Wrong fingers, Omar.

It feels like every time I start a new post I’m doing so with a snarky remark about this wretchedly slow off-season hitting some kind of a new low. As much as I’d like to avoid doing that again right now, it’s kinda hard not to, because we’re about to rehash a bunch of 2012 bullshit involving people who are no longer even in the Jays organization. (Yay?)

But actually, this is somewhat interesting, as last night we got some excellent — albeit curiously 18 months late — insight from Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun about the breakdown of the relationship between John Farrell and Omar Vizquel back at the end of both of their tenures as Blue Jays.

The short version of Elliott’s piece is that Vizquel paid for Henderson Alvarez’s family to fly from Venezuela to Miami so they could watch the then-Jays pitcher’s scheduled start against the Marlins in June of that year. However, a flurry of injuries hit the club’s rotation (as you may recall), and at some point after both the team and the Alvarez family had landed in Florida, Farrell bumped Henderson’s start back a game, which put him into the next series, in Boston. This angered Vizquel, who went to the manager’s office to complain, though he was rebuked, Elliott explains, with something like, “I’m not running a Little League team here, I’m doing what’s best for the team.”

He continues:

Vizquel thought he had been slighted, began second guessing Farrell and 13 weeks later knocked Farrell’s failure to “jump on mistakes” by young players telling our Steve Simmons:

“It’s part of the inexperience. If you make mistakes and nobody says anything about it — just let it go — we’re going to keep making the same mistakes over and over. We have to stand up and say something right after a mistake happened. We have to talk about it at meetings. We have to address it in a big way in the clubhouse.

“Sometimes you have to punish players because they’re making the same mistakes over and over again.”

The next day Farrell screamed at Vizquel behind closed doors and wanted to release him.

With less than a week remaining in the season, the Jays did not think it was appropriate to release the future hall of famer.

There are some interesting strands to pull from this, especially looking back on what was being said at the time, the first of which is to reiterate — gauche as it may be in some circles at this point — that Farrell is absolutely fucking bang on. That doesn’t mean, however, that the disarray of his final weeks as skipper here isn’t in abundant evidence when looking back.

When the breakup eventually became inevitable, we heard about possible tensions between the manager and the front office. That became clearer near the end of the 2013 season, when Farrell contrasted his former and current employers, speaking about the difference between a “scouting-based organization, and one based on player development.

Acrimonious as it came off, those comments actually made it sound a rather cordial, academic split, like a band claiming after the fact that they broke up over “creative differences,” when the reality suggested by the Vizquel stuff makes it look closer to being about petty jealousies, or, to complete the analogy, sleeping with each other’s girlfriends.

Farrell could have justifiably been upset not only with Vizquel, but with management for not taking his side in the matter, and for saddling him with the supposedly HOF-bound carcass in the first place. There was, of course, more going on with the relationship than just that, which (self-indulgence alert!) I hinted at when writing at the time about Vizquel having been forced to apologize to the team and coaches for his comments to the Sun:

I tried to make clear earlier today that it’s as bad on one side to dismiss these concerns as it is to swallow Vizquel’s self-serving tripe whole hog, but I’m sorry, it really is just too rich for me to take [his comments] seriously, especially now that the Jays have made so clear that they’re not buying what Vizquel is selling– and also, in light of the conveniently ill-remembered fact that last year’s narrative was that the intimidating Farrell would have supposedly never allowed Boston’s chicken and beer brigade on his watch. So… which is it, people constructing a narrative from the crumbs in their ass in the desperate need to point fingers in the wake of a disastrous season?

I lose the plot just a little bit, especially at the end there — and not just grammatically (although: holy fuck, what was that??) — because it seems clearer now it wasn’t necessarily an either-or situation. Vizquel certainly didn’t have the credibility, especially as the club Latino Veteran during that summer’s Yunel Escobar situation and his previous complaints to the media about playing time, to suddenly be making these kinds of charges, but my presumption that all along this was the same Farrell who Clay Buchholz cowered from in Boston, in retrospect, seems off.

