The YuniBomber

You get the feeling that Jon Morosi likes smothering his traffic bread in delicious Jays-fan butter, so it’s kinda of little surprise that he’s rumour mongering once again today in his latest for Fox Sports, as he tosses this nugget into the Jays section of his team-by-team breakdown of the up-for-grabs AL East:

In the near term, keep an eye on shortstop Yunel Escobar. Once prospect Adeiny Hechavarria arrives in the majors — which could happen any day now — the Blue Jays will have the flexibility to move Escobar for pitching. The A’s, Mariners and Pirates are possible trade partners, because they have pitching depth and a lack of production at shortstop.

It’s interesting, though.

I mean, I suppose that moving Escobar would make total sense if the Jays if they felt that his overall numbers this season– a .300 OBP and .275 wOBA– reflected his true talent level, because that’s probably about what you can expect from Hechavarria, who’d then improve the club with his otherworldly defence. But I don’t know why anybody would think that’s where Escobar is truly at.

Shit, in May he hasn’t even really hit his stride yet, but he’s well beyond his putrid April numbers, putting up a .313 wOBA with a .342 OBP in the season’s second month, and his walk rate is up to 8.1%– much closer to his career 9.4% rate.

If he continues to start hitting more like we know he can, Hechavarria would have to provide a massive upgrade on defense to be worthwhile to a Jays team that thinks it can hang around in the American League East, and right now, that’s a tough row to hoe, as Escobar is the seventh best defensive shortstop in the Majors per UZR, and has accumulated the 27th most WAR of any player in baseball in the DRS-based– i.e. shift-broken– Baseball Reference system.

There are sample size issues with those numbers, of course. Regardless, even just by the good, old fashioned eye test, Escobar has been pretty alright, and as much as I’m curious to see Hechavarria on the diamond, I’m not real optimistic about what we’re going to see at the plate. Until the Jays decide to throw in the towel on 2012– which certainly hasn’t happened yet, and may not happen at all– I’m not sure what the rush would be to jettison Escobar and his $5-million salary for 2013, plus two $5-million club options for the following years, in order to bring in a tantalizing, yet unproven commodity.

Yes, all the positives we see about him gives him nice value on the trade market, and could allow them to use him in a deal for a pitcher, if they think that’s what’s more needed, with a ready-made backup waiting in Vegas. But then I suppose it comes down to the question of how fucking ready is Hechavarria, really.

With Vegas numbers so impossibly fucking skewed, it’s hard for us to guess, but if the Jays really wanted to find out, why not tell Kelly Johnson to suck it up and play left field for a bit, and let the kid take some get some Big League at-bats? If that happens, maybe I believe this is a real course of action the club may consider taking, but until then, I think I’m not buying it.

That said, I’m totally just spitballin’, and actually, I’ve come around a bit Morosi’s notion over the course of writing all this a little. Indeed, acquiring a pitcher may a bigger necessity than keeping Escobar’s bat if this team is going to really stay in the hunt, and Hechavarria’s availability could nicely mitigate the loss and create an overall win for the club. It’s just… he has to be able to hit enough to keep himself in the lineup, and without knowing that (and suspecting not), I’m thinking your four-win shortstop is, in addition to other pieces, kind of a hefty fucking price to pay to accommodate such a move, even if Escobar hasn’t quite looked himself yet this year.

Um… isn’t it?

Comments (134)

  1. No, no,no, no, no , no.

    Does anyone not realize how bad Hech is going to be? Currently he isn’t much more then a 250 obp 9 hole player, do we really need that? Please don’t be fooled by his PCL stats.

    • +1

      - The jays blogosphere is full of fanboys who think that hech is great, and escobar is a scrub…

      I’m tired of having to deal with the Russ Adams/Royce Claytons/David Eckstein/Alex Gonzalez’s s of the world….

      If the Jays traded Escobar for pitching, then they will most likely be shopping for a new shortstop within a year of Hech posting a sub 270 OBP….

      • You seem to have forgotten the career fucking year Alex Gonzales was on his way to when we shipped him off to ATL

        • Ya that was a good half season… But I wasn’t thrilled going into the year with him.. And still cant believe Atlanta was dumb enough to make that trade,,,,

          But its not even close to the dumbest thing Atlanta has done in the last 3 years…

    • No one is fooled by PCL stats.

      The reality is that Hech doesnt need to hit, his value is in his glove.. and because he plays SS, all he needs to do is not completely suck and he’ll be an everyday player.

