Now it’s time for all the stuff I don’t figure on making full posts out of, with the spiffy graphic by Matt English (aka @mattomic). It’s your Early-Afternoon Snack…
At Getting Blanked Parkes writes about how the Reds extension of Sean Marshall impacts their ability to keep Joey Votto, and looks at the kind of package a club (specifically the Jays) potentially trading for him this summer, should the Reds fall out of contention, would have to give up. (Think Teixeira.)
House of the Bluebird makes a plea for the Jays to give more of a shot to Kyle Drabek.
Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star recounts Carlos Villanueva’s recent “cold hand” medical scare. Crazy stuff– but the right-hander is feeling better now, if not quite 100% yet. He also tells us about potential LOOGY Evan Crawford, and Rajai Davis, who’ll be a key off the Jays bench this year, as John Farrell has noticed that in 2011 he “was very good against lefthanded pitching and he was a disruptive force late in the game.”
Gregor Chisholm of BlueJays.com brings us a notebook post on Villanueva, the team’s first intrasquad game, and their focus on defense in camp.
Chisholm also checks in with Travis Snider, who reworked his swing to lower his hands last year, and will be competing with Eric Thames for the starting spot in left field– with John Farrell closely watching “the consistency, the production, the swing and how he maintains that swing.” On his struggles last year Snider says, “it really took a whole summer in Vegas to get the repetitions needed to find the level of comfort to go into the cage every day, as well as practice and carry it over into games. … It was a good platform for us to build off of going into the offseason and really understanding where I needed to be in my offseason training — in the cages as well as coming down here knowing what I needed to accomplish each day.”
MLB.com tells us of Robbie Alomar’s plan to have the Jays host baseball camps in Puerto Rico– and that the Hall of Famer will be coming to 14 Canadian cities this year as an instructor for kids attending the Blue Jays Honda Super Camps.
Shi Davidi of Sportsnet looks at the niceties between pitchers and catchers in the bullpen, which isn’t nearly as dirty as maybe it sounds.
MLB Trade Rumors lists all the $100-million contracts in baseball history by the age of the player when they signed. Lock ‘em up early, for fuck sakes!
Lastly, Buster Olney of ESPN.com (Insider Olney) ranks American League clubs based on the strength of their early-season schedule, deciding that the Jays have the ninth-toughest go of it early on, and noting that they only play the Yankees twice in the entire first half, and have a September that’s stacked with games against AL East foes. He thinks it’s a bad thing, I’m thinking… fuck, maybe they can skirt along enough to be legitimate buyers at the trade deadline.