The Afternoon Snack is now The Daily Duce– all the latest must-read Jays links, fully Rob Ducey-fied…
Gah! The club says they’re not alarmed about it, but according to the latest notebook post at BlueJays.com from Gregor Chisholm, Sergio Santos is out of action until Saturday with a soreness in his right triceps muscle. Cue insufferable Chicken Littles.
Topical! On a day featuring a Grapefruit League tie between the Jays and Orioles, Craig Robinson checks in at Getting Blanked with an infographic featuring all the ties in MLB regular season history.
Great stuff from Ken Fidlin of the Toronto Sun, who used yesterday’s off day to take stock of where the Jays stand at this point in the spring, laying out what we know, what we don’t know, and what we think for facets of the team like the rotation, bullpen, infield, bench, outfield, defence, etc.
Richard Griffin checks in with another epic Bullpen piece over at the Toronto Star, where, among other things, he talks to Alex Anthopoulos about the changes to the process of signing amateur international free agents. “The old system was to our benefit,” Anthopoulos told him, referring to the spending limits that have made the market essentially a popularity contest among organizations. “Now, we would have had to earmark a guy like Osuna, which we didn’t. (We would have had to) say he’s the guy, he’s the guy and make sure we get the evaluation right. That’s the hard part about it.”
Maybe I should have given the comments from Colby Rasmus about panicky idiot John Farrell more attention, as I’ve seen a couple US sites doing so, like Big League Stew, where Dave Brown does make a keen observation, noting that “Rasmus hasn’t been the only Jays player/employee to rip Farrell, though earlier criticisms were for not making players accountable — especially young ones, like Rasmus — and a lack of discipline overall. That doesn’t line up with players looking over their shoulder, tightening up, panicking and apparently fearing consequences that never were coming. Maybe that’s how Rasmus felt personally, even if he did a poor job of explaining himself by lumping the rest of the clubhouse with him.”
Coolness: Centennial College’s Toronto Observer has multiple journalism students in Florida right now– I’m told by @MMAdamMartin that Shi Davidi, an instructor for the sports journalism program there, is behind it– and a bunch of them are filing reports from the Jays’ minor league camp. There’s one on Canadian prospect outfielder Dalton Pompey; last year’s top pick D.J. Davis says his goal is to get all the way up to New Hampshire this year (!?!??!); Mat Smoral talks about his appreciation for Madison Bumgarner, the outstanding Giants pitcher who has a similar frame and arm slot to the Jays prospect; another looks at former second-rounder Griffin Murphy and his Rollie Fingers moustache; in yet another we hear from second generation pro ballplayer Dwight Smith Jr.; another still has a chat with third base prospect Kellen Sweeney, who says that he’s finally healthy.
Both Brendan Kennedy of the Star, and John Lott of the Post look at Dustin McGowan’s first mound session in over a year, and the upbeat posture the oft-injured pitcher took afterwards. (Since I began writing this, Gregor has added one at BlueJays.com as well).
Michael Grange of Sportsnet has a big McGowan piece as well, with a five minute video report featuring their assessment of his still-impressive stuff, plus comments from the pitcher, pitching coach Pete Walker and manager John Gibbons. It’s from ol’ Gibbers that the money quote comes: “We want him in the mindset of let’s go, compete. See what you’ve got. I know he’s tired of being on the DL and wants to get off, so let’s go for it,” Gibbons said. ”I want his mindset to be: ‘I’m here to help this team. I still have a career left. Sometime you get in that rut, you’re on the DL and that’s all you know. We still like him, he’s not a forgotten guy … he can help us.”
At North Of The Border, Gregor Chisholm passes along the Jays’ upcoming pitching schedule, with all of the pitcher slated to go from tomorrow’s game in Lakeland against Detroit, to their return there on Saturday. Morrow, Buehrle, Johnson and Romero are your next four starters, in order.
The Jays have sent Moises Sierra to minor league camp, which he’ll join when he’s through with the Global Honkball Challenge. You could take my word for it, but, y’know, unlike some sites, I’ll actually point you to a source.
Doug Harrison of CBC Sports talks to Jays pitching coach Pete Walker, putting the ol’ five questions to him about his preparation heading into the season.
Dirk Hayhurst checks in with another series of notes from camp.
The Tao of Stieb continues hammering away at his 30-odd Jays in 30-odd days, with the “oddly brilliant if overpriced” Mark Buehrle.
Travis Reitsma of Getting Blanked look at the AL East team I think we’ll all have to begrudgingly admit aren’t really as bad as we want to believe: the Boston Red Sox. Drew talks about this too, in the preamble to his URL Weaver post earlier today.
Aaaaand more Getting Blanked, as the Zubes stays up all night so you don’t have to, giving us the goods on whatever happened in the Global Honkbal Extravaganza last night.
Speaking of, at Baseball Prospectus, Sam Miller explains why he’s rooting for the honkbalers in this year’s version of the tournament.
Elsewhere at Baseball Prospectus, they rank the top 40 starting pitchers for fantasy purposes, three of whom belong to the Toronto Blue Jays: R.A. Dickey (10), Josh Johnson (27), and Brandon Morrow (36).
Joe Posnanski of NBC Sports tells of speaking to A’s director of baseball operations, Farhan Zaidi, who claims that his club’s own WAR-ish “objective model for measuring a player’s value” indicated that Miguel Cabrera was slightly better than Mike Trout in 2012. Zaidi’s probably just fucking with him, right?
Lastly, it’s back to Getting Blanked, as Scott Lewis reviews MLB ’13: The Show, which sounds excellent and has a Jays-heavy video review as part of the piece. He also tackles MLB 2K13, which… yeah… not so much, apparently. At Franchise Mode, Scott Johnson has some GIFs of glitches discovered so far in the latter title.