      • Is his defence that much better than Escobar? Well first of all he hasn’t played D in the big leagues so his skill is technically unproven. Second of all, how many plays are there at short each game and do you really think every game he will be so much better than Yunel as to justify a completely unproven bat?

        I would way rather see him up as a Mike McCoy utility type that can steal bases and take over defensively. Let’s see him uproot McCoy before we trade away a solid starting SS.

        • Hasn’t played D in the big leagues, but are you honestly suggesting that defense varies all that much from level to level? About the only plays that are different are shifts and the occasional squeeze play. Both of which I’m fairly certain are still performed and practiced to some degree in triple-A.

        • Watched Hech in Vegas this year and he made 2 plays that we have not seen made in Toronto since Tony Fernandez was in his prime. Yes I’d take his 250 bat over Escobar and right now i’m sitting here with my Escobar tshirt on

          • That’s cool. I’m excited too – just don’t understand the rush. He can come be a Mike McCoy type player for a while, fill in for injuries, etc. No need to get rid of a good working player… yet.

      • If you’re going to dump McCoy for Hech you want to make sure he can pitch first.
        Btw, Like that move.

      • Rasmus’ value is (or at least was until he got bumped to 2nd in the order) in his glove. I don’t know how many more ‘defensive specialists’ the Jays lineup can support, espcially with Bautista and Lawrie not hitting to their potential.

        I like Escobar and I think he is a good fit on the team. The Jays should hold onto him unless their starting pitching completely implodes

    • STFU you skinny prick.

    • okay, first of all…”a 250 obp 9 hole player”? 9-hole probably, but don’t pigeon hole the guy at 250 obp before he’s ever played a game! Where would you possibly get that number from? Most scouts see him as a potentially viable bat (not much else), and apparently his swing does have room for some power. His glove is so good at the highest valued defensive position that that alone would put him on many major league rosters. We really wouldn’t be losing that much if we traded Yunel…I’m not saying we should. Most people aren’t “fooled” by his PCL numbers…that’s not the point. Having Lawrie/Hech/Johnson? patrol the left side negates the loss of some homers and a little higher OBP…and getting quality in return would make it worthwhile. NOTE: I’m not saying it’s necessary or that we SHOULD do it…but it does make some sense!

  2. how fucking ready is Hechavarria, really?

    Fuck if fucking I fucking know.

  3. after my odd incounter with Yunel last year outside of the rogers centre, I have no problem with trading him trade on!

    • What happened?

    • OMG TELL

    • i’ve ran into after a couple games as well, always with 2 hot latino women, both look taller than him, but that could be the heels, when I saw this again a month ago one of them was prego for sure.

      Also the dude dresses louder than a mexican wrestler

      • Well that is just the best reason to trade someone. He’s a stud and flashy. Fucking Canadian arrogant attitude you have.

        • you read my mind, actually i’m hoping we can start measuring the dick size of all ball players as well as know their sperm count so we can having some reasonable metrics to base our trade recommendations on

      • and cue the racism.
        he probably didn’t say hi to you either (hint: he doesn’t really speak much english)
        guess what… Hech is Latino too Archie Bunker
        And Troy Tulowitzki isn’t available.

        • that was racist? i described the 2 ladies he was with, and and how he dresses.

          I would also say that i’ve seen lawrie with 2 hot blondes and his tattoos are louder that country music blasting from a pickup truck in a trailer park. is that racist too?

      • I have ran into Yunel twice after games too, both times he was with 2 hot ladies as well and both times he was nothing but nice to us, sure he barely speaks english but he understood what we were saying and was happy we recognized him (especially in front of the ladies!)

  4. Unless it’s as part of a package for a fucking phenomenal pitcher, trading YEscobar now would be nuts. At least wait until we know whether we have a second baseman for next year before we start tossing away decent infield bats.

  5. I have my doubts that they’d want to bring Hechavarria up to play a position other than shortstop. Might sound like “intangibles” bullshit, but asking him to adjust to MLB pitching AND play a new position might not be something they’d want to do with a very young player who’s got his share of challenges to begin with (presumably language, all this citizenship stuff, etc.). Fair amount of money tied up him to start shuffling him around when they don’t really have a pressing need to do it.

    • thats not the reason why you don’t ask him to switch.

      you don’t ask him to switch because he’s the best SS on the team.

      but with KJ a free agent, is this all a bit premature?

