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One week left.


The last homestand is like the last road trip - first the Yankees, then the Rays. The Yankees have now been mathematically eliminated, although Gerrit Cole is still chasing that first Cy Young. The Rays can still catch the Orioles, but they'll need an awful lot of help from Washington and Boston. The Jays appear to be in a comfortable position, with a three game lead on the fading Mariners (with Houston nestled in between.)

A three game lead with one week to go? Yeah, that doesn't feel safe. I've seen some things...

Matchups!

Tue 26 Sep - King (4-7, 2.66) vs Gausman (12-9, 3.29)
Wed 27 Sep - Cole (14-4, 2.75) vs Berrios (11-11, 3.58)
Thu 28 Sewp - Weaver (1-0, 2.89 vs Bassitt (15-8, 3.74)
New York at Toronto, September 26-28 | 239 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, September 26 2023 @ 12:24 PM EDT (#437639) #
"I've seen some things"

36 years ago, and it still stings.
JohnL - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 01:31 PM EDT (#437642) #
"36 years ago" won't repeat itself this year. Luckily, it's impossible for them to lose 7 games in a row :-(

On another front, I enjoyed Rowdy's account of Donaldson joining the Brewers. Jomboy thinks he's slagging JD; I suspect it's Rowdy's pretty straight-faced humour at work here. Pretty good though!

https://x.com/TalkinBaseball_/status/1706693409463762953?s=20
Leaside Cowboy - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 02:31 PM EDT (#437646) #
" They say the neon lights are bright on Broadway . . . "
Marc Hulet - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 03:49 PM EDT (#437654) #
With Michael King on the mound tonight, Jays' approach should be to see lots of pitches and get into the Yankees bullpen as quickly as possible. King has been outstanding and the Yankees bullpen hasn't been dominant by any means... plus they had to cover 5 IP yesterday.
greenfrog - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 04:00 PM EDT (#437655) #
Lineup:

Springer RF
Bichette SS
Vladdy 1B
Biggio 2B
Chapman 3B
Belt DH
Varsho LF
Kirk C
Kiermaier CF

My only quibble is that I might have preferred Horwitz at 1B and Vladdy at DH, mainly to avoid aggravating Vladdy's knee issues. Also, I'm not sure whether Belt would be a better offensive option than Horwitz in this game.
Glevin - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 04:10 PM EDT (#437656) #
Horwitz and Pearson down and Belt and Jackson on team. Jackson up is a bit odd. Just see him as an end of bullpen guy but he can't go long so not ideal. They also can't option him again as he's been optioned 5 times already this year so would have to DFA him if they needed room (not a big deal I guess).
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 04:22 PM EDT (#437657) #
Both teams sitting their best hitter.  Fair's fair!
Joe - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 04:32 PM EDT (#437658) #
Biggio is in the lineup, Mike :P
greenfrog - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 04:33 PM EDT (#437659) #
Yes - VGJ DH, Biggio 1B, Schneider 2B would have been another viable approach.
Joe - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 04:34 PM EDT (#437660) #
uglyone - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 04:38 PM EDT (#437661) #
Today's report on Felix Bautista doesn't sound too promising for the Orioles.
92-93 - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 04:41 PM EDT (#437662) #
I think theyíre just trying to do Jackson a solid and get him some MLB pay for another week.
Nigel - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 04:52 PM EDT (#437665) #
You may be right 92-93, but from a baseball perspective, that's a horrible reason to be doing something in the last week of the season when your season is on the line. I'm hoping (and believing) that they think Jackson is better than Pearson right now. Why Francis isn't on the team right now is a different question.
92-93 - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 05:00 PM EDT (#437668) #
Francis isn't on the team because he had pitched 3 times in 4 days and they needed another arm, and they can't option him anymore this year so they didn't want to bring him back unless necessary. Maybe he'll be back for Sunday's start.
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 05:05 PM EDT (#437669) #
Why would you have him throw 3 times in 4 days with nothing at stake in triple A, and the club potentially needing him?

I think that it's because the org lacks confidence in him. They have been extremely reluctant to give him opportunities all season despite good performance. It's too bad.
Cracka - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 05:10 PM EDT (#437670) #
My take on the bullpen moves is this: Bowden Francis pitched three times in four days and was optioned for a fresh arm. Pearson was pitching well in Buffalo and got another chance - but his last outing in NY was ugly (2 walks, 2 wild pitches). Francis can't be recalled until Sept. 30th, so the next man up is Jay Jackson. If the Jays have clinched by Sunday, maybe Francis gets recalled to make the start and then a decision is made on Jay Jackson... one alternative would be to option Genesis Cabrera - he'd still be available for the playoffs as the 15-day rule goes away after the regular season ends.
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 05:14 PM EDT (#437671) #
I don't think so. He was optioned on September 14 and can be recalled any time.
Magpie - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 05:32 PM EDT (#437673) #
[Jackson] as an end of bullpen guy but he can't go long so not ideal.

His longest outing this season was 2.2 scoreless against Houston in June, after a truly epic implosion of Mount Manoah.

As for Belt, he obviously needs to be in the lineup, and shake off the rest.
Magpie - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 05:33 PM EDT (#437674) #
Shake off the rest, scrape away the rust?
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 05:42 PM EDT (#437675) #
Taylor Swift meets Neil Young.
Leaside Cowboy - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 05:50 PM EDT (#437676) #
Tonight's out-of-town scoreboard:

6:10 PM E - Cincinnati (Hunter Green) vs. Cleveland (Lucas Giolito)

7:10 PM - Miami (Braxton Garrett) vs. N.Y. Mets (Joey Lucchesi)

7:20 PM - Chicago Cubs (Justin Steele) vs. Atlanta (Bryce Elder)

7:40 PM - Arizona (Zack Davies) vs. Chicago White Sox (Josť UreŮa)

9:38 PM - Texas (Cody Bradford) vs. L.A. Angels (Reid Detmers)

10:05 PM - Houston (Cristian Javier) vs. Seattle (George Kirby)

scottt - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 05:53 PM EDT (#437677) #
Nathan Lukes is the guy who was optioned on September 14 and I don't see him being recalled.

Francis is eligible for recall on Sept 30 but can't be optioned after that.

Mike Green - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 06:05 PM EDT (#437678) #
Sorry, Francis'last MLB appearance was Sep 14 and he was optioned on Sep 15. He is eligible to be recalled.
Leaside Cowboy - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 06:22 PM EDT (#437679) #
Brooks Robinson passed away.
John Northey - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 06:29 PM EDT (#437680) #
It'll be interesting to see how the Jays play now with a magic number of 3 with 6 games to go. It'll be down to 2 no matter what tonight (Houston vs Seattle) and if they win down to 1. That means tomorrow could easily be the clincher for reaching the playoffs. Then game 3 vs the Yankees and the 3 vs Tampa are very secondary (just to decide if they face Tampa or Minnesota) - FYI: 3-3 vs Minnesota, 5-5 vs Tampa.

June 1st to now, Jays are 58-42, Rays 55-44, Twins 54-46. Only the O's have done better in the AL than the Jays since then (62-38). July 1st to now, Jays and Twins both 42-31, Rays 38-34. August 1st to now (post trade deadline) Rays 30-18, Twins 29-20, Jays 28-21 (uh oh). Sept 1st to now Jays best in AL at 14-8, tied with Twins (and NYY). Tampa just 13-10. Lots of ways to either be an optimist or pessimist. To me it is 'woohoo' for playoffs. Let the madness begin.
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 06:51 PM EDT (#437681) #
Willie McCovey. Frank Robinson. Joe Morgan. Tom Seaver. Lou Brock.  Bob Gibson.  Whitey Ford.  Hank Aaron. Brooks Robinson.

So many icons of my childhood have gone in the last 5 years.  Brooks Robinson was, of course, the definitive glove-first third baseman.  Is it me or did he not have a particularly strong arm?  What he did have was the quickest first step I have ever seen, and at third base, that is probably the biggest item. 
Magpie - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 07:00 PM EDT (#437682) #
Is it me or did [Brooks} not have a particularly strong arm?

Well, it was strong enough! I've been watching highlights, and of course the famous play he made on Lee May in he 1970 Series comes up. That was a hell of a throw, from deep in foul territory. Of course, the entire 1970 World Series is basically the Brooks Robinson Highlight Reel.

He was always know to be one of the game's famous nice guys, and I actually got to shake his hand one day at the SkyDome. Folks, it was beyond thrilling.

It was a privilege to see him play third base. It can't be done any better.
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 07:09 PM EDT (#437683) #
Roof open at the end of September?  Two thumbs up.
greenfrog - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 07:27 PM EDT (#437684) #
Going to be a long night for Jays hitters if the home plate ump is going to give King free strikes.
GabrielSyme - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 07:27 PM EDT (#437685) #
First four batted balls of the game all over 100mph, all for outs. I wouldn't bet this game remains scoreless for long.
James W - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 07:28 PM EDT (#437686) #
lol this ump
greenfrog - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 07:29 PM EDT (#437687) #
First inning. Iím guessing these quality starters are going to settle in.
James W - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 07:59 PM EDT (#437688) #
lol this ump, again
John Northey - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 08:01 PM EDT (#437689) #
Need a chant of Robo-Ump Now! to start at the stadium.
Leaside Cowboy - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 08:26 PM EDT (#437690) #
Umpires: HP: Malachi Moore 1B: Bruce Dreckman 2B: Stu Scheurwater 3B: Mark Wegner* (crew chief)
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:00 PM EDT (#437691) #
That 2-0 strike call against Varsho was brutal.  It was such an obvious pull-down from the catcher.
SK in NJ - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:09 PM EDT (#437692) #
That called strike 3 on Vlad with the bases loaded which should have been Ball 4 might be the difference here. Would have been 1-0 Jays with Biggio up when King was on the ropes with no command. Hopefully that doesn't end up being the difference in the game.
99BlueJaysWay - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:14 PM EDT (#437693) #
That 2-0 strike call against Varsho was brutal. It was such an obvious pull-down from the catcher.

