Yes, yes, I know I said in the Game Threat that I’d get this post up mid-game, but… I can’t lie. I was hanging on every move in my stupidly deep hockey pool’s draft, willing my fellow owners into letting Flyers goalie prospect Sergei Bobrovsky slide to me in the last round (no, you live in your mother’s basement. Also: nailed it!).
Uhh… yeah. I also spent some time making up the nifty Photoshop you see above (ta-da!), and creating a Facebook invite for our Thursday night shit show at Opera Bob’s, just in case any of you are like me and can only keep track of what’s going on on a given evening with Facebook invites, even though they kind of completely suck now, after the most recent redesign has almost entirely hidden them. (FYI, not that you would, but please don’t try to friend me.)
Anyway, here are some links to chew on as you bask in the afterglow of another hell of a Burnett facefucking (and while you try your best to remember that Cito won’t be around much longer to keep fucking trotting Brian Tallet out there for his traditional shitting of the bed). You see now why I didn’t just tack this shit onto the game threat?
The Feeling’s Mutual, Baltimore
Hey, fucking Baltimore Orioles. Know how you still, rather pathetically, hold a grudge at our manager because he didn’t let legendary piece of shit Mike Mussina pitch in the 1993 All-Star Game? Well, two can play at that game—and I don’t mean hating on Cito. Although…
“I guess that’s how they do things over there,” said a fucking nails Shaun Marcum of Sunday’s Bautista beanings at SkyDome, according to USA Today, and presumably every other report out there. “I think we have a little more respect for the game and respect for players on other teams. We’re not going to throw at them on purpose, even if they have 50-plus homers.”
Come on, Shaun, can’t we make an exception for Nick Markakis or Matt Wieters or—please!—Brian Roberts or something?
“To me it’s pretty obvious what they were doing,” said baseball’s home-run king. “They didn’t care to have a pitcher ejected, so that was their train of thought at the moment.”
Careful to inject just the right amount of bullshit into the situation, O’s manager Fuck Showalter (see what I just did there?) insisted: “There was no intention there, just a wild pitcher. The rules are set up to not let something like that get out of hand. It’s something that we caused from our wildness. It just happened to be against a guy that you’ve got to pitch hard in.”
Yeah, I’m sure the scouting report on Bautista is to pitch him inside.
Alfredo Simon—the offending “wild” pitcher—has been suspended three games, and Showalter for one game, pending appeals. Shaun Marcum was given a token fine of $750 for supposedly throwing intentionally at Luke Scott.
MLB Trade Rumors Continues To Be Seriously Awesome
Lots of great stuff from MLBTR that we’ve missed over the last few days, which, since we’re all here, we might as well catch up on it.
On Friday they pointed out: “Bob Melvin and Eric Wedge both interviewed for the manager’s position this past week, reports Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun. Jays bench coach Nick Leyva is also scheduled for an upcoming interview. Don Baylor and Juan Samuel have both expressed interest in the Toronto job after being asked by outgoing manager Cito Gaston.”
Wait… really? Cito can just ask whoever he wants to come in for an interview? Meh… can’t hurt. Still, I’m kind of hopeful that Anthopoulos is leaning towards a more new-school guy than any of the retreads mentioned. (Note: I said retreads)
On Saturday MLBTR noted that, as per Kenny Ken Ken, there has been no contact between the team and Yankees third base coach Rob Thompson—who, for anyone who might have been confused, is not the former All-Star second baseman for the San Francisco Giants—and that he won’t discuss it until the season is over. Sounds fair.
And lastly, yesterday Ben Nicholson-Smith had a fantastic sit-down with potential upcoming free agent Blue Jay relievers, Kevin Gregg, Jason Frasor, and Scott Downs, all of whom discuss their futures, and what they expect as they potentially enter free agency.
Layin’ Down The Law
There were some interesting Jays-related nuggets in last Thursday’s Keith Law chat at ESPN—some that you will enjoy, some that you most certainly won’t, and some that aren’t technically Jays-related but that I’ve added nonetheless. Here are the highlights…
Can we put Cito’s head on a stake? I can’t, for the life of me, understand why he’s not playing Arencibia. Since his call up hes played 3 times and started twice at DH. It’s ridiculous. Cito wants to “finish .500,” and “get Buck 20 homers,” before he plays him. He’s killing the development of his young guys, like he already did with Snider.
Yes, it’s ridiculous, and I think it’s the job of the GM – or perhaps the President in this case – to step in and say, “You’re playing Snider and Arencibia, period. We are here to develop players, not to meet some arbitrary W-L goal.”
The Common Man (Parts unknown)
Do you buy the notion that rebuilding Jose Bautista’s swing turned him into a homer machine? Or is this season a Brady Anderson like fluke?
Who is the real Aaron Hill. BABIP of .199 is supressing his numbers for the year but what are reasonable expectations for 2011?
Got too homer-happy – last year was a pleasant fluke, but his game is short to the ball/hard line-drive contact.
Where you as impressed by Hechavarria’s defense as some seem to be? Worst case scenerio is he Johnny Mac?