      • Well, yeah. It is premature. And he probably IS the best shortstop. Was just referring to the idea of moving KJ to left field this year for a spell to see what Hechavarria could do — which, in Stoeten’s defense, he said was a big “if” anyway.

    • Agreed. But, it’s also money that’s being spent NOW. If you think that you’ll bring him up and any struggles at the plate won’t affect his longer-term development, then why not? He’d only have to hit as well as whatever shitbag we’d have in LF.

      • Something tells me he won’t be able to do even that. And until we see the Snide back up for a spell, or Sierra, or anyone else with an offensive upside, I don’t think you can accept having a guy who currently profiles to hit like an AL Pitcher in interleague play playing everyday in the AL East.

  6. odd encounter? lol what the fuck

    • i tried saying hi, and he turned his back to me, and walked away w/his two girlfriends. dick move, but super funny

      • how is that odd?
        “Hey ladies let’s go out on the town. Wait, some dick hole wants to say hi like he knows me, let’s go this way”

      • That isn’t odd. I’d turn my back on you if I had two hot women to attend to. All you’ve told me is he is a rich heterosexual male that doesn’t care that much about fans after spending all day at the ballpark hearing the same cliche fan talk and signing the same plastic memorabilia.

        • we saw him walking once too with some hot ladies, and you know what we did? nothing! then it just so happened he looked in our direction, and made eye contact with us, so we gave him a head nod, and he nodded back. a little “hey, your cool”, “thanks bud” kinda nod. if he’s out on the street with hot ladies and friends i highly doubt he wants some guy with a man crush on him coming up to him thinking he knows him

      • It’s hardly a dick move when you can barely speak english. It’s called avoiding an awkward situation:
        “Hi Yunel”
        “Hi”
        “You’re my favourite player”
        “Hi”
        “Great Game today”
        “Hi”
        “Uh, ok, bye Yunel”
        “Hi”

  7. I’d way prefer the ol’ bait-and-switch. Find out who’s interested in Escobar, and then sell them on Hech instead.

    Of the two new Cubans SSs in the AL East, isn’t Iglesias supposed to be a better bat than Hech? And he’s not exactly tearing up a non-PCL AAA league…..

  8. I’d love Johnson so play LF, but not happening he’s a 2B and above avg 2B, he’s not movin gunless they singed him to an extension where he felt he was compensated quite well maybe he woud switch to LF but not when he’s on a one year contract hitting free agency, teams will pay more for 2B then a LF in Johnsons case.

    • I don’t know how to explain that, except that you give a shit about the douchiest sport out there, and follow it’s “ring girl’s” criminal records.
      Fuck off with your trolling and spamming.

      • It is funny that the sport is considered douchy and it attracts macho tough guys, but at the same time the blogs and message boards for the sport are much more civil than baseball blogs. weird i know.

  9. Oh, that’s just a load of rich creamery butter.

  10. Sounds like an upcoming off-season question to me. Give Hech a Sept call-up. And/or maybe he gets to play a bit if YEscobar or KJ goes on the DL.

  11. I don’t know about you guys but I’m dying to trade the only legitimate shortstop the Jays have had in roughly a decade so a kid who can’t hit can find his way into the lineup. That’s how you win in this division damnit!

    • lol what wamco said. Let’s trade a 4 fwar ss with a good contract for a kid who just might be the only one out Snider, Thames, Lawrie, Cooper and Gomes to have his major league stats come anywhere close to those he’s putting up at AAA.

      • Yup. With you on this. Agree completely.

        • Well… doesn’t it heavily depend on what we’d get back?

          Like – I sure as hell wouldn’t look to move Escobar for the hell of it for all the reasons you’ve mentioned above.

          But if Hech + return for Escobar would improve the team more than just Escobar, then you’ve gotta do it.

          • except that pitching is a lot easier to both develop and acquire than a 4 win shortstop on a sub 1 win contract.

          • I agree with you. Hech’s defense is a guarantee at a position where that is a HUGE plus. It would absolutely make sense if the return made it worth it. Yunel’s offense really is not that important on this team, and isn’t THAT substantial anyway. It’s not a move they need to make, but if the right situation comes up, I can see them doing it.

