Minnesota Twins v Toronto Blue Jays

It was back on October 3rd that I wrote the last Game Threat of the 2012 season. Brandon Morrow pitched– the above photo is from that season finale– and I had this advice to offer the small slice of a giant, disillusioned fan base I am able to speak to:

Yes, stuff this memory in your pockets and keep it for those nasty cold mid-January, sun-setting-at-five-o’clock, brown slush and rock salt-covered days when you’re dying for pitchers and catchers to report and willing to do anything–anything– to contort your mind into forgetting just how awful these last few weeks have been and how relieved we now are that it’s over. Y’know, just on the off chance that it gets better.

Will it? We’re about to spend several months adrift at sea, aching to find out.

But first, the Minnesota Twins.

Today the opponent is different, but the stakes are about the same as they were when 2012 went out with a thunderously pointless whimper, it’s Morrow taking the hill again. More importantly, we hit big on that off chance of things getting better. Rather than months adrift, it’s been months of giddiness, surging to a fever pitch that will break today at 1 PM ET, and slowly wash away as the prospects and org guys wearing jersey numbers higher than last year’s win total take over the game, and we collectively realize that this damn tediousness still has six weeks to go before anything but the injuries actually counts.



Ken Fidlin of the Toronto Sun revisits the ten burning questions he posed two weeks ago, assessing how the Jays have been answering them so far. He also tells us, among other things, that the Tigers will be trotting out a number of their best players today, as a reward for the fans who’ve come down to Lakeland to watch them host the Jays in their spring debut.

John Lott of the National Post talks to Luis Rivera, who is looking forward to the start of live games, which will allow him to sharpen his third base coaching skills, as he takes over for Brian Butterfield.

Gregor Chisholm of BlueJays.com also talks about Rivera in a notebook post that additionally touches on Adam Lind, and the careful monitoring of his progress against left-handed pitching by whatever poor fucking soul has to watch all of Adam Lind’s flailing against left-handed pitching before the team finally calls it a day on that experiment.

In a different piece, Gregor tells us about the one-two punch at the top of the Jays’ lineup.

Shi Davidi of Sportsnet looks at Brandon Morrow, who like new teammate Josh Johnson, is learning to become a pitcher, rather than just a fireballer. Morrow’s damn awesome.

Baseball America notes that the Jays have made a couple of minor league signings, which totaZzzzzzzzzzzzzz.

If you’re into welling up with rage and/or fear, in his Ten Stray Thoughts On A Friday post at Getting Blanked, Parkes says he’s still worried about Jose Bautista’s wonky wrist, and points to David Ortiz, who avoided tendon sheath surgery in 2008, which it appears to have taken him a while to recover from. Papi’s 2008 was his worst in a Red Sox uniform… until his 2009, which was even more terrible. His 2010 was subpar by his standards, too. But colour me unconvinced that this correlation implies causation, seeing as Ortiz put up a .277/.385/.529 line over more than two months after he returned from the disabled list immediately following the injury.

Lastly, for your between inning viewing pleasure, Jonah Keri of Grantland notices that MLB has taken the shackles off some of the games most beloved video clips– previously unavailable online– and pulls out a bunch of gems for us to watch. Though not Nolan Ryan vs. Robin Ventura, for some reason. And Ben Lindbergh goes even deeper into the vault at Baseball Prospectus.

TV: Sportsnet

And now the lineups…

Toronto Blue Jays

E. Bonifacio SS
M. Izturis 2B
B. Lawrie 3B
A. Lind 1B
J. Arencibia DH
J. Thole C
M. Sierra RF
A. Gose CF
R. Nanita LF

B. Morrow RHP


Detroit Tigers

A. Jackson CF
T. Hunter RF
M. Cabrera 3B
P. Fielder 1B
V. Martinez DH
A. Dirks LF
J. Peralta SS
A. Avila C
O. Infante 2B

A. Sanchez RHP

Comments (176)

  1. I don’t care if it’s spring training; Adam Lind shouldn’t even hit clean-up in a video game. They need to do the right thing and bat the fucker 10th.