Fortunately, I had a firmer grip it all by the time of the next post on the site. In it I passed on the “rumour” — the earliest concrete statement on the saga that would then occupy the following month —  from Jen Royle that the Jays were willing to let Farrell leave for Boston due friction between him and Anthopoulos . Many fans were aghast at both the presumption and the source, and I didn’t necessarily do as much as I should have to stop that. “This sure as fuck is a powerful bit of information to have slipped past the local wretches, coming to us from a source whose mere existence, I’d wager hard, is as much a revelation to Jays fans as her claim,” I explained. “Which isn’t to say it’s necessarily untrue, it’s just kinda seriously odd.”

I continued:

That said, it’s not like there aren’t reasons to believe that something may be amiss between Anthopoulos and the hand-picked manager he spent so much of his first year on the job seeking out. My personal tendency is to not take this very seriously, but it’s undeniable that Farrell wasn’t particularly on-message during the Escobar press conference that went so badly awry, and that he hasn’t managed his ballclub, tactically, like a man taking a whole lot of input from what typically appears to be a very savvy, new age front office [2014 note: really???]. Add in the fact that Anthopoulos reportedly was open to discussion with the Red Sox last year, that he, somewhat unusually, has been insisting that a manager’s contract really only sets his rate of compensation– the implication being that he doesn’t see the need for an extension at this time — plus the suggestions, entirely suspicious and agenda-driven as they may be, that the clubhouse atmosphere is too lax, and you start to see where there may genuinely be issues.

Bigger still may be the fact that, if Farrell leaves, at this point, would anyone really care? I mean, I don’t think we’ve seen the best of John Farrell at all, and I’d have absolutely no problem with bringing him back for the final year of his contract and seeing how it goes, but if Boston wants to give up something to get him, how could you possibly not take it? And isn’t that a pretty serious indictment?

We obviously know now that something really was up, but interestingly, Elliott’s casting of Vizquel as so petulant brings the tensions between Farrell and the front office into sharper relief, I think. Most Jays fans are never going to think that Farrell rightfully felt aggrieved in wanting out, and I wouldn’t argue that they should, but it’s certainly interesting where it seems the club’s loyalties were laid.

Could the Jays have done something about Vizquel sooner, when the timing would have been more appropriate? The incident involving Alvarez, in addition to Omar’s complaints that May to Jon Morosi about his reduced role — “they think because I’m old that I probably can’t do the things I used to do” — may have been grounds enough for early dismissal, coupled with his utter uselessness on the field. John Farrell wasn’t running a Little League team, in other words, but maybe Alex Anthopoulos was.

Shit, just wasting a roster spot on a Veteran Presents totem alone probably does as much bad in reinforcing the notion of rewarding special privilege over merit than whatever supposed good it does, so the whole Vizquel enterprise is pretty questionable, in my view.

Of course, we don’t have nearly enough information to think any of this for sure, and right now it’s very easy to be sucked in by negativity’s vast gravitational pull when it comes to this team. Still, pushing up Vizquel’s petulance timeline makes it a little bit harder swallow the idea — easy as it is to believe regarding the end-of-season incident — that Farrell’s heart was already in Boston when friction arose between him and the front office.

Then again, maybe his heart was there all along. Or at least from the time he was denied the opportunity to take the job that was ultimately given to Bobby Valentine following Terry Francona’s firing after that club’s epic 2011 collapse.

That’s the easier narrative for Jays fans to believe, at least for as long as they believe in the club’s current front office. But how long will they?

I’m generalizing, of course, but certainly that worm hasn’t fully turned just yet. If a free agent splash and/or a winning start to the upcoming season doesn’t reverse its course, though, I can’t help but think that we’ll find Farrell’s days as a foil for this front office weren’t as neatly wrapped up at the knife-twisting end of last October as maybe we thought. Already I’m certain that you could find far more people willing to believe now than they were less than a year ago, when boos rained down in near-total unison on him at the Rogers Centre as he deliciously gave a mock cap tip to the April crowd, that Farrell was the one to keep, and right all along.

