In his latest for Fox Sports, Kenny Ken Ken Rosenthal provides this tidbit about the Jays catching situation…

The Diamondbacks, among other clubs, would love to get their hands on one of the Blue Jays’ catchers. But don’t count on Toronto moving either J.P. Arencibia or Triple-A catcher Travis d’Arnaud before the season is over.

OK, so maybe “FU” is a bit of an exaggeration, though the heading of the section is “Jays Catchers: Hands Off!”

He explains that, despite weak offensive numbers so far– though, at least anecdotally, he appears to be coming around– the Jays are “thrilled” with Arencibia’s game-calling and the improvements he’s made defensively, especially since the live arms on the Jays staff aren’t particularly easy to catch.

And when it comes to d’Arnaud, “the Jays don’t want to trade him because his upside is greater than Arencibia’s. And they don’t want to promote him while they are trying to contend, believing he is not ready for the majors just yet.”

MLB Trade Rumors points out that this report echoes something Rosenthal wrote back in March, which also had the Diamondbacks sniffing around Arencibia– especially since their catcher, Miguel Montero, is slated to become a free agent at the end of the year. At the time Rosenthal suggested that maybe Arizona’s Gerardo Parra was a fit, given the Jays’ uncertainty in left field, but I’m thinking Anthopoulos is going to hold out for more when the time finally comes.

It’s suggested in the March piece that Arencibia– who has endeared himself to the club, as I think we’ve all seen– might end up a Mike Napoli type, catching the odd game, and playing some DH and first base as well. While I’ve scoffed at that possibility before– he’s got a long way to go to just be average with the bat at those other positions– I’m not entirely sure they wouldn’t be able to find a way to fit him in there from time to time to better effect than what they’ve been getting for two-plus years from Adam Lind. (Say… go even farther than the current in vogue rumblings and bring up both d’Arnaud and Snider, ditch Lind and Francisco, and rotate Snider, Thames, d’Arnaud and JP around left, catcher and DH as matchups dictate. Huh? Huh? Huh?)

Of course, to be fair, as I mentioned on this week’s podcast, Lind did have a .300/.349/.515/.865 line at the All-Star break last year, before absolutely falling off a cliff. So… even though that’s driven largely by a particularly hot run, you really would take in a heartbeat another half like that. It’s just, that’s an oasis of decentness in a fucking Sahara of sucking a goddamn bag.

But…

um…

… what was I talking about?

Oh yeah. Apparently Arencibia isn’t going anywhere anytime soon. Makes sense.

Comments (57)

  1. trade him now only when you get (what you think) is perceived value for him

    if teams are only willing to give you what he has been, then its not worth it.

  2. Arencibia for Montero, from whom you recoup draft pick compensation when he leaves a a FA. BOOM!

    • Well played. Sure, why not?

    • You do not get a draft pick for Montero under the new cba unless you offer him $12.5 million to stay which he would obviously jump at.

      We all need to look hard at D’Arnaud who is struggling in Vegas. He’s had 4 errors, 4 passed balls and his cs is only 3-11..His offensive numbers are still weak as well, so I don’t think its an automatic given he’s ready next year, nor do I think the power is a given.

      In addition right behind D’Arnaud is Jimenez in AA, the best defensive catcher in the system..

      • It’s never a given unless you’re steven strasburg or bryce harper, he’s ahead of where JP was at the same age… I believe this was the year JP fell off the map entirely. Travis had a significantly better year than JP did in AA at the same age.

      • Montero is going to be a 29 year old FA who has been one of the best offensive catchers in baseball the last 3.5 seasons. If he’s healthy this year and has his typical year, he’s going to guarantee himself a heck of a lot more than 12.5m; Yadier Molina, an inferior hitter but a better receiver, got 75m.

        • If I am not mistaken, it would have to be a 12.5 million dollar qualifying offer for one year (though the actual amount changes year to year). So 12.5 million for one year is a huge amount, but maybe he would decline anyway in the hopes of a multi-year.

    • Also, don’t you now need to be on the team for a full season in order to get draft pick compensation?

      Unless the D’backs are willing to offer Trevor Bauer or Upton, I’m not sure I’d deal Arencibia now.

  3. D’Arnaud’s stats in AAA don’t inspire a lot of short-term confidence, and but neither do Arencibia or Lind’s at the MLB level. I’m about ready for EE at 1st and healthy Snider (does that exist) at DH. And yeah, I guess I can deal with shitty JPA at bats in the 9-hole for now. But Parra isn’t that bad at all.

    • Why put a healthy Snider at DH. He’s much better defensively than Thames. EE at first, Snider in Left, and Thames at DH.

