Welp, we now have something resembling an honest-to-goodness bench (y’know, once everyone is healthy), as the Jays have gone and made some roster moves, including the highly encouraging D’ing FA of Moises Sierra. They’ve also optioned Jonathan Diaz to Buffalo, and recalled Steve Tolleson and Anthony Gose.
None of these guys are the lefty-masher that the club badly needs to pair with current DH Juan Francisco, or regular DH Adam Lind, but Tolleson has hardly been hopeless with the bat in the minors — he at least takes walks, leading to an OBP of .345 this year, .381 last year, and .358 in the Orioles system in 2012 — and provides some defensive versatility, having played at second, short, third, and in the corner outfield spots in the last couple of seasons. Gose, as you probably know, is a left-handed bat, so not much use as a straight replacement for Rajai Davis — who over the past few seasons had been used as a platoon mate for Lind, in addition to his duties as a backup in centre and as a pich runner — but he at least will bring the club some great outfield defence for when Colby Rasmus needs a day off, and can be a threat on the basepaths. Again, for Anthopoulos, versatility is the name of the game — covering for the ailing Lawrie and Cabrera is another game of his — as it certainly has its advantages when you’re running a damn three man bench.
It’s not as simple a call as certain cranks would like to to tell you it should have been — for example, Gose isn’t going to see a lot of action, and while dreaming on something eventually clicking with his bat sounds more absurd by the day, it’s certainly not going to help him, and Sierra, while wholly miscast in his role as a spare outfielder and lefty-masher, isn’t entirely a nothing piece to let slip away — but it sure feels like the right one. At least in so far as the internal options available to the GM.
Or at least a step in the right direction.
The big thing, though, like I say, is the fact that the club has finally cut bait on an out-of-options guy for the betterment of the current roster. Yes, they did this with Jeremy Jeffress earlier in the year, as well, but the fact that they actually recognize that wins for this year that this club needs to be picking up are slipping away because of how badly they’re clinging to guys who barely scrape above the title of non-asset (if they even do that), would seem to me to be a very good thing.
Now they just need to do it with some relievers.
That’s going to be a tougher row to hoe, for sure, just because of how valuable pitching depth is — yes, even pitching depth named Esmil Rogers and J.A. Happ — but you’ve got to think it’s going to happen, too. SO LET’S SEE IT ALREADY.