Let’s see here… Roxanne, the Real Roxanne, Roxanne Shanté, and Salman Rushdie.

The Jays picked up minor league infielder Steve Tolleson, who you may remember as a bit player on the 2012 Orioles. MLBTR has the details.

Awesome stuff from the latest Getting Blanked Podcast, as Drew chats with Boston Red Sox advanced video scout and bullpen catcher– and former holder of the same duties with the Jays (and who threw to Jose Bautista in the 2012 Home Run Derby!).

Behind the Box Score tweets that one of their writers, Ben Horrow (aka @Summerpastime), has been hired by the Jays. Nice!

Matt English waxes poetic about Roy Halladay on that Kinja thing I don’t really understand. #old

So did Dirk Hayhurst– at his personal blog, which… that I totally get! This Kinja thing though.

According to this tweet, Baseball Reference’s Play Index doesn’t have the right algorithm to compute the fact that black is slimming.

I’m not going to shut down outside-the-box thinking, but in a Fanpost at Bluebird Banter, “MjwW” makes the case for the Jays going to a four-man rotation in 2014, and… well… not sure I’m crazy about the whole 100-125 innings to three of Jeffress, McGowan, Rogers, or Redmond aspect of it. Not that it’s a tenable plan anyway because of how open it would leave the club for severe criticism– both in terms of the media and, presumably, within the industry– at the first hint of any sort of trouble. Let’s maybe see about getting rid of the closer orthodoxy bullshit before we go down this road– walk before you run, eh?

Over at Sportsnet we have an audio clip of Bob Elliott and Dave Perkins filling out their Hall Of Fame ballots live on air, and… uh… I didn’t hate this segment. That, however, is probably more of an indictment of how useless the Hall has made itself than it is of anything else, because I’m sure there are things in there to get upset at, it’s just… meh. Good on them for being inclusive about PED guys, at least.

Elsewhere at Sportsnet, Ben Nicholson-Smith takes a look at some of the Jays’ remaining starting pitching options.

Buster Olney, in his latest at ESPN.com (Insider Olney), wonders if Ubaldo Jimenez and Ervin Santana may just end back with their old teams– on those teams’ terms– because their market has so badly cratered because of the draft pick compensation tied to them. I can think of at least one team that ought to be able to beat those offers.

Baseball Hot Corner has a chat with Ryan Goins that makes it slightly harder to root against him– which I’m totally not, by the way. I mean, I’d love to see him succeed, I just think it’s a ridiculous idea to crown him a big league regular without a safety net. Or to expect him to, y’know, hit enough to even justify the great glove being there.

More stuff from Blue Jays Plus on John Gibbons, as Isaac Boloten has chatted with two more players from the 2012 San Antonio Missions, who were managed by Gibbers. Like the other items in this series, Hayden Beard and Dustin Pease have nothing but good to share about their former manager.

Elsewhere at Blue Jays Plus, it’s their latest podcast, featuring a great talk about pitching mechanics with Doug Thorburn.

David Laurila of FanGraphs has an interesting chat with Jays prospect Andy Burns.

A couple from earlier in the month, Nick Ashbourne of Bluebird Banter wonders if Dioner Navarro’s 2013 meant anything, while Ken Fidlin of the Toronto Sun looks at how Navarro can maybe relate to J.P. Arencibia, given his years in baseballing purgatory.

Another one from Nick at Bluebird Banter looks at Esmil Rogers, who he suggests needs to feature his sinker– especially if he’s pressed into duty as a starter.

Craig Dunham writes for BlueJays.com about farmhand Jack Murphy, who has achieved cult hero status in Australian baseball circles.

Maury Brown of Forbes writes that MLB’s revenues exceeded $8-billion in 2013. With a “b.” Holy shit.

Oh and there’s a tonne more from BlueJays.com: Jim Callis takes a brief look at next year’s draft class. Bernie Pleskoff does some scouting on Marcus Stroman, saying that he likes him as a starter, explaining that “his fall statistics were outstanding, but it was his mechanics and mound demeanor that helped confirm my belief in his ability as a quality pitcher.” Meanwhile, Gregor Chisholm looks at how Jays catcher will benefit from working with Tomo Ohka, who has returned to the organization as a knuckleballer.

Lastly, Jeff Blair writes about former Jay Ryan Freel for the Globe and Mail, tying in the announcement that it was discovered that he has been posthumously diagnosed with CTE with issues of player security the league’s decision to ban collisions at the plate.

Comments (55)

  1. 4 man rotation with more innings to middle relievers seems like a great thing to try. Have the starters only go through the order twice rather than 3 times on average. 3rd time through almost all starters have less success – the odd ace gains velocity as game goes on but is about batters guessing pitch selection and reacting to the same pitchers a bit better too.

    Do it in the minors first then when you bring guys up from within your own system they wont lose their shit due to the change and potentially less losses.

    There has to be some science / biology come into play here with injuries and recovery times as well. I am no physiology expert so dont know if less pitches per game with more games and less rest between them is better. Currently we have starters on one extreme and bullpen on another.