    • d’Arnaud is improving though. You had to expect a transitional period of going from prospect-y pitchers to hasbeens and the odd great pitching prospects. His OPS in the last 10 games is .860 which, while not studly, is very solid. The power will undoubtedly come out of the shadows long before season’s end.

  4. Travis D’arnaud for Trevor Bauer OR Tyler Skaggs OR Archie Bradley

  5. Don’t think d’Arnaud is ready. Snider is deffo worth another look at this point, though. Lind is creamed shite on toast. Plus, those creepy eyes…He looks like some kind of ‘borg; the bad, replicant-from-Bladerunner kind.

    • Adam Lind has both the looks and hitting ability to qualify for the Special Olympics. I’d still probably bench him.

    • Wow you guys are real assholes.

      • No kidding. Complain about his play all you want but looks have nothing to do with it. Major secondhand embarrassment at the comments above.

        • Yeah I’m amazed people call themselves fans and then make personal attacks on our own players. And not even like attacking a guy for his DUI conviction or something tangible like that. Just attacking his IQ (that we don’t know) and his looks and even derogatorily associating him with the special olympics.

          So basically we only like players that are good looking and hit for average and never slump and play great defence and answer cliche reporter questions just right and with a Hollywood smile. Oh and they have to agree to cheap contracts. Duh we should just sign people like that and we would have an awesome team!

    • Hahah, he definitely falls into the uncanny valley

    • Ok, so no complaining about his looks, but he runs like a girl!

  6. Snider to RF, Jose to 1B. Nothing wrong with the catcher situation at the moment.

  7. Of course the Jays are going to tell them to fuck off at this time and at first. what are they going to say “sure you can have him for a nickle”

    My take is that the Jays are going to try and drive up the price..and the price will only get higher as JP gets out of his hitting funk and the season progresses.

    I dont for a minute think they are in love with this guy as a long term answer at catcher considering how much they love JPA.

    and no, there is not room for both of them. JP is a terrible hitting option at any position other than catcher.

  8. I’ve been thinking about the whole Snider in LF , DH thames and put EE at 1B thing.. and on the surface it sort of makes sense, but the gains seem marginal at this point considering Snider’s ineptness at hitting the big-league curveball. Which got me to thinking the other day, what about calling up Gomes and having him platoon 1B with Lind? He’s destroying AAA right now and I don’t think we’re too worried about him getting full-time atbats right now, as his ceiling isnt as high as the other options.

  9. Give Snider a shot at first base. He can’t be any worse hitting than Lind, or fielding the position than E5-3.

    • so you’re saying you’d rather have Thames in LF than EE at 1B? because thats what it comes down to.

    • That doesn’t make sense because Snider is a pretty good outfielder, good enough that the Jays used him in CF a few times. That’s a harder position than 1B. Snider needs to learn to hit major league fastballs (something Thames, who is a brutally bad fielder, has been able to do) and to adjust to the adjustments major league pitchers make for him. It would make more sense to move Thames to 1B, maybe platooning him there with Edwin E.

      • Chris, I think we’re on the same boat here. Just get some at bats for Snider and sit Lind (or trade him for a Creed CD if we can get that much). As long as EE keeps knocking those grounders down with his face, I’m behind him! Well, I wouldn’t sit on the first base side in the first row behind him, but you get the gist.

        Actually for sheer entertainment, EE filling in at third and throwing (assuming he got to the ball) to Thames at first would probably get a Restricted rating on Jays broadcasts but kind of be like horror porn.

    • I’m probably in the minority here, but unless the Jays go out an add a big 1B bat through a trade, I’d like to see David Cooper get a shot. I was impressed with him after he was called up the second time last year. He did put up an .851 OPS, albeit in limited AB’s.

      • Agreed. Everyone here likes to remark, “Well, his numbers don’t suggest a legitimate 1B,” or that that they’re inflated by Vegas. Who cares? The only thing that matters is whether his numbers suggest he’ll do better than Lind.

  10. I think GM AA needs to do some serious due diligence on this Luis Mercedes guy. He works with Robinson Cano and he’s the one who fixed EDH and has him with the two-handed swing.

    Seriously, could the Jays not use an extra roving batting instructor?

  11. If it means you can drop or sit Lind and get Snider some at bats, then yeah. Hell, give Thames a shot at first if you prefer. He can’t field it any worse than EE.

    • hard to say who’s a worse fielder between Thames and EE, but we know EE can at least be average defensively at first, we dont know that about Thames, whcih means you would put Snider in LF, DH Thames and EE at 1B.

  12. I personally think we should sell high on thames and arencibia, I think both of those players are overrated by fans and media. Arencibia might be a nice guy and loves toronto blah blah blah but at the end of the day hes just not that good of a hitter. Same goes with Thames. Our lineup would be so much better w/o those 2 GIDP or swinging at bad pitches and striking out.

