double in his first PA today. 2-0 M's
hypobole - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 01:37 PM EDT (#434695) #
Belt has has 79 RISP opportunities. He's hit 1 HR, same as KK in 80, Kirk in 92 and Springer in 129. Chapman 2 in 149 opportunities. Vlad's hit 3 in 136, as has Jansen in 72 and Biggio in 61. Varsho has 4 in 126, as has Merrifield in 122 and Bo in 98.

72 players have 5 RISP HR's, 4 have 10, lead by Matt Olson with 15.

As for today's opponents, just about to turn 40 yr old Joey Votto has only had 48 RISP opportunities. He's hit 7 HR's.
Chuck - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 01:48 PM EDT (#434696) #
Cue the Benny Hill music for today's defensive Reds. That's three makeable plays botched in the first inning alone.
Eephus - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 01:50 PM EDT (#434697) #
Even though the result wasnít a positive (for the Jays anyhow) I do like it when Vlad is hitting the ball oppo with authority like that. Naturally, it was the only nice defence the Reds displayed that inning.
Eephus - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 01:52 PM EDT (#434698) #
AlsoÖ only scoring one run despite three serious misplays is such a 2023 Blue Jays thing. Iím still rooting for the Jays here, kindaÖ. But these Reds are way more fun.
Magpie - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 01:54 PM EDT (#434699) #
Bichette has more total bases since returning (one game and one at bat) than DeJong had in almost three weeks.
hypobole - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:02 PM EDT (#434700) #
KK now with 2 HR's in 81.
Eephus - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:03 PM EDT (#434701) #
If weíre bringing back any of our free agentsÖ Kiermaier over Chapman please. Whit can tag along too of course.
92-93 - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:05 PM EDT (#434702) #
Incredible order today :)
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:06 PM EDT (#434703) #
They can afford to bring all of them back for the record.
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:07 PM EDT (#434704) #
Heh great factoid magpie!
hypobole - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:08 PM EDT (#434705) #
And now Belt with his 2nd in 81.
Eephus - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:09 PM EDT (#434706) #
I would love to bring Belt back of course too (even the bias of that very recent moment aside). Quirky longtime NL left handed first basemen seem to be a thing with me heh. I suspect Horwitz deserves a shot next year butÖ. Would love to see the Captain back in blue again.
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:09 PM EDT (#434707) #
Seems like a long long time since we chased an opposing SP early.
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:12 PM EDT (#434708) #
I'd try to bring them all back and let schneider/lukes/clement/horwitz fight for the 3 non-C bench slots (and save money on Biggio and Espinal's more expensive arby contracts). With Orelvis, Barger, Roden waiting in the wings if they show they canaster AAA pitching.
hypobole - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:21 PM EDT (#434709) #
Espinal is an easy dump. He's been replacement level since the 1st half of last year. Don't agree on Biggio.
Chuck - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:22 PM EDT (#434710) #
Benny Hill giveth and Benny Hill taketh away.
Eephus - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:24 PM EDT (#434711) #
Is everybody hungover? Whatís going on hereÖ.
lexomatic - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:27 PM EDT (#434712) #
Really annoying how the Jays seem to have a hard time putting teams away.
92-93 - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:29 PM EDT (#434713) #
The Astros were down 6-0 to the Mariners and have made it a 6-5 game. Uglyone made a good point that Jays fans probably want Seattle to win so it brings two playoff spots within striking distance. The Jays own the tiebreaker with Houston.
Marc Hulet - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:41 PM EDT (#434714) #
Ryu's velo is down and he seemed to be limping off the field a bit at the end of the inning. Wonder is the leg/knee is bothering him...
Leaside Cowboy - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 02:54 PM EDT (#434715) #
Smashing.
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 03:04 PM EDT (#434716) #
And ryu finishes off his best inning with his hardest pitch of the day at 90.

Excellent reverse jinx, Marc!
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 03:10 PM EDT (#434717) #
Springer was at a 144wrc+ over his last 14gms/61pa coming in today. Should come out with around a 160-170 in his last 15 after today.
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 03:20 PM EDT (#434718) #
Please give him one more inning, coach.
92-93 - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 03:26 PM EDT (#434719) #
It would be great to see Francis get a save today.
Kasi - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 03:31 PM EDT (#434720) #
Itís weird with Chapman being our best player by WAR this year but I donít think Iíll be sad to see him go. Heís dependable on both sides of the ball but I donít think heís that good offensively and itís clear heís lost a lot of D in the last two years. Still a good player but imho not worth the investment.
Nigel - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 03:39 PM EDT (#434721) #
I mentioned this a few weeks ago - Chapman has just been bad at the plate since May 1. Heís now down to 87 wRC+ since May 1. His insanely hot start is masking the quality of his last 330 PAs. His offseason contract negotiations will be interesting.
scottt - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 03:41 PM EDT (#434722) #
Runners on 1st are not in scoring position, so what matters are hits with RISP and HR with runners on base.