There have been some doozies tonight. Game Day has this one roughly at Varshoís neck, maybe the top of the shoulder.

Leaside Cowboy - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:16 PM EDT (#437694) #
Swanson is the unsung hero of the bullpen, like David Phelps last season.
James W - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:16 PM EDT (#437695) #
what i said before applies again
99BlueJaysWay - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:19 PM EDT (#437696) #
On the other side of the ledger, the ump has missed two high strikes to Vlad. One in each of the last two ABs that were easily and completely in the zone
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:20 PM EDT (#437697) #
VGJ was moving as fast as I have seen all season on that DP.  Nice to see. 
dalimon5 - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:21 PM EDT (#437698) #
Mike,

Nice pointing that out. I have to say that is the best I've seen him run maybe ever. Full credit to him.
92-93 - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:23 PM EDT (#437699) #
Call me old-fashioned but I had no problem with the strike 3 on Vladdy. He watched two strikes go by and then chose not to protect on a borderline 3-2 pitch. In the umpires' grading system, that isn't even a missed call.

Magpie - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:23 PM EDT (#437700) #
That was sub-optimal.
Nigel - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:24 PM EDT (#437701) #
This is where Schneider has struggled this year. Romano has really struggled lately. He wouldnít have been my choice tonight.
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:30 PM EDT (#437702) #
I don't know, Nigel.  It is Romano's role, and he hasn't been that bad recently.  They were two hittable pitches though.  His control hasn't been very good. 

It is a fact that I feel more comfortable with Hicks, but there's a lot to be said for sticking with the roles. 
Kasi - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:30 PM EDT (#437703) #
Last I checked you donít win many games when you score zero runs.
Nigel - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:37 PM EDT (#437704) #
Oh the terrible offense is the reason for the loss tonight and in general. No debate there. Not blaming Schneider for the loss.

Mike - it may well be Romanoís role but he just hasnít been good recently.
99BlueJaysWay - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:45 PM EDT (#437705) #
The way the ump scorecards work, it has to be at least a +1 for the Yankees tonight. Drives me crazy every time
Mike Green - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:46 PM EDT (#437706) #
I don't know.  One stinker and one shaky game in the last 5 prior to tonight for Romano.  That will happen to a good high leverage reliever.  I mean, Hicks came into a game in the 9th in a tie score, two games in three and each time gave up a run for the loss in August.  

However, HIcks has only walked 4 since mid-August while Romano's control has been poor (9 walks in 15 innings since mid-August). And he's been wild both in the zone and out of it.  
greenfrog - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 09:53 PM EDT (#437707) #
Drury just hit a three-run home run and LAA leads Texas 3-1 in the first inning. Who knows? Maybe Detmers and the Angels can pull one out against the Rangers tonight.
SK in NJ - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 11:00 PM EDT (#437708) #
This one is on the offense. You can nitpick bullpen decisions, and when I saw Romano's name in the 9th inning I had a bad feeling about it given how he looked last time with his finger issue, but you can't win games when you score 0 runs, and this has been a common theme for this offense. Expecting the pitching to be perfect in order to win.

I don't know if the renovations messed up the hitters or something else entirely but the way they have hit at home this season (or not hit) is staggering. Their road offense is actually pretty good. At home they become one of the worst offenses in the league. At least every wild card game is on the road, assuming they get there.
greenfrog - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 11:16 PM EDT (#437709) #
9-1 Angels over Texas at the moment. No Ohtani, Trout, Rendon, Schanuel, Cron, Moniak, Stassi or Ward for LA.
Leaside Cowboy - Tuesday, September 26 2023 @ 11:31 PM EDT (#437710) #
All right LAA.

Seattle leads Houston 2 - 0 in the 5th. Aided by an error plus a sacrifice fly, the Mariners show life.
Leaside Cowboy - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 12:20 AM EDT (#437711) #
Angels win 9 - 3.† Seattle leads 5 - 0 in the 7th.††Teoscar HernŠndez makes a brilliant catch while crashing into the outfield wall.
vw_fan17 - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 12:48 AM EDT (#437712) #
The Angels winning is the big win here. Obviously, Seattle / Houston is 1 win 1 loss for 2 teams trailing us. Probably rooting for Seattle here, since we own the tie breaker with Houston, and I expect Texas to beat up on Seattle in the last series..
Leaside Cowboy - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 01:15 AM EDT (#437713) #
Seattle wins 6 - 2.
John Northey - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 08:25 AM EDT (#437716) #
So 72 losses each for Houston and Seattle, 69 for Texas. Jays have 70. 5 games left. Jays need a 3-2 record to guarantee a playoff slot. Tie breaker owned by Jays vs Houston, by Seattle vs Jays, by Texas vs Jays. So if Seattle wins tonight the Jays magic # drops to 2. If Houston wins no change. Hopefully the Jays are patient and can get Cole out early tonight.
lexomatic - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 11:02 AM EDT (#437719) #
Ump directly responsible for a run and with potential to blow open a game. I don't know if you can protest umpiring, but I sure would. Imagine this costing a playoff spot.
https://twitter.com/UmpScorecards/status/1707040987401379942
lexomatic - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 11:08 AM EDT (#437720) #
1.43 runs favour.
Moore is terrible and 2 of his 5 worst vs Jay's
https://www.umpscorecards.com/single_umpire/?name=Malachi%20Moore
92-93 - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 11:09 AM EDT (#437721) #
That scorecard shows that in the very same AB Vladdy had the benefit of a strike being called a ball, yet nobody even mentions it. It's not the ump's fault he struck out.
ISLAND BOY - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 11:32 AM EDT (#437722) #
I saw a stat this morning that showed that Romano allowed a full 2 more runs in ERA in appearances that were non-save situations. I know closers aren't infallible but Romano and Garcia are the two relievers I have the least faith in when they enter a game.

I also agree that Vlad's strikeout with the bases loaded wasn't the ump's fault. If there is two strikes, he's got to be swinging at anything close.
scottt - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 11:45 AM EDT (#437723) #
Vladdy took a 3-0 fastball down the middle with the bases loaded. That's a good take.
But after that the hitter needs to sit fastball and can't take another fastball down the middle.
That's not what's expected from the 3rd hitter. The 3rd fastball was a good pitch.

Speaking of fastballs down the middle. Romano started the 9th with 95 down the middle.
A few pitches later, when the game was lost, he threw 97 on the corners and sliders at the knees.

At home, with the bullpen they have, I would expect the Jays to do very well in extra innings.
If they thought the game was lost it would have been Jackson, not Romano throwing in the 9th.

Houston has only 4 games left. 1 against Seattle and 3 against Arizona who are still fighting.

That's 6 games against Tampa, but don't expect to see the starting pitchers who will be used in the first round. I don't know if the Jays would have been able to win a best of three against the Yankees featuring Cole and King. The difference is that Tampa has a good pen.

99BlueJaysWay - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 02:34 PM EDT (#437727) #
It's not the ump's fault he struck out.

I donít understand this line of thinking at all. If the umpire missed the call, heís at fault. Full stop. You can also be mad at Vladdy for not swinging at the other strike, but thatís a separate issue, and both can be true at the same time.

ISLAND BOY - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 02:47 PM EDT (#437729) #
What I'm saying is that the third strike was a very close pitch. It may have been just off the edge of the strike zone but if it looks close, then the batter has to protect the strike zone, or anything near it, especially in that situation. If the umpire missed a pitch that was 4 inches outside the zone, I'd say " yes, it was the umpire's fault" but a close pitch, then it's on the batter to swing and not hope for a ball call.
Cracka - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 03:02 PM EDT (#437730) #
The third strike was also the 16th pitch in a row that was called by the umpire - Springer walked on 6 pitches without swinging, Bo walked on 4 pitches, and then Vladdy didn't swing at any of his 6. Hard to know for sure, but it felt like Vladdy was penalized on the 3rd strike for not swinging at either of the first two strikes down the middle.
92-93 - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 03:43 PM EDT (#437731) #
Much better order tonight than yesterday. Chapman and Varsho should not be batting ahead of Belt and Kirk right now.
Magpie - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 03:48 PM EDT (#437732) #
It may have been just off the edge of the strike zone but if it looks close, then the batter has to protect the strike zone, or anything near it, especially in that situation.

I agree - but I'm not sure that's part of Guerrero's skill set at this point. His approach is generally to swing at pitches he thinks he can hit hard. He knows he can't do that to a pitch low and away - hardly anyone can - so he automatically lets it go by and hopes it gets called a ball. He hasn't really mastered whole the foul-it-off-until-you-get-something-better ability.
soupman - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 04:49 PM EDT (#437733) #
Nicely said and another reason robo umps would potentially benefit the Jays.

That said, I would assume losing Kirks framing would offset that.
Leaside Cowboy - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 04:56 PM EDT (#437734) #
Citi Field in Queens is deemed unplayable.† Leave it to the Mets!
Nigel - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 06:55 PM EDT (#437735) #
Kirk is one of the rare Jays on which bWAR and fWAR don't diverge (because of the different defensive metrics inputs). They both think his defence has been excellent - which matches the eye test (at least after the first month or so of the season where I thought his defence struggled along with his bat).
finch - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 07:33 PM EDT (#437736) #
Before the first pitch to Chapman, anyone notice that Cole grabbed his hat, wiped his brow, grabbed the rassin bag, took his glove off and ran his fingers along his wrist!?

