I know how not to let my son run off in robot pants with a fistful of knifes!

Remember when some Jays fans kinda didn’t like Mark Buehrle? Maybe it’s just that as I get older I have more of an affinity for the old guys and the soft-tossers, but holy shit… so good.

According to a tweet from Ben Nicholson-Smith, John Gibbons told the Fan 590 that Adam Lind will be activated from the DL tonight. No corresponding move has been made yet, but I think that rustling sound you hear is Chad Jenkins packing his bags.

MLB and Apple made waves yesterday – mistaken waves, apparently — after a bunch of fan podcasters found that their podcasts had been removed from the iTunes store. Awful Announcing has the details, including (at the bottom) MLB’s statement after the P.R. battle truly got away from them, blaming Apple for mistakenly removing entire podcasts, when all they wanted removed were copyright-infringing logos. Mmm hmm. Ah, but everything is fine as far as we’re concerned: DJF isn’t going anywhere — we missed last week because Drew was on vacation, yes, and have been recording intermittently so far this year because that’s how I roll, it turns out, but actually the aim is to get one done later today (or at the very least tomorrow). Just… y’know… don’t quote me on that.

Wendy Thurm of FanGraphs rather awesomely calls bullshit on MLB regarding this.

At ESPN.com (Insider Olney), Buster Olney wants to talk about whether to talk about Melky Cabrera and PEDs (i.e. is it OK to be a total asshole and openly wonder if he’s cheating again). I could imagine writing a post full of outrage about this if I could actually muster a single solitary fuck. Can’t, though. In fact, I’ll tell ya: I’ll probably be a whole lot more indignant at the Jays fans all whiny about some perceived bias against the club.

Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star gets reaction to Olney’s piece from the clubhouse, where Jose Bautista — who knows a thing or two about bogus PED accusations — defends his teammate and friend.  ”I think if you did something wrong and you were caught and you pay your dues, that should be it. (Failing once) doesn’t mean that you’re always going to be doing something that’s illegal or not allowed,” Jose said.

Baseball America has their first mock draft of the season up, and in it they speculate that the Jays will go for loud tools, as they often do, and might take a risk with one of their two early picks — like with Jeff Hoffman, who will miss the rest of this season with Tommy John surgery, but who wouldn’t have otherwise been available by the time the Jays were picking. Seems to have worked well for the Nationals and their pick of an injured Lucas Giolito in 2012.

At North of the Border, Gregor Chisholm transcribes the impromptu State of the Franchise session that Alex Anthopoulos had with the media on Tuesday.

Great stuff from the Blue Jay Hunter, as he looks at the ever-changing batting stance of Colby Rasmus.

Whoa! According to Ben Lindbergh’s latest look at pitch framing over at Baseball Prospectus (not paywall’d!), Dioner Navarro was responsible for the best framed pitch of the entire month of April. Could he have shored up a serious deficien– oh, wait. He also had the worst and the fourth-worst framed pitches. Ugh. Though, to be fair, Ben describes his skills thusly: “Navarro’s career framing runs total rests at -33.2, but most of the deficit came in his rookie season; since then, he’s been only a little below average.”

Elsewhere at BP, Jay Jaffe joins the Effectively Wild podcast to talk about “team entropy and the AL East.” I haven’t listened yet, so I’m not sure if those are two separate subjects or not.

Back to pitch framing, where at FanGraphs we look at the strange recent acknowledgement of the phenomenon from one of the people whose opinion on it truly matters most: an umpire. On Tuesday, Paul Nauert, home plate umpire in the Dodgers-Nationals game, told Washington catcher Jose Lobaton that he might get more strikes called on the heavy, sinking fastball of Blake Treinen if he held his glove better and didn’t let it get pulled down by the natural sink. An umpire said that!

Elsewhere at FanGraphs, Wendy Thurm takes a thoughtful look into issues of race, sparked by the Braves’ planned distasteful “white flight,” while Mike Petriello looks at a familiar and fascinating pitcher: Henderson Alvarez.