    • amen +1

    • Actually that’s how I feel about all the JPA/TDA talk. JP is doing well with the rotation as far as we can tell, is nabbing baserunners pretty well, has more power than any Jay catcher ever and… I know this is crazy talk… but he could always actually improve his OBP and average. Yeah TDA might totally uproot him, but slow down people. These things just aren’t problems yet, both cases we are talking about people with 0 big league at bats.

      • ….and I completely disagree with this. Not the same at all. In this case the better player is in AAA and the ML player, outside of HRs, has pretty weak numbers.

        • Exactly the same except that Hech is not expected to hit better than Yunel and TDA is expected to hit better than JPA. That’s the only difference and is is minor. Everything else is the same – position players that are known commodities and not dragging down the team and are contributing both at the plate and on D and we are worried about their younger counterparts that have zero big league at bats or defence.

          Yes TDA is even more likely to replace his senior than Hech, but both scenarios are premature to say the least.

          • An upgrade at the plate, compared to a downgrade at the plate is a minor difference? Other than that they are exactly the same? Umm, I think my head may explode.

        • I can’t reply to your follow-up for some reason. Yeah obviously it is a huge difference IF it ever materializes.

          I do understand the difference between having good hitting and having bad hitting.

          Philosophically though it is the same proposition: do you undo a working, young, cheap, MAJOR LEAGUE player for a player who has proven zero where it counts.

          Imagine if we let Bautista go for a bag of balls in spring 2010 because “Snider is ready now”.

      • it may actually be the opposite thing: Where Hech’s value is supposed to be based on his defense, while his offense is a huge hole (especially vis a vis Escobar’s), D’Arnaud is already considered a better defender than JPA, with height to his ceiling, and his offense is (potentially) a wash with JPA at this point. JPA’s offensive profile is precisely what his toolset has always portended: good power, with holes in his swing (i.e. a poor hit tool), while D’Arnaud has always been considered the better pure hitter of the two, and projects to have at least positionally relevant power. JPA has to do extensive work on both his offensive and defensive skillsets in order to improve them, as Hech does on his hitting to even be major league relevant, where TD’A has to grow into his profile, and seems to be ready to do so at the major league level.
        And last week’s hiccup, as well as Drabek and Hutch’s continuing struggles don’t exactly prove your argument about his work with the rotation (not that it proves the negative either).

  12. I doubt that Oak, Sea or Pit gives us anything good for Yunel. It’s not excatly like they’re one player away.

  13. It’s kind of awesome that Morrissey is taking an interest in the Jays again. First time since 1980′s odes to post-game callers “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now” and “Panic”.

  14. I’m not expecting much from Hech when he finally arrives. If you are looking for pitching, I would think the better move would be to package Johnson with some B prospects instead. This is predicated on escobar and his team friendly contract agreeing to move to second. I would think Escobar would find himself back at ss when Hech can’t hit his weight.

  15. It does sound like Hech is getting a call-up though if you read the tea leaves: hasn’t played since Monday, is not injured, the reports that he’s working on his papers/visa – the same thing they couldn’t get done in time for a Sept call-up last year, Jays optioned Laffey and said they’ll wait before announcing the corresponding move. Can’t think of who the deserving outfielder is.. Snider injured, Thames can’t be recalled, too early for Gose, Sierra not performing well in AAA, Nanita seems like a long-shot. Anyone have any ideas on who the call-up will be?

  16. An injury of any notable length could make this whole idea moot. It certainly won’t hurt Hechavaria to continue to work on things in AAA. Maybe the Jays wait to see if they are in contention or not and trade accordingly depending on need. Could Johnson’s contract status make him the more likely target? Either way – 1 of the 3 guys should be moved to address other team needs.

  17. so who would the jays be targeting in these phantom trades? who’s a young, controllable stud at left field/pitcher/first base on a team with depth?

  18. As others have mentioned, KJ is going to be a FA. What internal 2B options do we have for 2013 other than Escobar (or Hech)? None that I see. So trading Escobar requires us to get a 2B in return, or sign KJ or some other FA in the offseason.

    Escobar is on a pretty team friendly deal as a SS, anyone know if his deal would still be team friendly as a 2B? Also, anyone know how the 2B FA market is shaping up for this offseason?

    i doubt we’d get much return for Hech in a trade. My guess is that other teams will severely discount his AAA numbers because of the Vegas/PCL factor.

  19. Why stop at escobar? Might as well trade rasmus, aaron cibia and esco all for felix hernandez amiright?

  20. Also, the Jays talked a lot about the importance of OBP at the top of the lineup this offseason. Trading Escobar and promoting Hech throws that out the window. KJ, Escobar, and Bautista are our OBP guys.