    Players and teams adapted to the change in philospohy back whenever when one inning relievers started more often and starters didnt go as long so why not more refinement if it makes sense?

    • * wont lose their shit due to less wins (not losses) since maybe they dont go the full 5 innings as often.

      • This will never happen until the way Pitchers are rewarded financially through arbitration changes.

        • Again a fallacy. The arbitration process would change how it rewards players if teams started to implement this. Back in the day a prominent thing for pitchers getting paid was likely how many complete games and if they could go every third day. There would be a transition period as there is right now with players still being rewarded for HR and RBI when better analysis is available. This would lead to a resistance to change for sure but when things make sense they logic can prevail over that resistence especially when the players have little option to resist the change (if pitchers were mostly home grown and / or under contract already)

          • If you were a kid, getting drafted, and you knew if you were picked up by the blue jays you’d be part of their pilot program and you’d never amass the kind of career you had set out, or you could choose to not sign and go somewhere you could rack up the wins and the strikeouts and the innings, I think you’d skip on the blue jays all day.

            • I agree there would be resistence.

              The theory is to pitch the same number of innings but more effectively. If it worked it would lead to starting pitchers getting more strikeouts and having better statistics overall – that is the whole point so it follows that they would be paid more.

              Jays already do it in the minors with the piggybacking. Assuming it worked it may only take a year or two of success to change people’s opinions so may not have much impact on the draftees. The lack of player development history with the Jays certainly may though

    • If it worked everyone would do it. Need one solid starter and hope one of strolman, sanchez, drabek or hutch to step up.

      • That is a fallacy. Nobody has tried it so how can you say if it worked everyone would do it? History is chalk full of examples of heavy resistance to change but eventual change that undeniably led to improvement. With pitching the clear example is whenever they stopped having the starting pitcher try to pitch complete games almost everytime. I am sure if this was suggested before it happened many people said “If it worked everyone would be doing it”.

    • The Jays problem is not that they do not have a 5th starter; it’s that they have too many of them. Thus, the four-man rotation does not work particularly well for the Jays.

      • Wouldnt the reasons you said mean that the 4 man rotation with extra middle relievers would make the 4 man rotation idea make sense for the Jays? Too many 5th starters become the middle relievers who go 2-3 innings

        • Yes, absolutely. And the guys who throw the best over a half dozen 2-3 inning stints find their way into the rotation and you eventually head back to a 5 man rotation if it looks good enough that way.

  2. MjwW says Jiminez at 4/50. Thought he is usually pretty on point but that seems low to me. Nolasco got that. Would be great deal for Jays – make him your fourth member of the 4 man rotation.

    • Just to clarify…that’s not what I think he’ll get, it’s where I think he’d represent a decent signing for the Jays (could live with a little higher, maybe $55M). There’s a very good chance someone gives him a fair bit more than that.

      • Seeing what other people have gotten it seems like he is most definitely going to get higher and if that is as far as the Jays go they will not get him or other pitchers and will roll with the in house options. Unless the price comes way down ala Kyle Losch or however you spell that guys name

    • When we had Doug Thorburn on the BlueJaysPlus podcast last week (thanks for the link Andrew) we asked him about Jimenez and basically confirmed what I’d already thought about Jimenez’ mechanics.

      They are a complete nightmare, and basically prevent him from having any type of consistency what so ever. Even if you get the good Jimenez for a while its not going to last.

      I have zero interest in any of the top 3 pitchers left on the market. Garza cant defend his position even a little, and is also a gaping asshole of a person. Jimenez has the brutal mechanics, abd Santana cant keep the ball in the park.

      At this point if we dont trade i think the best we can hope for is a bottom end innings eater to serve as a fall back if Stroman, Nolin, Drabeck & hutch arent ready. Someone like a Capuano. Not pretty.

  3. During the HOF voting segment on Sportnet, I couldn’t believe the one guy Elliot chose to drop was Tim Raines. Keep Jack Morris because he’s more deserving than Raines. That to me was completely brutal.

    The whole HOF voting thing is completely ridiculous.

    • Sure is. How can anybody say that Barry Bonds isn’t a hall of famer? PEDs or not this guy was clearly one of the greatest players of all time much less hall of fame worthy. Yet like 50% of the voters will not elect him! Same goes for ARod who I am sure people wont vote for but is clearly deserving.

      • But whoever was their manager and got the benefit of their bat in the lineup still gets full marks for how many wins they amassed.

  4. PTS did a similar HoF seqment yesterday with Blair and Friedman. It was much more aggrevating, in that Blair suggested that he doesn’t put all that much thought into the process (but still votes), while Bobcat basically held a kangaroo court for guys like Piazza.

    Seriously, its a museum…just put the best players in, be transparent about their careers, and keep it for posterity. Maybe if they just changed the name to the “Museum of Professional Baseball” we could all move on.

    • A kangeroo court is exactly what it is. Guys like Griffey (worthy) and lesser talents are supported since they were clean in the PED era. Does anyone even know who was clean and who wasnt? Wasnt it liek half the guys tested positive but the list was never released due to confidentiality under CBA?

      When do the people in the game start voting on this stuff instead of the writers – many of them are competely out to lunch and it is a joke.