As I also did yesterday — though he got to it earlier — Nick Ashbourne of Bluebird Banter wrote about the suddenly interesting Juan Francisco. Really the whole walk rate thing that’s key, and Nick notes Francisco’s 2014 zone profile at Brooks Baseball, and shows us that it certainly looks a lot better to his career as a whole. Hmm…

A pair from John Lott of the National Post, as he talks to the versatile Steve Tolleson, and also Marcus Stroman, who expects an orderly transition to the bullpen … for however long that’s going to last.

Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun tells us a bit about Casey Janssen’s rehab start — yes, start — yesterday for New Hampshire, and a whole lot about Scott Copeland, who followed Janssen with eight scoreless innings.

Elsewhere at the Sun, Jenny Yuen looks at tensions in the Christie Pits area between Jack Dominico, the owner of the Intercounty League Maple Leafs, and what he calls “heavy-handed” parking enforcement officers. He also calls them “vultures,” so he’s pretty much awesome. Also, those games are a lot of fun on a summer day, I tell you what.

And one more from the Sun, where Terry Davidson talks to 101-year-old Kitty Cohen, who will throw out the first pitch at Rogers Centre on Mother’s Day — which, FYI, is Sunday.

Robert MacLeod of the Globe and Mail figures that the Jays are showing signs of making noise in the AL East. He’s entirely right, and this is an exciting little moment we’re in right now, simply because of how much better the rotation has looked of late. Doesn’t hurt, though, that the rest of the division is largely spinning their wheels, too.

The Jays rotation, according to Shi Davidi of Sportsnet (or at least whoever wrote his headline… or Drew Hutchison… or Vince Horseman) are lately showing more will than won’t. Uh huh, honey don’t?

Elsewhere at Sportsnet, Ben Nicholson-Smith looks at the history-ish-making day at the plate on Tuesday for Drew Hutchison, while Arden Zwelling talks about the suddenly red-hot Colby Rasmus and streakiness.

Jamie Ross of BlueJays.com brings us a notebook post that includes a short section about R.A. Dickey’s anti-bullying children’s book. Nice.

Keith Law tweets, “Wait, @RADickey43 wrote a children’s book? How did I miss this?” to which Richard Griffin replies, “Maybe it was on the top shelf.” HEYO!!!

More from Twitter — but back to last night (because… why waste this gold?) — where Griff points out that Moises Sierra was four-for-four for the White Sox on Tuesday, while Barry Davis informs us that Marcus Stroman got a beer shower in the locker room for picking up his first win, and where I observe, “If somebody isn’t getting Clarence Carter to record a version of “Stroman” right now, something is very, very wrong.” Do it, world. Do it.

Via CBS Sports, a public service announcement that you really need to pay attention at the ballpark. (Seriously, that’s fucked.)

Holy shit this MiLB.com box score: last night in the Midwest League, the Clinton Lumberkings won 20-17 in twelve innings over the Burlington Bees, despite at one point being down sixteen fucking runs.

Footage of the scandalous 1919 World Series uncovered in the Yukon permafrost? Crazy. CBC.ca has the details — and some of the footage.

Lastly, at Getting Blanked theScore, Jack Moore looks at three surprising early-season stats — including the fact that Drew Hutchison has racked up so many strikeouts, and, last week, reflected on when baseball had its Donald Sterling moment.

Comments (69)

  1. Stroman to the east, Stroman to the west, Stroman to a catcher not named JP is the best. I’m Stroman. I Miss Clarence Carter. Said no one ever.

  2. The Clinton Lumberjacks have a player named Burt Reynolds?

  3. with the umpire telling the catcher that, when we played our catcher was awesome at getting very low, and our pitchers got low strikes called all the time because he could catch and frame all of them without turning his glove over.
    i’m not saying it’s right but umpires aren’t machines, there’s perceptions that will get you calls.

  4. It’s Arizona all over again

  5. That minor league game just shows how awesome baseball is.

    As for Navarro – how awesome is it to see a catcher on this team with an OBP in the .340 range that rarely strikes out?

    And, when it comes to the AL East – what’s neat is that there haven’t been really any huge injuries either (other than to Tampa’s staff, but Oakland has had equally big staff injuries and are still pretty good). Also, the Jays have played on the road a lot so far (Minnesota in the snow instead of Toronto in a dome?), more than any other AL team, so maybe that will help too in the next little bit.

