Leading off, as always (or usual), it’s today’s edition of the Getting Blanked Podcast– which for the duration of the season will be coming at you daily! We’re not double posting this year, but I’ll be sure to include the link in the first Daily Duce or Game Threat that follows the post going up over at Getting Blanked. Otherwise, you can find the podcast at Getting Blanked on iTunes, get it via the RSS feed we have setup, or like Getting Blanked on Facebook in order to get each day’s podcast straight into your news feed (if we bother to post it). While you’re at it, go ahead and like DJF on Facebook, too.
At Sportsnet, Shi Davidi declares that the off-season is a better time for the big changes the Jays will need to make in order to make a run in 2014, and he’s probably right. Sigh.
Meanwhile, Davidi’s colleague Ben Nicholson-Smith gives a nice primer on how August trades work.
Chris Toman of Gamereax similarly suggests that the dearth of activity from the Jays at the deadline wasn’t such a bad thing. The piece comes on the heels of another, in which Toman suggests that the Jays are still in good shape for 2014.
At Getting Blanked, Drew looks into how tonight’s combatants in Anaheim– the Jays and the Angels– came to be (supposed) sellers at this year’s trade deadline, after being big (supposed) winners over the winter.
Jeff Blair rounds up the lack of deadline activity for the Globe and Mail, who says Alex Anthopoulos, in his post-deadline conference call, “sounded very much like somebody well aware he has heavy lifting ahead of him, so better to hang on to what he has in hope that value is maximized in the winter.”
Earlier in the week at the Globe, Blair noted the dark clouds gathering over this year’s version of the Jays, winding up asking, essentially, if the club maybe didn’t choose the wrong core of players to build around (hint, hint, pageview-whoring bullshit about Jose Bautista), while his colleage Tom Maloney looked at where it all went wrong, and what can be done to amend it.
Jon Hale of the Mockingbird gets deliciously all “statistical crank” on a recent Shi Davidi piece about whether pitchers or hitters have been getting more calls. Read it.
Belated, heartwarming stuff from Hall Of Fame weekend, as Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun tells tails of “Saint” Shirley Cheek– Tom’s wife, of course– while the Sun reprints the text of her speech at Cooperstown. An incredibly deserved and long overdue honour for the voice of baseball in Canada.
This week’s Bullpen post from Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star also reminisces about Cheek.
Elsewhere, Griffin suggests that Josh Johnson’s troubles are more than just mechanical.
Mop Up Duty wonders whether the Jays should go all-in or change course for 2014, which… I’m pretty sure they’ve already been all-in for like eight months now.
John Lott of the National Post looks at how R.A. Dickey has been haunted by home runs in the Rogers Centre this season. Yepppp.
Brendan Kennedy of the Toronto Star notices what Chris Creamer of Sportslogos.net mentioned a while back: the Jays kinda suck when they’re wearing their road grey uniforms. Burn them, say the superstitious weirdos!
Mike Rutsey of the Sun looks at the impressive improvement this year that we’ve seen from Colby Rasmus– one of the few Jays non-relievers (maybe the only one, actually) to really take a step forward this year.
Gregor Chisholm of BlueJays.com notes that J.A. Happ is getting closer to returning.
An MLBTR post suggests that the Jays were scouting the Chicago Cubs this week, but wonders if it was more about future deals than anything that was imminent at the deadline. I still think they might be eyeing Starlin Castro.
Edwin Encarnacion is not your typical slugger, says FanGraphs. The best, though. The best.
Drew’s latest My Approach post is another gem. This time he speaks with the Twins’ Joe Mauer. Meanwhile, elsewhere at Getting Blanked, Craig Robinson’s fortnightly infographic looks at all the guys who spent 15 years on the Hall Of Fame ballot. Cool stuff, as always.
Lastly, today was our first day in our new, sweet-sounding podcast digs. Can you say sound quality improvement? Seriously, give it a listen if you haven’t for a while– also because we’re actually, finally getting quite a bit better at this, I think. No, really. (Also, no DJF podcast today, so this is all you’ve got!)