From the Belly of the Beest

Literally the second we got out of the studio from recording yesterday’s podcast, which ended off with a lot of talk about Paul Beeston, his apparent sequestration from the media, and the poor job he’s done in general with respect to managing expectations, and there was his ruddy face on the screen of the TV above my desk, as he was, at the very moment we were dumping on him, whipping up expectations in a conversation with guest crew Jeff Blair and Paul Jones on Prime Time Sports.

The talk also included segments about Ricky Romer-woe and the questions about system-wide medical practices and pitching mechanics that have come up in the wake of the club’s injury disaster this year, but, obviously, that’s not what anybody is going to be talking about– least of all, us.

“We went into the 2012 season expecting that we could really make a move, and the way it’s gone, this was a year for us to actually make that move,” he said, referring presumably to the extra Wild Card spot and the vulnerability of the Red Sox and Rays that we’ve witnessed. “But we had the injuries.”

He’s not entirely wrong, of course– though, let’s not pretend like this was a championship-calibre roster that’s only problem was injury– but he quickly made clear that he understands the poor optics of such a statement. “That’s not an excuse,” he continued, “because a lot of teams have injuries. If we sit back and say we’re the only team with injuries– you know, we’re not. A lot of teams have had them.

“But, you know, our pitching has been OK,” he continued, referring to the under-appreciated fact that guys like Carlos Villanueva, Aaron Laffey, and JA Happ have done at least as well as you could have expected of Drew Hutchison and Kyle Drabek. Getting rambly, he goes on to say that the issue has “been the hitting at the present time– we don’t seem to be able to score runs, and it’s made it difficult. But we will gut it out.”

“Alex has done a terrific job of building the farm system,” he adds, non sequitur-ishly, “but the future, I like to think is now.”

And there we have the key refrain.

“I think that we’re at a point right now where we’ve got to make a move. We’ve got to be aggressive. We’ve got to put ourselves in a position where we’ve got a chance for next year [italics mine], which means that I think we have to be either in the trade market or the free agent market.”

Now, I only italicize the word “chance” because of the inflection in Beeston’s voice. He will use the word again later, slightly more emphatically, making a distinction– at least in my hearing of it– between the incredibly tiresome “hey, we’re pretty average, but if everything humanly possibly breaks our way, who knows?” kind of chance we’ve been sold on forever, and something resembling an actual, legitimate chance.

“The rebuild and the infrastructure is now completed,” he says.

It’s an interesting, hopeful notion, but one that makes me wonder, then, how serious they will be when the opportunity arises to start dealing in some of the prospect capital they’ve built up over the last three years. If a Latos- or Gio-like scenario arises involving, say, Brett Anderson, or Jeff Samardzija, or Lucas Harrell, is that “finished” pipeline going to be in play, or are we going to be pinning our hopes in 2013 on whatever JP Arencibia, Yunel Escobar, a handful of cheap relievers and/or Rogers’ fucking benevolence might bring?

Whatever the case, Beeston is at least saying the right things– Quelle Surprise!– about not making another go of it with the same basic roster we saw this year.

“I think that we’ve now got to put the Blue Jays– for their fans and for everybody else, and for the team itself,” he says, “we’ve got to show them that we’re committed to winning. And I think that this off-season is gonna be one of those off-seasons where it’s gonna be very important for us to go out and be aggressive and to improve the team and give us a chance to win.”

Tremendous words, if there was any reason to– y’know– believe them. Unfortunately for Beeston– and I truly mean thta it’s unfortunate, given that the club has spent a lot more than people want to give them credit for over the past three years, albeit not on the free agent market– he’s going to have to put his money where his mouth is if he expects to satisfy anyone– the most conservative, patient, all-believing Anthopoulos acolytes included. And speaking of money…

“I will say this: it’s not going down,” he says, with respect to payroll, punctuating his money quote with a hefty guffaw.

But, holy shit, I think he can be pretty safely held to account on that statement, technically, seeing as– according to Cot’s– the Jays already have about $65-million committed to 13 players (assuming Davis and Oliver have their options picked up), about $10-million more slated for arbitration eligibles (assuming Litsch, Cecil and Laffey are tendered contracts– Happ and Rasmus most certainly will), and another four million, I figure, for pre-arb contracts to fill out the 25-man roster, which means they’re already only around five-million short of this year’s $83.74-million Opening Day figure.

I mean, whoopty fuck, right? But, bless our soulless greed-eyed corporate overlords, Beeston at least leaves the door open for payroll to go higher.

“The degree it goes up will be dependent on what is available and what we’re able to achieve. I don’t think there’s anybody in the organization, including the ownership, that doesn’t think that we should be taking it to the next level. That doesn’t mean that we’re going to be crazy, though, from the point of view of ten-year, twelve-year, thirteen-year contracts. But that doesn’t mean that we’re not going to go out and try to get the best players, so that we give ourselves a chance. We think that we’re close right now.”

Those really are fantastic words from the team president, if you’re capable of taking them at face value. The problem, of course, that Beeston knows he’s slippery enough (no, not literally… although?) to not worry so much about creating a problem with his mouth that he can’t later wriggle his way out of, which… probably sounds a whole lot dirtier than it needs to.

