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 Afternoon Snack…

Welp, it’s back to your regular scheduled service around here. Thanks muchly to Drew and Parkes for all their work on the site, as it’s been pretty much business as usual over the past week, despite my being elsewhere. And thanks as well to Bradley Ankrom, who has decided to break his awesome bit of prospecting for us, Greetings From Dunedin, into two posts. This week’s first went up yesterday, and the second should hit sometime today.

The National Post continues to nail it, with Guy Spurrier once again getting all Pitch F/X-sty to look at whether or not the Jays were getting squeezed by umpire Sam Holbroke on Tuesday night.

Elsewhere at the Post, John Lott tells us that John Farrell might stick with the re-worked configuration of his one and two hitters, with Kelly Johnson leading off and Yunel Escobar batting second. The reasons Farrell gave for trying it out during Spring Training still make sense. I wrote in March after a Farrell media scrum posted at Miked Up that the manager “felt that Escobar can use the whole field, and has ‘the ability to hit the hole’ a little more [no, you turn six], while Johnson is more of a dead pull hitter. In other words, with a runner on he likes Escobar’s ability to get the ball through infielders playing at double play depth, plus the advantage he can provide on a hit and run.”

The Tao of Stieb wonders why John Farrell keeps insisting on hitting Adam Lind in the heart of the order, leaving the team vulnerable in late-game situations to clubs who have good lefties who we know he still. can. not. effing. hit.

MLBTR notes a Jon Morosi piece at Fox Sports in which Omar Vizquel says his “51% sure” this season will be his last. “They think because I’m old that I probably can’t do the things I used to do,” Vizquel said. “It’s hard to go through that process and feel as good as you feel. I feel pretty good, but they probably say, ‘I don’t think he’s going to be able to do this and that.’ ”

Anthony Castrovince of MLB.com thinks the Jays might have a legitimate opportunity in 2012, with their young rotation looking good, and none of their potential Wild Card competitors seemingly ready to run away from the pack.

Meanwhile, at MiLB.com, they talk to Drew Hutchison about his repe-twah, and Travis d’Arnaud about how he’s come around in a big way since an early-season slump in Vegas.

It’s a Mockingbird appearance! As Jon Hale wonders what the fuck is with the Jays having completely turned around their rank in terms of pitches per plate appearance.

At Gray Matter, Kevin Gray of the Manchester Union Leader writes about the curious case of Brian Jeroloman, who was called up to the Jays for 37 days last year, without playing.

Lastly, a pair of things a couple days old from the Toronto Star. First, seriously… why the hell are people letting Damien Cox write about baseball? Especially when it takes all of three paragraphs for him to get to schlocky jokes and goddamn hockey references. On the other side of the ledger, I read the recap of Richard Griffin’s most recent live chat, and there were actually a bunch of interesting nuggets in it– totally some good stuff:

- He said that John Farrell became upset that his hitters were taking too many pitches in fastball counts, and thought that the club had become more aggressive in the Mariners series.

- Of Joel Carreno he says, “There is a back story about how he fell from grace after the Indians start. I have a promise from someone inside the Jays to tell me later in the year.”

- On Bautista, “His power is stil there because I have never seen popups that go as high as when he hots one. He is chasing and umpires don’t treat him like a superstar and that’s partly his fault.”

- On speaking with Anthopoulos during the spring: “in discussion with him some things became clear. First of all the reason big FAs blew the Jays off and vice-versa was years not money.”

- On Brett Lawrie slowing things down: “He has already slowed down. It stated with the slide in Cleveland at the plate, the leap, the pirouette the ignoring EE the race to the dugout, the crash into the batrack and the crushing Bautista’s hand on the high five. Bautsta spoke to him right there and the nbext time he toned it down a little bit and ever since he’s been more like the Tasmanian Devil on a half a Valium.”

Comments (41)

  1. yes late game situations is why Lind shouldn’t be batting 4th…

    or umm, how about every fucking situation. Seriously, like holy fuck. The guy has been one of the worst players in the league the last 2 years, not only is he a full time player with enough rope to last a life time, but he hits fucking 4th as well.

    Seriously, like fuck.. and i dont even hate lind, i like the guy, but hes not a fuckin mlb starter. period.

    • He’s hitting OK against right-handers… but you’re not wrong.

      • Well then he’s a platoon player.. Its one thing to sit him against lefty starters which they are now doing. great its a start.,

        but he should be pinch hit for before he has to face a lefty reliever because statistically, lind vs a lefty pitcher is the WORST offensive scenario the jays can put themselves in to.