    • I think he should go to jail.

    • So far by my account, the coverage of a meaningless spring training game consists of:

      Ginger Campbell
      Jack Morris
      Zaun Hemmingway
      Katherine Humpries ?? wtf?
      Shi Davidi
      Barry Davis
      Dirk Hayhurst.

      Where’s Sam Cosentino?

      It’s like we’re suddenly the Yankees with this coverage, and it’s great. Now dump hockey central for baseball central and you’ll have one happy Little Looper

  2. Does anyone know when the MLB.tv PS3 app is going to update for 2013?

    • The iPhone one is ready for 2013, so it would have to be soon. Though… I’m sure there are better people to answer this than me.

    • last year it didn’t update until after spring training iirc.

    • I had the same question. It turns out last years app wasn’t released until March 29th. This is disappointing considering they advertise the fact that you can watch preseason games but not the end of the world since it still works on the cpu. What I really want to know is whether or not they will be providing WBC coverage for a nominal cost. If anyone knows how online WBC coverage will work please let me know.

  3. Gonna see some Nanita today, nice.

  4. Gregg Zaun looks horrible. He looks like he gained 30 pounds. His suit doesn’t button properly.

  5. Guys, went on a date last night and it was awesome. When we woke up this morning I was talking about how cool john gibbons is.

    I’m watching the game alone with eggo waffles (maple syrup obv). Happy spring!

  6. Has anyone else loaded a pistol after listening to Morris for 5 mins?

    • Is Katherine Humphries part of the broadcast crew now? Wasn’t she on City TV?

      There used be another lady on the roadcast crew. Didn’t she have a baby?

    • Here we are about to watch the new look Jays for the first time and all you can do is bitch about Morris. I don’t get it.

  7. Oh Lord, Jack Morris…

    • Interesting JPA calling Thole “R.A’s personal catcher”. Guess JPA understands he’s not getting that gig. Now he can focus on catching normal pitchers properly instead of worrying about catching a floater.

  8. bummed that reyes isn’t playing…was really hoping to get our first glimpse today.

  9. Hayhurst I love you but give Peyton manning his haircut back.

  10. Is there anyway we could persuade those fucking assholes to make their content available to people in canada who do not subscribe to cable television and have a non rogers phone service provider. What the hell is the point of blacking out jays games on mlb.tv I can assure you it is not going to make me drive 22 hours to Toronto to buy tickets to a blue jays game. Someone should tell them that Canada is actually very big and it can’t really be considered an in market game for those of us outside GTA. Seriously I would even pay money to see them unlike tv or movies but there is no option available aside from having a sweaty possible sex predator rogers cable installer into my home and then pay for a bunch of shitty channels. For now I guess I will have to get my information from the djf comment section. How else would I get updated on the douchy things Greg zaun is saying

  11. Where’s cabrera

  12. “Bone-Knee-Fa-See-Oh” Buck

  13. replace morris with hayhurst already!

    • We all agree.
      Hayhurst must not have wanted the gig. Probably to concentrate on writing or something. Otherwise, I have no idea why he’s not.

      • He did. Rogers wanted someone with experience. And WS rings.

      • Well, I think Dirk should have been the hire, but since he wasn’t I’m willing to give Jack a chance. I don’t want to see anybody fail, so I hope he’s good and adds some entertaining and enjoyable insight.

        I’m not betting on it though, and my guess is Dirk will be in the booth next year. Unless he pisses someone off which is just as likely.

  14. Nice catch young fella!

  15. Does the whole team play tomorrow? Reyes, Cabrera, EE, Bautista, Rasmus?

  16. That got out in a hurry…

  17. Wall scraper

  18. I’m always surprised when they don’t hook Prince up to oxygen after he finishes rounding the bases.

  19. Josh thole see-ya-bingo comin right up

  20. Listening on the radio. Tuned in a little late. After a few minutes I said “Is this Jack Morris?? He’s a lot more insightful/less retarded than I geared myself up for!”