“The building of the minor leagues and putting ourselves in a position for the future, all of that has been put in place,” he says. “It’s now time to return something to a) those people who’ve supported us, and b) the players themselves.”

Well… let’s fucking see it, huh?

Comments (181)

  1. wheres the nl trade pitching post?

  2. Jesse Chavez to Oakland for cash considerations….were on our way now……..

  3. “Well… let’s fucking see it, huh?”

    That’s pretty much it, isn’t it?

    I mean, I really can’t expect Beeston to say much more than he did – coming out and saying “payroll will go up to $XXX’ is folly for a multitude of reasons – but ultimately it comes down to what they do, what they spend and who they get.

    I do believe it’s time to start putting the money where the mouth is.

  4. The fuckin jays had to come out with this after the nut kicking fans took. And Beest has lots of outs over the winter. Wasn t a reasonable price or length, didnt want to come here blah blah blah. donkey shit

  5. In the next 20 years, I would expect that we would win the world series 15 to 16 times

  6. The no shit sherlock comment of the day: The payroll isn’t going down.

    Or as Stoeten accurately underscores, the payroll has to go up to account for existing contracts and pending arbitration cases (please pass on Litsch though).

    I think what fans want to hear is this. We want to hear Beeston actually say that the Jays project the payroll going up in the $125M to $135M range (minimum). Otherwise, all this talk about being aggressive in the offseason and getting players who can give the team a chance to win is just bullshit.

    • But it can’t really go up that much. They might have the ability to go that high, but there might not be the players available who allow the team to go to that payroll. Hell, even if they threw an astounding $25mill at Greinke (and he took it), who are they giving the other $20-25million to? Sure they could theoretically trade for players with high contracts, but if the team can’t get to a $125mill payroll without being stupid about it, then I’m not going to fault them.

      • Too many holes on the roster, especially in the rotation. A big name pitcher is required along with a solid innings eater. LF is a fucking joke right now. And does having Hech and Escobar in the middle infield really the answer? I hope not.

        To account for the additions, you can allocate $30M to $35M to the existing $90M + salary structure (if you project arbitration raises). This would come up to the $120M to $125M range. That is not crazy money. It would put the Jays back in the conversation as a contending team, if the right players can be signed (FA or trade). Add another $10M for the final piece or pieces (bench player, extra bat, whatever), and you are approaching $130M to $135M.

        • I’d rather see the 125-140 mil in the years of 2014 and beyond, when it’s a sustained competitive operation

    • “We want to hear Beeston actually say that the Jays project the payroll going up in the $125M to $135M range (minimum).”

      Right. And then if the Jays get turned down by the “big names” they go after through no fault of their own, ownership gets labelled “cheap”, “liars”, etc.

      Also, putting an exact # out there decreases their leverage to an extent with the agents of those “big names” we all hope they’d pursue.

      Putting $$ figures out in the public doesn’t help in any way shape or form.

      • Who the fuck cares what the public thinks. FA’s and their agents know the deal. Not saying it should be a proclamation, but jesus, lets see some committment dollar wise.

        • “Who the fuck cares what the public thinks. ”

          The team?

          • Let’s rephrase. Beeston says that they want to be aggressive. In the real world, this translates to spending an extra $30M this offseason.

            Anything else is just bullshit. So yeah, the team doesn’t really care what the public thinks.

          • @ballsdeep

            what if they can only spend 25? or 15? What if they offer a blank cheque to every top-notch FA and no one signs? Would the “real world” be okay with that?

      • naw buddy they get turned down because they’re looking for “value”. they’re not outbidding people and still being shut down. maybe by beltran but even then the difference was marginal.

        face it they are cheap…or in the business world “cost effective” conscious

        • What’s wrong with value? Ask Boston what happens when you overspend on FAs.

          And we were using hypotheticals with Greinke or any FA. It’d take at least one massive (and probably dumb) contract to get the team to 125mill.

    • maybe Beeston should take you into the CEO’s office with him so you can help him make his case for the extra $50 million?

      • $125M (projected payroll with FA or trade acquisitions) minus $90M (projected existing 2013 payroll) equals $35M.

    • Here’s the problem with this “lets increase payroll for the sake of increasing payroll”:

      You have to actually have fucking players deserving of this kind of fucking money. You don’t want to hamstring your entire organization with a shitty contract. We ship out Vernon Wells and immediately you have these idiots wanting to fucking throw money around at whoever will take it.

      Last year, did you really want to run out and sign Prince Fielder or Albert Pujols? Contracts that their respective teams will be regretting before the contracts are even half-way over? EE is putting up numbers (fWAR) that are higher than Pujols and slightly lower than Fielder this year, for a fucking fraction of the cost.

      I said last offseason that the Jays should have went out and looked at someone like Yu Darvish or Cespedes last year. Darvish isn’t playing at all like a $100 million dollar player though, and Cespedes defense is absolutely terrible (although he could be a pretty good DH for this team).