  2. Welcome back Stoeten.

  3. Good stuff from Griffin, but I’ve never understood when people say “The problem was years, not money”. Players get paid yearly; the two are inexorably linked. More years = more money, in almost every case, unless the Jays are willing to pay an outrageously high AAV in exchange for a shorter-term contract.

    It’s not like the Jays said “Hey Prince Fielder, we’ll pay you $214 million over 5 years” and he said “Fuck that, I want $214 million over NINE years!”.

    • I agree. Which is why I don’t get the Jays restriction on long contracts. By the same logic, if Fielder would play 10 years for 214M and the Jays were offering 214 for 5, wouldn’t they take the 10 years? Obviously yes. And you won’t get such a clear cut scenario. But you will get areas in-between and to arbitrarily say “5 years max” kind of goes against AA’s attitude of “we’ll do anything if it is the right deal for the club”.

      I’d give Brett Lawrie 10 years right now. And I’m not even counting on him playing HOF baseball. I just think he is a safer bet at whatever he would cost for 10 years (bulk of them under our control already as it is) than really any other player.

    • They like job security. And no, AA would not have offered $214M over 5 years. That would be insane. Half of the annual payroll for one player would be stupid no matter how good they were. He would have offered something like $135M over 5 years which they would balk at due to the length. Similar money per year, but not as many years makes Albert hit fewer home runs… oh wait…

      • I think AA is awesome, but we need some more flexible GMs in this town. If the absolute right player is available, you should relax your policies a little. If that perfect player wants 8 years, work with it. Same goes for Brian Burke – at some point, you have to put aside your principles if they are keeping you from improving your team.

  4. That Jeroloman story is fucking bizarre and let me more confused than anything.

    If he was hurt, why was he up? Charity from the Jays in getting him a uniform and a taste of the bigs with it likely being his last shot at the show?

    When did he get hurt? They put him on the 25-man roster for a few days before rosters expanded on September 1 last year. Did he get hurt after he got called-up?

    Why was this injury meant to be a state secret anyways?

  5. wilner said that carreno showed up to spring training a little heavy and out of shape this morning on the fan

  6. Lind still batting in the heart of the order is why I am not going to any games this season. Yes, folks, after 17 years of paying somewhere in the region of $2500 a year to go to see my team play, this season I am not paying a dime. I’ve stuck with them through thick and thin–or rather through thin and thinner. But what the front office said about attendance linked to payroll stuck in my craw something awful. OK, maybe they mis-spoke. But I don’t care. I’ve paid a lot of good money to see a not good team for years and years. I don’t mind it when expensive guys with big reputations don’t deliver–at least I do, but you can’t foresee that. But I do mind it when the team had the best hitter in baseball for a year and a half and stuck a guy like Lind behind him game after fucking game. It’s not like they could turn to the farm and say ‘wait until so-and-so comes up.’ We don’t have a great 1st baseman down there. OK, now Encarnacion is doing really well and that should help Bautista. But it doesn’t help last year when they really should have brought in someone reliable who could hit behind him.

    I’m fed-up with this bunch and I’m giving it a break for a year. If they do well and go to the play-offs I will be sincerely happy. I’m still rooting for them. But I can spend a lot of money on other stuff this season and I’ll watch the games on tv. When I watch the games.[/rant]

    • I respect your choice to do whatever you want with your money, but this sounds like a case of being a Blue Jays fan as opposed to a baseball fan. If you can’t get any pleasure out of going to the ballpark with friends on a summer afternoon because you’re so angry at the team’s front office, then it’s probably time to re-evaluate why you were ever going in the first place.

      • I’ve heard this ‘you’re not a baseball fan’ stuff over and over again. It’s patronising as hell. I am a baseball fan and my team is the Blue Jays. I’m not real interested in continuing to go the the RC to appreciate the pretty plays executed by the other side. Try taking a plane over to the UK and telling a fed-up football fan who’s doing what I’m doing that he doesn’t appreciate the game. See how far you get. Over there we vote with our feet. Which is what I’m doing. I’ll begin to spend money again when the club makes winning a priority. And that will start with a replacement 1st baseman. And, no, as much as he has improved, that ain’t Edwin Encarnacion in my opinion. I’ll still be watching and probably still be bitching. But that money can be better spent in may other places right now.

        • I think there have been many better reasons to hate on the Jays than keeping Lind around. I think you may be over-reacting just a little.

