Now it’s time for all the stuff I don’t figure on making full posts out of, with the spiffy ALTERNATE graphic by Matt English (aka @mattomic) that I just couldn’t keep letting stay dormant. It’s your Afternoon Snack… er… Afternoon Hangover… er… links!!!

Not sure why there was a delay, because everything was a-OK on our end, but Episode Two is now up and downloadable on the DJF Podcast iTunes page. We’ve also got the DJF Podcast RSS feed up and running, both of which can be found on our podcast page at theScore.com, which is another place where you can have a listen.

Buster Olney talks the farce that is the unbalanced schedule at ESPN.com (Insider Olney), pointing out that Baltimore (103) played twice┬áthe number of games against .500-or-better opponents than the Detroit (51), and that– motherfucking get this– the six teams who played the fewest games against such opponents all made the fucking playoffs, except for Atlanta, who missed by a hair (Arizona, Philadelphia, Milwaukee, St. Louis, Atlanta, Detroit). Kinda makes your blood boil.

At Getting Blanked, Parkes takes us through another example of what not to do as a baseball organization, as brought to us by the Baltimore OriLOLes.

Dave Church of Jays Journal, like everyone else, doesn’t quite know what to make of what we’re seeing from Brandon Morrow so far.

Scott Carson of Sportsnet sees the logic in John Farrell bringing out Drew Hutchison for a sixth and final inning during his MLB debut on Saturday, and I can’t disagree with what he’s saying.

Minor League Ball jumps ridiculously way early into the mock draft game, having the Jays taking Louisiana high school shortstop, and impact bat, Gavin Cecchini at 17, and rising Florida high school RHP Zach Eflin at 22.

At BlueJays.com, there’s some kind of advertorial horseshit full of jargon about some kind of improved fan experience at Rogers Centre that nobody has actually, y’know, experienced.

Ken Fidlin of the Toronto Sun tells us how Brett Lawrie’s athleticism has made the Jays shiftier. And elsewhere in stuff from the local papers that us less-influential-than-the-San-Diego-Chicken fucks already covered, Mark Zwolinski of the Toronto Star looks at the Golden Brett’s struggles, explaining that “Lawrie can be broken down further through sabermetrics and some of the breakdowns show he could do a better job getting on base. But Lawrie has also been one of the Jays better hitters with runners in scoring position.” WELL THEN!!!

Jesse Wolfersberger of FanGraphs takes an interesting look at whether or not teams are losing the advantages in trade that they once had because of years spent gathering proprietary information on their own players.

The Jays have moved up a notch on SI’s FanGraphs Powered Power Rankings… to 20th in MLB. Meh.

The Tao of Stieb debuts their Jays player power rankings– and shows some mean-spiritedness, ranking Eric Thames at the bottom, below Omar Vizquel. Ouch.

Jeff Sullivan of Baseball Nation looks at the transition we’re witnessing from Brandon Morrow, and at ESPN.com (Insider Only), Keith Law redrafts that 2002 Moneyball draft. The Jays wind up with Brandon McCarthy, rather than Russ Adams, in said hypothetical.

Lastly, I’ll still be checking in pretty regularly over the next week, but my ladyfriend and I are taking off for NYC tomorrow for a couple days, followed by a few more days in Austin, so… if I’m quieter than you like, there’s your answer why.

Comments (35)

  1. Detroit’s easy opponents weren’t really noted when Justin Verlander walked away with both the AL MVP and Cy Young in 2011 either. There was a legitimate argument to be made that CC Sabathia was the best pitcher in the AL last season based on strength of schedule/opponents.

    • Yeah, I think it’s interesting to look at the average wRC+ of the opponents each pitcher faces.