      Who do we realistically have for next year? Greinke, who is going to cost 20-25 mill per season, who probably won’t come to Toronto, and has been playing like dog-shit since moving to the Angels. Dempster is old and has been exposed as an NL product. McCarthy is hurt too often, Lewis is coming off injury. Anibal hasn’t really done that well in the AL, EJax may want to resign with the Nationals (but would be a good pickup, especially since he dropped Boras). Haren will probably have his option turned down, Kuroda is probably going back to Japan…

      I mean, I just can’t see how you can look at this FA class and say, let’s fucking drop 40 mill/year on these guys. Do you want fucking Swisher? Swisher is going to get Ethier money, at the very least. 5 years of Swisher declining at 85 million? Ortiz has been hurt for a while now, and is getting pretty damn old… do we want him at 2 years/25-30 million? I just don’t know. But spending money for the sake of spending money is retarded. When you really need that money to be made available, guess what? You have Prince Fielder locked up for another 5 years at 100+ million and you have to let those critical pieces walk away because you have declining assets signed for the long term.

      • agreed.

      • Agreed. Last year was the year for this, when Pujols, Fielder, Darvish and Cespedes were available and the Sox and Yanks weren’t bidding. Now, a year late, Beeston comes waddling out of his executive bathroom with stink lines behind him, ready to spend money when there isn’t a 130 OPS+ guy available.

        (I also kinda love how, what, twenty minutes after he said this, news broke that the Red Sox put Adrian Gonzalez on waivers. Seeing how the Dodgers claimed him, Gonzalez made it past every AL team. Not saying that the Jays should have nabbed him, but I find it amusing that after Beeston’s latest round of empty words and honeyed promises there was a clear opportunity to grab a big bat for big money and hope the Sox just say, “Fine, take him” and it didn’t happen. It’s amusing how quickly events conspire to (possibly!) reveal Beeston’s sad sack bullshit.)

        But yeah, this seems like the wrong off-season to throw money at people if Grienke refuses to come to Canada.

        • Disagree their is more pitching available in free agency this year. Let’s face it, was fielder and Pujols for 25-30 mill smart for the jays? NO… but 15-20 on a few free agent pitchers combined is smarter and there are more sp options this year.

      • “Last year, did you really want to run out and sign Prince Fielder or Albert Pujols? Contracts that their respective teams will be regretting before the contracts are even half-way over? EE is putting up numbers (fWAR) that are higher than Pujols and slightly lower than Fielder this year, for a fucking fraction of the cost.”

        dont even need to read the rest of the post here’s my response…
        yes i would have wanted both those guys..i want this team to admit they have the capital to spend like this and in the last few decling years of these guys deals they will spend more to mitigate their declining impact.

        who the hell cares about value if your spending half of what these other teams are spending year in year out? why do you need this amazing return on your money? if we dont sign the top guys we dont win. thats why they get paid. sure edwin broke out…had a great year…but you gunna bank your fucking season on that?

        so the angels took on vernon’s deal…they still went out and made moves…got pujols. got wilson. got greinke. they want to fucking win. they are willing to spend what it takes…to win.

        this small market mentality of “oh dont do that 6 years from now it wont be worth it and we wont have anything left to spend” is trash. up the fucking payroll ..put your balls out there and take a shot.

        you cant play in safe and expect to win championships..especially not north of the border.

        • @Tyler

          “who the hell cares about value if your spending half of what these other teams are spending year in year out? why do you need this amazing return on your money?”

          Because Rogers is a fucking public company. It never fails to stun me how many people don’t grasp this simple concept. The ownership doesn’t give a fuck about whether the team wins, they just want to make more money. Fortunately for fans, winning team = more money. If this insults you, go cheer for the Yankees and Dallas Mavericks. If you still want to cheer for the Blue Jays then it’s a fact you simply need to accept.

          By the way, Mark Cuban also runs the Mavericks to maximize his ROI. Thinking this is unique to corporately owned teams is folly.

      • Who says that an increase in payroll will come exclusively via the overpriced FA market? The trade market remains a better option for the Jays. However, to get quality players, the Jays will have to take on some larger contracts.

        My earlier post doesn’t mention name. Nowhere did I suggest that the Jays go after Greinke. For one, he wants to stay in California. And two, the Jays were on his no-trade list. It would take a dramatic overpay to nab a Greinke.

        Beeston needs to put the proverbial money where his mouth is.

        Adding $30M to $35M to the projected $90M payroll would be a good starting point. A snazzy trade or two to fill out the rotation and address LF should remain the top priority. Add in a free agent, even just a middle-tier FA player, with some trades, and you will easily gobble up the extra payroll.

        Anything else to me is just pure bullshit. As for Swisher, nowhere did I mention that he would be a great pickup. He’s looking for Jason Werth type money. I wish him luck with that.

      • Fielder is lookin’ GOOD, and Illich made a smart buy.

  7. i would love (LOVE) to see ther jays take the next step this offseason. It is literally my dream to see them make the playoffs. BUT this team just isnt very good. And the free agents out there arent great either. This was the whole point about going out and getting Fielder last offseason. It wasnt that we were ready for the 2012 season, its that he would be in place for 2013 and beyond when the farm team catches up. Now i know the jays wouldnt have matched what the Tigers ended up giving him, but they werent even in the bidding! Add to all this that Gose and Hech cant hit for shit and your looking at another dissapointing season in 2013, I mean how is the jays time now when the vast majority of our prime prospects are in double a?

    • A thought:

      If the Jays get Fielder, does Edwin get the chance to become 2012 Edwin? Fielder likely plays 1st all year, and Lind would likely have gotten the majority of ABs @ DH at the start of the season.