  6. Is it just me or is Olney getting worse? I’m wondering if he’s trying to spark outrage just to get page views these days.

  7. I do miss Henderson Alvarez. I read somewhere that he was leading the NL in shutouts. Isn’t it great (when you face the opposing pitcher)?

    • Yeah, he has two shutouts already, and of course his last start of the 2013 season was the no-hitter.

      • As I remember, he didn’t have a “put away” pitch. Somewhere along the line, he must’ve figured something out. My question would be, why couldn’t the Jays have helped him there.

  8. Anyone else notice that Bobcat hasn’t mentioned “the center fielder” in a while?

    Colby Ball.

  9. In Mark Buehrle’s last 30 starts he has a 3.04 ERA, 3.49 fip, 3.94 xfip, 128 SO, 48 BB, 14 HR, 64 ER, 189.2 IP.

    • Honest question, is he somehow getting better?

      Those season’s worth of starts are pretty much better than any in his career, save maybe for 2005.

      • I wonder if, as his velocity continues to drop, he’s separating himself from the standard ‘fast’ pitcher and it really messes with the batters timing. Sort of a Dickey effect. Add that to the command and its a one-two punch.

        • The guy’s amazing. I’m wondering though if he re-signs after next year when he will be 37. For that matter, at age 36 do the Jays trade him to a contender @ 19 MM/year ?

  10. It’s a bit off topic, but with the immortal Yan Gomes returning to Toronto for the first time next week, I thought I’d take a quick look at Yan’s tremendous defencive regression this year. His offencive numbers through 29 games show a .255 average (down from .294 last year) and 4 home runs and 12 runs batted in. Last year he hit 11 homers and knocked in 38 runs in 88 games. The defence though has been awful, rnaking him dead last among all catchers thus far. In 2013 Gomes threw out 20 of 49 would be base stealers (41%) but this years he has thrown out only 6 of 24 for 25%. Last year in those 88 games he committed 3 errors and allowed 4 passed balls. This year Gomes has committed 9 errors and allowed 3 Passed balls, once again those numbers are in only 29 games. If he keeps it up, he’s apt to set some new standards for catching futility.

  11. Just my perception, but I see Navarro being pretty good at framing the left and right side of the plate, but taking brutal stabs at the bottom of the zone.

  12. I don’t think the Melky/PED talk is biased against Toronto. But I do resent how anytime a player takes a few years to get good it makes him a potential PED user. It’s like everyone is supposed to come up and be an all-star immediately.

    • It’s also funny how Melky actually had a fairly common career arc (although the jump with the Giants was maybe not so common) but people seem to enjoy portraying him as a “late-bloomer” to make it seem more like his breakout was entirely steroid-driven.

      He broke into the league as a 20 year old, had moderate success interspersed with some huge struggles, then looked very good with the Royals at 26. He really broke out at 27 while on steroids, then struggled at 28 after the suspension. Now that he’s back playing really, really well, people like to assume he must be cheating again, so they just ignore the fact that his struggles came while he had a tumour on his spine.

    • I think it’s funny that people would insinuate steroids make it easier to hit a round ball with a round bat. If steroids were so great everyone in the 90s would have been Barry Bonds.

      • i know it’s not popular around here, but steroids 100% can make you better at baseball, if you were already good.

      • Yep, for every Bonds or A-Rod you have hundreds of juicers who never amount to anything.

        PEDs may help already good players hit the ball further, but it sure doesn’t turn a scrub into a superstar overnight.

        • They’re called PERFORMANCE enhancing drugs BOB. That doesn’t just mean they let you recover faster and train harder. That’s stupid. PERFORMANCE enhancing means that your vision improves, reaction time speeds up, hand-eye coordination gets better and of course, you get monstrously fucking strong. Like fucking hulk like.

          Jeez, you must be stupid.

          • I assume you have citations for us? Please show me the study detailing where your vision is improved by a muscle stimulant. I’m particular interested in that one.

            • I see interpreting sarcasm through text isn’t your strong suit.

              Then again, there are people out there that say shit almost that stupid so I guess you get a pass.