RISP HR is kind of an incomplete stat.

Petey Baseball - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 03:44 PM EDT (#434723) #
I could really go for the team just deciding to hit more home runs like today to go with this pitching. If they do, we might see a 2015 type run, no exaggeration.
Petey Baseball - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 03:47 PM EDT (#434724) #
And by hitting home runs I mean hitting more home runs in their home ballpark...which is supposed to be homer friendly.
scottt - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 03:49 PM EDT (#434725) #
In theory, the Franco-less Rays could slide.
After today, they'll be 5 games ahead with more than 5  weeks to go.

Also, I wonder why Manoah isn't getting some work in AAA.

uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 03:50 PM EDT (#434726) #
Yeah i hope francis can finish this off and let our bullpen be 100% rested for baltimore. Would have preferred to let Ryu go one more instead of using cabrera tho.
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 03:56 PM EDT (#434727) #
Nigel i'm not sure Chapman's value was ever boosted as much fans might have thought from an early season hot streak. And as for his in season streaks he's followed up a torrid 154wrc+ July with an awful 47wrc+ August. Most likely he gets another good streak in before the end of the year.

But he's at 117 for the year and was 117 last year and 119 for his career.

He'll be valued as that kind of ~115wrc+ hitter with good defense, but with all the caveats of any 31yr old starting a new contract...and again i'm not sure the hot opening month ever really changed his valuation much.
lexomatic - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 04:22 PM EDT (#434728) #

Also, I wonder why Manoah isn't getting some work in AAA
The team may have decided he needs a full rebuild like Halladay, and that he won't be ready to pitch again this season. I just don't think anyone outside the team (if anyone) has any idea of what really happened. I don't think things are fixed. They may not be fixable.
christaylor - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 04:26 PM EDT (#434729) #
His valuation this season may not have moved the needle a ton but it is likely higher (adjusting for age) than it was when joining the Jays. I enjoy watching him.play and would dig watching him finish his career as a Jay but I think they'll be out because of an overpay by another org.
Kasi - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 04:36 PM EDT (#434730) #
Well the lists have him as the number 2 FA after Ohtani and some have said he will get a similar contract to Semien. I certainly wouldnít pay that.
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 05:09 PM EDT (#434731) #
I dunno chris - he was better as a hitter and overall as an athletic (120wrc+, 5.4war/650pa) than he's been as a jay (117wrc+, 4.7war/650pa).
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 05:11 PM EDT (#434732) #
That should be 4.4war/650 as a jay.
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 05:15 PM EDT (#434733) #
Red Sox stay within 2.5 of us while Houston is now only 1 game ahead. They play each other tommorrow while we're off and im cheering fir the sox.

Mariners stay half a game up and play the crappy chisox tomorrow.
greenfrog - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 05:46 PM EDT (#434734) #
The Jays are primed to have a better series against the O's this time around. Healthy rotation and lineup, deep and rested bullpen, team coming off a big game against Cincinnati...let's hope they can turn their AL East fortunes around and grab at least two of those three games.
Marc Hulet - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 05:53 PM EDT (#434735) #
I got the feeling listening to Shulman today that there's more to the Manoah story than what's being said publicly... As in maybe Manoah is refusing to go to Buffalo.
Kasi - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 05:57 PM EDT (#434736) #
Well we know Manoah has a huge chip on his shoulder. Wouldnít be surprised but he left the Jays no choice with his awful play.
Bid - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 06:59 PM EDT (#434737) #
Manoah's problem which is likely a version of post-traumatic stress disorder is best addressed outside of a baseball context with professional therapeutic assistance.
scottt - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 07:05 PM EDT (#434738) #
It has less to do with Manoah's performance than Ryu's.
Clearly, Ryu is the better pitcher right now and Manoah should be working on things and staying stretched in case an extra starter is needed.
Manoah is not accruing service time wherever he is.

I think Buck complimented Francis about his conditioning and they both seem to agree that he's the one getting a start (or a bulk appearance) if one is needed.

John Northey - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 07:15 PM EDT (#434739) #
With the current Jays rotation where would you put Manaoh anyways? Same for the pen.
2nd half stats...
  • Bassitt 3.21 ERA, Berrios 3.08, Kikuchi 1.29, Gausman 4.08, Ryu 1.89, Manoah 5.79. If someone is going to be cut it seems damn obvious it is Manoah.
  • Pen: Sub 1 ERA: Danner (IL), Cabrera, Mayza
  • Pen: 1-1.99: Francis, Romano, Jackson (AAA)
  • Pen: 2-2.99: Garcia, Richards
  • Pen: 3+: Swanson, Hicks, Hatch (released), Pearson (AAA), White (AAA).
So who would you cut for Manoah? Jackson going down hurt, I suspect Green is being left down to delay sending Francis down as Francis is a damn good long man right now.

