Well that didn’t take long. The World Series ended last night, I’m told, and today the Jays were already getting down to business.

To wit:

Yes, the Munenori Kawasaki Era may already be over, though that’s not necessarily going to be the case, as Davidi explains:

Lind will earn $7 million, Janssen $4 million and DeRosa $750,000. Kawasaki would have earned $1 million, but may still return on a minor-league deal.

So… yeah, I don’t know. All of those moves seem pretty obvious to me. Lind and DeRosa will make for a nice DH platoon combo, with DeRosa being able to spell the odd infielder from time to time, continuing his bang up job babysitting Brett Lawrie, and otherwise just kinda being awesome. Janssen, obviously, continues to be surprisingly terrific– so much so that his terrificness should have probably stopped being a surprise by now– while Kawasaki looks a whole lot better off the 40-man roster than on it.

OK, maybe not a whole lot. But better, I think.

Yes, yes, I know that everybody loves the guy– and for good reason. And I even think he’s a guy who is quite a bit better at the plate than some of his numbers– particularly the ones that penalize him for his utter lack of power– might indicate. Which isn’t to say that anyone ought to be quick to write off that element of his profile as a hitter, but he takes good at-bats and is able to get on base via the walk, so I don’t think he’s quite the detriment to your lineup as he might seem when you hear a thing like “.634 OPS.” But he’s still, as the roster is currently constructed, behind Reyes, Goins and Izturis as far as shortstop depth goes, and behind Goins, DeRosa and Izturis at second base, with another player surely yet to be added. Even assuming the club can somehow find a taker for Izturis, it’s pretty hard to justify paying Kawasaki that much to take up a spot on the club’s 40 man roster.

With Ricky Romero and Mike Nickeas being outrighted in early October, Darren Oliver retiring, Rajai Davis hitting free agency, and the club now declining Kawasaki’s option– which, frankly, I didn’t even know he had (it’s not on Cot’s, FYI)– the Jays currently have, by my count, 35 players on their 40-man (assuming they keep Josh Johnson), with seven guys on the 60-day DL still to be added back on. Or at the very least six, assuming Ramon Ortiz won’t be retained.

Sure, they could have bumped a Mickey Storey or a Thad Weber off the roster to keep Kawasaki, but with other new players sure to be added, new prospects needing to be protected from the Rule V draft (that is… I assume, though I’m too lazy to go look up who is in such peril), and the potentiality of keeping Kawasaki on a minor league deal anyway, it maybe wouldn’t have been prudent asset management to keep him and pay him $1-million, knowing he’s almost certainly not going to make the club (or at least not get much playing time if he does), and that maybe there are better options out there for him.

That said, if the club had kept him and paid him a million bucks, would I have been complaining? Not likely. I’d still like to see him stick with the organization, and wouldn’t be upset if he managed to earn the 25th spot on the roster, either, depending on how it all eventually shakes out. But I get this one, and get wanting to shift the resources to somewhere other than someone who could– and frankly probably should– ultimately end up the club’s fifth-choice option at both middle infield spots. Right?

Also: this.

Comments (84)

  1. R.I.P. The Kawasaki Era, April 2013-August 2013

  2. Good news is I can get my Kawasaki jersey 50% off now

  3. Go after Mark ELLIS and Chris Capuono and blow off JJ for the same amount of monies.

    • You can get someone to suck for a whole lot less than what it would take to get Capuano, I’d figure.

  4. Can Derosa decline to play, thus opening up a roster spot? Does Derosa have to retire or can the Jays cut him in spring training if he shows up out of shape etc?

    I recall we went through this with Darren Oliver last year. The Jays had exercised the option but Oliver wasn’t sure if he wanted to play another year.

    Didn’t Derosa say he had to talk his wife about playing in 2014?

    I don’t have a problem with Derosa coming back in 2014.

    I like Kawasaki, but the Jays have a surplus of infielders, with Goins,Izturis & Derosa all looking for the 2B spot.

    I would hope that Izturis can recover in 2014 back to his career averages.

