Archive for the ‘Brett Lawrie’ Category


Far be it from me to interrupt the love-in for Marcus Stroman today– and now also Aaron Sanchez (except when he’s out of the stretch)– and also that fact that Brandon Morrow apparently feels good!– but… uh… Brett Lawrie’s Viddy page?

Brett Lawrie’s Viddy page.

I won’t even try to describe it. Just check out some ridiculously ridiculous highlights after the jump. #Getttittttttt.

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4:00 PM ET – Boston (1) vs. Detroit (1) – John Lackey (2.8 rWAR) vs. Justin Verlander (4.6 rWAR)
8:00 PM ET – St. Louis (2) vs. Los Angeles (1) – Lance Lynn (1.8 rWAR) vs. Ricky Nolasco (0.4 rWAR)
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To say that Brett Lawrie’s 2013 was a tale of two halves somehow doesn’t even do it justice. There was certainly a point where it looked like that was going to be the case– much to our delight. Back in late August, we passed along a comment from a scout who had spoken to Baseball Prospectus and said, unequivocally, “I am comfortable saying that he is going to be a superstar third baseman, and it’s more likely to happen sooner than later.”

At that moment Lawrie was healthy for the first time in basically a calendar year. His swing was quieter, and he was finishing up his best month at the plate since he burst onto the scene in August of 2011.

Taken as a whole, the difference between his first- and second-half splits is encouraging, with the second-half ones being pretty close to what you’d expect of a player who missed Spring Training, rushed himself back into the lineup, went down with an ankle injury, and then came back as healthy as he’d been since the first half of 2012. In the second half of this season his walk rate ticked up by two percent over the first half, and his strikeout rate dropped by 12%, thanks largely to a month of August in which he made crazy contact, combining to walk and strikeout in just 12% of his plate appearances.

His second half slash line of .283/.346/.417 looks very nice for a third baseman who plays outstanding defence (despite not being nearly as well liked by the advanced metrics– perhaps because of the lack of shifting– in 2013 as compared to 2012), and still might have some additional home run power in his bat, considering that he’s still going to be just 23 years old for another three months.

But, while we really don’t want to put too much stock into a single month of data, his September wasn’t so hot, and it would be much easier to salivate over the possibilities of a Jays lineup fully healthy and running on all cylinders, with Lawrie fulfilling his supposed superstar potential, if not for it.

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Everything old is new again, huh? Dreaming on the Jays’ prospects. Cursing Rogers for the possibility they won’t spend. Finding new and exciting ways to convince ourselves that meaningless August and September games are worth watching.

It’s like last off-season never even happened!

And now this! Ridiculous praise for Brett Lawrie in the latest What Scouts Are Saying piece at Baseball Prospectus!

“His detractors will tell you that his makeup makes him a risk or prone to streakiness, but I think that line of thinking is just caddywhompus. He plays at level 10 with an extra shot of espresso at all times, but he is still under control. He has impressive forearm strength that lets him snap the bat head through the zone, but he does a good job of staying back on balls and driving them the other way, whereas he was just looking to yank everything when he first came up. I think he is among the five best defenders at his position in the game, and he is only going to improve. He is very quick and has more than enough arm strength to make the toughest plays to his right. I am comfortable saying that he is going to be a superstar third baseman, and it’s more likely to happen sooner than later.”

Boner town.


Alex, just pick a damn position for me and stick with it, bro!

As mentioned in the previous post, John Gibbons was on Sirius XM radio this morning, and apparently he had an interesting tidbit to offer about the Jays second– er… third baseman.

I guess that’s one less thing for Jeff Blair– who has been banging the Lawrie-to-second drum all year– to pat himself on the back for. (Don’t worry, he still has not picking the Jays to win the division to cling to.)

But yeah… so there’s that.

And it’s another what the fuck? moment for the organization, because here’s Alex Anthopoulos last night, via Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star:

“Should we leave him at one position and stability,” Anthopoulos asked, rhetorically. “How’s it going to impact things? That’s fair. I can definitely see the school of thought where stability is important. People believe in a lineup, a set lineup day in and day out. There’s a lot of successful players in this league, Zobrist being one. He’s an all-star that can play multiple positions. (Jose) Bautista was one early on. You have a lot of good players that bounce around.”

. . .

“It opens up things from my end,” Anthopoulos explained. “If a third baseman becomes available in trade, if a second baseman comes available. A lot of people that have seen Brett play second base at the minor-league level really believe that he will be a plus-defender and a Gold Glover there. My whole point is: What’s the down side? We all know that Brett can be very good at third.”

Yeah… about that.

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Ho-lee! We’ve got something to actually talk about, as the Buffalo Bisons have posted (and tweeted) the lineups for today’s game in Syracuse, which find Brett Lawrie making his debut for the club at a position he was once a whole lot more familiar with: second base.

I’m not going to say this necessarily means anything, but it’s interesting nonetheless. In all likelihood though, we’re just seeing the Jays just getting Lawrie some extra work in at the position in order to maintain positional flexibility, should they find a third baseman on the trade market. Or even an outfielder– the acquisition of which would then likely see Jose Bautista move to third base, when the lineup is fully healthy– or a 1B/DH, which would see Edwin Encarnacion spend some time at third… assuming the club was willing to stomach that.

Take it as a signal that something may be imminent if you really want, but it seems far more likely that Alex Anthopoulos is simply trying to keep his options open as he scours the market for precisely the right deal overturn the flagging fortunes of a club that’s full of talent, but just hasn’t been quite able to click. Whatever that means.

I’d tend to think acquiring pitching would seem to be more in order, but what the hell do I know?

No you feel guilty about not posting more today.


In other Bisons news, the club has released catcher Ramon Hernandez, which… I still think he’s better than Arencibia, but oh well.


Y’know, it’s real easy to latch on to some hopelessly clueless opinion among a tiny vocal minority and bash it into the ground over the course of a long blog post as though anybody actually capable of comprehending the words on their screen would be dullard enough to disagree, so… let’s do that.

There’s a thing that I’ve seen out there, on Twitter and in the comments here, where Jays fans, terrified of messing with success and off-put by “antics” and “immaturity” that absolutely pale in comparison to last year’s genuinely fuck-skulled throwing-a-helmet-at-an-umpire incident, want to keep Brett Lawrie away from the big league club once he’s healthy– ostensibly to work on his hitting, and probably because of some bullshit about “sending a message.”

That sort of stuff is particularly funny to me, because back when– after his 43 game 2011 cameo resulted in a .407 wOBA– Lawrie could do no wrong, fans were stampeding each other to be the first to defend him against those who dared question his explosion of anger at an umpire. But now that he’s posted a .209/.268/.374 line in his last 153 plate appearances, his always-evident quirks have stopped being lauded and have started to look like a problem to some.


Real tough to see how this complicated evolution in some fans’ minds has taken place, huh?

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Toronto Blue Jays v New York Yankees

A few items coming from the Twitter fingers of the reporters down at Rogers Centre today that just seem too big to leave until tonight’s Game Threat, as we have new word on the progress of three key Jays who’ve been injured throughout the club’s recent run back towards quasi-respectability…

So… that’s some good news– at least, in a relative sense, as far as Morrow goes. And there’s more!

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