      Here are some examples from 2011:
      Verlander: 96.7
      Sabathia: 99.8
      Romero: 101.1
      Morrow: 103.0
      Halladay: 93.7 (showing the unsurprising gap between the AL and NL)
      Kershaw: 91.6 (I didn’t find any example of an easier schedule than that but I didn’t look at too many NL players)
      Pineda: 103.9 (a big reason I was worried about the Yankee’s getting him; thankfully I’ve been proven wrong so far)
      Santos: Only 95.4
      Janssen: 103.4 (It’s been strange seeing the criticism he’s come in for early this year given that you could make a good case that he was amongst the top 10 relievers last season.)

  2. I know how we all feel about power rankings, but those SI FanGraphs power rankings could use a few tweaks. Notably, a -23 spot adjustment for getting swept in a 10-game homestand.

    Also, apropos of nothing, am I the only one who finds the anti-narrative narrative from the blogosphere (Drew, in particular, seems to beat this one to death) more aggravating than the initial narrative being railed against?

    • I hope so.

    • Agreed.. the Royals’ ranking in 7th is a source of lulz.

      Also, those strength of schedule numbers are both eye catching and maddening. I don’t have insider, can anyone post where the Jays fell as far as games against .500+ clubs?

    • Jesus Christ, I hate to call an anti-Canadian bias here, but shit, those rankings are fuckall awful. Look at the Jays sandwiched between Baltimore and Miami. Notice anything? They didn’t even bother to upload their new logo. Fuccccck that.

    • You are not alone. It’s because they’re hipsters and are therefore not allowed to like or agree with anything mainstream.

    • Very good points Steve.

      Boston’s number 6 ranking last week was funny too because it was fairly obvious they weren’t that good, even before their implosion in the last week.

  3. I want to hear more about the “lady friend”.

  4. http://mlb.sbnation.com/2012/4/24/2972184/brandon-morrow-blue-jays-stats

    Might want to add this link, Stoeten. Jeff Sullivan finds Morrow’s new pitching approach just as interesting as I do.

  5. How long is Thames leash???

    if this was Travis Snider he’d be on the brink of being sent down.. And snider, albeit in vegas, is doing nothing to not be called up. At the very least the power stroke is back..

    With Jose, not being all that Jose, and Lind being pretty craptacular.. wouldnt it be amazing to have snider bat 4th vs rhp??

    • Snider has always mashed AAA pitching. It’s not a sign that he’ll be able to do the same in the majors.

      I doubt Thames will last much longer in a starting role, though, unless he starts hitting for power.

      • This simply isn’t true. The power was David Cooper-ish last year. Snider also has the best K/BB of his AAA career. Obviously this goes way beyond stats, but the power looks to have returned and his control of the strike zone is promising.

        • It’s not true that Snider has mashed AAA pitching before? Did you forget about 2009 when he simply destroyed it in Vegas (.337/.431/.663)? And while the power wasn’t there last year, he did still hit .327/394/480.

          No, I can’t say I’m surprised that Snider is mashing at a level that he’s essentially repeating for the third time in his career. If he wasn’t, I’d have some real serious doubts about his future. The good K/BB ratio is a positive sign, but it certainly doesn’t mean it will translate to the MLB level.

    • My un-informed opinion is that only one of these two players will be with the Blue Jays by next season and that the Jays prefer the long-term potential of Snider. Unless Thames demonstrates an ability to suddenly become an above-average fielder and magically discover OPB skills then he’ll be the one to move in a package for greatest need (SP or big bat at 1b or LF).

      My guess is that AA figured Thames might be able to put up some decent and misleading numbers over 80 games and pawn him off on a rebuilding team that might over-value him. In that time they’d know if Snider had rebuilt his stroke/confidence to deserve a full-time look over the last 80 games. I think this is the best way to maximize value for Thames while giving Snider the greatest chance for success. It’s why I was happy to let Snider head to AAA because I can’t imagine that the Jays don’t see Snider as a more important, long-term piece.

  6. I’ve got just one question regarding the SI power rankings: how in all that is right in this world were the OriLULZ in 14th place a week ago? I suppose it’s fWAR driven, but, it’s the OriLULZ!