    I wonder if AA thought of picking up Kawaski’s option & making soom room on the 40 man roster as you said Stoeten.

  5. Sad to see him go but could this guy play on the Cardinals or BoSox ? NO. Good Luck to him , the homer he hit was one of the really great parts of the shitstorm that was 2013. They have a tonne more to do. Let’s hope Lind doesn’t miss Chad too bad. We sure seem far away after that nasty season and an off season just packed with great teams.

    Went to Boston for Game 2. Blue Jay execs need to realize this team can’t wait for 3-4 years for a grass field. If they have to wait go out get new turf and install a clay infield. Surely the cost is minimal compared to the wear and tear on their Million Dollar ballplayers,

    • “Sad to see him go but could this guy play on the Cardinals or BoSox ? NO.”

      Yeah, the Red Sox only carry superstars like John Macdonald.

    • Well, John McDonald and his .371 OPS finished out the regular season with the Red Sox, so, yeah, Munenori Kawasaki might be able to play for them.

    • Compared to the Kozma/Descalso shitshow that the Cardinals were running out there at shortstop, Kawasaki would’ve been a godsend.

  6. ive declined the option on AA…..and take gibbons with you….and JP, and melky, and thole, and lind, and izturis, and romero!! im trading fuckin sucky ass bautista too so go peddle your peanuts elsewhere!

  7. all that, now im drinking an ice cold beer…..FUCK, LIFE IS GOOD!! oh yeah…FUCK YOU RED SOX!!!!!!

  8. I’m sure they’ll find another player who can do some capering.

  9. NEED A CATCHER FIRST PLEASE. SPEND ON CATCHER PLEASE. Ruiz,Molina,Navaro all are good options.

    • Will be interesting to see what becomes of Arencibia. The Jays site says they’ll probably re-sign him.
      Anyone know if he’s got options left?

  10. After that Jays season seeing the Red Sox win the World Series is such bullshit.

    • Resisting the urge to barf, but there’s only one good thing I can take away from the Red Fux winning it all this year — if they can finish in last place in one year and then win it all the next year, then why not the Jays as well? The Jays have a lot of decent players – it’s just a matter of making the final tweaks in this off season to pick up players to fill the gaps and then get them to gel in spring training and to keep everyone healthy.

  11. God love him but there’s only so much room on a shortened bench. 20 years from now you’ll remember this shitty season and you’ll remember Munenori Kawasaki and he’ll still be able to bring a smile to your face.

  12. Yeah he was lovely. I’ll miss him. I hope he can make it back here somehow. But I stopped being sentimental about the players on this club a while ago. The team needs improvement on the infield. Muni unfortunately isn’t an improvement.

    • @Isabella,

      Kawasaki reminds me of Randy Ruiz. It was fun while they played. What annoys me is that Kawaskai was one of the only players to have at bats like the yankees or red sox players routinely do.

      If izturis doesn’t recover, the Jays are stuck with Goins or derosa as everyday 2B.?

      The Jays 2B has been going downhill since Aaron Hill left.

  13. I’ll be curious to see if AA will be aggressive early in free agency like he was last year with Izturis,

    IIRC, AA suggested Izturis was a target and gave him the extra year to ensure he got him.

    While it hasn’t worked out with Izturis so far, it’s a reasonable strategy to use for the right player.

    For example, if other teams are offering Ruiz 2/12, maybe AA swoops in and gets him for 3/20…

    • 3/20 is a lot for a catcher that doesnt hit well. Hes better than jpa, but still.

      • Carlos Ruiz’s wRC+ over the last several years:

        2009 103
        2010 127
        2011 108
        2012 151
        2013 89

        I would say that he is a catcher that DOES hit well. i guess it depends if you view his 2013 as the start of a big decline or his floor.

  14. Kawa could still be back and I hope he will be. One of the few position players on this team that knows how to have a good AL east type AB. Im really fed up with lind and didnt want him to be back even though I knew it was likely he would return. Just sick of his inconsistency.