      For isntance MVP voting the MVP always has to be from a competitive team? Obviously somebody who put up great numbers on a non playoff team was way more valuable to his team than someone who put up poorer numbers on a playoff team while there were 3 or 4 other guys that had similar years to them on their own team.

  5. Just wondering, with our second base situation, about the chances we see Jayson Nix back in Toronto as a cheap, veteran utility infielder? I think he’d be a good third option if the Goins/Izturis combo doesn’t work, filling the Mark DeRosa role for us this year. He doesn’t have any real slugging ability, but It doesn’t seem like we’re going to pay the 12 mil. to get a second baseman with power anyways.

  6. I mean…what the fuck is going on with this Tanaka situation. Are we fuckin…(hiccup) in on em or not?

    • Nope. All we are is fuckin’… (hiccup).

    • ive been a drunk rambling grumpy piece of shit since i was 3 years old!! now gimme my name back cause i aint plannin on changing….even if i get a visit from christmas ghosts!! ive raped ghosts before and i aint scared to do er again! this better be fuckin AA’s sink or swim year

  7. What are Goins’ stats compared to Kawasaki’s? Going with a”marginal improvement” theme that might (stress on the “might”) characterize AA’s strategy this off-season, can we say that Goins is an improvement over Kawasaki (parking the Izturis factor for a moment)?

    • I’ve wondered this too. Is Kawasaki legitimately better than Goins? Seems to be a solid-ish bet to give you a league average OBP (if nothing else) with a solid but unspectacular glove. I also felt like Kawasaki had just barely enough arm to play SS (needed a big crow hop even on easy plays), so he’d be even better suited to playing at 2B. If Goins was a surer bet to be anything at the plate at all, this wouldnt be a question, but then I guess that’s why we’re looking at 2B upgrades in the first place.

  8. Stoeten: Please stay in the box! I like your old classical way of thinking. Don’t change now.

  9. Way to go MLB. If you can keep the growth up, some day you might get to be as big as Rogers is today.

  10. I do think that the Jays could potentially take advantage of the whole Draft pick issue to sign one (or two, why not?) of the big name FA SP’s with that anchor tied to their potential offers. I wonder if a creative offer could lure them in, seeing as both guys are so young. Something like 14M for 1 year (where a Qualifying offer is still tied to the Pitcher), with a player option for a second year at a slightly lower rate which ends with the Jays automatically turning down that qualifying offer.
    That way the player could opt out after 1 year if they feel conditions will be better than this year, or tough out the second year so they can become a FA without that anchor.

    • Not sure why conditions would be any better next year for those guys. They’d just be a year older and even less likely to land the years/dollars they wanted. Also wondering if a pre-arranged QO decline would be against the rules. I’m thinking yes, since no one has tried this fairly obvious circumvention of the system before.

    • Try to put yourself in their shoes. First big contract opportunity. If I am them I am going for as big of overall guaranteed money as possible and not risking blowing out my arm nest year and not getting paid for the rest of my life after i pick up my option. Veteran guys its a little different and if they had big down years maybe they want to regain some value like JJ

      • A reasonable and rational person probably would sign for as long and as much as they could get. But these are people with huge ego’s with agents that care most about the bottom line.
        That said, signing the deal above would mean enough money to live off of forever, and taking a chance that 1 or 2 years later would mean a better opportunity to cash in big time.
        I guess it depends on what the players and agents figure that Qualifying offer is costing them, and if it’s worth that added risk.

  11. Re the revenue number for MLB,curious how that stacks up against the other big 4 sports

    • Its got to be way higher. Payrolls are higher plus they are pumping money into all the development like none of the other sports. Those greedy bastards who set up the league over 100 years ago sure got it right to play as many games as possible.

  12. Rotation should include Stroman for sure and one of Hutch or Drabek. Guys with higher upside, young and hungry. Happ is utter garbage. Calling him a 5th starter in the AL East is a lie and everyone knows it. Would rather take a flier with a couple of rookies and hope for the best. Hopefully catch lightning in a bottle and run with it. Has worked for Oakland for a few years now. AA should focus on getting a proper 2B and a power RH bat and I would be content going into Spring.

    • Wow someone after my own heart when it comes to Happ. Though I won’t go so far to say he’s utter garbage, I just think they can do better. He walks way too many and is a fly ball pitcher in the wrong division. If cash is tight, then he’s the perfect guy to move because of the back end depth the Jays currently have.

  13. I’m only 23 and I’ve never heard of Kinja. Though I will say that the author is 26, so hardly an infant. And he said that “we all” liked the 2004-2011 Jays logo. Incorrect, it fucking sucked and always did. Fact.

  14. I don’t understand a world where Dave Perkins has a Hall of Fame vote and Vin Scully doesn’t.

    • Really? You don’t understand? You must be confused a lot.

      Vin Scully is an employee of the Los Angeles Dodgers. No one who is employed by any of the major league teams or by Major League Baseball, votes on entry to the Hall of Fame. For obvious reasons.

  15. Good article on Tanaka. See what we’ll be missing out on lol


  16. Lotta dogs in the fire stanimal.

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