For the playoffs it'll be tough to pick a rotation. Round 1 is best of 3 so just 3 starters needed - but who? Gausman has slumped but is a lock. Berrios and Kikuchi both have earned slots, as has Bassitt but Ryu has been almost untouchable since coming back. If the Jays make it to round 2 then who goes into a 4 man rotation?

The pen also will be hard - do you move any of the missing starters into the pen? Cabrera, Mayza, Romano, Hicks, Swanson, Richards, Garcia should all be locks with Green and Jackson also deserving spots, and Francis showing he can handle long relief. That gets us to 10 relievers - I suspect Francis is #1 cut to get us to 9 for rounds 2 and beyond, but round 1 you can go with 10 so do you take Francis or one of the 2 starters not starting? A good problem to have.

This winter the Jays will have some tough (good tough) choices to make with the rotation. Do you expect Manoah to recover? If not, do you resign Ryu? What about Tiedemann with those insane K #'s in the minors (16.9 per 9 IP)? What about Francis? Or the 1001 good free agent pitchers out there this upcoming winter?

Lineup is easier with Davis Schneider grabbing that 13th slot, plus a bench of Biggio & Espinal and whichever of Kirk/Jansen isn't playing. Lukes is the injury call-up if an outfielder, Heineman for catcher injuries, Clement for an infield injury, Horwitz if it is Belt or Vlad who gets hurt. With Merrifield, Biggio, and Schneider all able to play the OF (despite Biggio's ugly mistake on Saturday) I don't see a need to have Lukes on the roster outside of injuries. For the extra man in September I'd debate between an extra catcher and just having Lukes around to run for whoever needs it late in games. 2024 will be a tough one with Chapman, KK, Belt, and Merrifield all being free agents. I suspect the Jays top priority is Merrifield of that group, then KK, then Chapman (due to price/years). Belt will only be resigned if cheap (should be) and no better option can be signed as I doubt he can keep up his 120+ OPS+ for many more years. Still, one never knows. Kids should take over one of 3B or LF next year and Lukes will probably take the 4th OF slot (if KK isn't resigned). It'll be a fun winter, hopefully after a deep playoff run. Astros & Yankees lost today, Red Sox & Mariners won, O's slaughtered poor Oakland. Seattle and Houston are within a game of the Jays now (2nd/3rd WC), Boston 2 1/2 behind the Jays.

Coming up: Jays @ Baltimore, Houston vs Boston, Seattle @ ChiSox, TB vs Colorado. Tough series for the Jays coming, but in baseball one never knows.
uglyone - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 07:35 PM EDT (#434740) #
Agreed Marc sure sounded like Buck and Dan trying to encourage Manoah to go down
Kasi - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 07:51 PM EDT (#434741) #
Manoahs issue is PTSD? I donít recall reading anything like that. (Not that it couldnít be mental health is a big thing) It was pretty obvious though that he didnít show up in shape to camp this year though. Also felt at times early on that he wanted to spend his free time on growing his brand through endless media stuff.
Bid - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 08:39 PM EDT (#434743) #
Explosive drinking father as revealed by Sportsnet and Toronto Life...

What the Body Remembers/Bessel Van der Kolk; When the Body Says No/Gabor Mate...and a number of Heinz Kohut-influenced psychotherapeutic practitioner/writers of 80s and 90s.
Marc Hulet - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 09:09 PM EDT (#434745) #
I wonder if Rogers/Jays management didn't feed Dan and Buck some info to start leaking out info and putting some pressure on Manoah to buy in and report to Buffalo... Gently starting a public convo about how he's shooting himself in the foot by not pitching and staying ready for another shot.

It's currently a no win situation for everyone involved (Manoah, Jays, fans)...
Mike Green - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 09:19 PM EDT (#434746) #
On a different topic. This time re Vlad. There is a scientific explanation for balls not travelling as far as launch angle and exit velocity would suggest and that is spin. Backspin causes balls to carry further and topspin makes them fall short.is there something Vlad is doing which causes him to impart topspin?

