In the Toronto Sun, Bob Elliott writes that the Jays have eyes for Japanese pitcher Masahiro Tanaka, having sent both assistant GM Andrew Tinnish, and pro scout Dan Evans, formerly the GM of the Dodgers (though Elliott says the White Sox), to Japan to see Tanaka in person about a month ago. I don’t know if we need to get too lathered up about it, though. Alex Anthopoulos himself went twice to see Yu Darvish two years ago, and that would seem to be a clearer indicator of a firm interest.
Another reason to be skeptical about the Jays’ potential interest comes from a statement in Keith Law’s chat at ESPN.com last week, where a reader asked for KLaw’s thoughts on Tanaka, noting that most information seems to have him pegged as possibly a number two, and not terribly far behind Darvish. “I have not seen him myself. What I have heard from scouts is that he’s less than that,” Law replied.
Brendan Kennedy fleshes out some of the details regarding Melky Cabrera’s spinal tumour in an excellent piece for the Toronto Star. “If he had told us that his back was bothering him earlier, maybe we would have found it earlier,” Anthopoulos admitted. “. . . I wonder how much it really bothered him when he was playing and he wasn’t saying anything.” Later he adds that “Anthopoulos referred to a ‘culture’ in baseball in which players are often reluctant to disclose injuries.” It’s tough– Brandon Morrow was getting shit on this year for supposedly being soft, yet Melky is going to get shit too for trying too hard to be what, in other circumstances, some people would call a “gamer.”
Elsewhere in the Star, Richard Griffin’s latest Bullpen post tells us that the Jays mishandled Ricky Romero, which… yeah, they could have not called him up to replace Josh Johnson, or not tried to spare the armchair psychology by insisting his issues were mechanical, or… I don’t know. They could have done a bunch of things differently. Does anyone think it might have changed the outcome? I don’t.
Elsewhere still in the Star, Kennedy looks at the success that Sergio Santos has finally been having, now that his health issues are, hopefully, behind him.
Another on from Kennedy at the Star tells us about Jose Bautista visiting with the parents of 9-year-old Derek Lendosky, who was such a big fan of the Jays’ slugger that he was buried in a Bautista jersey after he died in an ATV accident last month.