    • Selling high is good. With Arencibia, consider that when he was in AA , just a few years ago, he had two operations, after which he started showing notable improvement every year. Can he continue to make improvements, especially with the bat? He does look better behind the plate this year than last. Could his hitting improve significantly soon? It might be worth waiting a little to see.

      OTOH, if somebody makes a really good offer … then I’m with you. Sell high.

    • When you speak of selling high, do you mean the buyer would be high as well? I think Thames and Arencibia are average at best just like you said. I listened to some people talking about trading the same two and it was starting to sound like Tony from Woodbridge and a Schenn for Crosby, Malkin and Staal, plus cash Leaf Lunch show.

      • LOL if AA can find a taker for vernon wells im sure he can find a taker for those 2 high or otherwise.

        • Excellent point. I would have said Kenny Williams but that requires waivers and paperwork and shit. I’m thinking maybe the Massholes will take them both and probably Lind because whoever the GM there is now, obviously has either the greatest sense of humour or a horrible meth problem (probably meth in the land of Masshole) with that brilliant signing of Booby Valentine.

          Speaking of Booby Valentine; who can kill a franchise quicker, him, or Ben Affleck as Jack Ryan? Discuss

    • Both are in their second year. And doing about as well as any non-superstar in their second year. Take it easy FFS.

      Not everyone comes up hitting like Bautista – oh wait Bautista was 30 before he turned it on. Ok maybe EE is a better exam- no wait he took a while too.

  13. Plus, we have snider and Darnaud to replace them.

  14. More like we have MATHIS to step in and D’Arn-O to back up. ;)

  15. one thing is for sure the Jays have lots off options…but do they make the deal with the most value to them…

  16. I’m curious to know what a package of JPA + Thames would return. I feel like Thames’ value is high right now, and is being played to generate value (aside from the he-has-options-and-Snider-doesnt argument). Obviously this wouldn’t happen until d’Arnaud is ready for a call-up (mid season or end of 2012…).

    Thoughts?

    • Didnt see this was covered by afdg above.
      //comment withdrawn

    • I have been saying the same thing about Thames. AA wants Thames to play in the big leagues to maximize whatever value he can get down the line.

      As for JPA, I don’t think the Jays would be wise in calling up d’Arnaud in mid-season. Best to keep him in AAA and call him up when the roster expands in September. There is a very big learning curve adapting to big league catching. Catching Aaron Laffey in AAA is one thing. Trying to corral Alvarez’s sinker or Santos’ slider is another.

  17. Arencibia isn’t going anywhere and he’s not losing the primary catcher job.

    The Jays brass loves him and rightly so.

    • How nice to find a rational fellow fan. JPA is doing extremely well overall for a second year catcher.

      • I wouldn’t call an OBP of .277 or an OPS under .650 good. His defense has defense has also improved to close to average. Not sure what qualifies as “extremely well” in your second year, but I wouldn’t have thought those count.

        I’m not saying that the jays should trade him, but we can still be realistic about the fact that he hasn’t played that well.

        • Your assessment relies solely on two numbers. Regardless of how significant they may be, they don’t tell the entire story of JPA’s performance. There aren’t numbers for calling a game or handling a pitching staff, esp. one that isn’t easy to catch, that has 3 young rookie or near-rookie pitchers in its rotation, etc.

          JPA was a starting catcher in his rookie season. I consider that his offense last year was just gravy; he was learning on the job. So far this year he hasn’t hit much, but it’s only early May. We don’t know what he’ll do over the course of the season. He does appear to have made strides defensively.

          To me, that amounts to “doing extremely well” in the first season plus five weeks of a MLB catching career. Whining about his OPS at this point seems ludicrous.

        • He showed power in breaking the Jays HR record for a catcher in a year where he was watching video of other players while the rest of the guys are watching video of themselves. Give him a little time. Do we really need to throw out random example of people (gasp!) getting better past their second year of baseball?

          Maybe he turns to nothing. Who knows? But there is no reason to give up on him now. None whatsoever.

  18. i’d say trade d’arnaud while he’s still a ‘top prospect’ and can be the centrepiece of a trade for someone big.

  19. I believe that Arencibia’s greatest value to the Jays lies as a bridge or conduit between the Spanish and les Anglais, the young (rookies) and the old (veterans), as well as his cheerleader tutoring of the pitching staff . The team would not have the same chemistry, the same cohesiveness without JPA.

  20. Hey Hey Hey Hey…WHAT is going ON here!?!?!?

  21. When Arizona calls – I ask for Goldschmidt. It would give us a power hitting young 1st baseman

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