Gibby Vday

Thursday links!– a double dose, after I missed yesterday’s link dump, which… I totally shouldn’t do at this time of year. There’s a lot! (Image via Archi’s first installment of Blue Jays Valentine’s Day Cards. Check out batch two, as well.)

Brett Lawrie engaging in meat-headed and unbecoming behaviour on Twitter? Colour me shocked, but apparently it’s true. Vice, of all places, has the details of Young Lawreh’s seven year old basketball grudge, and the eye-rolling way it played out on social media. Not the way I’d want the guy I base ad campaigns for my multi-million-dollar sports franchise to behave online, but what the hell do I know?

“I guess I’m being positive with it for the time being,” says J.A. Happ of his predicament as Buffalo’s top starter, according to Shi Davidi’s latest from Sportsnet. And, you know, with the way Ricky Romero pitched last year, I’m not sure I can entirely blame him. He’s just got to be a bit patient, though. His time will come.

For his part, according to Gregor Chisholm of BlueJays.com, Romero says that he’s ready to put 2012 behind him.

Jon Morosi of Fox Sports visits the Jays’ camp in Dunedin and comes away impressed. “The Blue Jays are deep, talented and professional,” he writes. “They seem unbothered by reporters’ questions about how they will handle the burden of expectations.”

Anthony Castrovince of MLB.com also fells that Jays are prepared to be the centre of attention.

Does it seem like spring yet? Elsewhere at Sportsnet, Davidi looks at Josh Johnson through the prism of Felix Hernandez and the monstrous payday that may be awaiting the Jays’ nominal number four starter at the end of the 2013 season. Ken Fidlin of the Toronto Sun also talks about Johnson.

Neil Davidson of the Canadian Press (via the Globe and Mail), Gregor Chisholm of BlueJays.com, and Ken Fidlin of the Sun talk about Mark Buehrle and his dog situation.

Elsewhere at North of the Border, Gregor Chisholm transcribes the whole of Wednesday’s media scrum with Buehrle.

Elsewhere still, in a notebook post at BlueJays.com, Gregor writes about the first bullpen session between R.A. Dickey and J.P. Arencibia, as well as a tidbit about Dustin McGowan’s injury.

The CP’s Neil Davidson, again via the Globe, also writes about R.A. Dickey and his gift of glove. (No, not his defence– he gave the catchers in camp bigger gloves, as gifts.) “We have no idea where it’s going,” said Josh Thole of Dickey’s magical… er… floater. “We can give it our best shot and I can guess, like I do half the time. But a lot of times, having the bigger glove helps.”

John Lott of the National Post writes about John Gibbons’ words of caution when it comes to the expectations placed on his club. He also looks at Casey Janssen and Jose Bautista, who aren’t about to rush things as they return from injury. Shi Davidi has something similar at Sportsnet.

And there’s more stuff about expectations from Gregor at BlueJays.com, the CP’s Neil Davidson (via the Globe), and Ken Fidlin of the Sun.

Fidlin also talks about the relationship between Brett Lawrie and John Gibbons, who explains of his young star that, “I’m not going to tell him to back off because that’s what got him here.” Wiser words, in my view, come from Jose Bautista, who explains: “there will be times when he is going to have to tame himself, or somebody is going to have to tame him and pull the chain back a little bit. In certain situations, the risk-reward component of the moment, you don’t want to risk an injury on a play that might not warrant it. A foul ball late in the game, we’re losing and there’s no need to be jumping into a camera pit.” He adds, “but those are little things. He’ll learn. Don’t forget, he’s still a young kid and has a long way to go.”

At ESPN.com (Insider Only), Keith Law looks at the biggest impact prospects who should make it to the Majors this year, and while no Jays make the list (sorry, Marcus Stroman), two ex-Jays do, with Travis d’Arnaud checking in way down at 16 (due to health concerns and the fact he might spend extensive time at Triple-A), and Adeiny Hechavarria at 20, who “probably will win the every-day shortstop job, play great defense and hit absolutely nothing all year.”

Richard Griffin has exclusive photos and posts on his Facebook page. Richard Griffin has exclusive photos and posts on his Facebook page. (Sorry, just really wanted to write that more than once.)

Shi Davidi tweeted yesterday that Jays non-roster invitee Jack Murphy is already looking the part of local cult hero. Not likely he’ll make any use of it on the big league roster, though.

Mop Up Duty takes a look at last year’s Spring Training stats, finding that many of the numbers for the guys on this year’s expected 25-man roster were actually somewhat predictive, with only Ricky Romero being a big tease (along with the departed Eric Thames), and only veterans Darren Oliver and Mark Buehrle drastically outproducing their rough springs in the regular season. Y’know, for whatever all that’s worth.