    Nope. Hayhurst.

  21. Morrow is such a bust. Cut this bum already!!1!

  22. I thought that I’d give Buck and Tabby a try before going to the pain of Morris…right off the top, crack insight into Victor Martinez and RBI’s followed up with a clutch hitter discussion…painful….
    Sure as hell is nice to see some baseball again though…

  23. One at bat each, and I’ve decided I’d rather they option Arencibia, and have Thole and Blanco as the catchers.

    • I know DJF nation dislikes JPA, but IMO he will end his career as the best catcher the Jays have had. I don’t care about average (as long as above 240) but his power is great for this lineup.
      I care more about his defense. Has to improve big time in that area.

      Plus love the fact he embraces Toronto like no other player I’ve ever seen. Sure, a lot of it might be for camera time, but he’s a cool ambassador for the city and you can tell he likes playing here. In an interview with a Miami reporter, when asked if he thought he was getting traded to his hometown, I’m sure the reporter was expecting him to say it would be cool going to Miami (like Morneau). Instead JPA said “I wasn’t worried. I knew I wasn’t going anywhere,” Worried about leaving the Jays for your hometown? Never thought I’d hear a player say that about playing in Toronto

  24. Oh Boy

  25. lol baserunning

  26. Anyone have a livestream for those not in Canada?

  27. This is why i dont like watching spring games that much, everybody fucking overreacts way too much

    • Morrow said he was going to throw as if there was no batter, working on that curve and change-up, learning how to “pitch”…

      As long as he didn’t strain anything, I’m happy.

  28. ugh…they seriously need to do a 101 on base running.

    • Paging ‘Rock’ Raines

    • This is what spring training is for and it’s perfect the first run of the season was cancelled by two bad baserunners. Should have an impact for lesson learned.

      Even this has to stick in Lind’s mind for the season to run full speed through home.
      Guy’s been in the league longer than he deserves and still doesn’t get it.

  29. LOLO amazing baserunning so far.

    That said, Peralta ACTUALLY looks like he’s in the best shape of his life. He must be 30 lbs lighter than last year.

  30. Moises Scouting Report

    Baserunning: 10
    Arm: 80
    Smile: 80

  31. I know he’s doing a daily radio show, and other stuff… but seriously why didn’t they hire Hayhurst to replace Ashby?

    Listening to him now, and he’s very good. At least so far.

  32. I was gonna mock you all for complaining about tabby/morris…. But it truly is annoying.

  33. Baserunning retardedness? Sounds familiar. It would be a treat to watch Gibbons lose his shit in the first ST game.

  34. 30 seconds of Morris, and I already hate him

  35. Oi, Morris, learn how to pronounce the fecking players’ names before you start your new job. Lawrie rhymes with ‘sorry’ not ‘Tao-ey’.

  36. ban its all over

  37. MLB The Show 13 Overall Team Rating

    1. Detroit Tigers
    2. St. Louis Cardinals
    3. Boston Red Sox
    4. Los Angeles Angels
    5. Toronto Blue Jays
    6. Texas Rangers
    7. Washington Nationals
    8. Atlanta Braves
    9. Cincinnati Reds
    10. Philadelphia Phillies
    11. New York Yankees
    12. Los Angeles Dodgers
    13. Colorado Rockies
    14. Chicago White Sox
    15. Arizona Diamondbacks
    16. Tampa Bay Rays
    17. San Francisco Giants
    18. Oakland Athletics
    19. Kansas City Royals
    20. Milwaukee Brewers
    21. Baltimore Orioles
    22. Pittsburgh Pirates
    23. Seattle Mariners
    24. Cleveland Indians
    25. San Diego Padres
    26. Minnesota Twins
    27. Chicago Cubs
    28. New York Mets
    29. Miami Marlins
    30. Houston Astros

