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With proximity to his Maryland home seemingly a major consideration, the Jays were probably never really a factor in the chase for A.J. Burnett. That’s good, in a way, because it means that they didn’t exactly “lose” him, as word came this afternoon — to most of us via a tweet from Ken Rosenthal (which credits Philly beat reporter Jim Salisbury, though MLBTR now says Hayden Balgavy of Arkansas’s THV 11, and apparently being a real person who exists, had it first) — that he has signed on to be part of the most expensive fourth place team in the National league, joining the Phillies on a one-year, $16-million pact.

Another one bites the dust.

And this, of course, is where we look at that awfully tasty contract and wonder how the hell the Jays couldn’t have done better, before snapping back to the reality that this reunion just wasn’t ever happening, no matter how much we want to fume about why the hell that’s so. (Or maybe you did that a couple hours ago, when the news first broke, and are over it already — SO SORRY, SOME OF US WERE HAVING LUNCH).

The market continues to play itself out pretty much exactly like we’d expect, and though Burnett isn’t quite the last half-decent starter available without a draft pick tied around his neck, he’s pretty close. Chris Capuano remains out there for some plucky club to dream on — Dave Cameron wrote about him in a positive light a couple weeks back at FanGraphs, noting that he “has a better three-year FIP/xFIP profile than Ervin Santana” and that “his three-year strikeout rate is exactly the same as R.A. Dickey‘s” — so the coming onslaught of scawwwwwy pieces about how the Jays may have waited too long and that other, now-desperate clubs may jump back into running for Santana or Ubaldo Jimenez is maybe still a little off, but… we’re getting to there.

Speaking of, I still think the worry of either of those guys being stolen away is overblown in the minds of fans. If the Jays want them, they can still get them, even if the bidding moves the dollar figure north from its lowest ebb, especially since they still have just about the least amount of draft pick value-loss to factor into the price they’re willing to go to. There is certainly a greater than zero chance that they really don’t sign one — and things like the Mariners losing Iwakuma for four to six weeks don’t exactly help — and should the Jays actually allow that happen, there will be a lot to answer for.

I mean, even if you buy the premise that the Jays could be quite alright with what they’ve already got (and I do), there’s no reason that should be mutually exclusive from the desire to add even more assets. Given the advantageous position they’re in, with respect to both the draft pick situation and the way the markets have cratered, a club with such a public hard-on for in-a-vacuum value can’t seriously expect to convince us that they suddenly got cold feet because they realized that liked what they had so incredibly much, or that they didn’t notice the way that a team like the Cardinals managed to integrate guys like Michael Wacha, Trevor Rosenthal, and Carlos Martinez by way of the bullpen during the back-end of a year in which the club made a run all the way to the World Series, despite the fact that in the minors those guys were all exclusively starters.

In other words, the idea — which is out there, I think (or, at least, the Jays would like to be out there, as part of their contingency for not signing anyone) — that the club could be locking itself into some kind of undesirable rotational log jam is utter garbage.

Yes, it’s difficult to not give a free agent signing a whole lot of rope, and given all the marginal value the Jays are going to have to rely on accumulating in order to be competitive with yet another “if everything breaks right…” roster setup, maybe that’s a legitimate concern. Maybe they’ll be immediately regrettable — awful straight out of the shoot — but the good of adding a high upside guy like Santana or Jimenez surely outweighs such potential bad, and the Jays sort of demonstrated how they agree with that notion last year with the additions of Dickey and Johnson, right? Plus, it’s not like they would be killing their flexibility going forward into 2015.

Shit, the Angels got the Royals to take Santana following his brutal 2012 (albeit with only a single year remaining on his deal) and all they had to eat was $1-million. It’s not likely that he or Jimenez will pitch so poorly as to become unmovable, but even if they do, we’ve seen through the sad decline of Ricky Romero that the club will put its own on-field interests ahead of being beholden to a contract or a pitcher’s feeling.

Add in that there are club options for 2015 on Brandon Morrow and J.A. Happ, and that, if by some miracle several prospects have forced their way into the rotation picture, Mark Buehrle will be headed into the final year of his contract, likely as a very movable piece if the Jays are willing to eat a portion of his $20-million salary in order to save the rest of it to be used elsewhere, and you wonder just what exactly the fuck the worry might be. Assuming, of course, that it isn’t money, payroll parameters, and all that garbage fans rightly dread may still be lurking behind every decision or non-decision. And that’s exactly where the conversation will inevitably go if the Jays fall short on both of these guys, no matter how they try to spin it.

It doesn’t have to be that way. It shouldn’t be that way. I don’t think it will be that way — I think they’ll sign someone — but right now, as we continue to insufferably wait, that’s where it’s at.

 

One Final Parting Gift Basket…

Because I don’t want to devote a whole damn post about it, and because it’s not like you’re going to have trouble finding anything about it, this afternoon Derek Jeter announced that 2012 was, in fact, not his last season as a professional ballplayer (crotch grab in the direction of @MJ_Baumann for that one), and that he’ll be retiring at the conclusion of 2014. That means just one last chance for Jays fans to figure out that their extra-hard booing of him is kind of weird, off-putting, and an announcement to the world that hey! this is a name I recognize!

Anywho… that’s rather large news, I suppose. Retirement tour it is. And while there was quite a bit of bemoaning of this new trend on Twitter following the announcement, I can’t say I mind knowing when I’ll have one last chance to see the greats of the game in person — and I suspect that the marketing departments of clubs throughout the league don’t mind, either. So, also: get used to it.

Barring injury or (don’t laugh) a playoff matchup, Jeter’s last on-field appearance in Toronto is set for August 31st. I know he’s a fucking Yankee, but his career has been, like, stupidly good and a hell of a thing to watch.

Comments (194)

  1. I wonder if Beeston will leave after 2014 if it goes bad again

  2. I say we put Santana and Jimenez in a room. Put a contract on the table as well as a broke pool cue and tell them we are having “try outs”.*

    *Hey, worked in The Dark Knight

  3. C’mon stoeton, the jays will be “quite alright” if we stand pat? Hutchinson isn’t going to win 15 games. You’ve been good at telling it like it is; don’t stop now.

    • I had a dream that any PR coming out of the Blue Jays camp is not credible fwiw

    • might have more to do with the caliber of pitchers left on the market not being that much of an improvement. I think at best we are looking at a team that can hopefully play a few meaningful games in the beginning of September. more glaring to me than the pitching situation are the position players.
      An aging team that has seemingly always been a lock to be close to the top of the league in man games lost. In Baseball maybe more than every other sport durability is the key to success and the Jays haven’t had it and probably won’t this year.

      • That’s BS; the yanks won with lots of players in their early-mid 30s; it’s only when Jeter et al. push 40 did they really decline.