That man is cheating with a foreign substance!!!
Marc Hulet - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 07:35 PM EDT (#437737) #
I find it interesting that after using the rosin, Cole rub his hands like you would when you were washing your hands but he ran his hand up his wrist and forearm...
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 07:49 PM EDT (#437738) #
The Yankees have their best hitter in the lineup, while the Blue Jays continue to wait for Movember. 
Nigel - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 07:50 PM EDT (#437739) #
Game over:(

That's the problem with Berrios - he had three of the more dominant innings that he's had as a Jay, but the HRs are always going to be a risk with him.
99BlueJaysWay - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 08:04 PM EDT (#437740) #
Iím behind. But that K call for Judge was atrocious
greenfrog - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 08:16 PM EDT (#437741) #
My sympathies to anyone who actually decided to watch this game (I took a pass).
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 08:18 PM EDT (#437742) #
Whit Merrifield does not have an arm.  Judge was going to score easily from second despite the ball coming off Stanton's bat at roughly 160 mph.  Autobahn territory. 
99BlueJaysWay - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 08:18 PM EDT (#437743) #
Would they have had Judge if Chapman didnít screw up.

It feels like heís hurting the team more than helping since he came back
greenfrog - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 08:21 PM EDT (#437744) #
Looks like Atkins finally got the balanced lineup he wanted. Now everyone is equally ineffective.
Mike Green - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 08:22 PM EDT (#437745) #
Not a chance.  Merrifield's throw was dying.  Chapman did them a favour inadvertently, as they were able to get Torres who foolishly thought about trying to score when the ball rolled away a short distance. 
99BlueJaysWay - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 08:23 PM EDT (#437746) #
You guys had to bring up Ď87Ö.Thanks John and Magpie!
Marc Hulet - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 08:23 PM EDT (#437747) #
For the second night in a row I had to turn the game off very early. There may be nothing more depressing than watching this team try to play baseball. The hitting is just putrid.
99BlueJaysWay - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 08:28 PM EDT (#437748) #
Iím less sure Mike. I counted 5 steps from Judge after the ball hit Chapmanís glove. He was a little over half way. Itís questionable if the throw was on line though, which might have been why it was cut.
99BlueJaysWay - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 08:32 PM EDT (#437749) #
From the broadcast: on the road the jays have 103 homers and have given up 99. At home 77 for the Jays, 92 for opponents.
uglyone - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 08:32 PM EDT (#437750) #
it's crazy how unfun this season has been.
Nigel - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 08:57 PM EDT (#437751) #
The 2023 season being put at risk on the back of getting bageled back to back feels appropriate.
hypobole - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 09:12 PM EDT (#437752) #
Jays are a good road team. Bodes well for the playoffs. :(
Super Bluto - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 09:23 PM EDT (#437753) #
One word comes to mind:

Booooooooooooooooooooo!
Marc Hulet - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 09:42 PM EDT (#437754) #
I hope they were booed off the field. The last two games were beyond pathetic.
dalimon5 - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 09:52 PM EDT (#437755) #
If they played this bad against Scherzer and Verlander would everyone still be so upset calling this team pathetic?
greenfrog - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 10:14 PM EDT (#437756) #
Do Scherzer and Verlander have 0.00 ERAs, like the ERAs posted by King and Cole the last two games? (Against a near-fully healthy Jays lineup, it's worth noting.)
dalimon5 - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 10:34 PM EDT (#437757) #
That's kind of my point. Calling these guys pathetic after facing King with a massive strike zone and the Cy Young winner the next day...meh.
greenfrog - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 10:42 PM EDT (#437758) #
The team just needs to make the playoffs, so they (and we) can at least have that. But at this point nothing would surprise me, including an 0-4 finish to the season.

Luke Weaver and Aaron Civale are the next two opposing starting pitchers the Jays will face, so the team should be in a better position to score some runs.
greenfrog - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 10:50 PM EDT (#437759) #
Not to overly focus on one player, but the Jays desperately need Matt Chapman to wake up at the plate. wRC+ of 49 in August and 57 in September. He's a career 118 wRC+ hitter. His performance over the last couple of months has been shockingly bad. Lineup killer.
Leaside Cowboy - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 10:55 PM EDT (#437760) #
A fit of ill temper by the field-manager would satisfy.
Marc Hulet - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 10:59 PM EDT (#437761) #
They have 5 hits in the last two games with their season on the line... they haven't even looked competitive at the plate. I stand by my "pathetic" comment. Cole and King are not infallible pitchers.

I said before the trade deadline that this team is not a playoff calibre team. They are an easy out far too often.

If they make it in, it'll be dumb luck. And they'll be a quick out in the wildcard series.

Teams like the Dodgers, Orioles, Braves... heck even the Astros are much more enjoyable to watch. And they deserve their spots.
Nigel - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 10:59 PM EDT (#437762) #
greenfrog - Chapmanís offensive problems have been going on for a lot longer than a couple of months.

dalimon - in general, I agree with your point - good pitchers are going to do their thing. Iíd only counter by saying that the ease with which they were carved up (this week and last) is pretty shocking given the time of year and importance of the games and, this isnít a two start problem, itís been a season long one. This team is far from pathetic but it isnít a very good offensive team.
greenfrog - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 11:18 PM EDT (#437763) #
It feels like the coaching staff should be coaxing better overall production and execution (including baserunning) out of the position players. But I'm not sure how much of the offensive shortcomings are due to the players themselves as opposed to the coaches.
Eephus - Wednesday, September 27 2023 @ 11:35 PM EDT (#437764) #
Honestly... this team still somehow missing the playoffs would be just damn hilarious to me. I don't wish it... only because it would sadden many people (yall included) who are emotionally invested in their success. Missing on the last day of 2021 was a football in the groin... the 8-1 Mariners game last year? Still can't totally process that one. Just... whaaaaa? Those all still sting to varying degrees.

This stupid team? This limp attack that is so predictably feeble offensively you can tune out by the 4th inning? Geez. Just, get lost. Go win the World Series, or go get embarrassed. Either way, just do whatever. Neither would surprise me, and I don't feel invested in the former (nor would I take particular joy in the "told you so" of the latter). My least favourite Jays team, in my 24 seasons of following, by an easy mile. It's ridiculously unwatchable... our starting pitchers are often grinding so well just to keep things close, while meanwhile I wonder if the bats could win a random T-Ball game. Nobody should expect to score a lot off Gerrit Cole, sure, but come on this is the theme of this season: teasing the potential of scoring runs and then it feeling like a miracle when they finally do.

It's so strange, and as a ballplayer myself I just can't tolerate watching this... this... death by ten thousand toothpick stabs. It's simply unpleasant baseball. Ugh! Blech! This personal apathy is new to me, but as is this level of play from a winning home 9*




*now watch them go win it all in spite of my harsh doubt. Again you're welcome.


Jonny German - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 03:10 AM EDT (#437765) #
The sky isn't falling nearly as badly as it was after that 4-game faceplant vs Texas.

4 games to play, magic number over Seattle is 3 and over Houston is 4.

The weekend series in Toronto is meaningless to Tampa if the Orioles beat the Red Sox today.

scottt - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 05:50 AM EDT (#437766) #
Avoiding the sweep here would be very nice.

I wasn't expecting them to hit against Cole, but I don't know why they are still pitching to Judge.

Texas has made it to the top.
Houston is half a game behind the Jays, so at worse they'll be tied after tonight.
They have 3 games left against Arizona who has the second wild card 2 games ahead of the Cubs and the Marlins.

Texas starts their 4 games series at Seattle.
The worse case scenario has Seattle and Houston sweeping which would take Houston to 90 wins and Seattle to 89 so the Jays would need 90 wins.

Meaningful September baseball. More agony than bliss.  

Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 06:46 AM EDT (#437767) #
Dear Buck. The change up that Judge hit off Richards was not middle-middle. It hit the inside corner and mid-thigh. Judge can hit that pitch if he's looking for it- he can extend the arms. The pitch did not have a lot of downward movement, which made it easier for Judge. And of course, Richards throws basically fastball and change up so it's a 50-50 guess.
99BlueJaysWay - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 07:42 AM EDT (#437768) #
If the season ended today, this team would be tied for the 14th best record in Jays history, IE better than most of the teams weíve watched.

The offense at home, for whatever reason, is 29th in the league, as I understand it. 4 runs a game. On the road itís top 5, at over 5 runs.

bpoz - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 07:43 AM EDT (#437769) #
Wishing against Seattle seems like 1 method to get in or at least handle the tension.

The on going playoff race should be producing good revenue. However the lack of offense may mean that nobody is paying attention which means revenue suffers. I don't know the revenue results.

If we do get in I am not afraid of any team. Nobody can predict who will be hot & cold except someone will be.
99BlueJaysWay - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 08:01 AM EDT (#437770) #
From Jays Talk:

Cole Vs Blue Jays in 2023:

28 1/3 innings pitched, 1 earned run allowed.