I’m not saying that I buy it, or that much of whatever amount of that sentiment is out there isn’t surely a testament to the aforementioned vast gravitational pull of the negativity surrounding this club, but picture this: the Red Sox visit the once-again struggling, excuse-ridden Jays in late August of 2014 and the crowd rises to cheer their former manager in a half-mocking salute designed to cut Alex Anthopoulos and Paul Beeston to the bone. Wouldn’t it simply be over for them in a moment like that? Could the front office point to any asset in the low minors enchanting enough to save themselves?

It’s a little fantastical, to be sure, and the Jays season doesn’t have to go that way, of course. But what I guess I’m really just saying is, this Farrell thing surely isn’t just over for us yet — like an ex that got in our head but good. And now, when it comes to the Vizquel stuff we learned today, it gives us further pangs doubt that, at the very least on some of what led to our being apart, the piece of shit may have actually been right.

Comments (85)

  1. So…you’re saying they haven’t signed a pitcher yet…

  2. “picture this: the Red Sox visit the once-again struggling, excuse-ridden Jays in late August of 2014 and the crowd rises to cheer their former manager in a half-mocking salute designed to cut Alex Anthopoulos and Paul Beeston to the bone. ”

    This made me want to puke. Not just the the mental image of it, but the gnawing feeling of inevitability I got from reading it.

  3. I’m gonna go out on a limb and say they (Farrell and Vizquel) deserve each other.

    • What’s to dislike?

      • It’s all true; if we don’t sign one of them we hope Hutchinson wins 18 games. “Ha-ha”…

        We have 1st round pics protected and money to spend; if not now, then when?!!?!

        • Wins are silly and Hutchison is not incapable of having a really good year. But optimism on the current group and wanting the club to add to their collection of assets don’t have to be mutually exclusive things.

    • Good article. Pretty much sums things up imo. I really am starting to believe the money is an issue again. Obviously i have no proof but that is what I take away from all the tidbits this winter. Hopefully the prove me wrong soon enough.

      • Kind of silly to think that at this point. Surely they could have divested themselves of money if it was a major issue, and, of course, the players we’ve all thought they were going to be in on most are still unsigned.

        • i dont think its money. i think the Jays have offers on the table, but the players would rather get another team in a different city to match it. they dont exactly scream contender these days.

  4. The same guy saying things weren’t being jumped on quick enough thinking he should have veto power over the starting rotation is pretty odd (all told the wily veteran leaking news of problems with professionalism in the locker room is pretty fucking ironic).

    I don’t know, it’s pretty hard not to take Farrell’s side in this particular instance, but hell, it’s tough not to remember the guy whose performance at the Escobar presser (eventually followed by the ‘If I recall correctly I got traded line’) might actually make the Fords blush.

    Perhaps it’s the mind wandering because of the slow offseason and the tire fire that was 2013, but this comes across as an unnecessarily chaotic organization. One way or another, the Vizquel thing should have been solved at the time, and if Farrell was pissed the team didn’t have his back it makes me wonder about some of the stuff AA said a year ago about being too passive in the past and not relying on his gut enough. Maybe more than just missed trades or signings were on his mind.

    • I feel like AA may makes promises and doesn’t want to break them, which is noble to an extent but really he shouldn’t have had a personal guarantee or whatever with Omar.(whatever prevented him from being released)

      I remember feeling the same way when he said he wasn’t going to make the marlins trade because of Jeff Mathis.

      • He’s made several promises that he has no business making. Buck was promised playing time. Almost didn’t make “the trade” because of Mathis and maybe something with omar. AA should supply the personnel. The manager should be the one utilizing them.

  5. I hate Farrell more then most, but it’s pretty unfortunate to see how this was handled by head office.

    It’s pretty nice of a gesture for vizquel to have paid for alvarez’s family to come watch him pitch and it’s unfortunate he got bumped back.. Could he have not paid for them to get to Boston? You already paid for them to get the majority of the way, talk to Bautista or Romero, and get them to pitch in, the $5,000 solution to the problem.

    Seems like an immature, somewhat inexusable reason to have a blowup.

  6. “plus the suggestions, entirely suspicious and agenda-driven as they may be, that the clubhouse atmosphere is too lax, and you start to see where there may genuinely be issues”

    John Gibbons ran a lax clubhouse, which is why they couldn’t win.
    John Farrell won the World Series.
    Therefore, Farrell did not run a lax clubhouse.