      • I can’t speak for the team’s plans, but most fans wanted the team to keep Edwin in the lineup and upgrade/dump Adam Lind. So it likely wouldn’t have impacted Edwin.

      • That is a good point. The Jays would have probably kept Lind.

        but would Edwin be kept on the bench?

        Same issue with Bautista/Rios.

        If Rios does not get waived, does bautista get full time at bats in right field?

    • Mike Trout couldn’t ‘hit for shit’ last year either.

      • I think there’s a difference between mike trout and gose and hech. Trout is an all around player whereas the 2 hats are defense first. Also I doubt trout looked as lost as gose consistently does

      • Trout didn’t “hit for shit” he was above replacement level and hit 5 HR’s while being 2 years younger than Gose.

        He just didn’t have a Lawrie or Harper type debut, so casual fans thought he was a bust

    • I get tired of hearing about how this team is the bee’s fucking knees. If you think we’re one or two pieces away, you are fucking absolutely delusional. And don’t cite some sort of runs scored metric either, might as well fucking talk about how many RBIs so-and-so has. What does it matter if we beat a team 13-1 if we lose the next fucking 3 games 2-1, 1-0, 3-1? OH WOW OUR RUNS SCORED SO AWESOME!@!@!@!@!@!@!@!@ Doesn’t mean shit.

      Even without injuries, this offense is missing a strong presence at the DH/1B and LF spots. It is ok if we get limited production at SS/2B/Catcher if we can fill those holes. But running out Adam Lind and Rajai Davis makes it that much harder. Our entire offense is going to rely on fucking Bautista and EE… the only two guys who have produced consistently. And realistically, Bautista slumped hard in the beginning of the year, and was pedestrian after the All Star Break last year. Even he hasn’t produced consistently. After this injury, who knows what he’s going to be like? We’ll just have to wait and see.

      Point being, this team needs two good bats. It also needs people who can actually fucking get on base. Who gives a shit if you have two of the best sluggers in the game if all they can hit are fucking solo jacks? This team is absolutely filled with fucking hackers who can’t take a fucking walk. For all the credit Cooper has got since his call-up, fucker can’t walk. Escobar can’t walk. Rasmus can’t walk. Lawrie can’t walk. Sierra can’t walk. JPA can’t walk… the list goes on and on.

      The bullpen probably won’t be so bad… I can imagine we’ll see a little better performance out of Lincoln, and Delabar will probably be a little shittier than we’ve seen as of late.

      • This post doesn’t even cover starting rotation needs, and the fact that Villaneuva is walking and Oliver may very well retire at the end of the year.

      • Wow wow, you made some ok point, I agree that anyone who thinks they are only 1 or 2 pieces away from a championship is delusional, but are you saying they need to get some guys who can walk? Wow, great stategy, let’s walk our way to a world series … How come nobody ever thought of that before? Because it’s retarded, that’s why.

    • AGon Crawford AND Beckett to LAD? Wow….

    • The team with normal injuries is pretty good. And keep in mind, we’re not in 2006 or something where you need 95 wins in the AL East to make the playoffs. If this team can manage 85+ they’re in the conversation probably.

  8. So this is about to become a Rogers-owned blog. Interesting.

    The Globe and Mail’s Steve Ladurantye tweets that Rogers will announce that they have purchased the score at the end of the day.

  9. Typical Rogers, with their lies and doublespeak, what a bunch of cheap –
    (comment mysteriously disappears from screen, thugs brandishing phone-repair equipment as weapons knock ominously at front door)

  10. I bet Rogers only bought the score because of their fancy phone apps. I’m sure a third of their board of directors don’t even know what a blog is.

    • The sale to Rogers of the SCORE has not been confirmed yet. The asking price of $200 million is high.

      • I love how you were quick to say “hey it hasn’t been confirmed, it’s just speculation.” then 9 minutes later you post “BREAKING NEWS” about the Score being bought.

        • That’s right. Because I remember the 200 million price seemed very high based on revenue of 13 million per quarter.

          The actual purchase price is lower.

          I wonder how Roger will react to “an offbeat blog” .

          Will Stoeten & Parkes be allowed on the Rogers Sportsnet set.

          Parkes is preppy enough that he could fill in for Jamie Campbell.

          Would Rogers make Stoeten shave his beard??

  11. Talk is good and all–hell, desire is good too–but even if Beeston wants to go get a pitcher, even if Beeston is willing to bank the entire offseason on buying a pitcher no matter what the cost, where are the available pitchers to get?

    By my math there are about four teams that have pitching to spare–Tampa, Oakland, Texas, and Arizona. Maybe Washington too if you count “Lannan” as “available pitching.”

    Then you have rebuilding teams, that don’t care if you’re taking their last MLB quality pitcher if you give them prospects. Minnesota, Houston, Cubs, San Diego, Colorado, Miami, and maaaaybe Philly and Milwaukee. Most of these teams are rebuilding because they *don’t* have quality starting pitching.

    How many available starters are we talking about here? Maybe 12, tops?

