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Luis Rivera is the new manager of the New Hampshire Fisher Cats.  Previously Rivera was a utilty infielder who totalled 2215 major league at-bats over eleven seasons from 1986 - 1998.  Rivera was a coach in the Cleveland Indians minor and major league systems until the end of last season.  I spoke with Rivera last weekend when the Fisher Cats were in Erie.  Here is the transcript of the conversation.

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Clayton McCullough is manager of the Dunedin Jays, that is your first place Dunedin Jays.  McCullough was manager of the Lansing Lugnuts in 2008 and 2009.  Recently I spoke with McCullough over the phone from Florida to check on some of his players.

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Chad Jenkins is two months into his professional baseball career.  He is pitching for Lansing in the Midwest League and I caught up with him there last week.  Here is our interview.

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Antonio Caceres is back for his second season as the pitching coach at Lansing.  Previously Caceres had been the pitching coach in Auburn and prior to that Caceres was a pitcher in the Blue Jays minor league system in the nineties.  Last season pitchers Henderson Alvarez and Chuck Huggins made big strides under Caceres and he hopes to do the same this year with a new group of pitchers.  I spoke with Caceres last week in Lansing.
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Sal Fasano was only a member of the Blue Jay's organization as a player for one year, and in that year he had only 45 at-bats, but he did leave a lasting impression on the organization.  Maybe it was the moustache or maybe it was because he is a friendly guy.  Fasano is now back as manager of the Lansing Lugnuts and I caught up with him last weekend in Lansing.
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Alex Anthopoulos first joined us in Da Box last May.  In that interview Alex discussed his job, at that time, how he came to join the Blue Jays, and some specific Jays related issues.  When Alex was promoted to the General manager position I touched base with him but we agreed to wait until 2010 to continue our discussion as Alex was going to be snowed under with his new responsibilities.

So when 2010 rolled around we here at Da Box didn't want to talk about 2010, we know it will be a development year and we assume Alex is optimisitc about all his players.  Alex has laid out a new vision for the Jays and we wanted to drill down on that to get some more details of his longer term plans.  So we discussed the draft, hitter development, evaluating scouts, defensive metrics and statistical analysis.  Alex was his usual honest self.  So in this interview we learn why Alex feels the Jays will do better at hitter development; that the Jays might draft a high school pitcher in the first round; a different angle on what Alex thinks of Vernon's defense; and how the Jays are beefing up their statistical department.

Alex and I started exchanging e-mails a few weeks ago so the Dustin McGowan question looks dated now but it is good to hear that he seems to be continuing to get back to form.

Batters Box thanks Alex for taking some of his valuable time, which is much in demand right now, to answer our questions.

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Tony LaCava has a new job, although his title is still VP Baseball Operations he is now responsible for the farm system, replacing Dick Scott.  I caught up with Tony last week and he graciously gave us some of his time to answer some questions about the farm system.  Tony was a little cautious in our discussion, he was reluctant to get too excited about any player but he did let us know that JP Arencibia just had Lasik surgery.
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To complement our top 30 prospects list Dick Scott answered questions for Batters Box, as he does each year at this time.  Here is a link to last year's interview.
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Batters Box caught up with Dick Scott on Saturday as he was watching a GCL game in Florida.  Dick told us some bad news about Brad Mills and Kyle Ginley; had some promising news for Brian Dopirak; and talked about the year so far for Brad Emaus, JP Arencibia and David Cooper, among others.
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Ten days ago, In Lansing I spent some time with Kenny Wilson, Mark Sobolewski and Markus Brisker and had them answer a few questions.  Wilson was on the DL and is still on the DL but as you will see from his answer he hopes to be back this week.  A couple of days after our chat Markus Brisker was reassigned to extended spring training, hopefully he will have a chance to play in Auburn this summer.
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Clayton McCullough is back for his second year as manager of the Lansing Lugnuts.  Recently in Lansing he answered some questions about the 2009 Lugnuts.

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Chad Mottola played parts of five season in the major leagues with two of those for Toronto.  He also played parts of five season playing in Syracuse for the Blue Jays.  Now Mottola is the Blue Jays minor league hitting coordinator.  I caught up with him in Lansing last week.
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Dane Johnson is the Blue Jays minor league pitching coordinator and an old friend of Da Box.  He usually gives us his perspective on the minor league pitchers at least once per season.  Dane and his team have been sending a steady parade of pitchers to the big leagues recently and today he gives us some interesting insight into Danny Faquhar, Tim Collins and Marc Rzepczynski among others.
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Long time Blue Jay fans know the name Mel Queen.  Queen spent time in Toronto as pitching coach and even managed the Jays for five games on an interim basis.  Mel Queen gets a lot of the credit for remaking Roy Halladay's delivery.  Rumour has it he got on Pat Hentgens case from time to time.  Recently Queen returned to the Jays organization as a roving instructor.  When I showed up in Lansing last weekend I met Mel Queen for the first time.  I didn't think I was going to meet him so I didn't have time to prepare some historical questions so I just took five minutes or so from him and had him answer a few questions.
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Alex Anthopoulos has a long title, it is Vice President, Baseball Operations & Assistant General Manager for the Blue Jays.  This year Alex has been talking to the media a lot, he appears regularly on the Fan590 and also sat in for some innings with Jerry Howarth on the radio broadcast over the weekend in Atlanta.  As JP Ricciardi has taken a step back from the microphone Alex Anthopoulos has stepped up to take his place.  We did not know Alex was going to be this popular last January when we first approached him but we hope this interview fills in some of his background which includes time with Les Expos.  Also Alex explains what his job entails at diffeent points of the season.

But first this interview needs some context.  Batters Box originally contacted Alex January to do the interview, Alex promptly agreed, so we got started and Alex answered the first few introductory questions.  Then Bart Given left the organization and Alex's workload increased and the second round of questions went unanswered until this last weekend.  Some of the questions and answers have been overtaken by events, or might appear old, and I am not sure if Alex answered some of them in February or last week. 

But despite that uncertainty we do have questions and answers and things to talk about and Batters Box thanks Alex Anthopoulos for taking the time to answer given his heavy workload this time of the season.

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