Now it’s time for all the stuff I don’t figure on making full posts out of, with the spiffy graphic by Matt English (aka @mattomic). It’s your Afternoon Snack… er… Afternoon Hangover… er… links!!!
Shi Davidi kinda nails it at Sportsnet, writing that “of course there’s tension between manager John Farrell and general manager Alex Anthopoulos,” but that’s perfectly normal and OK, and ought to be presented in that context. They’ve clashed, he writes, “as every manager and GM do, dating back to last winter, when Farrell hoped for a mid-to-back of the rotation starter to stabilize the staff, while Anthopoulos aimed higher and either balked at the prices or couldn’t complete a deal.” But everything is better than it appears, he suggests, noting that “some players say there are no clubhouse fissures in need of repair, and no issues that a healthy roster and some wins wouldn’t instantly fix.”
Bluebird Banter writes that, rather than merely tweeting about it, Jen Royle should have written a more substantial piece on what a GM told her about tension between Anthopoulos and Farrell, which I think entirely misses the point. Stupid rumours get thrown around on this team all the time– and aren’t met with nearly the scrutiny Royle has faced, which ought to raise some eyebrows about why that is, I think– but, as I said when I wrote about it, I think the way she handled the reaction, or didn’t take steps to prevent it in the way that she presented the information, was probably her biggest error.
Elsewhere, Davidi writes about Omar Vizquel’s comments, suggesting that they may have some legitimacy, “but ultimately Farrell expects his players to act like men, not boys, and wants to treat them as such.” And he wonders why Vizquel didn’t “raise his concerns with Farrell in private earlier when there was time to salvage the year?” Right?
“Next year the Jays will wrestle with the comfort they’ve developed with failure,” writes Dirk Hayhurst in an interesting piece on Ricky Romero. “That’s why it’s always good to have a player on the team that takes failure personally.”
“They said they wanted to get another look at (Jenkins), and you know, I’m on board with that,” says Carlos Villanueva being a good soldier in the wake of being scratched from his last start– though this is probably good spin for him, so I guess I can see how he’s on board. Still, seems like he’s not likely to be back– and frankly, as much as I’d be interested to see what he can do, you’d really rather the club only have one of him or JA Happ in the rotation, if you can at all help it, and Happ’s under contract. The quote above can be found in the Villanueva piece by Brendan Kennedy of the Toronto Star, but also many others.
Elsewhere in the Star, Richard Griffin lays out a five part plan for Alex Anthopoulos over the winter, the first of which includes ignoring Rogers’ concerns about whether or not additional spending can guarantee a winner, spending what he needs to anyway, and telling ownership that “he’s making the move anyway and if it doesn’t work out then they can fire him.” Not sure it works that way, but… sure, why not?
Elsewhere still, Mark Zwolinski looks at the Jays’ roster as we move towards 2013, and does a nice job with it, though I’d quibble with the notion that Henderson Alvarez’s problems are mental and not entirely due to a lack of a decent third pitch. Interesting that he suggests the Jays want Hechavarria in the Majors next year.
Sticking with the Star, Damien Cox shits out something about the Jays no longer having injuries as a full-on excuse for how 2012 went so wrong, as though anybody is actually suggesting that’s the entirety of the reason. Then he writes some jumbled nonsense about hockey. OKaaaaay.
“What Brett’s understanding is how physically taxing a 162-game schedule is,” said John Farrell on Sunday, according to the Toronto Sun. “Once you go through that full cycle, you’re able to look back and say: ‘Okay, there are times when I can be a bit more under control, but not sacrifice who I am as a person and a player.’ ”
Shi Davidi has a lengthy look at Lawrie, as well.
In the Globe and Mail, Robert MacLeod runs down the events of last night– specifically, John Farrell’s delightful ejection.
MacLeod also asks a bunch of excellent questions that he deems to be crucial to the Jays going forward.
MLB.com’s Cut 4 thing shows us Wayne Gretzky throwing out the first pitch at last night’s Jays game. I wonder what he thinks about the NHL lockout nobody cares about.
Jays Prospects picks out the Jays-related nuggets from the chat at Baseball America about their top 20 Gulf Coast League prospects.
Jays Journal urges the club to make Marcus Stroman a minor league starter next year, and have him work his way out of the role, comparing his electric stuff with that of the similarly-statured Kris Medlen of the Barves.
Jays Jounal also gives us a prospect primer on the catchers in the Jays’ system.
The Blue Jays Hunter pieces together some kind of ridiculous narrative about John Farrell having checked out and practically being half out the door. Ian also writes about Buck Martinez and Pat Tabler not being quite so bad as we might think, and honestly, during a game last week I kinda had the same thought myself.
Forbes has a list of the top 20 selling MLB jerseys of 2012, and two Jays– Bautista (16) and Lawrie (20)– made the list! Bluebird Banter reprinted it with no link, but fortunately I found the actual source.
Check out last week’s episode of the Productive Outs Podcast– the PRODcast!– for a special appearance from our own Drew Fairservice!
And lastly, at Getting Blanked, Bill Parker looks at the philosophical split between front office types and the on-field staff in their employ.