    My narrative syllogism is unassailable.

  7. it’s interesting to see your views sliding, Stoeten, from Anthopoulos-can-do-no-wrong towards this-guy-doesn’t-know-what-he’s-doing. It’s been a rough few years, and you’re right, if a worst-case scenario presents itself, no amount of prospect porn is going to reassure the bloodthirsty fans any more. But I remain optimistic that a pitcher is coming, that a second basemen is coming, and that they will be the difference to take the team to the playoffs, as it was projected to do last year, and where little of substance has changed since then (aside from a bunch of players simply not doing what they were supposed to, obviously).

  8. Fuck, Stoeten. You’re really messing with my head.
    Last gasp before I concede: this is just clubhouse crap. Chemistry doesn’t matter.

    • Well, not necessarily, if there was deeper strife with Farrell about the player development stuff. But, yes, that’s a leap to make.

  9. I guess it’s a case of “She wasn’t the right girl for me, but she sure is good for that guy” when it comes to Farrell. It just wasn’t a good fit here.
    And although I hated to see him win the WS with the BoSox, it was a wake-up call that should make all Jays fans wonder (again) what really happened here in Toronto. Not cause Farrell was necessarily a brilliant manager (I still don’t know if he is) that we shouldn’t have cast aside, but because it just seems like everyone that leaves town has a story (and not maliciously) about how ‘things just aren’t working’ here.
    That makes me worry more than losing Farrell or going into the the season without the SP we all think we need.
    AA may have been the wonderboy a few years ago, but right now he has a history of questionable trades and signings, and decisions that he seems to be second-guessing (guess he was wrong about JP).
    So am I worried as a Jays fan?
    I hope Beeston is too and if the time comes for him to be loyal or to prove that he’s not running a Little League team, he’ll jettison AA.
    But this season is it for AA. It’s now, or never for him.

    • I suspect the legend of AA the Wonderboy began at the Vernon Wells trade. Those of us old enough to remember Pat Gillick were perhaps hoping we’d found another GM superstar. But the problem is that Gillick was working with open-handed owners who would pay lots of money to get a winning team. AA is saddled with the Empire, who have a distressing habit of opening the purse strings and then snapping them shut. I’m not convinced that this is AA’s last chance. I think the only thing that will turn this team around is an owner committed, as Labbatts were, to winning even though it might cost a shedload of money and might not contribute overmuch to the corporate bottom line.

      • It’s truly hard to determine how Rogers views AA.. Is he still an up and comer, the guy that made some great trades and watches Rogers pennies like Scrooge McDuck? Or is he the schmoe that blew 10′s of millions and pissed away prospects at the same time?

        From a fans perspective, if this season doesn’t yield positive results, that of being in contention in September, then it’s time for Rogers to let AA go. 5 years is enough futility.

        • I do think AA does deserve a lot of slack even past a mediocre 2014. The first 2 years were true rebuilding years, 2012 was due to be a stepping stone but was derailed by injuries. 2013 was the first year of legitimate expectations but again was derailed by injuries that imo were worse than 2012.

          Then there is Rogers financial commitment to factor in. I think you can argue that prior to 2013 there wasnt a full investment by ownership contrary to their protestations otherwise.

          I’m not giving him a complete pass. Like i said above I think the player development or refinement if you like, hasnt been as good it could have. Maybe you also see that play out in a couple of the trades that he’s made recently involving the catchers. I also question if they are more interested in winning $/war championship at times with all the value talk, but again that’s a hard thing to critique when you dont know what kind of payroll he has to deal with. That said Beeston has always said the money is there for the asking so it gets murky on that front.

        • They have just $27-million in salary committed for 2013. They’ll view that just fine.

          “Five years is enough futility,” is, of course, the dumbest. Hey, let’s not look at context in the slightest, right?

          • Definitely bringing context into the picture here.. but dumping bad contracts and signing star players on the cheap does not a good GM make. The results haven’t been there yet, yes lots of injuries 2 years in a row but what if there’s more key injuries this year? Another pass to AA?