FWIW, Brandon Belt's fly balls seem to carry further than I expect. Is he imparting backspin?
electric carrot - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 11:28 PM EDT (#434748) #
I am here to tell you that the Toronto Blue Jay baseball team, which competes in Major League Baseball has allowed fewer runs to score against them than any other team in that league. There are 29 other teams in Major League Baseball. Major League Baseball is often considered the most competitive baseball league in the world. Players in that league make obscenely large salaries.
hypobole - Sunday, August 20 2023 @ 11:41 PM EDT (#434749) #
Gerry posted an article in the Philly thread that had a statcast link showing Vlad's 365 ft as the 2nd lowest average distance of the 291 players with 10 or more barrels. Chapman is at 370, Belt and Springer 373. All 4 are in the bottom 10% for barrel distance. Varsho best on the team at 390 ft, but that only places him in a group around 80th place.  RC seems to suppress somewhat for most players, but Vlad on the road is still only 370 ft. Danny at 389 best at home, Varsho 394 best on the road.

FWIW, Luke Maile's 11 barrels have averaged 400 ft.  DFA DeJong had 16 averaging 399.
Petey Baseball - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 12:02 AM EDT (#434750) #
If that is true about Manoah refusing to report to Buffalo, that is truly sad. Someone needs to tell the young man to get his priorities straight. Contrarianism is it's golden age in 2023, but believing you have earned extra special treatment after 70 big league starts is really something.
Leaside Cowboy - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 08:52 AM EDT (#434751) #
" Vladimir Guerrero Jr. considered day-to-day with finger issue. "
uglyone - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 11:19 AM EDT (#434754) #
Last 30 days

* Merrifield 117pa, 127wrc+
* Bichette 48pa, 177wrc+
* Belt 94pa, 162wrc+
* Guerrero 114pa, 103wrc+
* Springer 106pa, 82wrc+
* Chapman 102pa, 82wrc+
* Varsho 90pa, 120wrc+
* Jansen 58pa, 111wrc+
* Kiermaier 49pa, 109wrc+

* Schneider 36pa, 222wrc+
* Biggio 59pa, 126wrc+
* Kirk 77pa, 108wrc+
* Espinal 53pa, 48wrc+
* Dejong 44pa, -77wrc+

* Luplow 6pa, 4wrc+
* Lukes 5pa, 101wrc+
* Clement 1pa, 747wrc+



Last 14 Days

* Merrifield 51pa, 116wrc+
* Bichette 10pa, 191wrc+
* Belt 40pa, 157wrc+
* Guerrero 50pa, 107wrc+
* Springer 42pa, 140wrc+
* Chapman 35pa, -21wrc+
* Varsho 42pa, 140wrc+
* Jansen 25pa, 79wrc+
* Kiermaier 8pa, 56wrc+

* Biggio 40pa, 125wrc+
* Schneider 21pa, 81wrc+
* Espinal 27pa, 41wrc+
* Kirk 30pa, -21wrc+
* Dejong 24pa, -93wrc+
* Lukes 5pa, 101wrc+
soupman - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 11:37 AM EDT (#434755) #
Jansen took a bunch of heaters on his hand. Vlad stopped wearing batting gloves and is now out due to a hand issue. Iím still convinced the wrist injury at the start of May is the most salient factor in his performance this year.
Mike Green - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 12:00 PM EDT (#434756) #
I can imagine how the lingering effects of a wrist injury would affect the spin imparted, perhaps more than launch angle or exit velocity.  Just a thought.
hypobole - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 12:01 PM EDT (#434757) #
I'm sure there's nothing I can say to convince you, but it hasn't stopped Vlad from hitting .291/.358/.496, 136 wRC+ on the road. If that would be his overall line, it would place him as the 12th best hitter in MLB, just ahead of Bo's 135 wRC+.

Mike Green - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 12:17 PM EDT (#434758) #
What are his exit velocities and launch angles on the road, i.e. is xwOBA comparable to his wOBA on the road and vastly less at home?  I don't know- perhaps there is some way of checking on Statcast. 

Here's another tidbit about his 2023 season so far.  The league hits .217/.212/.662 on fly balls.  VGJ hits .157/.154/.529. It's strange that a strong guy like him would have both a significantly lower BABIP and a significantly lower IsoP on fly balls than league average.  Fly balls and ground balls are actually poor outcomes for him, in addition to strikeouts.  The only good outcome is a line drive.  It's hard to be one of the best hitters in the league with that kind of profile. 
Ducey - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 12:20 PM EDT (#434759) #
I think it is a simple as he is trying to hit the ball too hard at home.

If you have ever played golf or worked on your slapshot (or played baseball/ softball) and totally come out your shoes trying to crush it, it doesnt work that well. You usually mishit it or impart some weird spin. The best swings in any sport are aggressive but relaxed and smooth.

He has taken some hellacious swings this year, resulting in poor results, lots of top spin, and injuries to his wrist and fingers.