          First of all, the guy is actually pretty solid defensively. Like legit 1B defence. And he is a decent hitter against righties and he one of the very best hitters in baseball last year until his health troubles.

          Honestly for the money he is fine and capable of being more than fine. It is only this cleanup silliness that I don’t get.

          • I’d say Lind is just above replacement level at first base defensively. He’s able to make some good scoops, but he drops the ball too much and doesn’t always have very good range when the ball is hit his way.

            Maybe it’s just my perception, but I’m sure the Jays could find a better first baseman somewhere.

    • I’m not sure we fucking care.

    • Power to you… But… Really?

    • Try being Leafs fan. It’ll make you appreciate what you have with the Jays.

    • Not sure what you think the Jays owe you. This seems like an especially odd thing to snap about considering this is the first time in years that the Jays aren’t running out a lineup with a single stopgap everyday. As awful as Lind is against lefties, he’s being set up to fail. As Stoeten points out, he’s more than adequate against righties. He’s not a retread washed-up stopgap ala Juan Rivera, Corey Patterson, Jayson Nix, Kevin Millar, the Mencherson debacle, Royce Clayton. In years past, someone of the Ben Francisco or Mike McCoy mold would be in the lineup on a daily basis.

      • It’s not so much that he’s adequate against righties. It’s more that he’s sub-standard and has been for a long time yet he continues to be in the line-up and batting behind Bautista where he had no business to be. Yes, it’s an odd time to snap. But this one’s been brewing since Beeston made his infamous statement about payroll being linked to attendance. And right after that, for the first time, I actually added up all the money I’ve spent watching a losing team flounder and flounder and flounder again. And it was a lot of money…

        • The Jays are a better team now with a ~70M payroll than they were a couple years ago at ~110M.

          AND they have a better farm system now. AND their core players are under control for longer.

          So… maybe just maybe AA knows what he’s doing just a little better than you. Maybe. I mean it’s crazy, but possible.

      • I’m replying all over the place on this, but I can’t let this go by. Did you see what you wrote? That list of ‘washed-up stopgaps’ have been rolling past my seats behind home plate for years and years and years and no one can come up with a good enough reason why except the perennial ‘the team’s not ready’. And I along with all the other regulars I see at every game have been paying through the nose to watch this shit-show. OK, this season we don’t have as many washed-up stopgaps as before but we’ve still got some. And I am not in a very forgiving mood about it. I’ve layer out $42,500 in the 17 years since I started going to the game. Any of you ‘true baseball fans’ out there paid that much for your team?

        • This sounds like a lame excuse to tell everyone that you had good seats. If the team seems to be getting better every year the last three years. This seems like an odd point to quit. It’s not Rogers fault Farrell plugs lind into the 4 spot.

          And the whole ‘I spend x amount therefore I am a bigger fan than any of you’ thing just sounds like trolling. You can go to a shit-ton of games every year for all of 99 dollars (the pass actually got cheaper since last year).

          • I had good seats but not the best seats. I don’t want to be in the 500s, it’s too far away from the action. I’m not saying I’m a better fan. Just responding to the comment that I didn’t appreciate baseball because I’m pissed with how the team has panned out all these years. In any case, it’s not a question of who is a better fan. But it is a question and may well be a question moving forward as to who is prepared to shell out money for the seats in the 100s. As far as I know I’m the only person sitting where I sat that posts on this board but I am not the only person sitting there who has decided not to come this year for the same reasons I had. It’s all we talked about last season–whether we were gonna re-up or not. I don’t remember another season where that was so much the conversation. And I hadn’t even thought of not re-upping. Until Beeston’s comments in the off-season. And then I did start to look at the money I’d spent and the little I’d gotten out of it. That money’s just for the seats. But wherever you sit, in the 100s or the 500s, there’s food and drink and maybe parking to add on top of that. None of it’s cheap. I guess if you think I’m trolling and/or boasting there is nothing I can do to change your perception. So there we are.

            Signed Isabella the Ritch Bitch

        • I am well aware of that list of stopgaps. That’s the point. It’s your fault for spending all of that disposable income on a team chock full of stopgaps. Nobody told you to or made you “vote with your feet” when the Jays were trotting out a line-up full of stopgaps and albatross contracts.

          Sounds like you’re mad at yourself for blowing money the past 17 years. That has nothing to do with the team on the field this year or in the near future.