Iím with the other posters in saying thatís pathetic.
85bluejay - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 08:42 AM EDT (#437771) #
This backward race has its own joy - every morning I check the scoreboard to see which teams lost - it would be fitting if the Jays lost out their remaining games and still made the postseason.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 08:46 AM EDT (#437772) #
Tale of the tape, Davis Schneider v. Whit Merrifield:
S. M.
Age 24. 34
PAs. 135. 584
Slash .270/.400/.595. .276/.322/.388
xwOBA .356. .276

If you play Merrifield over Schneider regularly, you can anticipate less offence.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 08:47 AM EDT (#437773) #
Ack. Column alignment didn't work- will use table next time.
bpoz - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 08:54 AM EDT (#437774) #
I looked at last years offense. We were one of the better offenses. I imagine no Teo & Gurriel & other factors like bad offense from this years players is the main factor.

This knowledge will help with the off season additions.
Glevin - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 09:54 AM EDT (#437775) #
"It feels like the coaching staff should be coaxing better overall production and execution (including baserunning) out of the position players. But I'm not sure how much of the offensive shortcomings are due to the players themselves as opposed to the coaches."

At this level, I think coaches can, aside from an unusual case we usually hear about, only help. In the end, the hitters have to hit and the Jays just aren't hitting. That being said, Jays should definitely replace the hitting coach because whatever they should be doing, they aren't. Cole is an elite pitcher so I don't mind it, but it's the inability to hit against anyone. The offense just looks so consistently bad.
92-93 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 09:57 AM EDT (#437776) #
Schneider and his 0 for his last 30 with 12 Ks will be back in the lineup tonight, have no fear.
electric carrot - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 10:00 AM EDT (#437777) #
In defense of the 2023 Jays:
Some on this site say the team is unwatchable and that this is the least fun team to watch in the history of the blue jays. Well, I don't agree. I like this team. It's young, and it's one of the best defensive teams in recent memory. The offense is middle of the pack but the pitching is outstanding. And there are a few guys who can swap a base. Also, with guys like Vladdy and Kirk (and erstwhile, Manaoh) you have guys who don't fit the stoic demeanor and carbon cut-out shape of the typically bland player. In other words, this team has a little personality.

But I will say this site isn't as fun as past years. It's the whiniest I've ever seen it in the history of the site. I've never seen it thus. We lose a game to the likely cy young award winner and people act like the team just ran over the family pet. I don't get it.
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 10:21 AM EDT (#437778) #
Well the team isn't young.

And tbh i don't know how anyone can watch what the jays have done with a chance to clinch against an eliminated yankees team the last two games and not be upset.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 10:28 AM EDT (#437779) #
Can we talk about bullpen usage?

It seems that Romano, Hicks and Swanson have all been roughly equally effective this year.  And good but not great.  Romano has been in the closer role, but apparently prefers to not come into the game in a tie game in the eighth or ninth even at home.  It seems to me that the club ought to honour that preference, but it would help if the brain trust loosened the one-inning limit for Hicks and Swanson a bit.  The presence of Chad Green makes this quite doable, but it would really be a lot better if they had a multi-inning guy to come in when the starter doesn't have it and exits early.  Trevor Richards is one possibility, but not ideally suited given his repertoire. Bowden Francis is another. 
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 10:44 AM EDT (#437780) #
I don't find this to be the most unwatchable team either.  I love watching Daulton Varsho, Brandon Belt,  Kevin Kiermaier and Davis Schneider, all of whom weren't on the club last year.  The defence, particularly the outfield defence, has been very, very good, and the offence has been erratic. 
There are little things that bug me- like not hitting and running very often when Kirk is at the plate (it would be nice if VGJ learned how to do that also- he's slugged .463 and grounded into 49 double plays over the last 2 years). 

uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:10 AM EDT (#437781) #
Mike - Ryu should fit that multi inning role nicely.
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:13 AM EDT (#437782) #
I dunno. I can't get upset when Gerrit Cole throws a two hit shutout. It's disappointing perhaps, but it's Gerrit Cole. That's what he does. It's not like hitting isn't already hard enough to start with.
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:20 AM EDT (#437783) #
not hitting and running very often when Kirk is at the plate

For obvious reasons, of course. And on the one hand, Kirk would be a pretty good hitter to try it with - he seldom swings and misses. But on the other hand, his normal approach involves taking a lot of pitches, especially strikes that he's not inclined to swing at. Only Biggio lets more strikes go by.
Joe - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:24 AM EDT (#437784) #
Exactly, Magpie. We should just thank our lucky stars that Cole will be watching the playoffs from home!
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:28 AM EDT (#437785) #
I know Kirk's usual approach is to be very selective until two strikes, but...it's not working (at all) with a runner on first and less than two outs.  He doesn't hit for enough power, and he hits the ball on the ground too often, and he's too slow, to make this a viable strategy.  One of the things about being young is that we are more adaptable.  Kirk (and VGJ) need to adapt. 
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:29 AM EDT (#437786) #
it would help if the brain trust loosened the one-inning limit for Hicks and Swanson a bit.

The limit was looser for Swanson in the first half - he worked more than an inning at least half a dozen times - but they decided they'd been working him too hard, and he hasn't worked more than one inning since the Break. And he's given up multiple runs just once in the second half, which is hard to argue with.

Well, he was a new guy. You need to see them work to find out what you have and what the guy can do. Still learning that stuff about Hicks.
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:35 AM EDT (#437787) #
One of the things about being young is that we are more adaptable.

Sure, but Kirk's a catcher. He doesn't get to work on his hitting, like the other players do. His day is already pretty full, especially after missing most of the spring.

I think you'll have better luck simply having the runner try to steal a base when Kirk's hitting rather than hoping he can change his approach enough to be a good hit and run man.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:37 AM EDT (#437788) #
Swanson had thrown each of those 6 outings of over 1 inning as of July 9.  In each outing, he had thrown 20 pitches or less.  But, he had pitched in 42 of the club's 91 games up to that point.  The innings pitched/pitches made per outing were completely sustainable, the number of appearances per team game was totally unsustainable. 
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:42 AM EDT (#437789) #
Somehow Carlton Fisk managed to learn to H and R, and Kirk is a bright guy.  I think he could do it.  Besides, how many players do the Jays have who you want to try to steal?  Springer.  Kiermaier,  Varsho maybe, Biggio maybe, Chapman maybe.  I doubt that you'll get a success rate over 65% if you don't have the element of surprise working for you. 


Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:51 AM EDT (#437790) #
Further to the Swanson comment, the Jays didn't have Green earlier in the year and that would have made it more difficult to modify Swanson's role as I have suggested. 
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:56 AM EDT (#437791) #
The thing is, throwing a 9 inning 2 baserunners shutout is NOT what Gerrit Cole does, as this is the only time he's done it this year, and only the 2nd time he's done it in his entire career.

In fact only 4 times in Cole's career has he thrown at least 8ip and allowed only 2 baserunners. 2 of those 4 times came in his last 2 outings, both against our Jays.
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:00 PM EDT (#437792) #
Kirk is a bright guy. I think he could do it.

I think was kind of a lost year for Kirk the hitter, mainly because of the way his spring unfolded.
Glevin - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:01 PM EDT (#437793) #
One of the biggest issues for me that does reflect coaching is the number of outs made on the bases. Jays have made 56 outs on bases which is 5th in baseball. They are actually best in baseball and not making outs at 1B (I guess not getting doubled off) but have made a ridiculous 55 outs at 2B/3B/HP. They are also 21st overall in extra bases taken so it's not like they are just being aggressive. They are just making lots of bad decisions. They also have the second worst SB% in baseball. Vladdy the worst offender (Chapman and Bichette bad too). Vladdy has only taken the extra base 26% of the time which is lower than Belt and only higher than Kirk. Yet, he has also made 8 outs on the base highest on the team. (Belt, for example, has made 3). He's also 4/7 in SB attempts. With 23 GDP, 3 CS, and 8 outs on bases, Vladdy has made 34 extra outs this year. Yikes. Varsho, on other hand, is a terrific baserunner. Taking extra base 52% of time and only making 1 out on the bases all year.
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:03 PM EDT (#437794) #
p.s. don't look now but with the way he's trending, after Bo looked like an MVP much of the year there's a good chance this year ends up being the worst year of his career so far.
92-93 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:05 PM EDT (#437795) #
Bichette is having a MUCH better year this season than last.
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:06 PM EDT (#437796) #
The thing is, throwing a 9 inning 2 baserunners shutout is NOT what Gerrit Cole does

Well, in that sense, it's not what anyone does. It's still less surprising to me when Gerrit Cole does it. The same way it was less surprising when Nolan Ryan threw a no-hitter, even though he failed to do so in 766 of his 773 career starts.

Michael King, on the other hand...
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:08 PM EDT (#437797) #
Bichette is having auch worse year at the plate than last year unfortunately.

We can argue hia fielding has improved.
92-93 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:10 PM EDT (#437798) #
His defense is inarguably much better, and his offensive line is exactly the same though this time with consistency. And that's with playing through an injury.
ISLAND BOY - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:13 PM EDT (#437799) #
I think the great pitching and defense makes us think the team should be better than it is. I agree with Magpie that last night was just a case of losing to the probable Cy Young winner. The first game was more frustrating with Gausman pitching his butt off, like he has all season, and getting no run support.

I hope the Jays make the playoffs but don't hold out much hope they'll have any success there.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:13 PM EDT (#437800) #
Yes. It's true that having a newborn will affect a player, catchers especially. I hope Kirk puts it on his to-do list for March.
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:21 PM EDT (#437801) #
It's the whiniest I've ever seen it in the history of the site... I don't get it.

I know! Isn't it weird?

I suspect that when this season is over, the team situation will be similar to the situation Anthopoulos faced after 2013 - some big moves were made, there were very high expectations, and things didn't play out as hoped or expected (although the full story of the 2023 Jays has yet to be written!).

