Are we going to have to create a Trolololosi GIF for Howard Eskin? Because the Philly reporter who broke the Bautista-Dom Brown “scoop” seems to know where his bread is buttered, as he’s got another one for us this morning– and who am I to turn down a slice of said buttered bread when he’s so temptingly offering it to me?

Frankly, I’d be an idiot not to eat up this delicious… um… wheat-y goodness. So here we go– WHEEEEEE!!!

I wrote about Ruiz yesterday, at which point the rumours of a two-year, $20-million contract were out there, but as I noted in yesterday’s GM Meetings After Dark post, Shi Davidi was reporting that it wasn’t the Jays who’d made the offer.

So… yeah. Again, what do we make of Eskin’s contradictory suggestion? I have no idea (though I’m entirely inclined to not buy the specifics, while believing that there’s interest).

I do know that he’s certainly an upgrade on Arencibia (Ruiz, that is, not Eskin. Although…). Even when he was at his worst in 2013, that much was clear. I also know that everything I wrote about yesterday still entirely applies, except with maybe a bit more sticker shock, assuming that a team really does have to go to three years in order to get him. Let’s hope not– though it would, I suppose, give the club more opportunity to backload a deal and maintain flexibility for this year.

But as far as signing in general him goes? Sure. As long as it leaves Anthopoulos with enough wiggle room to do everything else that he needs.

A real catcher– even an aging -one with some definite question marks– would be kinda nice.

So… there’s that.

Comments (44)

  1. A shorter term deal for a new catcher DOES make sense if you assume Jiminez is the new “catcher of the future”. But if you’re going after a 35 yr old coming off a down year you better bloody well have a solid backup too… and I don’t think JP or Thole qualify… though maybe Thole since he can at least hit righties (unlike Chooch and JP).

    Or you know, Just sign McCann and make him a DH in a couple years… right?…heh.

  2. I’d do 2/20 for Ruiz.

  3. i’d rather have dioner

  4. Iannetta could also be had for 2/20 right?… of course you’d have to give up some assets too…

  5. I wonder if Eskins bosses asked for an uptick in his online readership numbers. Ask and ye shall receive.

  6. Obviously looking for more hits/radio invites from Toronto media.

  7. I keep on wondering why we fear older players and longer contracts so much.

    AA has no problem with PED risks (Melky) or injury risks (Reyes, JJ, McGowan, etc, etc). Why are we so averse to age risk?

    The Yankees are all old and yet somehow continue to do well each year.

    And even if 2 years from now, we are in a rebuilding mode, we can always trade the guy.

  8. I would also take Navarro over Ruiz younger and cheaper

    • I suppose going after Ruiz is a reflection of how one views aging in baseball players. Generally players loose a little to father time in each subsequent year as they age, usually they just don’t fall off a cliff. Here’s Chooch’s last 5 years as a hitter per wRC+.

      2009 – 103
      2010 – 127
      2011 – 108
      2012 – 151
      2013 – 89

      His Steamer projection for 2014 is 109 ( he’s always had fairly good defensive numbers) which I think is quite reasonable. Remember league average for catchers is 91 for the past 5 years. You’d need to rely on your scouts to see what they think ( probably not the same ones that scouted Izturis ), but it’s entirely plausible that he’s still a fairly good hitting catcher. You have to be really cautious reading too much into one partial season where a guy missed most of spring training.

      The other issue is how much effect did stimulants have on his career, can’t he just chug some Red Bull like Lawrie?

  9. Maybe the Bautista Brown rumour is something that was discussed during the 13 season and was only mentioned to Eskin now.

    As for the Ruiz rumour, it’s plausible and for me, I hope it’s true.
    Iannetta and Navarro can’t hold his jock.

  10. I asked Dave Cameron about Ruiz in his chat… his answer was interesting.

    Comment From Bret
    Is 2-years, $20M worthwhile for a team to give Ruiz? Apparently he wants a third year – is that crazy?

    Dave Cameron: Ruiz projects as a +3 WAR catcher next year. It’s not crazy at all.

  11. Just for his supposed effect on the pitching, i would be down.

  12. @Ken_Rosenthal: Sources: #Orioles willing to trade Wieters. Both Wieters and Chris Davis two years away from free agency and represented by Scott Boras.

  13. Kenny Ken Ken also noted the Jays had talked to but made no offers to every single free agent catcher

  14. Yeah, well no shit. When the dumbshits at 590 and TSN are giving him a platform (and attention), the only thing that can be expected is more of this garbage.

  15. I like Ruiz, but don’t think he can catch much more than 100 games. He will require a good backup (maybe Jose Molina on a cheap deal…even if he isn’t good really).