  7. Any news on Dustin McGowan? When is he coming back up? I’m kind of liking seeing Drabek and Hutchinson getting some burn, but they signed Dustin to 2 years so he is obviously in their plans….

    • Farrell said on PTS that he’s basically re-starting Spring Training, so he won’t be heard from again until end of May at the earliest.

  8. That first bit about the six teams who played the most games against sub .500 clubs and Baltimore with the most is bogus. Seriously. Five of those teams are from the National League… and Detroit plays in the American league Central…and Baltimore should have at least 80 games with all the teams in the American League East to thank for their time playing against teams at or above .500. Hella non story.

    • Isn’t that the entire point (Detroit vs. Baltimore)? I don’t understand what you’re getting at.

      • I’d be more interested in SOS% than games vs. .500+ teams anyways. Jays/Cleveland/White Sox were virtually indistinguishable last season, but the Jays just barely make it to the .500+ group and Cleveland and the ChiSox were just barely short. The Jays win one less game, Cleveland wins one more and ChiSox win 2 more and Detroit has more games vs .500+ opponents than Baltimore.

  9. Kind of interesting to compare Morrow vs Ricky in first 4 starts:

    Brandon Morrow: 26.2 IP, 22H, 11ER, 7HR, 8BB, 12K, 1.12 WHIP, 3.71 ERA
    Ricky Romero: 27.1 IP, 19H, 10ER, 2HR, 10BB, 18K, 1.06 WHIP, 3.29 ERA

    Very similar results. Morrow has just given up way more home runs, and Ricky has struck out more.

    • What scares me is Romero isn’t missing bats anywhere near what he normally does. It’s early, but it is a little disconcerting.

      And yes, Morrow’s numbers look pretty.. awful. Most of which are caused by the homers. If he stops giving them up, the FIP goes down, the BABIP goes up (in this case that’s a good thing), and everything returns normal to the universe of Morrow.

      His drop-off from a 26.1% K rate to a 11.3% K rate scares the hell outta me. Especially when all that his BB% did was drop 8.9% to a 7.6%.

      I’m certain the numbers will level out to some extent, but man he makes absolutely no sense, and never has since coming to Toronto.

      • I’m hoping it’s all still part of the plan to get him deeper into games. The k rate has always been high so I don’t see any reason yet to think he can’t get back there. The pure k pitcher he had been wasn’t getting it done. And while the flatter fastball is a bit disconcerting, I think once he feels really comfortable – or Walton and Farrell do – that the improved gb% is here to stay, they’ll try to crank the k rate up again. The only way he becomes ‘the pitcher he could be’ is a balance between gb% and k/9. I still see progress towards that.

        • Totally agreed. I just don’t like how he’s gone from the extreme K pitcher to the extreme contact pitcher. He needs to find some parity between the two.

    • Romero must have struck out those additional 5 batters who hit HRs off Morrow.

  10. As much as I like Fangraphs – to see Royals #7 best in anything (other than collection of young players) is a joke!

    • lol yeah was just about to mention it. Not only are they at #7, they MOVED UP from #11 to #7.

      I get the SABER thing, in that sometimes results aren’t always what they appear. But whenresults are so overwhelmingly at odds with the SABER stats, you need to go with the actual results. In that vein, you can’t EVER rank a 3-13 team on an 11 game losing streak (at home) as #7 in ANY power ranking, I don’t care how good their peripherals are.

      • A system solely based on total wins, and total innings played with a lead, would be a pretty solid indicator of the truly superior teams.

    • So John Lott is reporting that Farrell is saying EE is the cleanup hitter for the time being. About time!

    • Dave Cameron said they would have been 9th today after last nights game.

  11. I love the stat on winning teams.. Go figure,, the opponents against a team who lost a shitload of games finished above .500…

    Yes I know the Jays/O’s and a few others do have tougher schedules, but the numbers they show are exaggerated..

  12. If you’re into BBQ, go to the Ironworks while you’re in Austin. It’s off the chain. At SXSW the lineup is around the building.

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