He should change his walkup to "You Need to Calm Down". And the Jays should get someone that can teach him a better approach.
Mike Green - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 12:34 PM EDT (#434760) #
I did a search.  Vlad's xwOBA on the road is .390 and his wOBA on the road is .367.  It's definitely worse at home, but there is likely a more general issue that might be related to a wrist injury.  Both things could be true. 
92-93 - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 12:40 PM EDT (#434761) #
If Vlad is banged up at all, now is a good time for an IL stint. The schedule softens after BAL, whom they have minimal chance of catching. They have 6 at home vs. CLE and WSH, and he can't hit at Dome anyway. After that it's 9 games @COL, @OAK, and KC.

Belt, Biggio, and Schneider can handle 1B/DH.

The Jays are only 3.5GB of the Rangers, and they host them for 4 games in September. TEX starts a 9 game road trip tonight @ARI, @MIN, and @NYM. It's good that they have also come back to the pack.
hypobole - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 12:40 PM EDT (#434762) #
Mike, here's statcast search showing the Jays LA and xwOBA away from home. If you play around with it maybe you can find your answer. Also, maybe someone can shorten the link

https://baseballsavant.mlb.com/statcast_search?hfPTM=&hfPT=&hfAB=&hfGT=R%7C&hfPR=&hfZ=&hfStadium=&hfBBL=&hfNewZones=&hfPull=&hfC=&hfSea=2023%7C&hfSit=&player_type=batter&hfOuts=&hfOpponent=&pitcher_throws=&batter_stands=&hfSA=&game_date_gt=&game_date_lt=&hfMo=&hfTeam=TOR%7C&home_road=Road&hfRO=&position=&hfInfield=&hfOutfield=&hfInn=&hfBBT=&hfFlag=is%5C.%5C.remove%5C.%5C.bunts%7C&metric_1=&group_by=name&min_pitches=0&min_results=0&min_pas=0&sort_col=launch_angle&player_event_sort=api_p_release_speed&sort_order=desc&chk_stats_abs=on&chk_stats_hits=on&chk_stats_xwoba=on&chk_stats_launch_angle=on#results
soupman - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 12:46 PM EDT (#434764) #
i'm open to a more elegant explanation, but the line is 279/350/455 since returning from the wrist injury (on the road)...so the 354/450/505 line he had on the road before the injury helped the numbers (a bit). he only had 12 home games before missing time, but the line is 363/440/524 for that time. so, your task, if you choose to accept it is to explain why he lost over 150 OPS on the road, but also why he is especially bad at home and why that correlates with the time missed due to wrist injury, but is a separate problem not related to that. again, the simple explanation does a lot of work even if there are other factors contributing.
Kasi - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 12:48 PM EDT (#434765) #
This year was not Vladís first wrist injury. His swing is so violent that I think unless he changes his approach heís always going to be injured to some degree. His fitness has fallen considerably this year as well judging by the change in sprint speed. Like maybe this means the Jays can get him on some 20ish million per year long term contract but I honestly wonder if heís just going to be a bust regardless. Like said they get him for like the Julio contract money. I think there is a significant risk heís just a 1-2 WAR player. His awful defence and base running saps his upside so much.
Leaside Cowboy - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 01:41 PM EDT (#434767) #
short version of the above link.

Off-day blues.

Kasi - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 01:45 PM EDT (#434768) #
Marc what exactly did Shulman say re Manoah?
uglyone - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 02:51 PM EDT (#434771) #
This year

* 1. 2B Merrifield 475pa, 112wrc+
* 2. SS Bichette 481pa, 135wrc+
* 3. DH Belt 347pa, 133wrc+
* 4. 1B Guerrero 527pa, 115wrc+
* 5. 3B Chapman 499pa, 115wrc+
* 6. RF Springer 518pa, 103wrc+
* 7. CF Kiermaier 307pa, 107wrc+
* 8. C Jansen 273pa, 105wrc+
* 9. LF Varsho 459pa, 83wrc+

* B. C Kirk 317pa, 88wrc+
* B. UT Biggio 220pa, 94wrc+
* B. UT Schneider 36pa, 222wrc+
* B. IF Espinal 199pa, 65wrc+

* X. C Heineman 30pa, 93wrc+
* X. OF Lukes 30pa, 72wrc+
* X. IF Clement 10pa, 200wrc+
* X. 1B Horwitz 10pa, 101wrc+


Past 1 Calendar Year

* 1. 2B Merrifield 564pa, 118wrc+
* 2. SS Bichette 671pa, 152wrc+
* 3. DH Belt 351pa, 131wrc+
* 4. 1B Guerrero 726pa, 111wrc+
* 5. 3B Chapman 679pa, 114wrc+
* 6. RF Springer 700pa, 110wrc+
* 7. CF Kiermaier 307pa, 107wrc+
* 8. C Jansen 386pa, 131wrc+
* 9. LF Varsho 613pa, 91wrc+

* B. C Kirk 462pa, 89wrc+
* B. UT Biggio 313pa, 88wrc+
* B. UT Schneider 36pa, 222wrc+
* B. IF Espinal 272pa, 71wrc+

* X. C Heineman 78pa, 88wrc+
* X. OF Lukes 30pa, 72wrc+
* X. IF Clement 31pa, 19wrc+
* X. 1B Horwitz 10pa, 101wrc+
Marc Hulet - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 05:11 PM EDT (#434778) #
They said Manoah was still in Toronto and the club didn't know how long he was going to be there.

