I’m back on the good coast after a taste of spring baseball action over in Dunedin, with more impressions of that to come. Now, here’s what’s been accumulating while I’ve been on the road and/or losing money at mini golf.
Before you read all the stuff about Ricky Romero’s refocus on the sinker, read why it maybe doesn’t make a whole lot of sense: at the Mockingbird, Jon Hale figures that “Morrow botched the analysis (although obviously a standing ovation for him doing anything at all). When you look at more of Romero’s career than just the last two seasons, there is just no way to come to the conclusion that the key to Romero’s struggles is a lack of sinkers.”
Jeff Sullivan goes poking around Romero’s sinker data as well, over at FanGraphs.
Scott Johnson of Franchise Mode gives you a tasty first look at what the new Jays and Rogers Centre will look like in MLB ’13: The Show.
At Getting Blanked, Drew compares Adam Lind and Justin Morneau, and comes to what you might find a startling conclusion: “Morneau was a better player but he won’t automatically be the better player going forward.”
Elsewhere at Getting Blanked, Darren previews the rotations in the AL East.
From BlueJays.com: Gregor Chisholm looks at a surprise gift of a couple of tickets to Matt Harvey– aka @Halladayfan32, for those of you one Twitter– from J.P. Arencibia. He also looks at Rickey Romero’s first spring start, Brad Lincoln’s command issues in his first start, and, in a notebook post, talks about how Casey Janssen is only throwing off flat ground thus far, as well as Romero’s quest for a sinker.
From the Toronto Sun: Ken Fidlin talks to Casey Janssen, who had to reset his routine this spring, as he works back from minor-ish shoulder surgery. Steve Simmons gets human interest-y with J.P. Arencibia. Bob Elliott talks to Justin Morneau, who is hoping to see baseball back in the Olympics, as he badly wants to play for Canada in 2020– because, y’know, he’s not Russell Martin.
In the National Post: John Lott talks recounts today’s action, including the Jays bullpen’s struggles, a couple of flubbed anthems, Buehrle’s dog, and the arrival of Lars Anderson in camp. He also tells us about Esmil Rogers, and the career push given to him by his best friend, Baltimore reliever Pedro Strop. He also has his own take on yesterday’s big storylines: Justin Morneau’s comments about Russell Martin, Ricky Romero’s refocus on the sinker, and Casey Janssen’s routine.
Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star talks to new Jays pitching coach Pete Walker, who has a few veterans tinkering with new pitches– like Romero’s Buehrle-taught cutter, and refocus on the sinker, plus Josh Johnson throwing a sinker as well. He also laid down the tweet of the day– “When Sportsnet’s Barry Davis crouched to pet Buehrle’s pitbull he got an instant erection — err, the dog that is.”– and says he’s looking for mail bag questions!
At Sportsnet: Wilner recaps today’s loss, as well as yesterday’s, after which he says we should probably bank on Henry Blanco winning a spot on the club– and being the opening day catcher as a consequence, with R.A. Dickey on the hill.
Dirk Hayhurst has another series of excellent notes from camp, which today included a chat with Chad Mottola– or Motor, as they call him. Not, thank fuck, Motorola, or whatever nickname people around here have tried in vain to have catch on.
The Tao of Stieb continues 30-odd Jays in 30-odd days, looking at Darren Oliver.
Bluebird Banter takes a look at the non-roster invitee hitters in camp with the Jays, and elsewhere review a bunch of supposed unwritten rules of pitcher development that the Jays live by.
Most of it is behind the paywall, but Baseball Prospectus shows us the top of their outfielder fantasy rankings for 2013, and Jose Bautista shows up 8th, behind Justin Upton and ahead of Bryce Harper. I’ll take the over.
The Jays haven’t landed in the back half of ESPN’s annual future power rankings of MLB clubs, which were updated today. I guess the first half will be out tomorrow.
Lastly, Keith Law was one of the panelists on on ESPN’s Outside The Lines today, discussing Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria, and his attempt at some kind of face-saving PR campaign in the wake of the winter’s dealings– particularly the one with the Jays.