        • sure but those “early-mid 30′s” guys weren’t missing games like the Jays of the last two seasons have. One of my favorite posts from Getting Blanked this off season outlined what having pitching durability means to a teams success. If i had a link to it i would but I believe Drew had said something to the effect of 9 of the last 11 world series champions got 30 starts from 5 different pitchers. I wish i could find the post I’m probably butchering it.

          I would venture to say that teams with overall durability are also generally successful.

    • Stop talking in wins, for one, and maybe I’ll take this nonsense seriously. Please notice the difference between “could” and “will” also.

      Of course they could be fine. Not sure how great you think Santana and Jimenez are, but if it’s miles beyond what Hutchison’s capable of, I disagree.

      • That’s the big problem. Neither Santana nor Jiminez will actually move the needle on wins for the Jays. The Jays need the 2009-2010 Jiminez or the 2008 Santana to have a chance at moving up in the standings. Those guys were 5-6 WAR.

        The free agent the Jays sign is likely 1.5-2.5 WAR, which is only going to be ~1 WAR better than whichever pitcher gets bumped from the rotation to make room.

        • Or they’d have to exceed the projections elsewhere, which is entirely plausible.

          • Re: stoeten … plausible and possible have different meanings. Plausible indicates that something is probable.

            Since most projections indicate there’s roughly a ~50% chance that the Jays finish with 82 wins or fewer, then no, it’s not plausible that the Jays systematically overachieve versus their projections.

      • OK fine; none of our “depth” starters will pitch 180+ innings with a 3.75 ERA. At least ubaldo or Santana might.

        • Silliness. Of course it’s possible. Though ERA isn’t really the best measure.

          • Why are people so sure the Jays can’t overachieve in 2014 when 2013 was a goddamn benchmark for underachieving?

  4. As you pointed out, we were never getting AJ. He made it quite clear that he wanted to play close to home. It’s the Orioles who should be upset. This is NOT a case of AA missing out on another one so please let’s not anyone go there.

    • Agreed but if we don’t sign ubaldo or Santana serious questions need answering

    • Jays don’t need to sign Ubaldo or Santana. Other ways to get a pitcher than free agency. Until the Jays break camp without having added a decent pitcher to their roster (and a damn 2nd baseman) there is no point in complaining about the Jays payroll limitations (which we have no idea about). Obviously disappointing if the current team is the one that breaks camp.

  5. anyone who boos Derek Jeter is a dummy.
    guy was a class act amongst the PED fueled morons of the generation.

  6. I’m trying to go full baseball nerd and think of how the signing of Butnett affects the prices of Santana and Jiminez.

    My logic is that supply (pitchers) has decreased and demand remains the same except for 2 teams: Baltimore and Pittsburgh. Why no other team? Because Burnett was clear he wanted to be close to home. Does this mean supply actually has not decreased (except BAL/PITTS) and the price remains the same for Jiminez/Santana ?

    • Dave Cameron wrote something a while ago about how principles of supply and demand are valid when looking at the baseball market from a macro level, but not on a micro level. Most of the time, teams pick a guy they like and go after that guy, they don’t just put offers out there to every pitcher at a valuation that suits their spreadsheets. Economic theory might suggest that was wise, but that’s not the way GMs operate.

      So yes, the price of Ubaldo/Ervin doesn’t change with this signing, since teams like Toronto likely weren’t involved in the negotiations for AJ. In other words, it’s not truly a ‘market’ in the purest sense of the word.

  7. Can’t wait for the annoying farewell Derek things all the teams will have to do like they did with Mo Rivera.

  8. jeter farewell tour? more like first team to give jeter a giftbasket with an ipad wins tour.

  9. It’s also possible the Jays just don’t value Santana and Jiminez as high as their current market prices. They certainly both have issues and the Jays just might decide that neither pitcher, despite being the best available on the market, is not really all that good. I think some people see them as the best available pitchers and the Jays should be after them no questions asked. But they both have the potential to be pretty shitty and the jays may be better off not signing either of them.

  10. “SO SORRY, SOME OF US WERE HAVING LUNCH”

    http://blogimages.thescore.com/djf/files/2013/05/sandwich.jpg

  11. I actually feel pretty comfortable with the pitching we have. No doubt Santana or Ubaldo could be nice this year, but as soon as the length gets to 3+ years I don’t see the value and I doubt AA does either.

  12. “…I can say I mind knowing when I’ll have one last chance to see the greats of the game in person.”

    Should read ‘can’t’ shouldn’t it?

  13. You’re not wrong, but it’s not as if signing one of the two is going to make an iota of difference if they end up shitting the bed. The guys who are currently in line for the last rotation spot will still be around if that happens, which is why the whole payroll parameters conversation may be set to rear its ugly fucking head again.

  14. I don’t see how any person could buy that the Jays are fine without doing something – in fact, they’re not even fine with doing something. They need to do multiple somethings to be fine.

    Let’s say last year’s team was projected to win 88 games (Bovoda had them at an 87.5 over/under – note, that’s higher than Fangraphs projection of 85 wins). Since then, they’ve lost:
    Josh Johnson (3.5 WAR expected last year) replaced with Stroman? (be extremely generous say 2 WAR projected this year, which is doubling the projections for him to assume 200 IP)
    Arencibia (2 WAR) replaced with Navarro (1.5)
    Bonificio (1 WAR) replaced with Goins (0)
    Davis (1 WAR) replaced with Sierra (0)

    So, if you ignore injuries, aging, etc. you’d have this years team being 4 wins worse than last year. That makes this an 83.5 win team without doing anything.

    Then, add in the fact that 4 of your core players (Bautista, Reyes, Dickey, and Encarnacion) are 30+ years old and dealt with significant injuries last year, so you have to expect less from them this year than you expected from them at the start of last year (let’s say .5 win per guy) and you’re now at 81.5 wins. And then you replace DeRosa, and the pre-2013 Izturis with no one and the post-2013 Izturis and let’s call this an 80 win team.

    But that’s the downside. The upside is:
    - Lawrie lives up to as good as he was expected last last year (which wouldn’t help the 80, but would stop it from dropping further – most had him as a 4 WAR player last year, 2.5 better than his actual tally)
    - same Comment for Cabrera as above (most had him as a 3 WAR player last year, 4 WAR better than his actual)
    - same comment for Morrow (most had him as 3 WAR last year, 3 WAR better than his actual)
    - Rasmus improvement is sustained – 2 WAR higher than projected last year

    So that’s 2 WAR in upside over the start of last year.

    Net, we’re at 82 wins. That’s in-line with Fangraphs (82 win projection and 9th in the AL) and most other sources I’ve seen.

    The problem with the focus on Santana versus Jiminez is that it’s the wrong question. If it’s only one of those two and no one else, the correct answer is sign neither and sell. Because signing one of those two puts the team in a similar spot as the team had when AA took over – low 80 win results, not much in the minors to help in the immediate future, and an aging core.

    • Why would you assume that all of Bautista, Reyes, Dickey, and Encarnacion will be worse than last year. As you said, they all experience injuries. Why assume that will happen again? Reyes especially was a freak injury and seemingly cost him a lot of value once back. I don’t buy your negativity

      • I did not assume that they’ll be worse than last year. However, I expect less from those 4 than I did at the start of last season.