    Team Batting

    1. Detroit Tigers
    2. Los Angeles Angels
    3. Colorado Rockies
    4. Boston Red Sox
    5. Texas Rangers
    6. Toronto Blue Jays
    7. Cincinnati Reds
    8. St. Louis Cardinals
    9. Washington Nationals
    10. Los Angeles Dodgers
    11. New York Yankees
    12. Atlanta Braves
    13. Philadelphia Phillies
    14. Milwaukee Brewers
    15. Baltimore Orioles
    16. Arizona Diamondbacks
    17. Chicago White Sox
    18. Kansas City Royals
    19. Oakland Athletics
    20. Pittsburgh Pirates
    21. Cleveland Indians
    22. San Francisco Giants
    23. Seattle Mariners
    24. Tampa Bay Rays
    25. Miami Marlins
    26. New York Mets
    27. San Diego Padres
    28. Minnesota Twins
    29. Chicago Cubs
    30. Houston Astros

    Team Pitching

    1. Philadelphia Phillies
    2. Washington Nationals
    3. Atlanta Braves
    4. St. Louis Cardinals
    5. Tampa Bay Rays
    6. New York Yankees
    7. Toronto Blue Jays
    8. Los Angeles Dodgers
    9. San Francisco Giants
    10. Boston Red Sox
    11. Cincinnati Reds
    12. Texas Rangers
    13. Detroit Tigers
    14. Los Angeles Angels
    15. Arizona Diamondbacks
    16. Oakland Athletics
    17. Chicago White Sox
    18. Kansas City Royals
    19. San Diego Padres
    20. Seattle Mariners
    21. Cleveland Indians
    22. Pittsburgh Pirates
    23. Colorado Rockies
    24. Milwaukee Brewers
    25. Baltimore Orioles
    26. Chicago Cubs
    27. Minnesota Twins
    28. New York Mets
    29. Houston Astros
    30. Miami Marlins

    Team Defense

    1. New York Yankees
    2. Los Angeles Dodgers
    3. Los Angeles Angels
    4. Tampa Bay Rays
    5. Cincinnati Reds
    6. Philadelphia Phillies
    7. Atlanta Braves
    8. Chicago Cubs
    9. Baltimore Orioles
    10. San Francisco Giants
    11. Texas Rangers
    12. Washington Nationals
    13. Colorado Rockies
    14. St. Louis Cardinals
    15. Boston Red Sox
    16. Kansas City Royals
    17. Arizona Diamondbacks
    18. San Diego Padres
    19. Detroit Tigers
    20. Houston Astros
    21. Pittsburgh Pirates
    22. Cleveland Indians
    23. Seattle Mariners
    24. Oakland Athletics
    25. Miami Marlins
    26. Toronto Blue Jays
    27. Minnesota Twins
    28. Milwaukee Brewers
    29. Chicago White Sox
    30. New York Mets

    They seem flawed, they would be current as of Jan 24th and take AAA and AA into account

    Also most on the site say Jays fans are ridiculous because they have been shit for 20 years and made a few decent trades…they are about what the Marlins were last year..

  38. Did anyone notice the girl wrench the thrown bat out of the old guys hands? Wonder what she wants with JPA’s bat?

  39. sorry for the long post, delete it if you want

  40. The sky is falling.

  41. lolmvp

  42. Not enough chemistry between Izturis and Gose…

  43. Never understood not calling for the ball. They teach that from the lowest levels of t-ball.

  44. Here’s a first. I just switched to the TV to hear the ‘better’ commentary provided by Buck and Tabby.

    • +1
      The radio is broken.
      Gonna have to run some speaker wire from the AVR to the backyard this spring …

  45. Esmil Rogers. We can thank Farrell for him. He might be a good one in the bullpen.

  46. Posted this on Twitter, thought I’d ask here too. Who’s drawing more hate right now in Toronto sports: Andrea Bargnani or Adam Lind? I’m leaning towards Bargnani because he’s as useful as me on a basketball court, but there’s some similarities. I think fans haven’t given either of them any room to show they can improve, or even be useful.