  15. I was looking at list of free agents today and thinking Buck might be worth a flyer at catcher with Mark Reynolds worth another at 1st. Him and Lind might make a great platoon at 1st or DH

  16. That starts the offseason with a bang. Lind should have been shown the door.

    • He absolutely should not have been, but thanks for trying.

      • What does Lind provide for this team? I give you that he hit a lot of home runs, but it was in a small batch in time. The rest of the season was him being an instant out. His back is an issue and I am tired of the indifferent attitude. The Jays just finished in last place and the Red Sox just won the title with the ex-manager. Now is the time to cut ties. If you want a bat from the left side off the bench keep Goins.

        • Okay, you’re a troll or an idiot.
          If you’re a troll, it’s not that funny.
          If you’re an idiot, it kind of is.

        • I love when people make these sort of comments in a vacuum. The Jays don’t really have an opportunity to add players from outside the organization yet, so this move doesn’t mean that they now won’t go out and get whoever you’ve been hoping they will get, though I don’t get the sense you had even thought this out as far as that. It just means that they feel as though the $5 million they’d save by letting him walk will not buy them more production on the open market than they anticipate getting from Lind next year. I tend to agree.

        • The first thing he provides is a positive trade value. He might be a nickel, he might be a sawbuck, but he holds value. So, no, you don’t throw that away for nothing.

        • The number of qualified MLB hitters with a higher wOBA against RHP than Lind this year: 11,

    • It is hard to believe this level of ignorance/stupidity continues to exist on this site….

  17. Lind and DeRosa platoon at DH…god no.
    Kawasaki behind DeRosa, Izturis and Goins at second. What?
    Derosa hit .235 last year.
    Error-ciba back behind the plate…
    We are truly fuked.
    At least you could count on Kawaski to go deep in the count, the only Jay to seem to understand this, the only Jay to be able to bunt.

    • i guess it’s almost (ALMOST) a good thing that there are months & months & months before next season starts, then, huh. they could make some moves. just a hunch.

    • Why the fuck would this moron think Arencibia is coming back? You know, beyond the other head-shaking stupidity.

    • Trollface.

  18. I don’t like keeping DeRosa. Keep 5 outfielders and use one of them as your DH.

    Gose can pinch run, be a late game defensive replacement, and sub anywhere in the outfield.

    Sierra or Melky can platoon in Right Field with Melky hitting DH against Lefties.

    Sierra and Gose need At Bats at this level.

    • I meant Left Field :)

    • What have they shown that makes you say that?

    • If they could get out of the contract to Melky, would you be not be comfortable going into the season with a Sierra / Gose / Rasmus / Bautista outfield?

      It wouldn’t be that bad would it?

      I mean, left field would be a little shaky but maybe…. just maybe it would work

  19. I believe Big Sak will be back. Probably similar to the decline on Rajai last year, AA resigned him for like 250 K less or something after he declined his option. Muni will get the league minimum and be back.

    Carlos Ruiz would be great for this staff. Calls a great game, good D and miles better with the twig then Strike3bia. Give him 2 years, bring up AJ Jimenez half way through the year and let him get some mentoring in.

    • Why is this the first time I’ve heard the nickname ‘Big Sak’? Well done.

    • Calls a great game? Really?

      • Yes, for fuck sakes Stoten, catchers call the game. There’s a pregame “book” on guys but that’s a guideline. They use instincts, try to get a feel for what pitch is working…etc

        You have no idea do you?

  20. Baseball America just listed the Marlins top 10 prospects.
    3 Marisnick
    4 Nicolino
    5 Desclafani

    And James Bailey predicted all 3 of them would make the top 100 prospects in baseball.
    When asked to name an organizational sleeper who could turn into a good pro : Sam Dyson.


    I still love the trade but was hoping for some regression.

  21. Old cheap FA’s I like for the Jays:

    Mike Young – He’s 37 but hit .279/.335/.395 while playing 1st, 2nd, 3rd and SS in ’13.
    He’s a leader, versatile, and would be better off the bench then Saki or Rosie (though I like them both)

    Bart Colon – He’s like 100 but ever since he went to Germany to get controversial stem cells inserted into his arm he’s been reborn. He’d eat innings and instantly become the most handsome guy on the team. (1.16 Whip at 40, what the fuck?)