        To choose one source, ZiPS projected them for 16 WAR at the start of 2013. They actually put up 12.5. So their 2014 has to be better than their 2013 just to be a total of 2 WAR less than what was expected from them last year.

    • The farm is better since then however

      • Yep – it is. But it’s also about 3-5 years away from helping … which is beyond the prime years and contracts for most players on this team. All the more reason to sell.

    • Don’t think that’s a great methodology to prove the point you’re aiming to prove.

      • Take any methodology you want … it seems that you were implying that last year’s team was OK, so this year’s team as is should be OK, so I just compared the team at this time to where it was one year ago to show the fallacy in that thinking.

        But I’d be happy to use any methodology …

        If you’d rather start from scratch, you can just look at the overall Fangraphs projection of 82 wins.

        If you’d rather take a look at the wisdom of crowds, Vegas has the Jays with the 9th longest odds to win the AL pennant (sportsbook – bovoda doesn’t have over/under out yet)

        I’m curious to see which methodology would lead to the conclusion that the team will be OK as is.

        • Red Sox last year were pre rated with 83 wins and 10th best odds to come out of the AL from vegas.

          • Black swans exist.

            I’d still prefer that a GM plan for what’s likely than what’s possible.

            Following your logic, the Jays should aim to be even worse because, after all, most expected the Pirates to be a sub-500 team.

            • I’m not really arguing your point. I actually do agree with you, I don’t think this is a championship team with or with out jimenez or santana.

              I’m merely arguing your path you took to get to that conclusion. its flawed from all angles.

    • posts like this make my head hurt. Wins above replacement is a measurement in how a player HAS performed in relation to his peers, you can’t just project previous WAR’s in to the next season, add or subtract depending on if they are young or declining and call it a day.

      Dickey put up a 4.5 WAR in 2012, he fought his way through injury to post a 2.0 WAR in 2013, so logically you put him down for 1.5 WAR in 2014?

      • No, for 2013, Dickey was projected for 4 WAR. Based on aging and injury, I have him down as 3.5 WAR.

  15. Whoa whoa….I get that times have changed and the new money pouring into baseball means there’s a “new normal” with regards to what’s a fair market value for players…..

    But I’m not sure I want to live in a world where $16 million for 37 y/o AJ Burnett is a “tasty contract”

    When I saw it I thought the Phillips had overpaid by a few million.

  16. I was one of those people that booed Jeter and couldn’t stand him. Then I realized that it wasn’t him that I despised but the incessant blowing of smoke up his ass by people every time he took a shit (hmm, that metaphor doesn’t work quite right). So then I directed my anger at anyone who said his leadership is the reason the Yankees won or who said he was all clutchy with his clutchy hitting and clutchy defence.
    My life improved when I realized I could respect Jeter and still hate the Yankees and their fans.

  17. I am actually more concerned about the lack of trade activity. They clearly have some moveable pieces in the bullpen and in the minors. They didn’t need to trade all their top prospects but they could have added a couple 1-2 win guys in key areas. Especially seeing as they have a bunch of out of options bullpen type arms.

    • I don’t think those guys are worth much.

    • There’s so few teams that are officially out of it, selling teams hold the leverage.

      Its not surprising that I haven’t seen trades out of the jays camp when the rumour asking price is stroman and sanchez. Only trade I was disappointed we missed on was Fister but that was obviously to no fault of AA

      • I thought jemile weeks would have been a decent gamble. Probably would have been a low ball return for janssen though.

        • I’d prefer Franklin or Ackley.

          Seattle needs some starter depth and we have a ton of it all of a sudden. I wonder if we could get Ackley for Happ and a reliever.

          • I was thinking the same thing. Seattle is now in need of pitching help in the short-term and assuming we sign one of the FA pitchers this deal would work from both sides I think.

    • Outside of second base, where is a key area that a 1-2 WAR player would actually help?

      This team has 1-2 WAR players just about everywhere. It’s actually the antithesis of what I think Anthopolous’ original plan was, which was to have guys that were superstars or bust just about everywhere (a much more flexible team and one that’s a lot easier to improve mid-season).

      • Jiminez especially I think and Santana could be much better than 1-2 WAR players

        • The comment I was respond to was, “… They didn’t need to trade all their top prospects but they could have added a couple 1-2 win guys in key areas. …”

          So it’s irrelevant what Ubaldo and Jiminez could be … the OP was talking about it being beneficial to add a couple 1-2 win guys.

        • 2nd base, Platoon for lind, BU catcher (i’m not convinced Navarro is an everyday catcher), a solid BU shortstop so the jays can give reyes days off easily. None of them are deal breakers on a season but there is a lot of potential downside in 2nd base, Sierra, thole and izturis.

  18. If they are not planning on not adding another starter can anyone tell me why they wouldn’t be all over Drew to shore up 2nd for a couple of years.

    Fuck I’m getting tired of arctic fronts and snow. I need to see this season get under way already.

    I seen my shadow today so that allows me one free vision and I’m going to share it with y’all

    Morrow, Hutch and Draebek are gonna rock in 14

    • probably because he requires a draft pick and plays SS.

      Especially if he takes a short term contract, there is no way he plays 2B. His value will be at his highest if he is still playing SS.

      • But according to local scuttlebutt he’s not adverse to playing 2nd.

        • I’ve heard the same, but perhaps getting him to play 2B requires a more lucrative deal.

          I cant see him signing a 2/20 to play second base.

          but this is all moot now that Jeter is retiring, Drew will be a Yankee by the end of the week

  19. Geez I must have a thing with nots

  20. Obviously you add talent if it makes sense, but the difference between happ, hutchinson, or stroman to jimenez, probably isn’t going to be as significant as everyone seems to think.

    I’m all for signing Jimenez, if its a fair deal, but he’s Verlander, he isn’t a sure thing and he’s not going carry this team on his back.

    IF dickey, morrow, bautista, reyes, EE, Lawrie don’t all remain healthy and productive, it really won’t matter who else we sign. We have a good core in place, especially offensively so maybe seeing the kind of start the current team gets off to is important. More important then making a move just to satisfy the fans.

    I take this all back if jimenez or Santana sign for less then 40 million.

    • On the flip side if dickey, morrow, bautista, reyes, EE, Lawrie do all remain healthy and productive the Jays may be a few wins short of making the playoffs and Santans or Jiminez or both could have made the difference

      Whatever the $ amount these guys are signing for it seems fairly clear that it is as “udnerpaid” as any FA of any caliber is going to go since the market for them is slim and the Jays have an edge on other teams with protected picks. If not signing htese guys now for whatever additional value they bring to the team then when are the Jays going to sign any FA. 2B signing maybe brings in more value for the team than SP so there is an argument to go for Drew. Given the current roster and potential contention window with the aging players not signing someone is a clear signal that the Jays either do not have access to more money or are not interested in doing whatever they can to win.