      • @Isabellareyes:
        “Gillick was working with open-handed owners who would pay lots of money to get a winning team”

        That’s somewhat true, but not the complete picture of Gillick’s GM tenure under Labatt’s ownership. It’s true that the Blue Jays had the majors’ highest payroll in ’92-’93, but they did not have the highest payroll in the preceding decade in which the team was over .500 every year (and either contenders / division winners every season from ’85-91). The winning formula in those days came from economically acquiring and developing young players.

        Having the highest payroll is not a prerequisite to winning or getting into the playoffs, as those ’83-’91 Blue Jays showed, and as the Rays / A’s / Cardinals / etc have shown in recent years.

    • This is the sort of stuff that makes me hesitate sometimes when indulging the negative questions, because it’s so easy to veer into stuff like this, with the “history of questionable trades and signings, and decisions that he seems to be second-guessing,” or that everyone who leaves town says its not working, like it’s a whole lot bigger list than it really is.

      • Fair enough, Stoeten. It is opening the proverbial Pandora’s Box.
        And I think it’s safe to say that all of my comments (and other peoples’) just mean we want these magic beans to finally grow. And yes, I made some wild over-arching statements in my comment. It’s been said that Toronto, in general has an inferiority-complex and I think that definitely applies to the Toronto sports fan — these stories of John Farrell (and others) just play into it — “Maybe they’re right and our team, management and ballpark AREN’T worthy…”. We have a lot going for us, but if we didn’t live here, who would say the Jays are the team they would follow? We root for the pyjamas we know. And our pyjamas could use something to cheer about.
        I’m a season ticket holder, and while that doesn’t necessarily give me the right to complain any more than the fan that goes to zero games, it would just be nice to see some meaningful baseball late in the season. That’s all I ask. But for the most part, the fun has to be in the journey of just seeing the season unfold and at least I like the game, rather than just the team. It makes it somewhat easier.

  10. Sounds like a nasty situation all round. Let’s not forget that Farrell had asked out at the end of the season before which would not have endeared him to the front office and does not suggest to me that he really was the right guy. Vizquel had no right to behave as he did. AA and Beeston should absolutely have backed up their manager. I don’t think any of these people come well out of the 2012 season.

  11. Farrell was useless with the Jays.He used his time here to gain experience.Congrats to him winning in Beantown,but for his time in Toronto,he was the wrong guy,in the wrong place, at the wrong time.

    • That’s the story, and we all buy it, but what I’m hearing from Stoeten’s post is maybe we all drank some kool-aid about Farrell. Sure he blew us off, but maybe he had reason to, but it wasn’t because he had a hard on for the red sox as much as it was he was stymied here. Possible, amigos?

      • More than a story.
        I remember his managing decisions.
        Fucking brutal.
        Get a guy on,try to bunt.All the time, all year long.For a former pitching coach,there was more than a few people on this site going “what the fuck?”.He was in love with the LRLRLR lineup and wouldn’t adjust.I could go on.
        He went through the motions but wrong guy with the wrong team.
        The team did shitty because of Vizquel and poor Farrell was undermined? Fucking bullshit.More likely because he lost 3/5ths of the starting rotation and he was a shitty manager.

        • I’m not saying there weren’t problems with his managing, because there definitely were, but it’s good to have left and right handed hitters split up for late inning matchups. Also, the Jays had 1,384 hits in 2011 and 1,356 in 2012; they attempted 54 and 65 sacrifice bunts in those years (FYI, they played 162 times in each of those years).

          • Farrell’s chief problem as a manager was that he had no idea how to run a bullpen. Showed that same trait in Boston too until he fell into Koji Uehara having one of the better relief seasons of all time.

            • @BFF
              I thought his ingame was worse, they were both bad.
              Who can forget when Lawrie tried to steal home with JBau at the dish?Interviewed a day later Lawrie was unapologetic and brash,nobody talked to him about it.

              • @Riggs
                isn’t possible that you just don’t hear about these things because you don’t read the detailed content on other teams that you do on the jays? Or perhaps they just do a better job of hiding out? It seems rather nieve to suggest that with the egos and money involved that this wouldn’t be because the jays are “a fucked up organization” but rather fairly normal.
                I say this all based completely on assumptions but it seems plausible to me.