    Almost every team that thinks they got a contending or near-contending core wants starting pitching. And with the introduction of the second wild card, just about everyone fancies themselves a contender these days. Starting pitching does not grow on trees. Supply is not close to demand. This means the price is going to go way up. And when the price for a, say, Jarrod Parker, turns out to be Sanchez, Nicolino, AND Syndergaard, is AA really going to want to pay that price?

    • I don’t think Alex is going to want to trade his entire farm away for 1-2 pieces. I could see a significant package being put together for a 1-3 starter though.

      The problem is that second wild card spot is going to make so many more teams feel as though “they are in it.” Less teams are clearly defined sellers, willing to take prospect capital for their major league ready players. Alex said it himself, this year was completely different, as more teams wanted major leaguers as opposed to prospects in any deal.

      Free agency is also a two-way street — how many FAs really want to make that trip up North for similar money? The Jays are going to have to massively overpay to get those first few free agents over here. Maybe once the culture changes, and the Jays start winning again, Toronto will become a more attractive destination for FAs.

      • Good points.

        It would be easier to overpay in $$$ vs prospects, but would Rogers be willing to take on potentially bad contracts??

  12. Can we have a Paul Beeston “Please believe my fucking horseshit” photoshop please?

  13. BREAKING NEWS:

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/rogers-communications-to-acquire-score-media/article4497481/?cmpid=rss1

    Stoeten, Parkes & Drew at a 2012 Rogers Xmas party with Jamie Campbell, Buck & Tabby????

    That would be a hell of a roundtable next year!!.

    Congratulations!. Stock price up 46%. I should have invested in the SCORE.

    • “The Score, based in Toronto, earns most of its revenue from its television station that specializes in offbeat commentary and second-tier sports such as college basketball and professional wrestling”

      ahahahhaha. wrestling as a sport. ahahahhahahaha

    • Holy fucking son of a bitch.

      This has Stoeten’s fingerprints all over it.
      Part of his master plan.
      Start blog.
      Blog purchased by the Score.
      Score purchased by Rogers.
      Then advances to Sportsnet.
      Up the chain to become CEO of Rogers
      Then takeover the World as ransom it for one BILLION Dollars.
      Or three cases of Heineken. and 2 extra large pizzas.

      That Stoeten’s a sneaky fuck.
      Laying in the bushes,claiming to be an independant blogger, all the time wanting to be world president.
      Fuckhead.

  14. guess stoeten cant shit on the jays anymore when they’re bought by rogers

  15. I don’t know what this all means for the Score, Stoeten, Parkes and Drew, but here’s hoping it works out for the best. It’d be a shame otherwise.

  16. Stoeten, did you guys know about this, or did you find out the same way we did?

    • My friend works in the mobile division as a developer, he said everyone found out through the globe article

  17. is this the end of getting blanked/djf?

    • I doubt it. Rogers online content sucks balls; the score’s doesn’t. I think it is safe to say that the blogs will be relatively safe from any change to “payroll parameters”.

      That being said, i hope Parkes, Stotes and Drew were getting stock options as part of their pay.

    • Gotta imagine DJF is done.

      • They’ll be fine. It just might mean the end of fun comments like “those cheap HUGS at Rogers”

      • I think JRocks right. Rogers probably wants The Scores mobile/web stuff, and as yet another channel to show Jays/Leafs/Raps.

        I bet they don’t fuck w the online stuff too much. But what do I know.

  18. no more swear words kiddies!

    • Go shove-it you cheap-skate mother fornicators

    • Oh, and please stop referring to us as “oligopolists”, the CRTC might find out and decide to let in more foreign competition. muahahahahhahaha

    • The following blogs will be renamed:

      DJF is now Designated Driver Jays Fans or DDJF for short

      Getting Blanked is now Getting Straight Edged

  19. So i guess thescore will now be “Sportsnet 2″?

  20. When told of the acquisition of the Score by Rogers, Andrew Stoeten of Rogers-owned the Score, declined to comment on either a possible move to Rogers-owned Sportsnet, new profanity rules at Rogers-owned the Score or anything related to Rogers-owned properties, including the Rogers-owned Blue Jays and the Rogers-owned World’s Worst Baseball Broadcasting Crew™

  21. Betcha there is some tears in beers and ciders right now.

  22. Always with the deep intrigue here.

    The guy is willing to throw some money around. Hopefully someone under 40 wants to play here. Hopefully they don’t want a Pujols contract.

    It doesn’t exactly help your bargaining position to publicly state your budget. Or to say “We promise on our lives to sign a #1 pitcher”.

    I really don’t know what the fuck people expect them to say. Considering every inflection gets nitpicked, I’m amazed they bother saying anything.

  23. chavez traded for cash when they could have gotten a million from japan. nothing to see here, move on

  24. We need pitching. We are stuck with Romero (hey others are having off years too) and Morrow is good.

    We need 3 more out of Laffey, CV, Happ, Cecil, Alvarez, Drabek, Hutchison.

    I say sign one big free agent starter.

    Keep Happ as another starter.

    Trade as many of the remaining guys as you need to + JPA and/or Yunel and land one other top starter.

    Then you have Morrow, Romero, Happ, a free agent stud and a traded stud.

    With kids in the minors coming up soon enough after.

  25. It’s been a pig of a season, but I’ve been happy about a couple of things. One of them being the transition of E5 to EE. The other being the speed we’ve got going now. Speed kills and we haven’t had this many fast runners for a long while.