      • Nick is right; for the love of god AA said starting pitching was the biggest need. Soooo?????

      • This team plays on horrible turf. It’s bad enough to expect normal players to remain healthy.

        You also have a bunch of injury prone players in that list:
        Reyes – averages 110 games the last 5 years
        Bautista is averaging 130 games since he became a regular (last 4 seasons) with significant injuries the last 2
        Lawrie had a season ending injury in 2011, missed a month in 2012, and 50 games last year
        Morrow has had an injury filled last couple of years, but was relatively healthy beforehand.

        Encarnacion and Dickey are rather durable.

        If signing a free agent makes sense only in the case that the above 6 are healthy … then signing a free agent doesn’t make sense.

        • @Mike
          By that reasoning it doesn’t make sense to keep any of these players on the team and are better off to trade them all for prospects and rebuild – that is if the goal is to make the playoffs and try to win the WS.

          • Agreed. It makes sense for the Jays to have added a few players this offseason (Infante or Drew, one of the pitchers, and a left fielder being prime spots) or else to sell the team.

            The Jays are sitting in no man’s land right now.

            • My thoughts are to give them a chance this year and see how they do. If they are out of it come July then I’m on board with selling the team and doing a true rebuild like Houston – none of this lets be a 500 team and try to rebuild. After last season trades they are committed to try to win with the veterans on the roster and shouldn’t blow it all up without seeing how the second year turns out (and still could add the 2-3 guys to compliment the team)

              • Why are the Jays committed to try and win with the veterans on the roster? I’m not aware of any that have no trade contracts.

      • My simple answer to that is to add at the deadline.

        • Why would you add at the deadline instead of before the season? The season is 2/3 over at the deadline and the Jays could use improvements for the whole year to have a better chance to be in the hunt at the deadline.

          • Because the prices will be lower?

            Do you always ask rhetorical questions that have obvious answers ?

            • Because it could be to late by then?

            • I dont think your obvious answer is so straight forward as you do. Does the price difference of what you give up in a trade in the offseason compared to the deadline really make up for the value the team would have with the players for the whole season vs the last third? There are lots of desperate buyers at the deadline especially now with the extra wildcard spot while in the off season “buyers” have the option to sign FA and teams may generally be optimistic about how the current roster may perform. And then there is the fact that waiting until the deadline significantly decreases the chances of being in contention and buyers at the deadline plus the fact that at the deadline if the team is in contention there are bound to be other areas of need than what is known before the season.

  21. So Beeston says that the 5 year contract thing is real and will be adhered to as long as he is prez on PTS

  22. Beeston is on PTS and is quite clear: no contracts beyond 5 years. He reasoning is pretty fucking stupid too.

  23. You watch.

    You think Chipper and Rivera were celebrated in their last season, wait to you see how they treat the King of New York.

    Go tip your hat to one of the finest players during our generation. And classy.

  24. Does anyone on here play poker? I’d love to get in to games with you.

    The optimism and logic I’m reading here is like someone ignoring a flop and turn and continuing to call just because they were dealt a couple of nice cards at the start.

    Last year happened. Guys that were counted on to be good last year either left the team, suffered serious injuries, played at historically horrible levels, or just got further away from their prime years. Only a foolish GM would not change his plans at all to reflect that boatload of new information.

    • The Jays are pot committed this year and should see how the cards land before bailing out. I don’t think its the doom and gloom very unlikely to contend scenario you seem to think it is.

      • They are committed now, correct.

        But at the start of the offseason, why were the Jays committed? I wasn’t aware of any players having no trade clauses – who does?

      • And, by the way … sign me up next time you want to play poker.

        • Because their chances to contend aren’t nearly as low as you are giving credit for hence being pot committed. If the chances were so low as you are saying they wouldn’t have been pot committed and would have made sense to fold (trade the players). It is worth it to see how well the team does this year before trading away all the assets

          • Here you go: http://www.belmont.ag/live-lines/baseball/al-pennant

            Right now, the Jays odds of winning the AL pennant can be found to be 25-1. That’s higher than Houston and Minnesota and tied with Cleveland. They trail everyone else.

            Put some money down if you think I’m understating how horrible the Jays chances are. Otherwise, I’ll stand by the fact that the Jays are a long, long, way from contending and the best thing they can do is sell. If they wait until they live up to most rational expectations for this team, all they’ll have done is watch the trade value of EE, Bautista, Reyes and others as they’ll be older and further away from their prime and in the case of EE and Bautista, have less excess value in their contracts.

            • Last year the Sox were 15-1 to win the AL East and 30-1 to win the WS.

              Lucky for them they didn’t look at those odds and trade everyone for prospects.
              Who knew their SP’s were going to put the stench of 2012 behind them and have career years and let’s not forget the numbers Napoli, Gomes etc. put up.

              My point is this isn’t a card game with set odds it’s baseball and every year there’s new hero’s and rookies that seem to come out of nowhere. I’m not writing this team off because of 1 shitty year but I’ll be really fuckin depressed if don’t come out of the gate better this year.

            • i thought we learned this last year when vegas had the Jays as WS champs and fangraphs had them in the low-mid 80s in wins. remember the scoffing when the Red Sox were projected for a similar or higher number of wins than the Jays? vegas exists to make money, not to accurately evaluate baseball teams. I realize projections arent perfect, but surely we can do a little better than vegas odds to evaluate the team, no?

              • Take your pick Kevin … fangraphs has the Jays as 9th place in the AL.

                Choose whatever projection system you want.

                And, additionally, if you or Nick think that Vegas is underrating the Jays … then by all means, go out and take advantage of it.

            • I have put money down

    • In poker, do you fold a good hand just because that same hand failed you the round before? Of course not. The poker analogy proves the exact opposite of your intended point. Bautista, Reyes, EE, Lawrie, Cabrera and Colby are still the same guys, even if they are a year older and some of them are maybe a bit worse (some of them may be better too!). The replacements at 2B and C, as uninspiring as they are, are still in all likelihood an upgrade from last year, and ditto for the depth SP.

      • So the Jays had a bunch of guys who are old, got older, got injured and … yep, they’re as good, or maybe better than before.

        Look … the most optimistic independent source has the Jays as a mediocre team in the middle of the AL. The pessimistic sources have them as worse than that.

        If you think that’s a good hand … then again, invite me the next time you sit down at the table.

        • Love the poker analogy.
          And you really wouldn’t want to play me.
          Although if you’re up for the challenge..
          Actually I’m not that good,I’ve only played twice before.
          But I’d love to learn at the feet of a master.
          LOL

        • point is the core of this team didn’t forget how to play ball. sure you can project some age related decline to the older members of the team, but then equally take into account the possibility of skill progression and the relatively low likelihood of catastrophic injuries such as happened to Reyes, Cabrera, Happ.