  21. I can’t see the Jays trading either Escobar or Hech until the 2B situation is settled for next year and beyond.

    If Johnson leaves via free agency, the Jays could go from an 8-10 WAR middle infield to complete junk if they try Hech and some random 2B next year.

    Losing 5 wins in the middle infield means the Jays probably need to add around 10 wins in other areas to jump from presumably an 85-ish win team to a 90-ish win team.

    That seems daunting as hell.

  22. What kind of pitching could we get for Yunel from A’s, Mariners, or Pirates? Hanrahan? Balfour?

  23. “…a Jays team that thinks it can hang around in the American League East”

    BWHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

  24. Shortstops are hard to find, Escobar will never be a chip.

  25. But then again say by mid June, Hutch, Draebeck and Alvarez are still pitching well, do you really need to trade for a pitcher…and if you do why Escobar.

  26. Despite being pretty awesome to get some offensive contributions from your SS, it’s not absolutely necessary for a winning team. The most important question in this is whether we can extend Kelly Johnson to play 2B or find a suitable replacement for him if he indicates he will not re-sign and is moved at the deadline. I feel like the team might as well get Hech up with the big league club to give us a better idea or how his bat will work against big league pitching. While the PCL does not offer us precise insights into a prospect’s ability, it also isn’t completely valueless or we’d have all of our top position player prospects graduating from AA to the bigs.

    Everyone’s screaming about how Hech’s bat will not play at SS but they fail to mention that his bat would look much, much worse if plopped into 2B if he’s actually shit at the plate. Scouts typically say that Yesc’s value is derived from his cannon of an arm at SS and not from his stellar range so I’m not so sure that his D would look as shining by any metric if he were asked to be moved to 2B. He also seems like the type that wouldn’t take it well and that could effect his bat.

    Yesc’s quality bat, D at SS, and team-friendly contract are a trifecta of awesome, no doubt, I love having him on the Jays but that means he could also fetch a pretty penny on the open market where some teams would stab their mothers for Hech, let alone Yunel. While it would certainly hurt our offence if Hech was absolutely atrocious, I think we’re still stuck in 2011 when he was such a key cog in the offence.

    We’ve since upgraded with a potential star at CF (still way too early but I feel it’s safe to say we’re going to get something between 2010 and 2011 Rasmus), a budding star at 3B (who will hopefully remember to hit an XBH once in a while), and 2B/DH where we discovered stars (who might end up leaving but I got to believe AA will get one of them to stick around). The offensive contribution from SS will matter even less if we could find a non-shitbag to patrol LF/1B which aren’t that hard to get but we apparently suck at it.

    My point is that trading Yunel will almost certainly hurt the Jays at SS but it could help in the one area where we need it the most, starting pitching. While we’re at it, let’s throw a certain overvalued power-hitting catcher into the mix and we could likely get us a fine return. Fan favourites be damned. Give me the team with the best chance to win now and going forward.

  27. Wait….is no one going to mention the epic picture? I might get that tattooed on my lower back.

  28. MLB is returning to be a young man’s game. Hech just turned 23, Escobar is 30 in November. 29 and 30 year olds are nobody’s future even if they have appealing contracts. AA would be crazy not to consider moving him.

  29. With Rasmus/Gose/Marisnick, Hech/Escobar, and JPA/Darnaud … I think we’re going to have a lot of these scenarios thrown out over the next couple years. Which is a great thing.

    Reminds me of when the Jays traded O-Dog because Hill was coming up. That worked out pretty well. IIRC, it was ODog+Batista for Glaus, then Glaus for Rolen, then Rolen for EE+Stewart, and then Stewart was part of the Colby package.

    • Yeah, it’s nice to have a huge number of minor leaguers knocking on the door, instead of having to wonder where we can put the high-drafted, low-ceiling players like Russ Adams, John-Ford Griffin, and so on.

  30. Lets be straight here.

    Escobar for his career (29 years old) – .335 wOBA and a 105 wRC + with peak wRC + of 119, 118 and 116 (2011).
    Johnson for his career (30 years old) – .344 wOBA and a 108 wRC + with peak wRC + of 117, 128 and 120 (2012).
    Adeiny one the other hand has been a well below average hitting SS until the PCL.