They said the Jays really need him to be the next starter in line in case of injury but given that he hasn't pitched since x date that there is no way they can count on him now.

They repeated that at least twice, maybe three times. The tone and additional comments seemed to heavily imply it was his decision and that the Jays didn't really have control over the situation.

If I have time given the lack of game tonight I may try and find it and quote it exactly.
Mike Green - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 05:25 PM EDT (#434779) #
Why would Manoah be next in line? He's not pitching. He wasn't effective when he was pitching. And Francis has been pitching and has been reasonably effective.

The club's message ought to be that they want Manoah to get back to where he was in 2021 and 2022, but that it will take time.
Petey Baseball - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 05:30 PM EDT (#434780) #
Not trying to get overly political here but a story has broke that Jays hitting coach (one of them) Dave Hudgens was tweeting four minutes before first pitch in a recent game.

I had heard there was a member of the staff who was lost in Trumpistan, now it seems everyone knows.

Not that I'm surprised, and I'm loathe to give a ton of creedance to Twitter related pile ons, spats, bickering, posturing, dishonesty, bad faith, whatever. But this looks pretty bad given how the team has struggled to score runs.

but given the Jays struggles on offense this looks
Leaside Cowboy - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 06:55 PM EDT (#434781) #
Historically, the Blue Jays play better with the Tories in power.
99BlueJaysWay - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 07:00 PM EDT (#434782) #
Depends what level of government youíre looking at, Leaside.
At a provincial level, theyíve only had successes under Liberal and NDP reign.
John Northey - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 07:09 PM EDT (#434783) #
Heh. I remember the first WS was during the debate on the national referendum on a series of changes to the constitution (Charlottetown Accord). It was a disaster - biggest no vote being in BC at 68% surprisingly. Ontario a near perfect 50.1-49.9 split. All media, provincial leaders, federal leaders supported it (The Reform Party & BQ weren't a force yet, but soon would be, and Pierre Trudeau was strongly against it). I remember various Jays saying they hoped it passed mainly due to being told by media figures that it was important for national unity to get it passed. The vote was October 26th, 2 days after the Jays won the WS.
Marc Hulet - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 07:18 PM EDT (#434784) #
I hear ya, Mike. I was very vocal about it being a terrible idea to bring Manoah back so quickly... It should have been best case September or spring training 2024.
John Northey - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 07:22 PM EDT (#434785) #
The Manoah situation is a mess now. I'm wondering if he was pushing hard to be back up when sent down the first time, thus the quicker than ideal recall. I'm wondering if he ends up being traded this winter if his attitude is that bad about it. You'd get pennies on the dollar for him but there might not be a lot of choice if he continues to refuse to go to the minors when told to. His last game was August 10th so he has missed 2 starts already. If he went and dominated AAA then the Jays wouldn't have much choice but to give him another shot ASAP, but by refusing he is only hurting his own chances. Right now I'd rather see Francis start with Richards mixed in to eat the 6+ innings needed from them.

Btw, did anyone else notice the Jays are at 7 starters this year total - opening 5 plus Ryu and Richards. Last year 13 starters were used, 9 with multiple starts, 16 in 2021 10 with 2+ starts, 12 in 2020 (in 60 games!) 10 with multiple starts. For total insanity you get 2019 with 21 starters, 15 getting 2+ starts, 11 getting 5+ starts, 7 with 10+. Phew was 2019 a mess. 2018 was 14, 2017 14, 2016 you finally get down to 7 (playoff year), 2015 12, 2014 9, I think you get the idea by now. Going with fewer than 10 starters is a rarity for the Jays - just twice in the past 10 years and maybe this year too.
hypobole - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 07:37 PM EDT (#434786) #
Was at the 1st ever Jays playoff game. PM Mulroney was there. This was shortly after Tunagate. Crowd was chanting "Tuna". But he did see the Jays win if he stayed to the end, which he probably didn't, and maybe even got a signed Steib jockstrap or something.
Ducey - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 07:41 PM EDT (#434787) #
I would caution calling the Manoah "situation" "a mess".

He could be refusing, or he could be having anxiety and mental health issues. He was clearly very emotional talking about the first half and his demotion when he came back up.