          I’m also not sure what stopgaps you can identify on this roster other than maybe Coco/Oliver/Frasor in the bullpen. Francisco/Davis/Vizquel/Mathis don’t count because you’re not going to put a good, young player on the bench.

          It’s almost unprecedented to have a lineup full of younger guys almost to a man showing above average potential in the everyday lineup and rotation. Every team has shitbags in the lineup, because it’s very difficult to amass high-potential talent at every single position on the diamond and every spot in the starting rotation.

          It’s just odd that you’re jumping off at the point when the Jays have fewer shitbags and far more bright young futures on the near horizon than they have ever had since the late 80s.

          You’re making decisions today based on what you say yesterday, when it’s basically universally regarded that tomorrow will be nothing like yesterday.

          It’s just odd is all. I’m not going to lose any sleep over your decision.

          • Adam Lind is not a first division starte at 1B. Mitch Moreland is not a first division starter either, and yet he plays for the Texas Rangers. Why is this important? The Rangers have a well balanced lineup, pitching, a deep bullpen, a formidable farm system and a very smart GM.

            I think that the Blue Jays are well on their way to becoming a legitimate force in the AL. But to those who pined for Prince Fielder or whatever, do take note that the success or failure of the Blue Jays will not hinge on Adam Lind. At some point, he will either learn how to hit adequately or he will be replaced by EE or even Jose Bautista.

            Let’s not get get too carried away with the cheap fuckers at Rogers. The Blue Jays are not going to sink or swim with Adam Lind. There are plenty of other holes and issues with this team than Adam fucking Lind.

        • Dude there are season ticket holders that pay that in one year by the time it’s all said and done. Stop wagging yer dick, I mean wallet around. Please leave. We have the most exciting team in 17 years and the best farm system and money to keep all our home grown talent. Sounds like you are better off cheering the Yankess bud.

    • I so don’t blame you, I feel much the same. I’m sure Lind’s a nice guy and all — dumb as a hatrack though, let’s face it — but even if he is a nice guy, I think I’m actually starting to hate the sonofabitch.

      Of course, saying this will probably mean he goes on a tear of some kind right about now but I don’t care. It’s been WAY too long that they’ve stubbornly left him there in that so-important-and-valuable cleanup spot … it’s just too stupid for words.

      • Were you complaining last year when he was one of the best hitters in baseball heading toward the AS break? And please share with me how you determine IQ from your IKEA as-is section couch?

        • I, like many of you cannot understand Farrell’s insistance on running Lind out every day as the cleanup hitter. Didn’t we see that show before with Cito insisting that Well’s was his #3 guy no matter what? How did that work out?

          That said, and my age may be affecting my recall, but I seem to remember Lind saying at spring training last year (2011), when it was suggested he would bat cleanup, that he was not comfortable there. Maybe there is a correlation with confidence vs contribution?

          It’s called “managing” for a reason.

        • Ok, maybe a tiny bit stronger than I was really thinking … in that I couldn’t *hate* a Blue Jay. And yes, as I sit here on my IKEA sofa, I consider that just because I’m thinking he looks dumb-when-he’s-watching-his-pitch-go-by-for-strike-three-yet-again-at-least-to-my-near-gouged-out-eyes, it doesn’t mean he is. So … there ya go.
          The machine rages less after dinner.

          Nevertheless … I hope the fucker heats it up soon.

          • Ha fair enough. I’m very nervous about Lind and not too happy about him batting cleanup, I just hate people stating things about players personalities that they have no way of knowing. For all we know, Lawrie thinks the Mayans were right and the moon landing was fake. And EE might be a neo-nazi, while Lind heads up the Toronto Mensa chapter.

    • Seems like a strange year to finally get fed up with the Blue Jays… With the buzz surrounding the team, more people seem to be jumping on the bandwagon, not jumping off.

  7. Jeroloman’s injury wans’t a state secret. It’s just that he’s not every important so no one really cared (I assume).

    Here’s a story from October, 2011 which contains info on his hand injury which kept him from playing:

    http://kevinglew.wordpress.com/2011/10/14/but-what-do-i-know-%E2%80%A6-chris-carpenter-michael-young-fergie-jenkins/

    “Thanks to Liz Holmes, the most diehard Jays fan I know, for informing me that call-up Brian Jeroloman was nursing a broken hand during the final five weeks of the season. This explains why he didn’t see any big league action with the Jays.”

  8. IF you do not want to watch us play hard for you each night at least come and take a look at my bloodshot eyes

  9. Those are great ideas; I use two or three already

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