But it's not the same. The 2013 team did a complete face plant. They sucked, end of story. They fully deserved the scorn and grumpiness this year's team has received. They got nothing of the sort. Go figure.
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:26 PM EDT (#437802) #
His offensive line is significantly worse than last year, unfortunately, going from 30% above league average down to 20% above league average.
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:28 PM EDT (#437803) #
not to mention dropping all the way from 91 all important rbi down to 64!
92-93 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:30 PM EDT (#437804) #
Offense is way down at the Dome this year.
greenfrog - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:31 PM EDT (#437805) #
If you check out other sites and media, itís clear that there is wide dissatisfaction with the performance of this yearís team. ESPN just gave the Jays a B- grade for their regular season performance. The Fan 590 radio just did a segment on how *all* of the Jays position players have underperformed offensively this year compared to 2022.

I actually find the repeated whining about the so-called whiners interesting. For example, focusing only on Coleís performance but ignoring the back-to-back dominant shutouts of the Jays. Both the pessimists and the optimists can be accused of failing to see the larger picture.
92-93 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:33 PM EDT (#437806) #
His RBI are down because he's batted 2nd all year and got hurt. His RBI/opportunity is up.
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:38 PM EDT (#437807) #
Fact is that in year 8 of this team's management, in a season where they upped their payroll and saw both NYY and BOS fall out of contention, the Jays not only didn't improve, but actually have a worse record than either of the previous 2yrs.

and again, they're not a young team:

Not young:

* 36: Ryu
* 35: Belt, (Jackson, Bass)
* 34: Bassitt, Merrifield
* 33: Springer, Kiermaier
* 32: Gausman, Kikuchi, Green, Garcia, (Heineman, Cimber)
* 31: Mayza
* 30: Chapman, Romano, Richards
* 29: Berrios, Swanson, (Thornton, Dejong, Luplow)
* 28: Jansen, Biggio, Espinal, (Lukes, White, Hatch, McCoy)
* 27: (Francis, Clement)

Youngish:

* 26: Varsho, Hicks, Cabrera, (Pearson, Pop)
* 25: Bichette, (Manoah, Horwitz, Eden)
* 24: Guerrero, Kirk, Schneider
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:39 PM EDT (#437808) #
If you check out other sites and media, itís clear that there is wide dissatisfaction with the performance of this yearís team.

Something seems completely out of proportion. I mean, I remember 2013. They were "World Series favourites," here and everywhere. So many people were talking about the best rotation in team history that I felt compelled to do research and find out which had been the best ones before!

That team went 74-88, and people weren't nearly as grumpy as they've been this year.
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:39 PM EDT (#437809) #
"His RBI are down because he's batted 2nd all year and got hurt. His RBI/opportunity is up"

sounds like RBI is a pretty misleading stat!
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:51 PM EDT (#437810) #

Gerrit Cole 2023

* vs Jays: 4gms, 7.1ip/gm, 0.66whip, 0.31era
* vs Other: 29gms, 6.2ip/gm, 0.87whip, 3.00era
Paul D - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:55 PM EDT (#437811) #
Is there a single regular player who's having a good offensive season? Lots of solid seasons, but nothing that stands out as great or even good. (Although maybe this isn't fair to Bichette)
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:56 PM EDT (#437812) #
that should read 0.98 whip against "Other" for cole.
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 12:58 PM EDT (#437813) #
I am wondering if the off-season renovations have had the unexpected result of turning the RC into more of a pitcher's park. It's way too soon to tell after just 81 games - I'd want to see at least 500. But both Jays hitters and opposing hitters are losing some 20 to 30 points of BAVG at the local dome. Jays hitters - one in particular- are also hitting fewer HRs here as well.
Nigel - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 01:00 PM EDT (#437814) #
On the whole, I quite enjoy this team and its certainly better than being a Tigers or Angels fan this year. I find the horrible baserunning this year hard to fathom and the number of totally uncompetitive ABs is perplexing but those don't take away from the whole for me. Its a good but not great club - I can get behind that.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 01:08 PM EDT (#437815) #
The 2013 club had some truly vile performance from position players- Bonaficio, Melky Cabrera, Arencibia (OBP- .227). And some disappointing performances from young and established players.

I don't recall thinking ever that a rotation headed by Dickey, Buerhle and Happ would be as good as a Stieb, Key, Ale ander, Clancy rotation. That's a high bar.
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 01:10 PM EDT (#437816) #
I quite enjoy this team and its certainly better than being a Tigers or Angels fan this year.

Me too (and no kidding re Tigers and Angels) but I was beginning to think I was just being contrary and weird because everyone seems to hate them so much! (Well, I'm pretty sure that is in fact the case...)

In the end, we'll have to decide - did Ross Atkins actually put together a powerhouse team that went out and underachieved? Do I have to give him an A in the Report Card and blame the manager and the players? Or was the team not as good as we thought they were going to be? Is it possible that we were wrong about them?

Unpossible, surely.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 01:13 PM EDT (#437817) #
Several posters thought that they were a high 80s win team. I forget what I said- ZiPs said 89 and I thought that was low. Better check!
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 01:23 PM EDT (#437818) #
Well, I know Zips had us as an elite offensive team and Manoah as a Cy contender heading into the seasonm, at least.

Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 01:26 PM EDT (#437819) #
Actually I said in the Opening Day thread that my main disagreement with the ZiPS W/L projections (which had the Blue Jays and Yankees leading with 89 wins) was the strength of the AL East. ZiPS had the division at 50 games over .500 and I said I would happily take the over on that one. That disagreement turned out to be right. It was a tough division, and the O's did progress faster than expected.
Chuck - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 01:27 PM EDT (#437820) #
Although maybe this isn't fair to Bichette

Bichette's wRC+ ranks 4th in MLB for shortstops (in a tight clump from spots 3 to 6). Given the context of the position he plays, I think it is fair to say that he has had a very good offensive season.

He has been remarkably consistent offensively for the past 3 seasons. A member of the broadcast team insists on hyperbolic proclamations when it comes to his hitting prowess, which gets in the way of an objective evaluation, but one wonders where Bichette's game can go next offensively (some will argue that he had already elevated his offense and that his numbers have suffered a post-injury funk).

Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 01:45 PM EDT (#437821) #
I ran a Stathead comp search for Bichette using shortstop with between 2000 and 2600 PAs and OPS+ between 120 and 132 through the age season (Bichette is at 2309 PAs and 126 OPS+). The two modern comps were Nomar Garciaparra and Corey Seager. Seager had hit fewer homers/PA through age 25 than Bichette.

So I guess Bichette could add more power and be one of the best hitters in the league. Probably would have to pull more..
Parker - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 01:47 PM EDT (#437822) #
No heart. Toronto Tin Men.
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 01:48 PM EDT (#437823) #
I know Zips had us as an elite offensive team and Manoah as a Cy contender heading into the season

I'll take your word for it but I don't understand why they thought replacing Hernandez and Gurriel with Varsho and Kiermaier was going to improve the offense, which wasn't elite to start with.

Manoah, obviously, was an unexpected disaster. But every team can sing a version of that song.
92-93 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 02:03 PM EDT (#437824) #
The disaster was unexpected, but the regression wasn't. People were quite upset when Steamer projected Manoah's ERA at 4.09.
bpoz - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 02:04 PM EDT (#437825) #
We win 2 games and Seattle loses 1 and we are in.
Chuck - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 02:11 PM EDT (#437826) #
Probably would have to pull more.

As Garciaparra grew as a hitter, he seemed willing to swap out home runs for batting average. I don't know Bichette's mind, obviously, but he seems similarly inclined. I can see him winning a batting title long before hitting 40 home runs.

85bluejay - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 02:11 PM EDT (#437827) #
"We win 2 games and Seattle loses 1 and we are in."

My expectations - Jays go 0-4, Seattle goes 1-3 - Jays in!

I really hope the Marlins get in.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 02:18 PM EDT (#437828) #
Bichette is a lot thicker than Garciaparra, and has lost quite a bit of speed already. You can be a batting champ without much speed, but you can't swing and miss very much. Bichette would probably have to shorten his stroke more regularly.

Whichever way he goes, some adjustment is involved.
Nigel - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 02:24 PM EDT (#437829) #
I really don't understand why anyone thought that this was going to be an elite offensive team. Management intentionally punted run scoring for run prevention. I didn't agree with all parts of the execution of that goal but I agreed with the gist of the offseason. I have no criticism of that management decision. Runs scoring was almost intended to decline and expecting an improved offence in 2023 wasn't on the cards unless you bought high on Varsho's offence and thought Merrified would find a fountain of youth.
John Northey - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 02:53 PM EDT (#437830) #
I think the biggest problem is that Baltimore did a big jump that we've been expecting from the Jays since 2021. Basically everything went right for them - from being 7 over their Pythagorean W-L record, to Rutschman playing 151 games (so far) and not breaking (109 catching, 44 DH, 5 PH) - Jansen could learn something there. Gunnar Henderson coming up and not having any rookie jitters at all. Aaron Hicks, after sucking in NY (45 OPS+ after a 2 year 82 OPS+ stretch) suddenly hitting better than ever (133) at age 33. Basically the only thing to really go wrong is Fťlix Bautista getting hurt just before the end of the season.

Tampa should've collapsed - everything logical says so - their star kicked off the team due to inappropriate behavior with minors, Glasnow at 21 starts so far, same for McClanahan (TJ surgery). Yet they just plug in other pieces and keep jugging along like nothing went wrong. Insane.