          • Having LRLR is great in the late innings IF you got lefties that can hit.It’s still optimal to have guys who can hit and get on base, grouped together.
            You’re gonna have to trust me on this.
            I appreciate that you’re trying to look at it logically,but it’s not the amount of sac bunts attempted, it’s when they are attempted AND the situation when the attempt is made.
            Farrell was doing it early in the game and in stupid situations.

        • +Lots. He really didn’t cover himself with glory here. And the players didn’t sound thrilled with him either. Lind has had a thing or three to say. Also, for a pitching coach, he had no clue whatsoever about running a bullpen. Whoever is right, Farrell will always be wrong in my book.

  12. It blows my mind how many behind the scenes dramatic stories this team is always involved in. It’s a fucking joke of an organization if you ask me. Why can’t they just be normal? Also, why in the fuck haven’t they signed anyone yet?! Like was said above, protected picks and money to spend…like what is going on?

    • Most teams have behind the scenes drama that nobody hears about.
      Cito was interviewed about his WS years and related that there was more than once he nearly came to blows with players, while arguing in his office.
      Nobody knew and nobody said.

      • With all due respect, you just said most teams and then used the team I’m talking about as an example.

        • Good point.
          I guess because it didn’t come out until last year.
          Before that,it was sunshine and lollypops for the 92/93 teams.
          There’s a ton of stuff behind the scenes.

  13. After Reading this I think I threw up in my mouth a little bit. I can handle a lot of things but not Farrell being the good guy..
    Melky Cabrera had a tumour on his spine (Really)
    Josh Johnson absolutely sucks (Fuck)
    All there pitchers suck (Fuck Fuck)
    We can’t beat the Old Age Yankees (Fuck Fuck Fuck)
    Henderson Alvarez gets a no hitter for the Marlins (Fuck Fuck Fuck Fuck)
    Farrell & The Boston Red Sox Win the world Series (Fuck Fuck Fuck Fuck Fuck)
    There is a lot more but I don’t like to swear.

  14. So AA might be terrible post time?

  15. Suck it Farrell.

    That still works, right?

  16. I always liked Farrel when he was here. He had an air of confidence about him. Even when he left I wasn’t up in arms like most were. The man had a dream and he got to fulfill it. I’d rather not see the fucking Red Sox win but c’est la vie. Vizquel was an old bag of fucking dust that should have never been on this team in the first place, let alone trying to tell the manager how to run his team.

  17. You can look at my posts at the time the Vizquel shit went down, i said he was a little weasel then and i say it again. For someone who has been around the game for so long and had aspirations of being a manager himself what he did was totally bush league.

    As for the other stuff, i’ve long wondered about their development among the position players and just how prepared they are when they get to the majors. Hitting aside, which will always have the greatest adjustment period, i have not been impressed with how the call ups do defensively and situationally. Personally i dont understand how some of these guys are incapable of knowing what base to throw to or how to bunt at this stage of their development.

    • Yep and you are right to wonder about that. These guys do not seem to come up prepared enough for mlb. They keep on making fundamental errors which never seem to get corrected. And if we do look back on the Farrell years, for a guy whose previous team had loved and feared him, I didn’t see any love or fear around here. Players made avoidable mistake after avoidable mistake with no obvious accountability. I would like to see *a lot* of changes at the player-development level. That’s where the real problem of the team lies in my opinion. Trades and free agents are all very well. But we need to develop our own home-grown core of dependability on the team. Raw talent is nice. Honed talent is way nicer and will actually win us some games.

  18. By the way, why is this coming to light now? Farrell and Vizquel are long gone. And the only Toronto people who are really hurt by it are the current front office. Who does this come from? Farrell? Vizquel? Why now?

    • Maybe there’s a new Jays book coming out? IMO Vizquel was wrong, but really in the scheme of things at the time, Alvarez could have kept his start as planned.

      • It’s a REALLY small dopey thing that could’ve been fixed if the two of them had just been mature about it. No one’s mentioned yet that the season was gone at that point and it didnt matter to the standings who started. On the other hand, as was mentioned above, all of these guys have got the cash to send the Alvarez family to Boston AND Toronto FFS.
        I suspect that things had been simmering for a while at that point.