We are not in the young man's head, and have literally no confirmation of anything other than he has not pitched in AAA and the comments in passing from two media members.
Mike Green - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 07:53 PM EDT (#434788) #
So I am walking in my neighborhood on am off-night and I pass a house with two older guys on the porch. One is strumming a guitar and together they harmonize:
"Touching me...Touching you
Sweet Caroline..."

I'm thinking...wait a second, it's nowhere near the hour for that.
Mike Green - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 08:03 PM EDT (#434789) #
Hypobole, I hope "Steib" is an autocorrect. Dewey would be disappointed.
hypobole - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 08:30 PM EDT (#434790) #
No auto correct. Too busy posting to have time to proofread.
hypobole - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 08:33 PM EDT (#434791) #
Bucs-Cards. Hatch started and went 3 for the Bucs. Casey Lawrence pitching for the Cards now that they're down 8-0.
Magpie - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 08:40 PM EDT (#434792) #
This weekend, at the Budweiser Stage, the greatest band ever to come out of Cincinnati (by way of Brooklyn) will be laying down a little rock, a little roll.

The National were wonderful, fabulous, magnificent... but that's exactly what I expected from them. Whereas I had no expectations, had barely even thought about, Patti Smith. Folks - if I could grow up to be an old lady, she's exactly the old lady I'd want to be. She was awesome. Inspiring.
greenfrog - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 08:50 PM EDT (#434793) #
The Mís are giving Rodriguez the night off. Good choice. T2 and Seattle is already up 5-1 behind Luis Castillo.
Magpie - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 09:02 PM EDT (#434794) #
In the first inning, the White Sox issued four bases on balls, threw a wild pitch, and committed two errors.
greenfrog - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 09:12 PM EDT (#434795) #
How many wins is Seattle going to come away with from their 12 remaining games (including tonight) against the White Sox, Aís and Royals?
hypobole - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 09:41 PM EDT (#434796) #
Well that was weird. Red Sox-Astros. Reese McGuire has a 3-0 count leading off the top of the 4th. He gets the green light. That's not the weird part. He bunts. Rolls down the 3rd base line and hits the bag for his 1st bunt hit of the year.
soupman - Monday, August 21 2023 @ 09:51 PM EDT (#434797) #
I haven't given up on the division yet. If they can take 2 or 3 from the O's, it's still in reach with the schedules looking like they do.
uglyone - Tuesday, August 22 2023 @ 12:49 AM EDT (#434798) #
* BAL +8.5
* TBR +5.5
* TEX +3.0
* HOU +1.5
* SEA +1.0
-------------------
* TOR ---
* BOS -3.0
* LAA -8.0
* NYY -8.5
John Northey - Tuesday, August 22 2023 @ 01:04 AM EDT (#434799) #
I'd say LAA and NYY are out of it, Fangraphs has both of them at 0.4% odds of reaching the playoffs and 0.0% shot at winning the WS now. Jays are at 62.6% playoffs, 4.2% WS.

So it is a 7 team race for 5 playoff slots. Baltimore is probably safe as they and the Rays are both listed as over 95% likely to make the playoffs. But this is baseball and the Rays have lost Wander Franco and Shane McClanahan which are 2 very big hits to their team, especially with how Franco was removed.

Those 6 games vs the Rays in late September will be very meaningful potentially. Tampa is in their final weak run vs Colorado, NYY, Miami, Cleveland - then their only weak spot is 3 vs LAA otherwise every other game is vs a playoff contender. FYI: Miami is also still in it just 1 1/2 games out right now. Jays have after 3 vs Baltimore 15 straight against non-contenders (Cleveland, Washington, Colorado, Oakland, KC) before the tough stretch where the Yankees are the only breaks (7 vs Texas/Boston, 3 NYY, 3 TB, 3 NYY, 3 TB) with the final 2 series at home. If the Jays make hay vs the sub 500's Tampa's spot at the top of the WC could be in jeopardy. Fingers crossed.
Leaside Cowboy - Tuesday, August 22 2023 @ 08:14 AM EDT (#434800) #
The staff ace on the hill to open the series in Baltimore.
Mike Green - Tuesday, August 22 2023 @ 10:38 AM EDT (#434801) #
Brandon Belt has been a noticeably better hitter, fielder and baserunner than Vladimir Guerrero Jr. this year.  If Vlad went on the IL, the club could use Schneider/Horwitz in some combination as DH and the club probably wouldn't suffer a bit.  It would almost surely be better than playing Guerrero Jr. at less than 100%. 
hypobole - Tuesday, August 22 2023 @ 10:50 AM EDT (#434802) #
Was about to post something similar, Mike. The Bo injury was devastating, and may end up being the difference maker in whether we make the playoffs or not.