          I mean we can stick our heads in the sand and say this is a true-talent 74 win team because that’s what their record was last year and discount all the unpredictable randomness of baseball that sometimes conspires to sink or make a team’s season, or we can use our brains, evaluate the things in a vacuum, and realize that this team sports 5 above average players in the everyday lineup (at least 2 of whom are elite), 3 average or slightly above average rotation arms with substantial depth behind them, and a solid bullpen.

          Did the Red Sox fold after a 69 win 2012 season? No they realized that behind the craptacular season that was, was a team with substantial talent (probably around 80 wins) that needed only a few modest acquisitions and a lot more luck to return to playoff relevancy.

          • I don’t think anyone is calling last year’s team a 74-win team, nor is anyone calling this year’s team a 74-win team.

            I’m calling this year’s team an 80 win team and that’s what just about everywhere else is calling them as well.

        • “Look … the most optimistic independent source has the Jays as a mediocre team in the middle of the AL.”

          Fangraphs’ projected standings have them tied for 10th in the MLB, one game back of 6th. If the season ended with those standings, the Jays would be tied with the A’s, Angels, Rays, Yankees and Indians for the two Wild Card spots. Their projections suggest the Rangers, Red Sox and Tigers are the best, followed by a huge pack of teams that includes the Jays. You can call it mediocre if you want, but if they’re projected to tie for a Wild Card spot then it probably doesn’t take a whole lot going right for them to be a legitimate contender.

          • Fangraphs still has them 9th in the AL and PECOTA has them at 80-82, 4th in the AL East, 9th in the AL. Every projection I’ve seen has them right around .500. Right around the bottom 5 or 6 teams in the AL. Fangraphs isn’t any different.

            While fangraphs may have the league leaders closer to the middle of the pack, it is unique in how it evaluates the top of the league and still doesn’t change the fact that it projects the Jays as being one of the bottom to middle teams in the AL.

            • Projections aren’t the same as probabilities in poker, Mike. Betting lines are even more askew. And not being keen enough to recognize that players skills don’t degrade in a linear way, bit by bit, year after year, says a lot about how narrowly you’re looking at this.

              That you’re starting from the idea that these sorts of things are infallible (or even all that meaningful) is pretty hilarious, as is your selective dismissal of the FanGraphs ones you don’t want to hear, which all makes the smartest guy in the room posturing that much more insufferable. Yes, the Jays will need things to break their way to exceed the projections, but there are lots of reasons that the projections don’t see to believe things can quite easily be better this year. You can let them do the thinking for you if you really want, but don’t act like it’s an act of your own intelligence and that you’re not just shutting out all other noise to do as little actual contemplating as possible.

              And if you do let yourself actually use your head, it becomes pretty easy to see how fluid these things can be. The FanGraphs one, for example, has EE a half win below 2013. Rasmus is below by a win and a half. Reyes exceeded his projections by one win and three wins wins in the two years prior to 2013, and Cabrera did by 1.5 and 2.5 wins. The club’s two best pitchers, Buehrle and Dickey, will be short-changed by anything FIP-based, as they outperform their FIP pretty regularly (note their rWARs vs. their fWARs). Add a pitcher that’s a couple win improvement on what they’ve got and get just some of that bounce back from those guys and all your silly talk goes out the window.

              Would have been a far bigger mistake — not to mention completely untenable anyway, from a brand perspective, from a job security perspective, from a money-making perspective — to write off 2014 because of a negative suckhole desperation to over-weigh the failures of 2013, failing to understand the way that regression works, and failing to understand that even these projections you so narrowly believe in have the club in the lower-middle of the pack in a 13 team league in which five now make the playoffs.

              The more optimistic FanGraphs one, low as it potentially could be on some of those Jays players, has them at 40.6 wins, and the would-be second Wild Card team at 41.6. You really don’t think it’s worth it to play the games and see how it all shakes out in reality???

              You really think trade value is going to crater that badly between now and July, when they may legitimately have to think about moving pieces around for the future???

              Get a clue.

            • Where does FanGraphs project them for 9th in the AL? I was looking at the projected standings (http://www.fangraphs.com/depthcharts.aspx?position=Standings) which have them in a log-jam, tied for 4th in the AL (and, if you really want to be technical about it, the projected run differential bumps them down to 7th) and 2nd in the AL East.

              You’re vastly underselling the ability of this team, as it’s currently constructed, to be competitive. There are certainly some weaknesses/holes/question marks, but there’s also a lot of talent on the roster and a ton of upside.

        • @Mike.
          “So the Jays had a bunch of guys who are old, got older, got injured and … yep, they’re as good, or maybe better than before.”

          We’re you referring to the red Sox of last year? They probably should have folded too. I’m sure Vegas wasn’t giving them good odds. I can’t believe they didn’t blow it up and start over… Oh wait! They won the world series.

    • I fold

  25. I think the question we should all ask ourselves is…Are the Jays a playoff contender if they do sign Jiminez or Santana?

    If the answer is no, what is the upside of signing either one?

    If the answer is probably not but at least they’ll have a better shot and to not sign anyone is a complete slap in the face to fans, then I’m not sure you are seeing he bigger picture.

    If the answer is yes, then your probably either overvaluing both of these pitchers and/or the Jays.

    Honestly, my thoughts from the start of the offseason was that if a front of the rotation pitcher became available the Jays should jump on it…Or elite bat for that matter. Anything less than this and the Jays will probably fall short of the playoffs again this year.

    • Right now they’re a fringe contender – neck and neck with the Yankees, a little behind the Rays and quite a ways behind the Sox. Outside the division they’re in the same category as Texas, LAA and Kansas City. Signing a mid-rotation starter absolutely has a substantial effect on their playoff chances.

    • I agree with your thoughts but do think the Jays can be contenders as is and lets give them a chance. Would have loved to see Cano or McCann signed myself and a trade for Price or maybe a Homer Bailey but at this point still think adding a mid tier SP or Drew gives them a better chance to contend and dont think it is an extremely low chance

      • Agree

      • I don’t disagree, but how much better is this team with Santana, over say just giving the ball to Stroman? I’m not sure? The Jays don’t have an unlimited budget so I believe that they have to be more careful with their contracts and spending $35 million a year on Buerhle and someone like Santana doesn’t give them a lot of flexibility to actually add a true impact player.

        I think this team is right to wait and see if Santana or Jimenez’s price falls into a range they are comfortable with…and if it doesn’t they should just move on. I know this is not what fans want, but I believe it is the best thing for this team as constructed.

        • There is the angle that it could be a good idea to sign the FA even if they give similar value to what Stroman would. Beyond having Stroman as depth in case of injury if he is left in the minors then it is more likely that when he does move up to the MLB he is producing at closer to his peak value and therefore you get more value out of him while he is making below market value salary over the first years of his careers. IF there is payroll flexibility now why not add the FA, have more depth and have more payroll felxibility years into the future as well?