    • I wondered if it was known about all along and just not written about until now.

      • That was my take. I think there is a lot of stuff that happens or is said that is left off the record for various reasons.

      • Elliott works in mysterious ways sometimes.Broke the Dirk news way before anybody else did and he had that buried deep inside an article.

      • Hey stoets cant even admit when Elliot is right…He has connections throughout MLB… you troll message boards on MLBTR!

  19. yeah its an interesting saga. On the one hand Farrell having his heart in Boston all along is easy (and gratifying) to believe. On the other hand, how could he possibly have been the crown jewel of one of the more extensive manager searches I’ve ever been aware of, and then all of a sudden been such a bad fit two years later? Something doesn’t jive.

    The Visquel-Alvarez thing – I mean if it was a nothing part of the schedule (I can’t remember what their record was at the time), then sure, why not let the kid pitch in front of his parents? Farrell shouldn’t have been on the hot seat at that time, so the all-out managing for wins thing didn’t have to be the focus. All part of the “managing people” thing – not that it should be govern all your decisions – but it is important to toss players a bone every once in a while if everything else is more or less equal and it doesn’t have a drastic effect on the team’s success.

    What I keep coming back to is the general negativity that current Jays have for Farrell. By no means do you always have to like your boss for him to get the best out of you, but respect is important.

  20. Fuck sign Jiminez already…

  21. Great piece, as always, Stoeten.

    It is interesting to see and feel our collective tunes changing with regards to management, especially if it is the all too predictable shit show come August.

    I hope we are not in that situation come August, but rather in a pennant race.

    No, seriously. A pennant race.

    Weird to say it out loud.

  22. I love how everyone hates on aa, when without hindsight, all of his moves have been justifiable. You were all sucking him off last off season, shit doesn’t always work out as planned. I still love aa wholeheartedly, everyone here will love him again next week when a fa signs

    • Agree with you CBA.

      I find it comical when the large majority of fans including readers of this blog thought that AA’s moves last year would probably result in playoffs. And now that it didn’t work out (admitted it was an injury filled disaster) those same fans are saying AA lacks loyalty or are outright demanding his head.

      Bunch of fucking hypocrites.

      For 2 and a half years AA took a barren minor league system and cleverly added prospects and picks. And then when the opportunity presented itself he made some moves that were largely viewed within the baseball world (including Baseball Execs and writers) as gutsy and smart. He tried to undo 20 years of futility.
      And you celebrated him for it.
      And after 1 season it’s all worthless?
      It didn’t work, but those moves are easily defendable.
      They should have worked. Some of the best thinkers in the game thought they would.

      You guys don’t look smart coming on here with the benefit of hindsight and saying the moves sucked. You look like a bunch of spoiled pussies.

      2014 is Brett’s breakout, I’ll be along for the ride.

      • Not to mention he got killed by injury and players underachieving. The team is built well in my opinion. We have a lot of solid pieces, some good young arms in the minors, some excellent options for depth in starting pitching and many excellent bats. This team can win this year if everything falls into place as I believe it can. It was widely discussed last off-season by many that the blue jays won the off-season and were world series favorites. Can we be patient for a second, give AA the benefit of the doubt and see how the season plays out before we start talking about his firing?

      • Is that Brett or Brent Morel?

  23. To give credit to vizquel the guys who started in that series were, Romero (no comment needed), Cecil ( Who had already begun being converted to a reliever that season….) and Jesse Chavez (most innings pitched is 62 in a season)….. Even though the jays were37-35 at the end of that series if you are throwing out those 3 as sp you have already lost….

  24. I believe this and the scouting player development component Farrell Suggested at a news conference in Boston had nothing to do with why he left…..and everything to do with the fact he tried to go to Boston every offseason but the one he was hired.

  25. umm. lets make me the news now.

  26. I think the most troubling takeaway from this is that the Jays’ FO didn’t have the balls to release Vizquel when it became clear that he wasn’t going to help on OR off the field (and it became clear pretty quickly).

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