  47. The man from Muncie, Indiana is on fire.

  48. Now that’s how you wear socks!

  49. I’m a bit behind watching this on PVR, but hilarious that Zaun’s appearance coincided when they were blaring YMCA.
    Hit the gym Zaun Hemmingway!

  50. Clap Clap for the slam!


  52. oh shit we got mo Vaughn

  53. Can we please get this close up over the shoulder bullpen warmup camera during the regular season? I could watch that shit all day.

  54. Welp, looks like the MLB part of the game is over. AAA game in progress.

  55. Lurving the mlb.tv subscription already. If there’s something I miss here in the Netherlands its bazeball

  56. “I love the new hats. You got the Toronto Mapleleaf on the front, you got the bird on the back – I gotta get me one of those!”

    - Jack Morris

    • Can’t fault the team employee for hawking the merchandise.

    • I have a 7 run bulge

    • Not a fan of those hats. Maybe if the red Toronto Maple leaf (lol) was smaller it could work. Or if they had the blue hat with the white front centre with the red leaf, like our flag. As they are, they seem kind of dorky. Otherwise, they have the best uniforms and logo in the game.

      Went to Loblaws this morning and 4 random and seperate people were wearing those hats. Gotta love the city (country) being pumped, even though I can’t get my hands on opening day tickets!

      Love that Jays are more popular than Mariners in BC..

  57. Tabler and Buck have mentioned “rbi’s” at least 50 times already…

  58. Got to listen to Jerry and Jack for a few innings in the car. I’m still not sure about his skills as an analyst, there were some rocky moments, but I liked his banter with Jerry. Sounded kind of folksy in a weird way. Had a great line after that kid hit the grand slam that made me laugh: “He should retire right now, go on the public speaking circuit, and talk about crap for the rest of his life.” So we’ll see through the rest of the spring I guess, but I didn’t think he was that brutal to listen to.

  59. I could hit better then Lind But I think he might be a better pitcher then me

  60. OH FUCK!

  61. Mike McCoy wth?

  62. That looked fucking nasty.

  63. THANK GOD!!!!

  64. The Argos should sign Ryan Langerhans to play tight end.

  65. Meanwhile, in other news, Travis d’Arnaud not in Mets lineup in any capacity. Mets will be babying him in spring training due to knee injury?

  66. Reminds me of the beginning of “Baseketball” when they combine sports, and the outfielder gets destroyed by the football player.

  67. Mccoy collided with number 17. That looks bad.

    If that was Rasmus & Bautista I would have freaked out.

    Feel bad for Mccoy. He’s now walking .

  68. Buck called John Gibbons John Farrell.
    He freaked out about making the mistake, which was a funny reaction.
    It’s wasn’t just a “pardon me, meant Gibbons” correction.
    It was “I just called a good man the name of Judas” freak out about an innocent mistake reaction.

    Suck it Farrell!

  69. Jack Murphy looks like a smaller version of The Eck

  70. A trade occurred!

  71. Tweet from Schwimmer a few weeks ago:


    yesterday was awesome. @JesseLitsch put on the single best charity event I have ever been to. Well done Jesse

    8:45 AM – Feb 10, 2013

  72. plan the parade

  73. Blue Jays starting to get that basketball team together: Schwimer (6’8″), Josh Johnson (6’7″) and Delabar (6’5″) front court is imposing.

  74. Schwimmer is depth right?

  75. I perceive the baserunning is approaching midseason forum. We’ll continue to work on that, day by day, as things go along and hopefully we can maintain our stick-to-it-iveness in that regard.

  76. Well I tell ya what this dang ol’ teams gonna do somethin speshul this season gottta line up & pitchin & baserunning outta the ole yingyang yesseree bob got the coaches show wit Jerry & all the chew you can chaw & dang whuts better’n free chew?

  77. Watched it on PVR.

    Favorite nugget from Buck and Tabby today….on why Mottola is a good hitting coach:

    Buck: “He understands hitting”

    Tabby: “You have to”

  78. Hahyurst is ok

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