    • The upside is taking a chance… Showing your fans you actually care about making the playoffs not just giving us bullshit lip service. By all accounts they won’t be burdened by signing either pitcher and either pitcher is better than the bottom shelf dreck the Jays will trot out as a 4th or 5th starter.

      • A good general manager doesn’t care about what the fans think and only does what’s best for the team.

        What’s that old saying..’as soon as you start listening to the fans it won’t be long before you are one of them’.

        • That’s definitely true and I’m not saying sign Santana cause fans want him (doubt they even do) but what I’m saying is spend, fans deserve a team backed by wealthy ownership to spend.

      • Birdie, can you please just stop saying dumb things. Thanks.

        • Dumb to you, right on the mark to fans.

          So you’re saying the Jays 4th and 5th starters are good enough to help this team contend? You know that 1-3 is filled with a guy that got shelled last year, a reliable but not great guy and a guy that’s most likely going to spend half of his starts, or more on the DL.

          Wouldn’t you want to ensure 4 and 5 are as strong as possible when these are your 1 to 3?

          • Whining about money is just stupid, given that the team roughly doubled payroll last offseason. Spending money just for the hell of it is never, ever a good idea.

            As for the other stuff, I can twist things around and word them in stupid ways so they get my point across too:

            Their 1-3 starters are a former Cy Young winner, one of the most consistent starters over the last decade, and one of the most talented pitchers in the majors. Who cares who the 4-5 starters are with that 1-3?

            • What is this team exactly? Young and filled with blue chip prospects? No…

              It’s mostly a vet team now with large contracts and is in a win now mode… it makes sense to spend dude. If they are stripping the team down to nothing in an attempt to rebuild then I’m not going to bitch about payroll… in rebuilding years you need a low payroll.

              So Your point about payroll jumping significantly is valid, although context is required. The team was rebuilding during the low payroll years, now they’re contenders.. or want to be anyway. It makes sense to over pay.

            • Oh and Dickey is a ? and Morrow is a fucking massive ?

              • So are Buchholz and Lester and Lackey and Sabathia and Tanaka and Moore and Odorizzi and everyone in the Orioles rotation. Dickey and Morrow aren’t any more of a question mark than what most teams run out there every day.

                • How exactly is Lester a question mark? The guy is as dependable as they come and you know you’re going to get ~200 innings, an xFIP of 4.0 or lower, and an fWAR of 3 or more. Since 2008 … he’s accomplished each of those every year, except for the 4.03 xFIP in 2008.

      • I think Birdie has a point. No you dont sign the FA just because the fans want it but the fans wanting it can still be a factor to swing the decision if it is close otherwise. At the end of the day if a signing puts seats in the stands the team generates more revenue. Maybe these FA arent such impact players that would do that. The trades certainly increased revenue even though the team didnt win but goodwill like that may only last so long without winning. It doesn’t help at all that at the start of the offseason AA was constantly talking about improving SP getting fans hopes up and now they could be dissappointed if no additions

  26. Anyone buy a PS4? I don’t like video games but MLB 14 The Show looks incredible, and I want to come over and play it.

  27. I just got back from Vegas, where I put down $50 on the Jays to win the WS at 40-1. Most casinos were down to 18-1 (from 40-1), but Caesars was still at long odds.

    Let’s go, AA. I want me a $2K payout!

    • Down to 18-1 in most places? Ho Lee Fuk.
      I got my 45$ at 45-1 in November and also a small $5 bet at 20-1 to win the pennant at Hills of London and I figured I had outsmarted them as I fully expected AA to get some top flight pitching somehow, among other things, so that by now they might be down to (18-1) or so and I would like a smart guy. SO far, no moves of any significance, yet they have come way down, anyway, apparently. The only thing I can think of, is that a lot of Toronto money from us smart guys that have all this knowledge at DJF must be gettin on board and puttin our money where our mouth is. We’ll show em.
      Anyway, I would feel a whole lot better about my bet if they would fukin upgrade the SP like he promised in the fall as we are running out of time
      Forward Soviet!

  28. Guys I do not get this sign Jimenez or Santana or all is lost….they are not difference makers Id rather sign Morales or Cruz and hope their offense has an impact

    • Oh god. Morales has nowhere to play unless they trade Lind and Cruz is really not very good at baseball.

    • I think I agree, they have more potential to make a difference. Cruz on a 1 yr to establish value. He and Melky could go to the meetings together

    • They make even less sense that Jimenez or Santana. This offense as it is, is going to rake if they are all healthy.

      • I sure hope you are right about this teams offense, but I bet the finish middle of the pack in the American league once again.

        • They were middle of the pack with their opening day starters missing 21% of all their games in 2013 or 306 games in total.

          Add to that, negative performances at 2nd and Catcher along with Melky’s horrible results when he did play in Left and you’ve got the opportunity for scoring a lot more runs.

          • if reyes can play 150 games for us, that will go a long way in getting towards the top of the pack.

            I also have a strong hunch that bautista has a really good year. too much talk of edwin being better then him

            • Reyes has played 150 games in a season once since 2008. No one should plan or expect it to happen this year.

  29. If the Jays don’t want either of these guys wouldn’t it be wise to avoid another Yu Darvish fiasco and just come out and say they aren’t interested…. I’d like to think AA learns on he job, learns from past mistakes and would just shoot the rumours down. So that leaves us in a situation where the Jays DO want one of these guys, but of course price is the sticking point. If the Jays get outbid there will be a lot of pissed off fans. But hey don’t go doing something that would please fans cause the war v $ value doesn’t add up…

    • AA likes both of these guys at a certain value, if their demands never meet this value he won’t sign them. How hard is this to comprehend.

      • Then he and Rogers aren’t trying to win… It’s as simple as that.

        If you think a guy will put you in contention you get him, you don’t haggle over a few million here and there. Especially in a league without a cap and a team with the pockets Rogers has. Otherwise it just becomes about value before winning.

        • Ok… so let’s say the Jays are looking for someone to platoon with Lind. There’s a very good option on the market, but he’s looking at signing elsewhere for $5 million and has no interest in coming to Toronto for personal reasons. He tells the Jays he wants $15 million. Do you sign him? He makes the team better and the value doesn’t matter, right?

          • Nope, not for a 10 million dollar spread.. but that’s an outrageous example you’re using in an attempt to box me in… Platooning with Lind is probably last on the list of what this team needs to accomplish.

            Starters would be 1 and 2 and 2nd base would be 3.

            If Jimenez wants an extra 10 over the span of 3 or 4 years…. and that’s what it takes to make this deal with spring training looming then you do it.

            • Of course it’s an outrageous example, but it wasn’t meant to box you in. I was genuinely curious as to where you draw the line when it comes to not caring about value.

              If you really don’t care about value, it doesn’t matter if you have to pay $20 million a year for a league average player because he makes the team better, and that’s all that matters. If you’re not willing to go to such extremes, then at least you recognize that value DOES matter, and it just comes down to your valuation (as a fan who just desperately wants the team to throw money at players) vs. AA’s (as a general manager of an MLB team who has a budget and the team’s future and payroll flexibility.