    Now here is the problem – moving either player causes the production to drop off dramatically. If you trade KJ and move Escobar to 2nd the Jays go from having above average offensive players up the middle to below average players at both positions. If you just trade Escobar and keep KJ then you lose significant production at one position. If you trade Escobar and lose KJ through FA you now are in the worst possible scenario.

    I don’t think AA trades either of them. That kind of production does not grow on trees. Bring Hech up in September and let him break with the team as a utility infielder in 2013 and see how he handles the bat. Or trade Hech because teams from weaker divisions might be able to live with a slick fielding poor hitting SS. The Jays in the AL East can’t.

    I normally like Morosi but I think he is off his rocker in regards to this particular trade scenario.

    • The scouts never liked his bat and I don’t think he’ll ever be the offensive SS that Yunel currently is but it wouldn’t surprise me if was at least serviceable with a bat. I don’t buy into the you need elite/semi-elite talent at every position to compete in the AL East. Tampa has our backup catcher in the lineup every night. Yankees roll out Nix/Wise on a regular basis this year. SS is one spot where we don’t absolutely need a stud. You can live with the best glove in the majors (so says some) and whatever he can do with a bat.

      I’d trade Yunel in a heartbeat if we could extend KJ for 3-4 years but there’s no indication that we’re even talking extension (not that AA is announcing these things). But at some point, you realize that Yunel is probably at or near his peak value and if your needs are elsewhere (aka starting pitching) then you should probably consider moving him if a quality package is coming back which would not have arrived from our farm likely until his contract was complete. He won’t even necessarily have the range needed to play +D at SS by the time the current core is seriously competing.

      • It would shock me at this point if he was servicable with a bat. If we were the Brewers running Yuniesky Betancourt in cement boots out at SS, or the Tigers with that infield defense and offense, maybe I could see the argument, but Escobar isn’t so bad with the glove that you can afford to take a 100 point hit in OBP alone in the lineup to marginally improve on defense, and marginally improve the rotation. It would have to be a special deal to make it worthwhile in any way shape or form , and the potential suitors don’t seem to have any arms worth moving for (other than Felix, and the odds/cost of that happening are astronomical).

        • I seriously doubt we lose 100 points of OBP with Hech even from Escobar’s peak. Let’s not forget that YEsc is 29 and has either begun or will soon begin his decline. His defensive value is likely to decline because it is his range (already the knock) that will be most affected.

          I’m not advocating for them to do this deal for a scrub, far from it, but the reality is that this team will need better quality pitching to be competitive while the arms in Lo-A take the next 3-4 years to arrive. If given the opportunity to improve the pitching staff significantly for that same window, management would have to at least consider it. I don’t see a candidate amongst Morosi’s supposed suitors but that wouldn’t stop AA from coming out of left field to move him to a team nobody expected.

          If you could get a #1/2 for the rotation with control or an extension covering the next couple years, would you not consider trading Yunel and his admittedly stellar production at SS + prospects?

          KJ leaving is clearly an issue that will hurt us but I don’t think either Hech or Yunel are a solution there so it doesn’t really affect my feelings on this. If he does leave, we’re going to have to trust AA to ninja us a new 2B but we’d have to do it anyway.

          • The Jays are not going to get a number 1 or number 2 for Yunel Escobar, even if you sweeten the package by adding top prospects or a MLB player like JPA.

            Escobar can hold his own on a first division team. But his trade value is very limited. Morosi is up to his old tricks. Nothing to see, just move along, move along.

      • You are right the Jays don’t need to have above average production at SS but they have players who for their career have been above average at their respective positions in the majors. Why mess with that based on the assumption the Hech’s bat may eventually be OK.

        Another problem is how are you sure that Escobar nets the type of player you are looking for and how is there any guarantee that KJ even gets extended? There are too many moving parts and for that reason I would not make that trade.

  31. wow. the Los Vegas 51s currently have a pretty heavy hitting team now eh?

    With certified AAA crushers Lind, Gomes and Thames
    and d’Arnaud showing that he’s progressed beyond that level…
    once they get Snider back they’re going to be pretty over-stocked with hitting talent.

    Send Francisco and Mathis away and bring up D’arnaud and Snider!

    oh as for Escobar…you crazy. The contract is good and his overall worth, even when slumping at the plate, is still quite positive.

    Its best to keep the depth. Having actual backup/depth talent at every position would/will be a really great asset. No season is without its injuries and the fact that you can continue to win during those times can make a big difference. Losing games because you’ve got scrubs subbing in during injury is a great way to throw the season away.