Jays? Just basically have been solid all year - not too good, not too bad, no long winning streaks (6 games the longest back in April) or losing streaks (5 games the longest twice in May). April the best month .630 win %, May the worst .393 win %. The rest 519-593. Worse at home than the road, killing in interleague play. A solid team, but never doing anything to really get us going nuts 'this team can't lose' all year and outside of the horrid 4 games vs Texas not really stinking up the joint either. Yeah, the last 2 vs the Yankees sucked but in both cases you were facing hot pitchers in Cole & King who both have ERA+'s over 160. Tampa's only guy used as a starter with an ERA+ over 130 is Shawn Armstrong (300 ERA+ 5 starts 33 relief games never went more than 3 IP, just once over 2). Baltimore has Kyle Bradish (144 ERA+) and John Means (162 in 3 starts 17 1/3 IP). Twins have Sonny Gray (155), Texas Jordan Montgomery (153 as a Ranger, 134 overall), Houston's best is Framber Valdez (122), while Seattle is led by Luis Castillo (128), but do have Trent Thornton at 179 (1 start, 20 relief, 23 1/3 IP). So basically the Jays won't ever have to face 2 starters as good as they just saw for the rest of 2023 (didn't check NL staffs).

So I choose to be an optimist, the Jays just need to win 3, or have Houston play no better than 1 win more than the Jays do from here on out or have the Mariners win 1 fewer than the Jays do from here on out. With just 4 to play (3 for Houston) that doesn't seem a tall order does it? Especially with how Texas has pounded Seattle lately (19-13 in a 3 game sweep last week) or with how Houston has played vs non-rivals (in Arizona vs a team that is trying to lock up their playoff slot after going 2-7 vs KC & Oakland this month and 1-2 vs Baltimore, 0-3 vs NYY, 2-1 vs SD before they got burning hot).

Btw, quite the snail race for the NL wild card. 2nd & 3rd have Arizona 84 W, Cubs & Marlins at 82, Reds at 81, Padres at 79. The AL Race bottom is Seattle at 85 wins, with Jays & Astros at 87. Outside of 2020 the Jays have never made the playoffs with fewer than 89 wins.
electric carrot - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 03:03 PM EDT (#437831) #
"I actually find the repeated whining about the so-called whiners interesting."

greenfrog: I would characterize the tone of the complaints about whiners not as whiny but at worst, scolding, and at best, baffled and curious. Whininess, at its heart requires a greater sense that one was owed something different than what was given.
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 03:15 PM EDT (#437832) #
What do you mean the offense wasn't already elite? Last year they were 4th in runs and 1st in wRC+. That's elite.

And then Belt, Varsho, KK were expected to be about as good offensively as Teo/Gurriel/Tapia/Bradley/Zimmer, with better defense, which has turned out to be right.
92-93 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 03:39 PM EDT (#437833) #
Schneider switches up the top of the order tonight after some encouraging ABs from Belt.

Springer
Belt
Guerrero
Bichette
Biggio
Kirk
Kiermaier
Chapman
Varsho

This is what the playoff order should look like. Very surprising that Schneider sits again.
Glevin - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 03:43 PM EDT (#437834) #
"I really don't understand why anyone thought that this was going to be an elite offensive team."

Maybe not elite but top-10 seemed reasonable. Look at the WRC+ last year vs this year of players under 30 where you couldn't really expect any decline. Out of 8 players under 30, you would expect most players to have similar seasons, a couple better, and maybe an injury or two. Every single player is worse, most of them significantly.
Bo-130/121
Vlad-133/117
Kirk-130/94
Chapman-118/109
Varsho-107/84
Jansen-141/116
Espinal-100/82
Biggio-98/97
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 03:46 PM EDT (#437835) #
What do you mean the offense wasn't already elite?

I agree that it was certainly a very good offense. Elite? The team that scored half a run a game more than the Blue Jays - while playing half their games in Dodger Stadium - that's probably elite. But this is quibbling over semantics.
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 03:59 PM EDT (#437836) #
Heat check:

Last 30days Heat Lineup

* DH Belt 15pa 178wrc+
* 3B Espinal 44pa 175wrc+
* SS Clement 38pa, 125wrc+
* 1B Guerrero 108pa, 122wrc+
* LF Biggio 90pa, 117wrc+
* 2B Schneider 87pa, 116wrc+
* C Kirk 85pa, 111wrc+
* CF Kiermaier 73pa, 106wrc+
* RF Springer 120pa, 97wrc+

* B. 1B Horwit 34pa, 107wrc+
* B. OF Varsho 75pa, 92wrc+
* B. IF Bichette 76pa, 62wrc+
* B. C Heineman 12pa, 14wrc+

* X. UT Chapman 48pa, 46wrc+
* X. UT Merrifield 80pa, 44wrc+
* X. (C Jansen 8pa, 193wrc+)



Last 14 days Heat Lineup:

* 1B Guerrero 46pa, 180wrc+
* DH Belt 7pa, 162wrc+
* CF Varsho 32pa, 137wrc+
* 3B Espinal 12pa, 117wrc+
* SS Bichette 55pa, 95wrc+
* C Kirk 38pa, 76wrc+
* 2B Merrifield 31pa, 70wrc+
* LF Biggio 48pa, 55wrc+
* RF Springer 56pa, 50wrc+

* B. UT Chapman 48pa, 46wrc+
* B. OF Kiermaier 36pa, 32wrc+
* B. C Heineman 5pa, 5wrc+
* B. 1B Horwitz 10pa, -8wrc+

* X. UT Schneider 29pa -66wrc+


Hoo boy that's a helluva last couple weeks.


Marc Hulet - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 04:08 PM EDT (#437837) #
Captain Schneider crushing another young player's confidence by sitting him for days on end while Biggio rocks the sub-.500 OPS over the past 7 games...
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 04:14 PM EDT (#437838) #
Schneider vs. RHP so far: .257/.381/.486, 13% W, 30% K, 8 doubles, 1 triple, 2 homers in 70 PA, 33% LD rate, 10% HR/FB, BABIP .372.

Entirely sustainable, and reasonably consistent with Buffalo performance.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 04:15 PM EDT (#437839) #
Sorry, 31% LD.
Glevin - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 04:23 PM EDT (#437840) #
Weaver also has reverse splits this year. Worse against RH than LH. Schneider is an absolute awful slump but still, on a team that can't score, starting once in a week doesn't make any sense. Merrifield hasn't hit for a long time and has started 3 games in the same span. This is Biggio's 7th start in that same time frame.
christaylor - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 04:58 PM EDT (#437841) #
The 2023 Jays are good but not great, but good in some of the most boring ways possible. The SP has been healthy and good. The OF defense is very good but very good OF defense tends to look mostly boring --- turning diving plays from a mediocre fielder into nice running catches is not going to get fan excited.

The weaknesses of the team seem more glaring. Squandering chances with runners in scoring position. Not coming back from 3+ run deficits.

Until Davis Schneider, the team had Bo, Gausman, and nobody to get excited about on the field.

I also agree with John Northey -- the promise of a great leap forward from 2020 until today just has not happened. The team looks frustrated much more often than it looks like they're having fun. Not exactly fun to root for...

Maybe the playoffs provide a reset. The first WC game would be a wonderful time to start a five-game win streak.
hypobole - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 05:04 PM EDT (#437842) #
Runs scored (wRC+) home - away

2022: 359 (120) - 416 (117)

2023: 312 (99) - 404 (111)

The road numbers are understandable after trading Teo and Lourdes, but are still very good. But the home numbers have cratered. The elite home wRC+ last year at home didn't translate into run scoring, but this year the team is neither good or clutch. Bizarre.
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 05:05 PM EDT (#437843) #

Last Yr wRC+ --> ZIPS/Steamer 2023 Proj --> 2023 Actual --> Difference (2022 / Proj.)

* Guerrero 706pa 133 --> Guerrero 154 --> Guerrero 667pa 117 --> (-16 / -34)
* Springer 583pa 133 --> Springer 136 --> Springer 668pa 103 --> (-30 / -33)
* Bichette 697pa 130 --> Bichette 128 --> Bichette 582pa 121 --> (-9 / -7)
* Kirk 541pa 130 ------> Kirk 132 ------> Kirk 408pa 94 -------> (-26 / -28)
* Chapman 621pa 118 ---> Chapman 119 ---> Chapman 568pa 109 ---> (-9 / -10)
* Espinal 491pa 100 --> Espinal 104 ----> Espinal 249pa 82 ----> (-18 / -22)
* Jansen 248pa 141 ---> Jansen 117 -----> Jansen 301pa 116 ----> (-25 / -1)
* Biggio 303pa 98 ----> Biggio 107 -----> Biggio 319pa 97 -----> (-1 / -10)
* Merrifield 130pa 120 -> Merrifield 95 -> Merrifield 584pa 96 -> (-24 / +1)

* Teoscar 535pa 130 --> Belt 124 -------> Belt 389pa 135 ------> (+5 / +11)
* Gurriel 493pa 115 --> Varsho 122 -----> Varsho 563pa 84 -----> (-31 / -38)
* Tapia 433pa 92 -----> Kiermaier 87 ---> Kiermaier 395pa 105 -> (+13 / +18)


* Moreno 73pa 115 ----> Barger 102 -----> Schneider 135pa 173 -> (+58 / +71)
* Collins 79pa 95 ----> Horwitz 102 ----> Horwitz 44pa 106 ----> (+11 / +4)
* Bradley 80pa 52 ----> Lukes 87 -------> Clement 52pa 144 ----> (+92 / +57)
* Zimmer 101pa 23 ----> Lopez 92 -------> Dejong 44pa -75 -----> (-98 / -167)
Nigel - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 05:33 PM EDT (#437844) #
Only the numbers of two players seem surprisingly out of whack to me. The magnitude of Kirk's fall off and the magnitude of Springer's decline (relative to a more normal age related decline).