Bluebird Banter points out that Blue Jays have had at least one player make his Major League debut in every season of their history, and the latest point in a season– the latest– that it’s ever happened is May 24th. Uh… there’s a pretty good chance that’s going to change this year, but there are still a few prospects who could possibly debut at some point in 2013, and they have a look at them.

Elsewhere at Bluebird Banter, Mike “Common Man” Bates does a public service, as a Twins fan, and explains to Jays fans the best ways to tolerate new radio and part-time TV analyst Jack Morris. Read it. You’ll need to.

The Blue Jay Hunter wonders if Adam Lind may actually still have something left to offer the Jays. Sure, I say, with a platoon partner he probably does.

In a similar vein, Jays Journal wonders if Moises Sierra could take the place of Adam Lind. Which… um… yeah.

Steal Of Home looks at the consensus top prospects for the Miami Marlins, which includes some familiar names at numbers three, four and seven.

Michael Beller of Sports Illustrated looks at Brett Lawrie and whether he can reach his potential, from a fantasy perspective, which… well… isn’t all that different from the concerns anybody would have about him. “The sum of his advanced numbers makes me willing to buy in again this year,” Beller concludes. “His minor league numbers hinted that he could jump a level in power, something he did two seasons ago. MLB history is filled with guys who lost their footing a bit at age 22, only to rebound with a little more seasoning.”

Jack Moore of FanGraphs looks at Baltimore’s bullpen, and for a host of reasons doesn’t see it’s ridiculous performance continuing in 2013. Pfft. Doesn’t he understand Buck Showalter’s ability to manage his players up???

Elsewhere at FanGraphs, Carson Cistulli looks at five notable signings from independent ball that took place over the winter, ranking the Jays’ pick-up of Mike Benacka first! We’re told that he “has posted formidable strikeout and walk rates due to a combination of an excellent changeup and less excellent other pitches, it appears. Posted best regressed pitching in American Association in 2012. Did same thing in Mexican Pacific League this winter.”

Elsewhere still at FanGraphs, Alex Remington looks at Chad Cordero, who tried to make a comeback back, pitching in camp for the Jays in 2011, and is still trying to get back to the level he was once at, back with the Expos and in the first years of the Nationals.

Will Leitch of Sports On Earth looks at the unfortunate end of ESPN’s Baseball Today podcast, and gives a rundown of a few quality alternatives, across several sports– though he surprisingly leaves out the FanGraphs podcast (and much less surprisingly leaves out my personal favourite, the Getting Blanked Podcast– but he makes up for it with much love for our friends and coworkers The Basketball Jones).

At Franchise Mode, Scott Lewis looks at some of the new minor league parks added to MLB 13 The Show, while at Getting Blanked, Drew looks at MLB Advanced Media’s decision to open up their heretofore very private API, and the Vegas oddsmakers’ latest over/under figures f0r 2013, which sets the Jays at 86.5. If I were a gambling man, and I am, I’d say that unfortunately that’s probably a harder call to make than it looks. Those Vegas fuckers know what they’re doing.

Non Jays-related and lastly, also at Getting Blanked, Scott Lewis– in addition to posting the awesome Mr. Burns/Moneyball mashup of the other day– asks the question that should be on all of our minds today: did Trevor Bauer drop a diss track on Miguel Montero?

Comments (82)

  1. Baseball’s (almost) back! Baseball’s (almost) back! Baseball’s (almost) back!

  2. Wow…Lawrie sure comes off like some kind of douchebag….which I have no problem in believing, despite having never met the man.
    The man (and I use this term in the loosest of all possible terms) truly needs to be taken out behind the woodshed and some humility slapped into his head.

    • I can’t disagree.

    • Agreed. However, there are many examples of young phenols turning their (at least) public persona around. I’d really like Lawrie to do it as it’d make it a lot easier to cheer for him.

      Makes my screen name look like douchebaggery

  3. I’m a little surprised more isn’t mentioned about Sierra,
    The team is obviously way deeper this year, but out of all the call ups last year I thought he was the most impressive.

  4. I’m surprised the jays haven’t looked a time carp

  5. The author of that Lawrie story sure comes across as bitter about something.

    • Couple of things

      a) good pick with the gibbons card. That is some top shelf hilarity.

      2) I already love Brett too much to let his childishness bother me. It’s like when you have the cutest baby at daycare and one day he shits in the sandbox. Id still rather have him than someone else’s shitty baby.

      D) Jack Murphy’s got the most swag of anyone on the roster. Teach him how to catch a knuckler so we can keep him over all the other unappetizing backup catcher options.