    But $20 million is reasonable. Martin got $17 and I’d consider Martin heading into 2013 as a worse player than what Ruiz is heading into 2014.

  16. I think you hate Arencibia irrationally much at this point.

    He’s wasn’t great with the bat last year and he’s not a great defender either. But the Jays also had no viable backup catcher—Thole’s worse with the stick and only marginally better with the glove. I’m pretty sure Arencibia was playing hurt a little bit more than he should have. That’s probably not bright, but it at least calls into question how well his 2013 stats will predict his future performance.

    • he wasn’t just ‘not great’… he was historically bad.

      and his immaturity and sense of entitlement have to be wearing awfully thin.

      • Yeah, he totally sucked and he was maybe a bit upset about it. One explanation is that he totally sucks and he’s a prick. Another is that he was playing hurt at least some of the time, wasn’t satisfied with his performance, and didn’t know how to react gracefully in the face of failure. I’m taking the position that the latter explanation is more plausible.

    • You acknowledge he sucks with the bat and the glove, soooooo why is the hate irrational?

      Also, no injury was reported so you’re making excuses for why he sucks.

      Is this you JP?

      • He sucked with the bat and glove. In 2013. That’s now in the past and relevant only insofar as it has predictive value for his performance in 2014 and beyond.

        I suspect he still kinda sucks with the glove, but the bat can’t possibly be as bad as it was in 2013.

      • Yes an injury was.

    • People really don’t understand how bad JP is. He’s literally one of the five worst hitters in baseball. He’s awful. Josh Thole is a better career hitter than JP even with Thole’s horrendous last season added in. JP is fucking BRUTAL as a starting catcher.

      If JP is your backup catcher you probably have the best backup in the league though.

      • You mean “was” and “was [...] last year” and so forth. Can you argue that his stats next year will be similar or worse?

    • If he was injured in any way, we would have heard about it now. He’s just terrible, i mean he has his positives, plus power for catcher, decent framing skills and durable.

      But he can’t hit for average or take a walk, and thats alot more important then hitting a dinger every so often. I havent heard any praises about his pitch calling and man he sucks at blocking pitches and cant throw out baserunners to save his own life.

      There definite value as he still is under control for 3 more years, but I would be very happy to see him leave.

      • I don’t think that’s true. He caught 1058 innings last year, which is kind of a lot. Fifth most in all of baseball. I’m pretty sure he got a bump or a scratch at some point. Maybe even more than one bump, or more than one scratch, or perhaps a bump and a scratch.

      • He WAS injured. We HAVE heard about it.

        Knee bursitis.

    • Thole can catch Dickey though which means that unless you find someone else who has that skill – he’s the backup – at a far cheaper rate (even if he doesn’t turn it around at the plate.)

  17. Sportsradio 94 WIP (@SportsradioWIP):
    A source tells our Anthony Gargano that the Phillies and Blue Jays are close to a deal that sends catcher J.P. Arancibia to the Phillies.

  18. Genius move by the jays to drive up the price on Chooch to make the Phillies make a deal for JP

  19. Dave Cameron while talking about Bautista made several good points about player aging patterns that I think are just as applicable to Ruiz.

    “It is one thing to expect a natural and continued decline in a player’s skills as he ages, but make sure you’re decaying from the right starting spot. The most recent single season isn’t it, especially if the seasons that came before it were significantly better.”

    I’m warming up to the idea of chasing this guy.

  20. Here’s more on the drug Adderall that Ruiz was suspended for.

    “It’s very potent,” Catlin said. “It jazzes you up, gets you off the line faster. You start faster, move faster, and it can be habit-forming. It’s certainly not good for you. If you take too much, it can get your heart racing, cause rhythm disturbances in the heart, and even, if you go to the end of the line, seizures, though it usually doesn’t go that far.”

    Daniel noted that Adderall “works on the same transmitter as cocaine, so you feel more grandiose, confident.”

    I suppose if you pursued him , you’d need to sit down with your Medical guys to determine just how his performance would be effected by being clean and off the drug.

    • or he’ll just get a prescription like everybody else.

      • Apparently according to Rosenthal, Ruiz now has a medical exception for the stimulant he was using.

    • The rest of MLB has a medical exemption for the stuff.

      Doctors routinely prescribe Adderall for a “condition” called ADHD which is normally diagnosed when children have trouble doing endless amounts of pointless, menial desk work in unstimulating environments without their minds wandering to something more interesting.

  21. Smoked crack today

  22. Well if Shi Davidi shot it down then it musssst be bullshit right? :S

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