    Chooch Ruiz – A tank behind the plate, does everything a catcher should that JP doesn’t.
    Smart game caller, frames, blocks, respect of vet pitchers, can hit the ball.

    Brian Roberts – Has been crazy injury prone for the last 4 years. Prior to that he rattled of 7 seasons of .270 or better and has a career line of .278/.349/.412. Why not gamble that he’ll stay healthy. He can’t much on the market and has some real nice upside.

    It will be tough for the Jays to land one of the premier FA’s, and if they do they’ll need some bargains. One or two of these guys could fit in nicely.

    Here’s a list of the current FA’s, you like the guys I mentioned or do you see something better?

    • I would dare suggest that Bartolo does much more than just eat innings.

    • Interesting, Smasher.
      I agree on Ruiz, no problem there-heh,heh, forget Salty
      You bring up Roberts. I was looking at him the other day and thinking as you were. At one time, not long ago, when Baltimore was shit, he was their all star. Scrappy, decent D-I like him and think he is worth the gamble and better than paying a declining Brandon Phillips 17m AND having to trade someone of note (Rasmus?) to get him.
      I would pass on Michael Young-His defensive metrics are weak, his power is declining and I think the money can be allocated elsewhere , for example, to Roberts

      Colon??-Putting up some great numbers in Oakland where the field is the length of the Par 5 ,18th hole at Pebble Beach, but he wasn’t that great in the bandbox the NYY play in, plus the whole PED thing and we already have one of those. I think I would pass, personally and look at a younger pitcher who is cheap and still has upside, even though Stoeten hates him, and that is… Phil Hughes of the NYY

    • “He’s a leader”?

      Come on. You’re allowed to not just regurgitate nonsense.

      • And…. that’s all you comment on? Not any of the actual players or points? You’re getting lazy.

  22. Will this help or hinder Kawasaki’s bid for the Toronto mayoralty?

    • OMG Yes.

      Stiff competition from Canseco but I’d give Muni the edge.

      • Hmmm. On the one hand you’ve got Canseco, the steroid injecting, gun toting American and on the other Kawasaki, the light hitting weirdly gesticulating, goofy dancing Yap -pahn-eeeeeese!
        I say either are better than the thug slimebag thats in there now.

  23. Eh – I’d rather Kawasaki be behind the hopefully-dumped Izturis on the depth chart. If they need a backup infielder, I’d rather Kawasaki get that job while Goins works on his hitting in the minors. Not a major deal, though, of course.

    I do have trouble seeing Kawasaki back here though. I can easily see another team guaranteeing him a backup infielder job.

    • Agreed.

      I like Goins in AAA and I think he has little to do with this move.

      This is more about the 40 man spot and likely addition of another 2b in the off season.

      • Mark Ellis’s option was declined by the Dodgers, he should be a target for the Jays. Even in a platoon situation with Goins. That combo would be miles ahead of anything we had last year on both sides of the ball.

  24. Griffin tweets that Kawasaki is probably heading back to Japan, where he had a $2M offer which the Jays knew about in advance of the option decision. So that pretty much explains that.

  25. Hope Kawasaki takes the minor league deal, but if he’s on the 25 man, it’s probably not a good sign for the Jays.

  26. Goodbye 2013 and good fucking riddance……..

    The hope I had in spring was doused by summer and then just pissed on by watching the douches from Boston win…

    Hopefully the heart will mend to allow me to love again come spring 2014.

  27. Griff says Saki goes to Japan

  28. I’d like to see them aim higher than Mark DeRosa.

  29. Kawasaki was about the only positive I remember from the hell that was ’13

  30. How soon financially can we guiltlessly release Izturis?

  31. Ok, don’t know what this means, or if anybody will see it at this point, but the official Jays release mentions the re-instating of members from the 60 day DL to the 40 man. It lists 5 of them, and says Ramon Ortiz and Josh Johnson were re-instated and are now free agents. Does this mean the Jays DIDN’T extend a qualifying offer, or that they don’t have to do that yet?

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