I'd have Schneider in tonight's line up. Probably in favour of Chapman or Varsho, but I understand the difficulty of doing that, so I'm ok with tonight's line-up. Swapping Schneider for Biggio would be fine too.
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 05:51 PM EDT (#437845) #
Well springer and Kirk's undershots are the toughest to dismiss at least. But dismissing the rest is still pretty weak.

92-93 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 05:55 PM EDT (#437846) #
I would have started Schneider over Biggio, but I think tonight's lineup and order are a reflection of what the manager is thinking for G1 of the Wild Card, and that he is rolling out his A squad so he can tinker and get guys ABs over the weekend.
Nigel - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 06:27 PM EDT (#437847) #
Who's dismissing anything. The numbers are what they are. They aren't pretty. But, Jansen has a career 102 wRC+ - why would I be totally surprised that he's put up a 117 wRC+ this year? Varsho has a career 95 wRC+ why would I be totally surprised he's put up a 84 wRC+ this year? Vladdy has a career 130 wRC+ (which as has been pointed out repeatedly is heavily dependent on a year where he spent a good chunk of it in Dunedin/Buffalo). Vladdy's yearly wRC+ are 106, 110, 166, 133 and now 117. I don't see much surprising in the 117 number in that. It's entirely possible that 2022 was the abnormality for this offence not 2023. I agree that hit sequencing/bad luck has hurt the team's overall numbers. The offence has been unlucky. I just don't happen to think that the offensive profile of the team is as good as some think.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 06:29 PM EDT (#437848) #
I think that's what he is thinking. Whether his thinking makes sense is another question. Perhaps being shut out again might persuade him to rethink it.

Biggio has looked very good in the field and not so good at the plate recently. His season and career lines against RHP are entirely average. It is a judgment call but there has been a consistent veteran bias in Schneider's decision-making on playing time. John Schneider is not alone in having that bias, but personally I prefer someone who is closer to the middle in the rookie-veteran playing time issue.

I like Biggio. He and Davis Schneider share traits I appreciate. At this point I think Schneider is a little better, and he needs the work.
Leaside Cowboy - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 06:49 PM EDT (#437849) #
A lot of pressure on the boys.† Let's have it.
Nigel - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 07:01 PM EDT (#437850) #
Giving Judge the Barry Bonds treatment would be a good start tonight. Just win baby!
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 07:02 PM EDT (#437851) #
The magnitude of Kirk's fall off and the magnitude of Springer's decline (relative to a more normal age related decline).

I think much of what happened to Kirk this year had a lot to do with his very late arrival at training camp. Job one had to be playing catch-up with his defensive chores and the new faces on the pitching staff.

As for Springer - it's never surprising when a 33 year old player declines at the plate. The odd thing is that this is by far the healthiest Springer has been since he came to town. He's looked downright frisky in the field at times. But two major slumps, one in April and one in July, have messed up his season. Players will slump, being human and all, but both of these were worse than anything that had happened to him in recent years.
dalimon5 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 07:55 PM EDT (#437852) #
Vladdy with protection for first time since Teoscar Hernandez was in this line up. I love this.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 07:57 PM EDT (#437853) #
A ritual sacrifice of a bat seems appropriate.
dalimon5 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 07:58 PM EDT (#437854) #
Idea for Manfred to consider improving the "entertainment product." Allow steals during mound visits.
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 08:26 PM EDT (#437855) #
Best in-game tracker of the year.  Harper vs. Hernandez and the helmet. 
greenfrog - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 08:39 PM EDT (#437856) #
Good game so far. I would be content to have Gausman and Bassitt pitch games 1 and 2 in a WC series.
Nigel - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 08:44 PM EDT (#437857) #
Bassitt has been fantastic the last 4-5 starts. I'm hoping that we don't have to see Romano tonight or, if we do, its with a healthy cushion.
electric carrot - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 08:48 PM EDT (#437858) #
I agree about Gausman and Bassitt as the two starters for the WC (if we're in it.)
Mike Green - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 08:51 PM EDT (#437859) #
Agreed.  Bassitt has been better than Berrios and Kikuchi. 
dalimon5 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 09:07 PM EDT (#437860) #
Gausman, Bassitt, Berrios
vw_fan17 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 09:38 PM EDT (#437861) #
Seems like they can hit mediocre pitching ok...
hypobole - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 09:42 PM EDT (#437862) #
Orioles win and clinch the East. Don't know if that alters the Rays plans for the final series.
Magpie - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 09:54 PM EDT (#437863) #
Don't know if that alters the Rays plans for the final series.

Probably not the pitching - they were already set to go with Elfin and Glasnow in the first two games. The Jays will likely see Civale, Littel, and Bradley. Some regulars will probably get a day off.
Leaside Cowboy - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 10:00 PM EDT (#437864) #
Bryce Harper's ejection.
dalimon5 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 10:34 PM EDT (#437865) #
"It took until September 28th to put the best hitter on the team into the clean up spot." Jeff Blair, September 28th
92-93 - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 10:50 PM EDT (#437866) #
Better late than never. Their only spot in the order with fewer RBI is #9.
electric carrot - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:01 PM EDT (#437867) #
"It took until September 28th to put the best hitter on the team into the clean up spot."

Uh, their best hitter is Brandon Belt. It's not even really that close.


99BlueJaysWay - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:16 PM EDT (#437868) #
@mike green - shout out over totally calling it re: BiggioĎs defensive improvements as compared to Espinal. In a game thread, a couple games ago I asserted that Espinal playing was the Jaysí best defensive line-up on the infield and you questioned that saying, you thought Biggio was better.

Heís been awesome
uglyone - Thursday, September 28 2023 @ 11:32 PM EDT (#437869) #
"Their best hitter is Brandon Belt. It's not even really that close."

Yup. Not remotely close.

Waveburner - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 12:18 AM EDT (#437870) #
Seattle was down 2-1 to Texas in the 9th but walked it off.

Jays magic number to clinch still at 2.
Mike Green - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 07:08 AM EDT (#437871) #
I think Brandon Belt is great, but he's been used essentially as a platoon player, and for good reason. He hasn't hit lefthanders at all the last two years and has struck out 41% of the time against a left-hander this year.

He seems particularly valuable because the club has not been facing LHP at all recently.

VGJ continues to struggle at home. Kirk has been the opposite-struggling away from the RC and hitting well here. I wonder why.
Mike Green - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 07:30 AM EDT (#437872) #
Fangraphs projects the Blue Jays will go 2-1 with a +2 run differential in their remaining games, and the Rays will go 2-1 with a +1 run differential. In related news, scientists have discovered that antimatter is affected by gravity too.
bpoz - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 08:43 AM EDT (#437873) #
4 teams in the NL fighting for 2 playoff spots. 4 AL teams fighting for 3 playoff spots.
dalimon5 - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 09:23 AM EDT (#437874) #
I can only take both comments regarding Belt being the best hitter on the team as sarcastic.
dalimon5 - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 09:25 AM EDT (#437875) #
Oh yeah, BAL is definitely elite. No debate there. I can't imagine which team beats them to the World Series final.

Leaside Cowboy - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 10:22 AM EDT (#437876) #
Who is the best hitter? Among the regulars, Belt's .848 OPS and Bichette's 169 hits and .303 BA lead the way. Matt Chapman has the most extra-base hits with 57.
Paul D - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 10:26 AM EDT (#437877) #
I don't think you actually want your best hitter batting second do you?
Paul D - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 10:27 AM EDT (#437878) #
Bah, batting clean up.
hypobole - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 10:30 AM EDT (#437879) #
Atlanta is even more elite than Baltimore.
bpoz - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 10:43 AM EDT (#437880) #
Baltimore has the best regular season record in the AL. Atlanta in the NL.

The regular season ends on Sunday which is also the opening day of the AFL.
bpoz - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 10:46 AM EDT (#437881) #
My many years of experience demands of me that I don't award the WS participants to Baltimore/Atlanta.
hypobole - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 10:47 AM EDT (#437882) #
"I can only take both comments regarding Belt being the best hitter on the team as sarcastic."

Then you would be wrong. Against RHP, Belt is the best by far. Yankees had a RHP starting. Against RHP's Bo is 3rd best behind Belt and slightly behind Vlad. If the pitcher had been a lefty, Bo would have been the best hitter in the lineup.
92-93 - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 10:55 AM EDT (#437883) #
There was no qualification in either comment about it being vs. RHP though. Might as well just say Schneider is the team's best hitter because he has a higher OPS.

Bichette has been, very obviously, the team's best hitter this year.
hypobole - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 11:10 AM EDT (#437884) #
In the context of yesterdays lineup, Belt was best. Nothing sarcastic about that, even though Bo is the better overall.
ISLAND BOY - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 11:57 AM EDT (#437885) #
Not related to the discussion but I saw a stat today that said the Texas Rangers bullpen has blown an astonishing 14 games since August 18. That's nearly once every three games.
dalimon5 - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 12:02 PM EDT (#437886) #
"In the context of yesterdays lineup, Belt was best. Nothing sarcastic about that, even though Bo is the better overall."