    If the jays have any way of developing a 1st string team at all positions where the AAA depth consists of almost/serviceable-MLB level talent like Thames/Cooper/Gomes/Hev/Lind(?) is a pretty nice prospect.

    If we could only get that sort of depth in OF and Starters (ie Snider/Bautista/Rasmus backed up by something a little more exciting that uh….Ben Francisco/Thames) and where guys like Hutchinson might be the depth to a starting rotation a little more stocked with Morrow/Romeros…then you’re truly cooking…

    • Why bring up D’Arnaud to sit on the bench, or Bench JPA, or waste D’Arnaud’s defense at DH when he can at least continue to play everyday in the minors. That’s asinine.

      • because otherwise you have no idea what d’Arnaud looks like at the MLB level.

        Look…if you don’t do it you have these two options which I’d argue are really stupid:

        1) Trade JPA with a blindspot as to how d’Arnaud will play at MLB level
        2) Trade d’Arnaud with a blindspot as to whether he was actually better than JPA and maybe super-star level talent.

        That’s stupid in my books. Even if JPA goes down with injury and you get the chance to play d’Arnaud for 2-3 weeks…is that going to tell you enough?

        Instead, I’ve seen it suggested already that you split their time 50/50 until either you determine which one is unnecessary moving forward.
        In that time you also figure out who’s going to be your depth / injury protection (probably too much to keep one of them as the depth…they both seem too good for that?) so maybe Gomes is your depth.

        But blindly trading players of this calibre is stupid unless you’re %100 of what you’ve already got on the field. and JPA ain’t all that. He stilll swings at absolute garbage. Unless he can straighten out that plate discipline then he might not quite be good enough to be WS-contention worthy & maybe d’Arnaud is going to be the way to go…..ONCE we get a look at him at MLB level.

    • And Snider’s injured.
      And the team does have backups/depth at every position. Except maybe first.
      Keep pushing for that one year contention.
      Fuck.

      • the team does not have backup/depth at:

        1B (never mind a starting player)
        Starting Pitching (at least 2)
        2B (since johnson isn’t locked up we arguably have a double hole here)

        none of this has to do with the contention argument.

  32. So the mariners could have interest in Escobar at SS. Also it keeps being mentioned that Seattle is interested in catchers, and JPA may be of interest. Are those 2,Escobar and JPA, major league players, a good start with some top end pitching prospects enough to get the ball rolling on Felix? Would Seattle ever make a move and if they get mlb ready players mean they would be less likely to trade away their star pitcher?

    • If the Mariners are going to do a major rebuild (which you’d assume they would do if they traded Felix) they may prefer Darnaud and Hech over JPA and Escobar.

      I mean, Darnaud (less valued at the time), Drabek (more highly valued at the time) and Taylor got Halladay with a year left. But the Jays felt they had to trade him.

      If the Mariners felt they wanted to deal, I feel like you could create something around Darnaud, Hech and one of their higher tier minor league pitchers.

  33. naw. there is no way the Jays trade D’arnaud. Or JPA…unless they are absolutely certain one is significantly better than the other…and then again only when they have a serviceable backup catcher who is more than a placeholder/emergency player (Hi My Name is Jeff Mathis).

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the jays are really only looking to trade guys where they have 3 player depth at a position. And I don’t think they really have that anywhere right now.

    • Since when is Jeff Mathis not a serviceable backup? Fantastic defensive catcher, and he shows flashes of power and the ability to hit balls hard.

      • what I mean is that your depth level talent is practically field worth in its own right.

        Imagine a situation where d’Arnaud is all he seems to be and where an injury to him means you have a guy like JPA as your depth. That’s pretty phenomenal depth. I’d feel pretty great about that….and I can’t see arguing that you’d feel quite as excited as Mathis being that guy.

        Isn’t this how teams like the Yanks are? I seem to recall last couple of years they’d get an injury and the guy they’d bring in ends up being as good or better than the everyday starter they had in there anyway. That’s insane….and a lovely place to be if its your team.

    • You can’t be absolutely sure on anybody. What you can do is take all the information (including the input of all those wonderful scouts we keep hearing about) you’ve got and make a decision either way. Just don’t sit on depreciating assets for fear of making the wrong decision. The strength of this regime was supposed to be scouting and player evaluation, now’s the time to get it right.