I don't feel good about this, but with the Vlad injury, my mind is saying "If he doesn't play we have plenty of options who can".
Marc Hulet - Tuesday, August 22 2023 @ 10:57 AM EDT (#434803) #
Ernie Clement has also been playing some 1B at AAA. Between Belt, Schneider, Clement and Horwitz I feel the Jays would be well covered at 1B/DH and someone would play well enough for a short period of time to make the loss of Guerrero negligible... And I'd rather see the Jays be cautious with him and ensure the wrist/fingers are as healthy as possible heading into the final few weeks of the season and possibly the playoffs.
uglyone - Tuesday, August 22 2023 @ 11:04 AM EDT (#434804) #
Don't disagree with you entirely Mike - but i'll always hesitate to say somebody can produce in the heart of the order until they show they can do it, even if they have the stats elsewhere.

This is one of the reasons i was always high on Belt - he wasnt just a guy with a good hitting track record, but a guy with a track record of being THE big bat on his teams, where opposing pitchers were focussed on him more than others. Also why i was so frustrated with them forcing Varsho into the middle of the order even regardless of whether he was struggling or not.

That being said i still mostly agree that Vlad wouldn't be nearly as missed as Bo

Then again maybe Bo wouldnt have been missed as much if we just tried someone like Clement there instead of the DeJong DeSaster.
Ducey - Tuesday, August 22 2023 @ 11:15 AM EDT (#434805) #
https://www.forbes.com/sites/tonyblengino/2023/08/22/vladimir-guerrero-jrs-offensive-decline-has-been-greatly-exaggerated/?sh=e4de84df369b
John Northey - Tuesday, August 22 2023 @ 11:29 AM EDT (#434806) #
Excellent point uglyone - Ernie Clement has over 2000 innings at SS in the minors.  Seems very shortsighted by the Jays to not have used him over the trade they made given the teams issues on offense vs defense, especially with a defense first guy here already in Espinal.  I forgot Clement was a competent SS in the minors - a guy doesn't get 2000+ innings there and sub 400 anywhere else unless they can play it decently.  That said, DeJong didn't exactly cost much (an A+ reliever who is 24 who has flopped so far in AA) and had a track record of great defense and power - he looked like a guy in need of a change in St Louis (fans there hated him based on what I saw online) but I guess that wasn't enough.

At 1B/DH Belt is a solid cover for 1B with Biggio/Schneider mixed in should Vlad be out for awhile.  I could see Horwitz getting a shot too with his insane 326/440/481 AAA line but this team seems very hesitant to give kids a shot unless they explode on the scene like Schneider did.  Still this makes a ton of sense doesn't it?  SS was the shallowest position on the field, despite the prospects in AAA, while 1B/DH is the deepest (can use it to give Springer a partial rest, etc.)

Remember back on May 1st when Belt was down to 161/235/274 and we all wanted him gone?  Since then he has hit 281/405/518.  Sometimes guys just need time to get going I guess.  His 923 OPS over that stretch is better than Bo's overall numbers, but not as good as Clement or Schneider's (over 10 and 36 PA respectively).
scottt - Tuesday, August 22 2023 @ 11:33 AM EDT (#434807) #
Franco has been moved to the Administrative Leave status.
He still gets paid pending investigation.

I don't expect things to move much on that front, except that in a week, the player union will have to ability to contest this. I mostly expect that they will do nothing either, but we'll see.

This late in the season,  you have to be eager to face any teams, especially the ones ahead.

uglyone - Tuesday, August 22 2023 @ 11:45 AM EDT (#434808) #
Even that April total line was misleading for Belt.

In his first 25pa he was useless with a -45wrc+, but his last 40pa in April he had already righted the ship with a 106wrc+.

There was always the risk that his injury last year was a career ender, but I was always a bit surprised how quickly he was written off here due to being bad in his first handful of games coming back from major surgery. Especially given that even besides the huge years he had in 20 and 21, even his 22 season had been very good up until he tried to play through that injury for a couple weeks at the end there (118wrc+ on August 4th last year, then a -10wrc+ in his last 50pa before going on the shelf on August 21st).
hypobole - Tuesday, August 22 2023 @ 11:50 AM EDT (#434809) #
There's givething and there's takething away.(Dewey alert!) Vlad's 116 wRC+/114 OPS+ will be missed, especially in high level situations. But combine that with some of the worst defence in MLB, some of the worst baserunning and the 17 GIDP's, his overall value will probably be replaced and may even be bettered.
vw_fan17 - Tuesday, August 22 2023 @ 04:59 PM EDT (#434826) #
So I am walking in my neighborhood on am off-night and I pass a house with two older guys on the porch. One is strumming a guitar and together they harmonize:
"Touching me...Touching you
Sweet Caroline..."

This was playing at a backyard party (of older people) 6-8 weeks ago when my wife and I were out for a walk at dusk. We stopped and danced a little on the sidewalk..

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