I can hear the splashing of your back peddling.
hypobole - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 12:12 PM EDT (#437887) #
Why are you like this?
uglyone - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 12:15 PM EDT (#437888) #
Jays vs Elite Orioles

* Guerrero 672pa 117wrc+ --- Rutschman 680pa 127wrc+
* Bichette 586pa 122wrc+ --- Henderson 614pa 124wrc+
* Belt 394pa 136wrc+ ------- O'Hearn 358pa 125wrc+
* Springer 673pa 105wrc+ --- Santander 648pa 120wrc+
* Chapman 572pa 110wrc+ ---- Hays 563pa 113wrc+
* Jansen 301pa 116wrc+ ----- Mountcastle 461pa 114wrc+
* Kiermaier 399pa 103wrc+ -- Mullins 446pa 103wrc+
* Biggio 323pa 100wrc+ ----- Urias 392pa 101wrc+
* Varsho 567pa 86wrc+ ------ Frazier 448pa 94wrc+

* Schneider 135pa 173wrc+ -- Hicks 309pa 111wrc+
* Merrifield 584pa 97wrc+ -- Westburg 221pa 97wrc+
* Kirk 412pa 95wrc+ -------- McCann 219pa 79wrc+
* Espinal 249pa 82wrc+ ----- Mateo 345pa 70wrc+

* Clement 52pa 145wrc+ ----- Kjerstad 25pa 131wrc+
* Horwitz 44pa 106wrc+ ----- McKenna 139pa 89wrc+
* Heineman 42pa 70wrc+ ----- Bemboom 13pa 51wrc+
* Lukes 31pa 67wrc+ -------- Vavra 56pa 63wrc+




* Gausman 6.0ip/gm 75era- 68fip- 75xfip- ----- Bradish 5.8ip/gm 68era- 78fip- 73xfip-
* Berrios 5.9ip/gm 87era- 92fip- 93xfip- ----- Rodriguez 5.3ip/gm 104era- 93fip- 88xfip-
* Bassitt 6.1ip/gm 85era- 98fip- 98xfip- ----- Gibson 5.8ip/gm 116era- 99fip- 97xfip-
* Kikuchi 5.3ip/gm 91era- 93fip- 87xfip- ----- Kremer 5.4ip/gm 98era- 107fip- 101xfip-
* Ryu 4.9ip/gm 78era- 116fip- 102xfip- ------- Flaherty 5.1ip/gm 117era- 102fip- 100xfip-

* Romano 1.0ip/gm 70era- 79fip- 93xfip- ------ Bautista 1.1ip/gm 35era- 44fip- 54xfip-
* Mayza 0.8ip/gm 33era- 55fip- 70xfip- ------- Cano 1.0ip/gm 50era- 68fip- 71xfip-
* Swanson 1.0ip/gm 73era- 80fip- 88xfip- ----- Coulombe 0.8ip/gm 64era- 68fip- 82xfip-
* Hicks 1.0ip/gm 73era- 74fip- 76xfip- ------- Wells 4.9ip/gm 87era- 119fip- 109xfip-
* Garcia 0.9ip/gm 100era- 79fip- 74xfip- ----- Perez 0.8ip/gm 85era- 88fip- 103xfip-
* Cabrera 0.9ip/gm 94era- 105fip- 106xfip- --- Webb 1.0ip/gm 83era- 104fip- 114xfip-
* Green 1.0ip/gm 128era- 65fip- 75xfip- ------ Fujinami 1.2ip/gm 176era- 110fip- 117xfip-
* Richards 1.3ip/gm 113era- 94fip- 87xfip- --- Irvin 3.3ip/gm 107era- 106fip- 105xfip-

* Francis 1.8ip/gm 41era- 88fip- 97xfip- ----- Hall 1.1ip/gm 82era 78fip- 80xfip-
* Jackson 1.2ip/gm 54era- 99fip- 101xfip- ----- Baker 1.0ip/gm 85era- 90fip- 107xfip-
* Pearson 1.2ip/gm 115era- 111fip- 118xfip- --- Lopez 1.0ip/gm 143era- 138fip- 110xfip-



bpoz - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 12:22 PM EDT (#437889) #
Hope the Jays get into the playoffs. Then the games are won on the field. 2021 the V weak Atlanta wins the WS. 2022 The V weak Phillies get to the WS.

I did not predict this happening.
Nigel - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 01:03 PM EDT (#437890) #
The Orioles aren't the Braves that's for sure. But they've won 100 games and have a +134 run differential. In head to head games against the Jays they are 10-3 and the run differential in those games (69-35) says the 10-3 record flatters the Jays. I have no trouble saying the Orioles are one of the elite teams in baseball this year. That matches the eye test in the games against the Jays. Now, whether you think there should be a massive gap between the Jays and Orioles and that some of the gap may be luck are fair questions - but I don't really think you can run the Orioles down for what they have actually done.
dalimon5 - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 01:08 PM EDT (#437891) #
Because you're calling my opinion wrong. There is no objective basis for "Best."
scottt - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 01:52 PM EDT (#437892) #
The Marlins/Mets game was suspended in the top of the 9th inning after the Marlins scored 2 runs to take the lead. If necessary, they'll have to go back to NY on Monday to get the last  3 outs.

Ouch. 
John Northey - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 02:39 PM EDT (#437893) #
BR had a fun factoid up which shows how different the Jays are now vs the past. In 1984 Dave Collins, Blue Jays LF, went 492 PA without hitting into a double play. Can you imagine? The leader on the Jays this year for PA without hitting into a DP is Cavan Biggio at 323 PA and 0 GIDP, 2nd most is Ernie Clement at 52 PA. Shouldn't be a shocker there though as his dad Craig Biggio had the 2nd most PA ever without hitting into a DP (744 in 1997 vs the record 748 by Augie Galan in 1935).
Leaside Cowboy - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 03:30 PM EDT (#437894) #
It's raining. It's pouring. The Mets fans are snoring.
hypobole - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 03:44 PM EDT (#437895) #
I believe your opinion that the 2 posters who called Belt the best were being sarcastic is wrong. And I gave 92-93 the reason why, while acknowledging Bo being the best overall hitter. So that part of your opinion is not wrong.

Hodgie - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 03:59 PM EDT (#437896) #
"There is no objective basis for "Best.""

How about BR's Batting Runs? Or Fangraphs' wRAA? Are those objective measures? They both seem to think that despite his utilization, Belt has contributed more with his bat than any other Jay this season, or put another way, that his contribution was the "Best" on the team.

scottt - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 04:00 PM EDT (#437897) #
Biggio is a lefty which helps. He's also uppercutting the ball; one does hit into a double play, one grounds into a double play.
John Northey - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 04:46 PM EDT (#437899) #
For best in baseball terms for hitters one can juggle different stats to get to a result.
  • fWAR: Bo leads at 3.5, Chapman 3.4, Springer 2.3, Belt 2.2, Varsho 2.1, Jansen & Kiermaier 2.0
  • bWAR: Bo 4.6, Chapman 4.2, Varsho & Kiermaier 3.7, Springer 2.2, Kirk 2.0, Belt 1.9
  • FG Offense: Belt 16.8, Bo 13.3, Schneider 11.9 (!)
  • BR oWAR: Bo 4.1, Chapman 3.1, Vlad 2.5, Belt 2.1, Jansen & Springer 2.0
  • wRC+: Schneider 173, Clement 145, Belt 136, Bo 122
  • xwOBA: Vlad 375, Bo 361, Schneider 356, Chapman 337, Clement 333, Belt 331, Springer 330
  • rBat: Belt 18, Bo 17, Vlad 16, Schneider 12
Note: for some offensive measures Belt (and others, especially Kirk) is hit hard by his poor baserunning and hitting into DP's.

I find it amazing that on some of the ones that require playing time to get up high Schneider can still show up (FG Offensive measure for example) - tells you how amazing that first month of his was that an 0-30 streak can't fully kill it.
Mike Green - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 05:04 PM EDT (#437900) #
The Blue Jay offence is quite flat.  Bo's numbers are excellent for a shortstop, but not really what you want to see from your cleanup hitter.  They don't really have anybody like that.  It's an offence without a locus of danger unless Davis Schneider and Brandon Belt can continue hitting the way they are (not very likely in Schneider's case). 

Belt is interesting.  His career high in home runs (by 10) was in 2021 at age 33.  His OPS+ from 2020-23 is 139, which equals the best year of his career prior to 2020 (at age 25).  He's a fabulous late-career platoon player. 
Mike Green - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 05:27 PM EDT (#437902) #
The Rays are fielding a lineup with their right-handed regulars- Diaz, Arozarena, Caminero, Paredes, Ramirez, Mead and Margot are playing.  Kikuchi has his work cut out for him.   
greenfrog - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 06:09 PM EDT (#437903) #
Iím looking forward to this series. Think about how many seasons weíve endured when the Jays were out of contention by now. Could the Jays pull a 1987 or 2021 and get bumped out of a postseason spot? Absolutely. But now is the time to buckle in and enjoy the ride for as long as it lasts.
Eephus - Friday, September 29 2023 @ 06:34 PM EDT (#437905) #
Watching Belt has been one of my positives for the season. I clearly have an affinity for long time LH hitting National League first basemen (except that Votto guy, obviously ha), and to me Belt has been just as advertised. Just a smart, patient hitter with still plenty of thunder.

Would love to see him back but I imagine theyíll want to give Horwitz a (much cheaper) look, plus it does sound like Belt might be musing about retirement anyhow. Heís been a big leaguer for a long, long time, has already won a few championships, and thatís a lot of time and commitment away from your family.
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