    Beeston’s is being disingenuous as usual. The club will spend but won’t take on any ridiculous contracts. But it’s gonna take ‘ridiculous’ contracts for anyone to come and play here. Seriously, Mr Free Agent’s Agent is really gonna back up the truck to get his client to forgive the foreign country, the 19 years in the wilderness and now fifth behind everyone else in the toughest division in baseball. I think if they are serious they will have to go the trade route and everyone knows what their deficits are so the price to ship off a mediocre pitcher to Toronto just went sky-high. I’m not blaming anyone for this,situation. AA thought the kids would be better than they were. But here we are. And short of ridiculousness I’m not sure how we improve.

    • Just curious, when has Beeston been disingenuous? People seem to be talking about him as though he’s some used car salesman. I just don’t see it. I’m not sure he’s said anything yet that I’ve thought was utter bullshit.

      Beeston said he expected the team to be in the playoffs two or three times in the next five years. Is that disingenuous? (it’s always funny that people say he said 3 in 5. He said 2 or 3 in 5, as we can see here: http://www.cbc.ca/sports/baseball/mlb/story/2012/01/31/sp-mlb-jays-anthopoulos-franchise.html

      He said he wanted to look into grass at the Dome and they did just that, and he’s stated that they could do it but right now it wouldn’t work with the Argos and the Dome’s status as a multi-purpose facility.

      He’s said repeatedly that Rogers is willing to hand over money when AA wants it. AA has said that Beeston has asked him if he wants more money to work with, but AA has rejected it. If what Beeston said yesterday about being aggressive is true, then we’ll see if Rogers is really going to open their chequebooks, but my guess is Beeston wouldn’t make such a comment if it wasn’t true. He understands the PR storm that can be created in this city. I’d say yesterday’s comments were calculated and by no means disingenuous. If in a year from now we’re looking at a team that hasn’t made a move (or at the very least hasn’t made overt attempts to get the players they need) then I’ll be proven wrong and will be as disappointed as everyone else.

      Are there any other Beeston-isms that I’m missing that show just how disingenuous he is?

      • And just to add to the above point about making the playoffs 2 or 3 in 5 seasons. Is that really far-fetched for this club? Could they not have been at least in the conversation this year if not for having to field a AA and AAA team/pitching staff? Sure there are holes, but I don’t think anyone would argue that they couldn’t have at least played meaningful games in September with a healthier lineup.

        In the AL East, you can’t guarantee a division pennant. It’s just not possible. But I think this is a team that should believe they can be one of the top 5 teams in the AL. SO I don’t think it was far-fetched for anyone in the organization to make the 2/3 in 5 claim.

      • I’ve heard him over the years at season ticket holder jamborees etc double-speaking with the best of them. But since I can’t come up with anything egregious I will take that word back concerning past behavior. However I believe it it disingenuous of him in this instance to say they are going to be aggressive in the off-season and then qualify it in the quote above that starts ‘the degree (payroll) goes up…’. It’s going to be very difficult to get decent free agents to come here, especially pitchers since pitching is needed everywhere and he knows that. So although this statement sounds great, I’m gonna hold off the applause until I see exactly what gets done this winter.

        • Fair enough, but all they can do is try to get guys to come here. If being aggressive doesn’t work, what else can they do? The only other way to acquire a player would be via trade, and like the free agent market, you only have so many targets.

          Personally, I’d rather he come out and say “we have a team that’s on the cusp and we’re going to try to get guys in here to take the next step” and I don’t know how you can fault him for doing that.

          But I agree, I too will hold off and see what happens.

    • Good post Isabella.

      Sadly, the team is now in 5th & will probably end the season in last place.

      Does Baltimore regress next year?

      Unfortunately, the price for starting pitcher is probably higher for next year than this year.

      Also, some free agent pitchers may be scared about joining the Jays after all the injuries.

      It’s bad karma.

      • karma? are we seriously mentioning karma now as a reason why the Jays won’t compete?

        And are we seriously suggesting that anyone would look at the Jays roster and say “I’m not going there, players were getting hurt last year.” Name an example of that ever happening to any team, ever? How many players have signed to play under Dusty Baker over the years?

        Do you think before you type?

  26. Well, I still believe in what AA is doing. I wonder if he will get aggressive enough to trade Rickey Romero though. I also wonder if they will play Siera in left next year…

  27. From Dan Plesac ‏
    Reports both #redsox Josh Beckett and #Diamondbacks Justin Upton claimed on waiver trade by unidentified teams

  28. http://espn.go.com/boston/mlb/story/_/id/8300112/adrian-gonzalez-carl-crawford-josh-beckett-nearing-boston-red-sox-exit-sources-say

    “The Dodgers and Red Sox are closing in on a deal to send Adrian Gonzalez, Josh Beckett, Carl Crawford and Nick Punto to Los Angeles, though a few hurdles remain before it’s official, multiple baseball sources said Friday.”

    HOLD ONTO YOUR BUTTS, FOLKS

  29. whhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhat that is insane. talk about a total rehaul

  30. Oh man, if Roger’s buys the score can DJF go back to the old site!?

  31. maybe boston is clearing up space so they can try and sign Hamilton?