    • At the risk of sounding like a whiny Jays fan, I’m 99% sure Melky has done this all by himself. If you’re getting 8 million/year with the possiblity of a huge payday to come why screw that up? (nevermind the 2nd offence penalty is 100 games).

      But the fact that A-Rod hid his ped use successfully for so long makes it
      extremely likely that the MLB testers are more motivated than ever. They’re absolutely going to test this guy 9 ways from Sunday from here on in.

      • Also, don’t he and Seitzer have a strong working relationship that dates back to KC?

      • Well – the logic works both ways. The big contract potential would also be an incentive to “do whatever it takes”.

        Having said that, the takedown of Arod and that Miami clinic made a lot of noise. I think things are way too hot for him to start poking around for a new “clinic”. I think the majority of suspensions for the next few years will be fringe guys trying to break in, younger players.

        • Admittedly yes, but I like to think Melky is convinced he can acheive all these things without peds. I’d bet too that he links the appearance of a tumour to his ped use.

  13. I dropped a massive duece this morning in the shape of a P.

    P for Postseason.

  14. Regarding the iTunes thing…… why do all MLB broadcasts state that you can’t even produce an ACCOUNT or DESCRIPTION of the game without express written consent of Major League Baseball and the Toronto Blue Jays? How tyrannical is that? Obviously they don’t enforce it, so why keep saying it every game?

    • Lawyers.

    • We’re called “fans”, but we’re really just customers.

      It’s called “sports”, but it’s really just an entertainment product.

      I think that it’s important to remember that every now and then.

  15. Can’t be sure but I think I saw Kenesaw Mountain Landis enjoying the game in that 1919 WS clip. Fascinating stuff !

  16. We can complain about Jays management all we want but at least they are minutes away from announcing that they are bringing back the worse coach in the league for at least one more year.


    • Coaches barely matter. Leafs need better players.

      • Hockey is much different than baseball…coaches do matter.

        • Then explain how Bruce Beaudreau can be fired from Washington, whom he coached to a top 5 single season record in modern day NHL history, and go to Anaheim to replace a fired Carlysle who coached the team to a Stanley Cup. Then Carlysle goes to Toronto to replace a fired Wilson who coached the San Jose Sharks to several playoff appearances. The same fucking coaches just trade jobs around and around because the whole league is an insiders only club. How many teams has Darryl Sutter coached and subsequently been fired from?

          As in all sports (except perhaps Football), the impact of a coach is a minute fraction of the impact of having talented athletes.

          If you believe coaches have an impact on NHL teams that’s probably because no smart person has posted an article to the internet telling you otherwise. Hockey analysts blow so I can’t blame you I guess.

  17. It’s official, Lind back, Jenkins down.

    • How would you stack it?

      Fat Juan

      Or drop Lind to the bottom of the order and stick with the current meat of the order until Gibby gets a feel for it?

      • No way I’d drop Lind to the bottom, I’d do it just like you put there…damn there’s gonna be a lot of lefties in this line-up tonight, might be a good idea to split them up if only for just this game…


        • That lineup can do a lot of damage.

          • Crazy to think that tomorrow’s line-up will look even better with Navarro in there…not to mention Lawrie’s out…this is a damn good line-up, good luck to Burnett tonight

  18. “Footage of the scandalous 1919 World Series uncovered in the Yukon permafrost? Crazy. CBC.ca has the details — and some of the footage.”

    Finally, something good has come of climate change.

  19. Tonight’s lineup

    Fat Juan
    Goat boy

    • weird, I get Francisco has been good but ahead of Lind?? Guess it probably won’t matter

      • Lind hasn’t seen stuff like Burnett’s in weeks.

      • Five LHB’s in a row. It’s been years since I’ve seen a Jays lineup like that.

      • Fat Juan hit a HR off of Cliff Lee yesterday, y’know, the pitcher who only gave up 1 HR to a LHB in all of 2013.

        I say it’s Fat Juan’s spot in the order till it’s demonstrated otherwise.

        • It was also apparently Fay Juan’s first HR against a lefty in the majors.
          That said I think the “Lind hasn’t seen stuff like Burnett’s in weeks.” makes more sense as a reason.

          Also it doesn’t really matter much.

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