      • if you’re looking to make a run at something this year, then yes, would mostly agree.

        but when you’re not then you’ve got a luxury of a bit more time. if you get 2 months look at d’Arnaud maybe you have enough info to still consider a trade for him or JPA before year is out. I don’t see the market on these guys taking a mountain-level drop for the sake of 2-3 months extra time. Teams making a run would still likely have use for these positions.

  34. I’m probably in the minority, but I think I would really like to see John Farrell try David Cooper leading off, followed by Yunel Escobar. He’s not going to hit for power up here, and he’s proving to be a singles machine, I feel it could be a good fit.

    • Yeah, I’d say you’re in the minority.

      I actually like how the line-up kinda sits right now in the top 4:

      Johnson
      Rasmus (against righties); Escobar (against lefties)
      Bautista
      Encarnated

      You need a high OBP in the top spot, and Johnson has that. If or when they have someone more qualified, I’d like Johnson in the 5th spot.

  35. Escobar is probably my favourite Blue Jays position player, but it entirely depends on what is on offer. If some team is going to fork over one of the game’s top ten prospects who is somewhat close to big league ready for Escobar then you have to at least listen even if the front office really does believe that the team can contend this year and feels that trading Escobar would be an obvious downgrade at shortstop.

  36. I’m not sure if it’s been mentioned, but the Cubs are apparently open to trading Starlin Castro. The Jays have a deep farm and not many of these shit-hot prospects are going to amount to anything more than replacement-level players — not because they’re bad prospects, but that’s just the ratio of how many prospects amount to good players. Castro is a complete hacker, but is only 22 and is only going to get better, so i wouldn’t mind Anthopoulos at least kicking the tires on him.

    Thoughts?

    • Our GM ninja has already kicked the tires on castro, and every other player in the majors and minors and Cuba and brazil and everywhere, he never sleeps, he can smell talent from 10 miles away and rip a phonebook in half with one hand.

  37. The thing is this is probably more of the media talking out their asses right now. Guesses on their parts and nothing more imo as getting any information out of the Fort Knox like Jays front office doesn’t seem likely. With the draft a few days away I am sure there are more pressing things on AA’s plate right now and will be for the next couple of weeks when you factor in getting the draft picks signed.

    I also think the coming month is really going tell us what this team has got as group as it stands now. Only the Brewers are currently under .500 and the Jays have a big interleague stretch of games to play.

    Over the last few years, interleague play and the month of June haven’t been kind to the Jays. Adding to that is the caliber of teams they are facing and you’re really going to be able to see if they have it or don’t.

    In fact the Jays schedule over the last 20 days and the next 30 is kind of ridiculous with only the Brewers being under .500 in that 50 day stretch and they’re not exactly pushovers with 3 good starters. If this team can come out ahead even by a couple of games then I would say it’s a team worth adding to more than anything else. If they manage to be right around .500 or even a game or two below in that stretch I’d say that’s a pretty good accomplishment all by itself considering the competition and even then I would be hesitant in selling off pieces.

    • i think you forgot about a KC at the start of july

    • and if you want to talk about interesting scheduling, from Aug 24 to sept 30, the jays only play one series outside the AL East, if they get hot then, they could make up alot of games, or of course lose alot of ground as well, either way it should be an interesting end of the season.

  38. Its refreshing to see an article where somebody thinks keeping the established guy is a good idea, rather than saying “get rid of him soon, cause we KNOW the next guy is gonna be better”, so thanks being cautious and holding this opinion

  39. Couple things, the first question I had when I read this is what would the jays be getting in return? It says a pitcher but are we talking a 4 , 5 guy or a young potential 2, 3 guy. If it is a low end starter or a relief guy I would rather keep Escobar. Second point, a lot of the articles I read or hear about on the jays prospects is all about their pitching depth. Going into May and even now I would say their weakness is their hitting depth. To take away another decent bat and replace it with a unproven guy and another pitcher I would say your going sideways. I would rather see Escobar traded for a young top first base prospect or left fielder. I know you can never have enough pitchers but you keep adding more at some point guys are going to get lost in the shuffle and stuck in the minors for longer the they should.

  40. I wouldn’t trust any of those pitt guys in the AL East… I mean did you just seriosly suggest AJ Burnett? Or Eric “3 pitches away from the DL” Bedard?
    And McCarthy or Parker? meh. Not enough of an upgrade to make it worthwhile

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