Yeah, that robot with the big tits!
It appears as though history’s greatest monster, Manny Machado, will be in the lineup against the Jays when they travel to Baltimore this weekend — a four game set that kicks of on Thursday, which is a game we’ll be watching at Opera Bob’s! — as the Orioles’ third baseman has received a five game suspension for his weekend tantrums, and MASN’s Roch Kubatko tweets that he will definitely appeal. That means he can keep playing for now — and he is in fact in the O’s lineup, batting second — and will surely be in there as well over the weekend.
On the Machado front, GROF offers us a delicious hot take over at theScore. And — more importantly — elsewhere from Drew, he goes into full content mode, ranking baseball’s best Joses. Some of them play for the Toronto Blue Jays, believe it or not.
As mentioned in the previous post, the Jays’ draft haul was listed in Chris Crawford’s latest at ESPN.com, in which he listed the teams who improved themselves the most last week. The Jays rank second, which makes sense given the fact that they picked twice before most teams had picked once, but it’s not even just that. Hoffman, of course, is lauded — if he fully recovers, we’re told, “there’s a chance the Jays just acquired the best prospect in their system.” Max Pentecost gets praise too — or… well… he’s called “one of the safest prospects in the draft” — while Crawford adds that “they also picked up a potential steal in Sean Reid-Foley at No. 49, and both Nick Wells and Lane Thomas have the talent to be among the best bats in their system.”
Jim Callis had a whole lot of praise for the Jays’ draft class, too, as he joined Jonah Keri this week on his podcast for Grantland. Now all the Jays have to do is, y’know, sign everybody.
Mark Zwolinski of the Toronto Star tells us that the Jays are asking MLB to review their review system, with respect to the Oswaldo Arcia hit-by-pitch bullshit that happened last night. Arcia indisputably moved his arm into the path of an R.A. Dickey knuckler, yet was given a free base for it. The Jays got the umpires to review the play, but what’s reviewable the system as setup does not “does not include smaller ‘details’ like whether a batter intentionally puts himself in the way of a pitch to get on base.” As I’m sure you remember, the call, despite being obvious bullshit, stood. And… well… I get that the league would prefer they only look at clear cut yes or no questions, and not a player’s intent, but… come on!
“Hutchison frustrated with inconsistent outings,” is the headline from Shi Davidi of Sportsnet. From Jamie Ross of MLB.com it’s “Hutchison frustrated by inconsistency.” The headline writer for the excellent John Lott of the National Post gets into the game too, with the somewhat wordier “Toronto Blue Jays’ Drew Hutchison frustrated with inconsistency.” Hmmm. I wonder how Drew Hutchison feels about his inconsistency of late.
Elsewhere in the Post, John Lott looks at last night’s heroics and anti-heroics from Kevin Pillar, while Shi Davidi’s piece['s headline] at Sportsnet focuses on the chat Jose Bautista had with Pillar that supposedly helped the young outfielder. “I was down in the cage before the game and Bautista talked to me about my role on this team, and some at-bats I’m going to get, whether they’re off the bench or facing some left-handed pitching,” Pillar told him. “He told me to be aggressive. Even if you swing and miss sometimes, it sets a tone, showing the pitcher you’re aggressive, and they’re more likely to miss over the plate, rather than you being passive, and knowing they can maybe expand out of the zone and feel a little bit more in control on the mound.” LEEDARSHIPS!!!! (But also, truthfully, that sounds like reasonably fair advice.)
Gose ain’t cookin’ says Mike Rutsey of the Toronto Sun. Or… well… not in so few words. But he does look into the recent struggles of the Jays’ temporary centre fielder, and speaks to hitting coach Kevin Seitzer about it. One “good thing that he was doing when he first came up was that he was being very selective as far as pitches that he was going on. Now he’s kind of swinging on pitches that are in on his hands, pitchers have been pounding him in a little bit and he needs to take those until two strikes and get himself something out over the plate,” Seitzer explained. “He kind of got away from his approach. Because he was getting pounded in he tried to pull the ball a little bit more which makes you vulnerable on the off-speed stuff and so that played against him. So we’re trying to get him to where his hands are ready to fire and he’s been more aggressive out over the plate instead of just being aggressive.”
There’s more interesting Seitzer stuff in Rutsey’s piece, so go read it. But as for Gose… yeah. Earlier today I tweeted that over his last ten games Gose has a wRC+ of 1. I added that, “to be fair, a 10 game sample doesn’t say a lot either. But when it’s more in line with the giant MiLB sample people were trying to forget…”
At RotoGraphs, Eno Sarris looks at Orioles’ prospect Kevin Gausman, who’ll we’ll be watching start on Thursday night during our event at Opera Bob’s (along with Mark Buehrle for the Jays), from a fantasy perspective, as he wonders if this is the last chance to buy him before his career begins to take off in the way that his minor league dominance would suggest.
Elsewhere from the FanGraphs family, Tony Blengino looks at the art of the sell — i.e. clubs becoming sellers as the league’s focus now shifts from the draft towards the trade deadline, which is a little over six weeks away.
Interesting stuff from Slate, as Tyler Lopez writes a piece titled Baseball Has an Amazing Gay History. It’s Time to Recognize It.
Bluebird Banter notices that Lansing pitcher Frank Viola III is good friends with Justin Verlander and Kate Upton, and that he tweeted out a birthday wish to the model today, including a picture of her wearing a Jays hat. So… that’s something?
Good question at the heart of today’s Effectively Wild podcast at Baseball Prospectus, as Ben Lindbergh and Sam Miller ask, “What’s next for the Tampa Bay Rays?”
At Your Van C’s, Charlie Caskey looks at which players appear to be slated to be heading out to the west coast this year — and it looks like there will be some really interesting talent calling Nat Bailey Stadium home this summer.
Lastly, a couple more reminders:
First off, as I mentioned yesterday, our old friend Bergkamp makes awesome Dutch comfort food at The Ossington on Sundays, and he’ll be kicking that enterprise into high gear for all of the Netherlands’ matches during the World Cup. You check out Borrel at the Ossington for a taste (see what I just did there?) of what you can expect, and now you hit up the Facebook event page, too. See you Friday at 3 PM for the big kickoff against Spain. Hup Holland!
And, as if you need to know at this point, PITCH #4 is fast approaching — it takes place Thursday, June 19th — and for those of you who missed the announcement, I’ll be one of the panelists, along with a much more talented group, featuring Jonah Keri, Michael Grange, and Morgan Campbell. Tickets are still available, so grab yourself some here, and be sure to follow @PitchTalks for all the info you need.
And lastly lastly, we’ll go back to one more cool thing to read, because the Blue Jay Hunter takes a look at the road to 90 wins, which offers some stark reality for the other clubs in the AL East. The Jays need to play five games over .500 the rest of the way in order to reach 90 wins — not easy, mind you, but certainly doable. The other teams in the division, though? Baltimore will need to be 16 games over .500 from here out to make it to 90. For the Yankees it’s 18 games. For the Red Sox it’s 25 games. And for the Rays it’s 35 games. Holy shit, that’s awesome! Er… I can live with that!!