  6. What’s your thought on the Buehrle story? He’s leaving his family behind

    • Whoops, didn’t finish that.

      He’s leaving his family behind but is signed thru 2015. Is he going to try to demand a trade?

      • Good luck if he does, with that contract.

      • Christ Doc, name one other player that lives in Toronto with his family. It’s a total non story beyond the pitbull debate – which was a similar debate where he last was anyway.

        • Agreed. There are over 600 cities in the U.S. with pitbull bans. There’s no guarantee he’d be in any different situation elsewhere. In Florida last year, Dade County has a ban, but Broward (I think), where he lived, does not. Something like that, anyway…

  7. DJFandTBJtheBest

  8. OK here is the deal….let’s not look to let it unravel before it even starts. Shit, lets talk about baseball….the game.

  9. The Lawrie article comes together at the end so read the whole thing if you do.

    Lawrie just needs not to troll and be trolled.

    • Although he probably is a bit of a dick., or at least came across that way at one time or another. I know a few guys who have or do play pro sports and I gotta say dickishness was not all that rare. Depends how you take it I guess. Ego does play part of excelling in a pro game.

      • But the thing about not getting attention from his basketball coach???? Wtf??
        Let it go dude! You’d think growing up in BC he’d know how to chill.

      • Wait a minute. You’re telling me that there’s jocks out there who have a tendency to be less than well rounded? And that giving them millions only exacerbates the problem? Crazy talk.

  10. I don’t get the Lawrie thing. Being a successful millionaire in his early twenties is supposed to cajole him NOT to be a jerk?

    That seems counterintuitive.

    • Just for the record, he got a signing bonus of 1.8 mill in ’08 but his MLB salary is 480 K. (per Cot’s)

  11. Brett Lawrie being on twitter is a disaster waiting to happen. I love him as a player, but he doesn’t seem like the sharpest tool in the shed. At some point I’m sure he’ll pull a Zaun.

    • He could be described as an implode/explode athlete but that will be his choice. I’m hoping Gibby will give him a smack or two and if needed.

    • @James

      I fear you might be right. Lawries the only jersey ive ever owned and i do like the guy but he is begining to remind me of Evander Kane in a way. Immature and trying TOO hard to be THAT guy

      • Kane now thinks that anyone who criticizes him is racist…..There’s probably more evidence to support the theory that if you’re an athlete from BC, you’re a nutbar.

    • Lawrie being allowed to function without adult supervision is a disaster waiting to happen.

  12. Brett Lawrie’s “following” list on Instagram is hilarious. It’s like a Brett Lawrie parody account.

  13. Lawrie is in trouble if he’s getting advice fom Bautista on temperment

  14. S o Morris gets trashed by Mike Bates. Bates clearly has never listened to Wilner so he dosn’t know that fans in Totonto will see this as an upgrade from what might have been.

    • I heard Morris interviewed on Vancouver sport radio and I read that piece and oh no … it all fits together. Bummer because I listen to a lot of games, or at least partial games, on radio when I drive home from work. Ashby was pretty good actually.

    • Speak for yourself, rather than “fans in Toronto.”

    • The notion of Jack Morris being a better broadcaster than Wilner is ridiculous.

  15. Bautista is such a BEAUTY

  16. Glad you ‘advertised’ Griffins FB twice . . Not like he doesn’t promote it every single day , , , and tweets nothing else ever except begging to ‘like’ his FB page,

    agree the Lawrie writer sure sounds petty & bitter. Wonder what his relationship is to the Coach? Coach had to get his Uncle to defend him, wouldn’t be surprised if he’s behind the story too? There could be 2 sides to this story??? & this sure isn’t a balanced article

  17. Interesting comment from Buck Martinez in the MLB piece. He says AA hired Farrell because ‘everyone told him he was the right guy’. It sounds like Alex didn’t particularly want Farrell from the start so someone–Beeston?–leaned on him. Must have been difficult on both ends of the Gm/Manager relationship.

  18. I was looking for to the season until I read the Jack Morris article.

  19. Bautista with some interesting comments with morosi

  20. Kinda puts the lawrie stealing home with bases drunk and Joey up in a new perspective

  21. I follow Lawrie on Twitter and remember seeing that tweet about the coach when he put it up and thinking “WTF is that about?”.

    Echoing what someone else said earlier, he’s not the only pro athlete who’s a bit of a dick; a fair number of NHLers (and minor leaguers) from around these parts and more than a couple had the “IT’S ALL ABOUT ME!” thing down pat. Maybe that’s what helps drive them.

    Hopefully corralling him won’t turn into Gibby v. Hillenbrand, Part Deux.