              Let’s also keep in mind that the Jays aren’t the only team with this valuation of Santana and Jimenez. There’s a reason they haven’t signed. There are 30 teams in the league who don’t think they’re worth throwing a bunch of extra money at.

              • Teams always overpay in free agency, it’s the price of admission. Unless a team is strictly looking for value contracts. I hope that’s not what AA is doing here, it would be foolish.

                Your example is fine but paying a league average player 20 million a year is more idiotic than anything resembling value.

                • So what would you be willing to pay for Santana or Jimenez, who were both slightly above league average last year and were both among the worst pitchers in the league the year before that?

        • How about winning based on proper value though?

  30. Ok for those that are saying that there isn’t a big enough difference between Jimenez and Hutchison you need to stop. The fact is, the goal is to win the greatest number of games you can and not win the $/WAR championship. Obviously the budget is a finite amount, but if the money is there as it is rumored to be, and there is at least a good chance that Jimenez/Santana will outperform Hutchison, then it’s in the teams best interests to sign them. Being able to push Hutchison back as depth thereby allowing him more time to recover from his TJ is just a bonus. No pitcher is guaranteed to produce, those coming off of major surgeries are even less likely to do so.

    Also, if you happened to read the latest THT article over at FanGraphs about paying for a veteran when it seems like he really isn’t needed, you’ll also see that it could be in the Jays financial interests to not let Hutchison start a lot of games at this stage of his career. It’s rather fascinating and something the A’s and Rays have already taken advantage of with their closer situation. The difference in what they are paying Santana and Jimenez could be far smaller than what you are envisioning now when you add up all the amounts in 3 or 4 years time.

    Say Jimenez or Santana project to a 3 win season and Hutchison is projected at 1.5 wins. By the All-Star break that’s going to be worth roughly 0.75 wins. It doesn’t seem like much but in an ultra competitive environment it has a very strong chance to be.

    It’s the All-Star break, they are 0.75 wins ahead of where they’d be with Hutchison, it’s entirely possible that this difference is what pushes management to decide to upgrade the team and go for it, or for them to do nothing or worse. Again I know it seems like a small amount but what if it’s duplicated somewhere else in the lineup? Everything adds up, that’s the important thing to remember.

    The gain takes them that closer to the amount needed to reach the playoffs. As we know, the further up you go on the win curve, the more valuable that win is. So looking at in a strictly $/WAR scenario at the start of the season doesn’t tell the whole story, in fact it’s rather misguided.

    Even if the team was already set on upgrading the roster, it makes those moves less risky because your chance of reaching the playoffs is already higher with Santana/Jimenez because they are further along the win curve.

    • Nice comment sandlot. I tend to agree. If one of those guys is below 40 million for 3, pull the trigger.

    • Like you say, they need to accumulate all the marginal value they can get, but also: they’re in a really advantageous spot to acquire a pretty good asset. Even if these guys are exactly equal to Hutchison, adding one at a below-market rate (which this would be, even though they’re free agents, because the compensation is depressing the market) increases their pool of potential trade assets. And since the number of roster spots is finite (not to mention the fact that injuries happen, so the more added depth the better), having guys pushing for jobs on the outside looking in strengthens the club’s ability to fix other areas via trade much more in the near term than would sitting on the money and keeping the second round pick.

      A reasonably-priced Jimenez or Santana getting passed on the depth chart by a Hutchison, Drabek, or Stroman is not a bad problem to have, and in the mean time, adding one just increases the number of wins you’re going to be able to accumulate — and, if you ultimately do decide to tear it down, gives you more trade chips.

      To have one of these guys essentially fall into their laps because of their advantage re: the picks and having enough payroll room to accommodate them, is not something any fan should condone seeing them pass up, even if they really don’t think they’re going to be any better than what’s already here.

      And to that point, while both Santana and Jimenez were both brutal in 2012, they’ve also been really good. Example: looking at just the past three years, here are all the >1 fWAR seasons by Dickey, Buehrle, Morrow, Santana, and Jimenez ranked:

      RD 4.5
      MB 3.4
      BM 3.4
      UJ 3.3
      UJ 3.2
      ES 3.0
      ES 2.6
      MB 2.5
      BM 2.4
      RD 2.2
      RD 2.0
      MB 1.9

      The FAs don’t look quite as good by rWAR — which you’d expect, since Dickey and Buehrle are both guys who tend to outperform their FIP, so don’t look quite as good by FanGraphs — but they still fit in just fine with the top guys in the rotation…

      RD 5.8
      MB 3.8
      RD 3.6
      MB 3.5
      BM 3.2
      ES 3.0
      ES 2.9
      UJ 2.7
      MB 2.1
      RD 2.0
      BM 1.2

      • The challenges in adding that 15 mil per season asset now are the following….

        1. The Blue Jays don’t make that much money. They could, but currently they don’t.

        As rich as Rogers is, and as much as a cash cow the Jays would be if they made the playoffs, they haven’t achieved a revenue stream that could justify 152 million dollar payroll (132 mil now on Cots + 5 mil to round off roster+ 15 mil to UJ or ES) to a company owned by share holders.

        At 137 million the team has bumped the payroll 53% in the last two years. That’s a lot. They can only play the synergy/SportNet properties card to a point.

        I’m confident that Alex would receive approval if he wanted on of these FAs, but he would likely have little to nothing else after that. They shut off the money taps on JPR back in the “why can’t we get a left fielder” days, and unless there is a real positive trend in revenue with the Jays early on in 2014, one could easily see that happening again.

        2.The sudden drop in the CAD. Yes it’s hedged, it’s dropped 10%, that a lot and needs to be considered.

        3. The value of the 2nd pick as far as transferring money from the two 1st rounders . What is often forgotten is that this current Jays management have been very, very aggressive in the manipulation of total draft pool money. They Jays could be in a position to acquire three 1st round type talents by diving the bonus pool strategically and utilizing the their 2nd round selection.

        4. The depth at the back end of the rotation competition. It really isn’t that crazy to think that two of these guys will be decent.

        Buehrle was nails in the second half and will never break, Dickey as up, but mostly down he was in 2013 was is still just a year removed from a Cy, and injured last year impeding his performance, and Morrow is awesome (sure he’s had health issues, but never the same issue twice).

        They need the spot in the rotation/roster to see what they got. Not 20 starts worth of Jo-Jo Reyes auditions, but a decent picture by the end of May.

        5. The offence could be really good on this team in 2014, that could by time for AA to see what he’s got in his starting pitching.

        I guess I’m saying that while adding a decent asset at a discount isn’t a bad idea, there are so many variable to consider that doesn’t make it a no brainer.