  32. Stoeten needs to come out with a State of the Blog Address. Perhaps sell us on a rebuild of the blog under the watchful eye of Rogers. A new young, athletic and controllable blog.

  33. Here’s a concept: instead of treating free agency as an all or nothing proposition with big tickets like Fielder or Greinke…why not just overpay on short term deals for above average major leaguers.

    Would Beltran honestly not have come to Toronto if they offered him an extra $10 mill guaranteed? Would Jackson or Kuroda not have come for an extra $5 million?

    I have very little faith in Rogers spending on the club if they don’t see immediate returns. If the Jays signed Greinke and he turned into a mere mid-rotation starter and the team wins in the 80-85 range it’ll be Vernon Wells all over again.

    I’d have zero issue if the Jays have to give Edwin Jackson or Shaun Marcum a few mill extra on short term deals. Same for Swisher. There shouldn’t be excuses for being cheap this offseason even if it’s 3 or 4 good players instead of 1 great player.

  34. For those that haven’t seen it before, or needed a reminder, here’s the Rogers Wall of Bullshit. Haven’t added to this in a while, but only time will tell which Beeston statements this time make it (I’d love for it to be none, but that wouldn’t be entirely realistic now, would it?).

    It’s a possibility (re-signing AJ Burnett),” Beeston said. “We can spend $100 million, but if it doesn’t make sense, why do it?” -Paul Beeston, 11.28.08

    “We won’t be in on anyone who’s going to cost any money. This is going to be a year where a lot of our kids are going to get exposure. That’s going to be a fun thing, to see how some of these kids develop.” -JP Ricciardi, 12.23.08

    “Also, Paul Beeston was on Prime Time Sports on the Fan 590 this afternoon, talking about the Jays’ payroll situation, linking it to the amount of revenues the team takes in– or is able to take in. He said that the payroll could conceivably be $120M, if the team could make enough to justify that, which sounds good, except that he was also going on about the foundation of young ballplayers that are coming up. “- Andrew Stoeten of DJF, citing Beeston’s words on PTS, 12.23.08

    “We can’t justify a $120-million payroll. We have to get the thing back to a break-even position. At that point, you can start increasing your revenue and then start increasing your salaries. The two are inextricably tied together. You cannot sustain losses forever. We thought maybe we’d take a little step back this year. We have a problem with the economy. You don’t want to hear that — that’s not your concern.”” -Paul Beeston, 01.20.09

    “If I said the money (should) have been there this year it would have been there, I just didn’t believe it in my own mind. If I’d say, ‘We should do this, we should spend that,’ I just didn’t believe that one or two new players were going to put this team where we want it to be. And if we believe in our farm system, why would we want all these long-term contracts?” -Paul Beeston, 04.03.09

    “I mean, we keep being told that 2010 is the year they’ll be competitive, so then why, if they had this money, weren’t they out there signing cheap two- or three-year contracts this off-season, with an eye to next year? Do they think that it’s going to be even more of a buyers’ market next winter? Well, then, you know, maybe say so. I don’t know, maybe it’s just that I’ve got a head full of cold medication, or maybe I’m just so jaded from all the years under Paul Godfrey, but I just can’t help but think we’re still being lied to here– only by much, much better liars.” – Andrew Stoeten of DJF on Beeston’s BS and how supposedly 2010 (lol) was going to be a contending year, 04.03.09

    Beeston said that the Jays have a “huge budget for our free agents this year,” but that does not mean Toronto will spend for the sake of spending. “Rogers buys into what we’re trying to do. If we get a free agent that we think can help us there’s not even a question we would go out and get him. Top free agents won’t want to come here until the Jays start winning again.” -Paul Beeston, 01.28.10

    “We should be able to support a $140 – $150 million payroll and that’s the direction we’re headed.” -Paul Beeston, 1.27.11

    I don’t know when we’re going to do it. It could be this year. It could be next year. It’s going to be when it’s the right deal that’s going to put us over the top.” -Paul Beeston, 10.10.11

    “We’re not there yet, we’re not going to go out and buy a team.” -Paul Beeston, 12.01.11

    “We’re still capable of going to the US$120m payroll once we start drawing the people. … The formula hasn’t changed.” -Paul Beeston, 12.06.11

    • I’m pretty fucked up as I rely on JP Ricciardi for the truth.

      BFullmer Fan

    • Fullmer I’d like to thank you for your thoughtful posts.

      In the offseason, I was accepting of 2012 as a “building” year. In retrospect, I have no idea how I convinced myself I was okay with Alvarez, Drabek, Cecil, McGowan et al filling the 3-5 spots in the rotation.

      Yes, there has been a shit-ton of bad luck, but it shouldn’t mask the ongoing cheapness of Rogers.

      Frankly, I think if anyone were to go back and read Stoeten’s posts from the beginning of the winter and compared it to the end of the winter, they’d see your direct influence on him, and not just in the Fullmer-speak about Adam Lind “flailing away at lefties” and Rogers cheapness.

      Kudos.

      • And just to add to my previous statement, I’m having a hard time convincing myself that it makes more sense to spend some money to contend this offseason than it did last offseason.

        Let’s look back at the starting pitching depth chart heading into the year:

        Romero, Morrow, Alvarez, Drabek, McGowan, Cecil, Hutchison, McGuire, Jenkins and even Litsch.