Raw ability is there – good hands, good arm strength, good feet. He sidearms his throws, which is somewhere between annoying and dangerous. And he doesn’t get after the ball like good infielders do – compare him to Tulowitzki, who isn’t half as agile but gets after the ball like his life depends on it. Everything I said about Hechevarria can improve with work and maturity, though, so long-term I’d project him to be a plus to plus-plus defender.
Luke (Cerritos, CA)
Fluke or not, Bautista deserves to be in the MVP discussion. He’s not a one-trick pony, he’s got a 15% walk rate to go along with that ridiculous .350+ ISO. I’m curious why he’s not, other than people still not buying what he’s done.
Because other players have contributed more value, notably Hamilton.
David (New York)
According to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research people are predisposed to vastly underestimating how long it will take them to learn how to use a new tool (or concept, or statistic in this case) and then when it takes them longer than they anticipate they become hateful of the new tool and become resigned to the fact that the old one was the superior product. This is often seen when an office upgrades its software, but doesn’t it sound an awful lot like what is happening with the “new” statistics versus the old ones such as Wins and RBIs?Link to the article about the study: http://www.physorg.com/news198305778.html
No comment, just passing it along.
Speaking of Bautista and the MVP Race…
Here’s Jeff Blair of the Globe and Mail either finally going completely off his rocker, or just fishing for some link juice in a Cox-esque trip to provocationville.
“It’s hard not to be impressed by Jose Bautista’s homers and it’s nice that he hit that foul ball out of the Rogers Centre on Saturday, but let’s keep it in perspective: The MVP award should go to a player or pitcher on a contending team, and Bautista has to get in line behind the likes of Robinson Cano, Evan Longoria, Joe Mauer (forget the power; check the average) and Vladimir Guerrero,” he wrote in Sunday’s paper. “Josh Hamilton will get top-five votes even if he’s missed 30 games and, hell, I’d throw pitcher David Price into the equation – but only after another guy from a non-contending team, Miguel Cabrera, because of a batting average that was 64 points higher than Bautista’s through Saturday.”
OK, maybe I’m being too picky, but… batting average?!? Come on, Jeff, it’s almost 2011 and we could really use you on team Being Sensible About Stats. How about (sorry Jays fans) Cabrera’s superior OBP, OPS, OPS+, WAR (according to Baseball Reference, but not FanGraphs), RC or wOBA?
(Bautista, I should note, has a better SLG, ISO, and wRC. And, of course, Josh Hamilton has been, more or less, better than both of them, though his missing 30 games muddies the picture—but I’d still put money on him getting the award, if only because his team made the playoffs.)
Heard It Through The Grape Viner
In the next issue of (Rogers-owned magazine) Canadian Business, Steve Maich speaks with outgoing Rogers Media CEO handsome Tony Viner, who had some interesting things to say about media consumption and the way the industry is going, but also touched on the Jays, and—surprise, sur-fucking-prise—made the club sound like a much more important asset than the Rogers bean counters usually give them credit for…
“Ted called me and asked me whether or not he should buy the Jays and I said, ‘No, don’t do it, because at least the urban myth is that Molsons, their beer share used to drop when the Montreal Canadiens lost,’ and I said, ‘Look, people are going to be saying, “I pay you 250 bucks a month for my cellphone and my Internet. Can’t you get me a switch-hitting third baseman?” ’ And, again, he said, ‘Tony, you’re my trusted media adviser,’ and he bought them the next day. And he bought them for civic pride, and because he believed that they might leave the city. Turns out, you know, across the breadth of our holdings, Steve, there’s two things where we actually produce content that we own, we don’t just aggregate it, we don’t just buy it, we don’t acquire it. One is the Toronto Blue Jays — every time they trot on the field there’s 3-1/2 hours of copyrightable video programming — and the other is publishing. And so the Jays have proven to be the underpinning of Sportsnet. I think it did tremendous things for our brand in the most important area of the country for us, southern Ontario. I was wrong, and Ted, I’m not sure he could see around corners, but I think he had an instinct that this was going to be important, and it’s proven to be very beneficial.”
Quote of the Day
“There’s no substitute for repetition at the big league level.” – Brian Butterfield with Mike Wilner on the Fan590′s JaysTalk after Monday’s game.
Yeah… it remains fucking insane what Cito has done with Travis Snider and JP Arencibia this season. Can’t really say this enough.
Quote of the Day II
Late addition via Ian Harrison (aka @iananywhere): “Reporter to Burnett: ‘I’m not used to seeing you get hit so hard.’ Burnett to reporter: ‘You should probably look at my career more …’ “
I can’t see most of this article on Jose Bautista from Newsday because it’s behind a pay wall, but… seriously, Newsday? Sourcing quotes from Bleacher Report??? You might as well take Cito Gaston’s word on which relievers are going to be stretched out as starters for all that’s worth. (Speaking of which, where the fuck is Jeremy Accardo anyway?)
Dave Bidini, author and member of the Rheostatics, threw out the first pitch at yesterday’s game and chronicles it for the National Post (which, in fact, still exists—despite Paul Godfrey’s best efforts to the contrary, I’m sure).
Alex Strachan of Canada.com reviews the new addendum to Ken Burns’ 1994 documentary Baseball, called The Tenth Inning, which looks at what’s happened to the game since the original series was broadcast, and spends a good deal of time looking at the story of the Montreal Expos—which shouldn’t be at all tough to stomach, eh?