        • One, you or I don’t know how much money the Jays are making or not making so arguing that the revenue stream isn’t there to support x amount of payroll is just silly. If they couldn’t support it they wouldn’t have it. Rogers aren’t dummies. They’ve said time and time again that the money will be there if needed. What we do know that is the Jays come under the media division and from the quarterly and annual reports we know that division is doing just fine. The payroll was artificially low for years. So any percentage jump you quote is has to be put into the proper context.

          We do know that live sports tv revenue is at an all time high.

          I don’t doubt that the 2nd round pick has value but you also have to put that into context. One, the value of that 2nd round pick will not likely be realized for many years to come if at all. See the numerous studies showing the chances of a 2nd rounder actually producing positive WAR. Over the that time frame there’s so many possibilities of doing other things to recoup that value later on. There has to be a balanced approach to the current needs vs the long-term needs of the franchise. If you blow you current needs now by focusing too much on the future you’re done and you’ve essentially wasted the season. At least with the future outlook, you’ve got time to correct things. Again the goal is to win games now. Scoring 3 first round talents in the draft would nice but not necessarily critical for the 2014 or 2015 teams.

          Not thinking that Buehrle at his age will continue to regress is just silly. People love to talk about how Jimenez and Santana aren’t locks to do anything good. Buehrle is in the same boat if not worse because of his age and the fact that he is due to make $37 million over the next two seasons.

          The Jays aren’t really in a position to have live auditions for the 5th spot in the rotation. This isn’t 2010/2011. They are in a very tough battle as it is where every game is critical. Considering there will never be 100% certainty it’s the GM’s responsibility to put as much certainty into the lineup as possible.

          I grant that payroll going forward could potentially be an issue because of the dollar but again, we really don’t know what they can or cannot afford. Getting rid of guys like Buehrle for instance will be more cost effective going forward than signing Santana or Jimenez. Depending on what you’d get for him coming back, you’d could potentially eat very little of his salary in a trade. It’s not ideal but they’ve done it before with guys like Rios.

          Even after you factor everything, losing a 2nd rounder for one of these guys is a no-brainer especially if you weight the current needs of the team over the future needs like I do. A second round pick to me is a like a drop in the bucket when you look out 4 or 5 years especially when there’s other avenues to replace it like overspending in the international draft.

        • On the money side thought its been interesting Beeston’s change from payroll will follow revenue gains to payroll increase can be justified since it can lead to revenue gains. There is no doubt that there is a great potential for revenue gains if the team wins. With the recent payroll increase maybe its on the front office to realize some of those revenue gains and if they do then payroll will stay high or otherwise have to come back down? I thought this was a critical time in that respect so expected Jays to be bigger players on FA market especially after early off season quotes from AA about adding SP but then lots came out about standing pat etc so wonder if that synamic may have changed over the course of the offseason.

  31. It’s so easy to look at the inactivity with signing a SP to date in a negative light. There’s also a positive way to look at this… You may not agree with AA’s assessment of the talent on his roster, but it’s hard not to see it as a positive that he won’t go to any lengths to try to save his job. Either he’s got great job security, or he’ll stick by his valuations, even if it’s his successor who benefits from not having a system left bereft of talent and no roster flexibility due to terrible contracts and not AA himself.

    It’s a good thing he’s sticking to his valuations of trade targets and FAs. Also, keeping the assets will provide opportunities should they find themselves close come July. If a few prospects continue developing nicely, they could land much better talent than Santana or Jimenez.

    • I generally agree with that sentiment.

      Another positive spin could be that AA likes his team. Sure 2013 was disappointing, and I’m sure that he’s always looking to improve, but he acquired all of these guys on the roster for a reason.

      Maybe he believes in them? I know that I do.

    • Why has the assessment of the current personel changed from the start of the offseason to now? Beginning of offseason AA was saying over and over we need SP.

      • Fair point. I’d suggest judging based on actions rather than what they say. I don’t remember AAs exact statements, but if he said we need a 2b and C and 2 SPs, he probably meant we’d like them, or we want them, at what we think is the right price.

  32. Also, baseball is more like Omaha than Texas Hold Em. There is a shit tonne of variance.

    Watch the Sox shit the bed this year. Mark my words. But, no, I won’t put money down at Bovado; sports betting is a slippery slope.

  33. I think it is truly comical to read some of the comments here.

    If I were the Jays, I’d just not bother playing the games at all in 2014, since commenters seem to know exactly what is going to happen. With fancy projections and WAR and PECOTa, whole the fuck needs real fucking baseball.

    Pull your heads out of your asses, for fuck sakes. None of really fucking know what is going to happen. We don’t how things are going to shake out.

    Every year there is at least a team or row that exceed, just like there are teams that fall far below expectations. See the 2012 orioles and many, many others.

    But to rant on here like you really fucking have a real clue how things are going to shake out just makes you look like a complete fool (to me, at least). It’s just dumb.

    • Advanced stats are good predictive ways of telling how a team may do though

      • Umm,no they’re not.
        They’re not as predictive as some think.
        It is interesting to follow the points made and discuss.

    • So you claim that 1 out of 30 teams will surprise you, or, in other words, 97% of the teams will not surprise, and you use that to claim that analytical projections are not really informative?

      • Jeez Mike,get a grip.
        Analytical projections are interesting and fun but far from an absolute or accurate in predicting results.Whether Pythag Wins or WAR Wins are used,they have failed to show the consistancy to be relied on.
        In baseball,as in life itself,we try to use available information and trends, to make better decisions about which direction to take.Using logic as a starting point,adjustments need to be made as the real games to begin.
        Whenever I have made lineups,I’ve always started with the stats then made adjustments based upon factors not reflected in stat lines.It’s worked for me.
        SI dropped BP sabermetric rankings because they were too unreliable.
        I wish it were as cut and dried just to evaluate the stats and cheer but as the cliche goes,that’s why they play the games.

      • No, that is not what I mean at all Mike.

        I mean, no one really knows what is going to happen. Really. Like at all. There are just so many fucking factors that go into it.

        You go ahead and add up WAR’s though and pretend you know exactly what is going to happen. Why even turn on the TV man?

  34. Yoon signed with Orioles. Market for SP just shrunk a bit more.

  35. Just want to say that, personnally, I don’t really care who reports these things first, or how fast they report it. I come to DJF because I find that it’s comprehensive – as in, any Jays news will pop up here in a day or two, so why bother looking elsewhere – and I find the analysis of the news generally rational (though I don’t always agree with everything).

    Conclusion: keep up the good work and don’t sweat the timing too much, because I, and probably others like me, only end up reading it a day late anyway.

    • Stoeten has always done an excellent job putting it all in one place.And anything that slips through his grasp, will probably show up in a link by a commenter.I’ve learned a lot reading DJF.
      Now if Stoeten could just come around to my way of thinking,he’d be perfect.

  36. The problem I have with this roster, and which I do not think the projection systems can account for properly, is the reliance on a one-armed DH. It creates all kinds of problems, including sub optional use of the 25-man and in-game limitations.

    Morales sucks, but still I’d prefer him to Lind.

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