        Through injury or underperformance, ALL 10 of these pitchers has taken a step back.

        Last offseason, 1 above average pitcher and 1 above average hitter would have made the Jays a realistic play-in game contender if nothing else.

        Now we’re looking at 2 hitters and 2 pitchers imo.

        • I’m really starting to think this team will never compete again. Not even trollin’ here.

        • I can’t take you seriously when you talk about Morrow taking a step back.

        • Yeah, if they didn’t spend last offseason (at what seemed like a perfect opportunity for the team), it’s hard to understand why they’d do it this offseason. The team has more question marks than it’s had at any time in the last year.

          The only “dependable” starting pitcher they have is a guy who has been hurt for half the year. They have no starting LF under contract for 2013, no starting 2B , their starting SS is having a brutal offensive campaign, their 1B/DH (Lind) has proven once again how useless he is, and their two major high level prospects (Gose and Hech) have been exposed as being nowhere near ready offensively for the jump to the MLB level.

          If the Jays seriously want to contend with the best teams in baseball in 2013 (which is what they need to do if they want to win the East), they better be ready to spend to fill these holes. And spend a lot. Does anybody seriously think they’re going to do that?

          • The roundtable on PTS today was equally negative.

            The consensus was the team is worse off now than at the beginning of the year.

            They traded away 2 of their LF’s for bullpen help.

            Is Rajai Davis the fulltime LF in 2013? I assume they have to use Gose or Sierra.

            That is a downgrade on offense with Gose.

            Romero should rebound, but to what level?

            Morrow should be OK , but coming back from injury.

        • Very good post.

          Be prepared to be called an idiot, negative fuckin piece of shit I was on yesterday’s podcast.

          At least Parkes defended me & felt my pain which is Clintoneque.

      • Damn straight!

    • @ Fullmer fan

      Excellent timing. It was hilarious to read through these posts once again because it shows how unreliable Beeston’s comments are.

      The comments by Stoeten at that time show that he was more of a cynic than he is now.

      I feel honored to be attacked personally by Stoeten during yesterday’s podcast in which your name surfaced as well.

      It’s funny that Stoeten knows that other people post ridiculous comments using my screen name but he still thinks it’s OK to call me a Fukin idiot.? He can tell by the IP addresses that 1/2 the posts are not by me.

      It will be interesting to see how the blog is affected by it’s new Rogers corporate owners.

      I suppose the rumors of Rogers buying the Score.com company were true .

      • My name surfaced? What about?

        Funny, though, as I hadn’t even posted here for quite a while. Apparently, I’m just never far from Stoeten’s mind.

        • They were talking about Steve Delabar.

          Stoeten was still not impressed with Delabar & was upset at fans who tweet back to him when he says something wrong.

          He said he would not back away from his comments for fear of dealing with unsufferable brad fullmer fans who show up who have no fucking life & wait for something disagreeable to happen & be a fucking twat .

          He was upset that you challenged him on things he had said previously.

          • Yeah, just listened to that part. That particular disagreement originated from a comment he made about Delabar being a shitty reliever based on his inflated HR rate shortly after they acquired him. I suggested that judging him based on such a small sample size was quite harsh (especially when it’s well known how often HR rates vary from season to season, particularly for relievers) and pointed to the good things that he does on the mound (namely his fantastic whiff and K rates due to his splitter).

            Sure, Stoeten’s known for his stubborness, but it seems the only reason he’s become so rigid on this issue is because I was the one who made that comment. It’s about time that he got over that petty grudge because it seems to even be affecting his judgement.

            I mean, you don’t have to call him a good reliever (I don’t think anybody know if he’s that yet), but it’s certainly easy to keep an open mind about a guy with the intriguing skillset of Steve Delabar rather than just criticize with little reason. Doesn’t Stoeten hate when “trolls” do that?

          • @Brad Fullmer Fan.

            Delabar is intriguing but I wonder about long term health.

            He has 8 screws & a metal plate in his elbow.

            Will his am fall off next year?

            I do agree that Stoeten can be stubborn. I am not sure why he is resorting to personal profane laced attacks, but I guess it’s funny.

          • True on Delabar, but basically every pitcher’s long-term health is questionable. Any arm in that pen could go down with a significant injury tomorrow and it wouldn’t be the least bit surprising to me.

    • That is an excellent post. And thanks for going up with a ton of Beeston’s double-speak comments which I could not do earlier!

  35. It was the afternoon of August 24, 2012, when, all of a sudden, everything changed.

  36. Stoeten’s had nearly 6 years to build a blog that can compete in the AL East. It’s been a mixed bag so far.

    It’s not just that he sold out to The Score. It’s that he sold out to a company that is willing to sell out to Evil Empire North in Rogers.

    If Stoeten is JP Ricciardi (pretty good at his job, but a prickly personality), is Fairservice Alex Anthopolous (polite, open-minded)?

    Fans of the blogosphere won’t stand for another rebuild just because the blog has a new voice.

    As the great Geoff Baker reminded us, you can’t hit the reset button on the rebuild just because a new person is doing the job.

  37. I’m pretty sure Marcum is a super spy and was traded to the Brewers to land the Jays Lawrie and bring back Greinke in time to contend.

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