  22. I dont think the Lawrie incident is noteworthy, like look at Paul Bissonette (biznasty2point0) hes a professional atthelete (more like a professional benchwarmer) and he is always calling out people on twitter saying much worse things. Ive never heard his name in the media concernining his rants, hell the douchebags on TSN praise his personality….. why not bretts

    • Their tweets are night and day. Bisonnete’s tweets tend to have a fair amount of self awareness and comedy. It’s not hard to believe that most of the ribbing is in good fun. With lawrie, not so.

  23. Well I guess this is kind of Blue Jays related: Nadir Mohamed is stepping down as Rogers CEO next January.
    http://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2013/02/14/rogers_ceo_nadir_mohamed_to_step_down_next_january.html

  24. Sean Nolin – First Jay to Debut in ’13.
    Mark it down.

    Lawrie’s a kid, give him a break. I egged a teachers house I didn’t like a year after I graduated and I’m almost normal.

    Stoeten you bash the shit out of people you don’t like all the time on here and you have more people following you then Brett Lawrie. (Incidentily don’t stop, I like it) So I don’t care that he calls out someone he doesn’t see eye to eye with. The argument is probably about more then who got to shoot a basketball anyway. We don’t know.

    • There is a difference between a humorist calling out public figures and a public figure calling out someone who isn’t sans humour. The context is all fucking different.

      • I choose to bury me head in the sand on this.
        When I come up everything will be gumdrops and rainbows and Brett Lawrie will still be my favorite hyper, hormone, helmet chucking, redbull guzzeling, shit kicking, brass testicled third basemen.

    • @Smasher

      Brett Lawrie has 167K followers on Twitter. Andrew Stoeten has about 5K.

  25. Ricky Romero said Thursday that his left elbow feels “100 times better.”
    “I wasn’t able to rotate it at one point I was so sore at the end of the year,” said Romero, who posted an ugly 5.77 ERA and 124/105 K/BB ratio over 181 innings in 2012 and had an elbow cleanup in October. It wasn’t just the elbow that was bugging him, as he also received platelet-rich plasma injections in both of his knees.

    I didn’t realize he was that banged up. Maybe we can write last year off to poor health?

    • That and a new girlfriend show makes ole Ricky a big bounceback candidate.

      I’ve said it before, Romero and Cecil are going to open some eyes this season.

    • Drew talked to him at the end of the year, and he was making it real clear that his elbow was seriously barking really bad.

      • Man, if the ineptitude in ’12 can be attributed to poor health this rotation just got absolutely scary.

        I can’t wait to see thes guys.

  26. Sticky balls

  27. tee hee

  28. Well, that took some time to go threw…..

    Really like reading player comments…..but until the whole team is there, I will just keep reading and hoping. I dont take much away from team record or anything like that in the spring, Jays always seem to win a ton in the spring. But so far the comments have been good, not the PR BS you normally see, just good honest talk from them, I like that.

    Thanks for putting all this in one spot btw, best part of DJF is the link dumps.

  29. Brett……..shhhh, dont hurt the team with BS tweets please, we dont need to see your dirty under pants….ffs

  30. I loved what I heard from Johnson, AND he’s not a Boras client. Any way he would take 5/90? Add an option at 20 and it doesn’t really impact payroll much?

  31. is it just me or looking at ticket availability and the best seats one can get in the first row first base line is like 33 up? I was looing to get tickets for my birthday and the ticket selection has already gone down, sign that there is a lot of flex packs this year.

    • Logged on at 10:00:01 with my Ticketmaster account already on- tried to buy two best available- there were NONE.
      Kept trying for five or ten minutes- just for fun went went over to StubHub- hey look… 3,000 tickets!!!

  32. Sorry should have clarified- for Opening Night.

  33. As a side note,congrats to April Whitzman.
    She, of Jays Prospects blog fame,has made it to MLB Fan Cave final 30.

  34. Another reason why we should love AA. The guy is a fucking spanish Ninja. Here is a clip of an interview done in espanol:

    http://www.cdn.com.do/video/hoSj8VrocNg

  35. There has to be more to the Lawrie/High School coach story than that Vice article was able to reveal. Lawrie comes off like an immature douchebag, but I think we were all already aware of that.

    We don’t know the details of why Lawire randomly tweeted this about his HS coach; and the Vice article does IMO a very poor job of getting to the bottom of it. They interview the star player from that team; no one else. This is just lazy journalism. Overly controlling, manipulative, and aggressive high school coaches can have a serious negative impact on a person’s mind. I was lucky enough to have good coaches that were positive and helpful, but I have a lot of friends who had terrible experiences their coaches.

  36. I think your purty and we otta get a drink or somthin, hehehe

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