I didn’t put the day in the title of this post, because who the hell knows what day it is? And I didn’t use the new logo, because I figured it would be useful to show the thing we’re talking about in the first item in today’s afternoon links…
Paul Lucas of UniWatch at ESPN.com reveals the mostly not-racist new batting practice caps that all 30 MLB clubs will be running out in 2013, saying this about the Jays’ one, seen above: “OK, we get it that they’re MLB’s only Canadian team. Would prefer to see the jay’s head logo instead.” Uh… seriously.
Sticking with ESPN.com, Jim Bowden goes through the five best moves of the off-season yet to be made (Insider only), which are pretty fanciful (Giancarlo and Nolasco for Profar, Olt and Martin Perez?) but includes the Jays going after Rafael Soriano– something Bowden has mentioned more than once this winter. Yeah, not sure they’re going to be willing to take the bonus pool hit that comes with losing even their second-rounder.
Melissa Couto of the Toronto Sun looks at the Jays’ updated top prospects list, per Baseball Prospectus, which has Aaron Sanchez on top, followed by Sean Nolin, DJ Davis and Roberto Osuna.
John Lott of the National Post looks at the off-seasons of the Jays, Angels, Yankees and baseball’s changing landscape.
Minor Leaguer of Bluebird Banter takes a look at the peerless Mark Buehrle, while Marc Normandin reviews the team’s new rotation.
Among other things, in his latest mail bag at BlueJays.com, Gregor Chisholm writes that he figures Darren Oliver is leaning towards retirement.
Gregor also talks to JP Arencibia about the holidays and the Jays’ off-season.
Jonah Birenbaum wonders at Baseball Prospectus whether Jose Bautista is damaged goods.
The National Post is running a Hall of Fame ballot poll for their readers, which I encourage you to go and fill out, but– please– only if you understand how profoundly unfair and unintelligent it is to both go making assumptions about players based on nothing resembling tangible evidence, and to try to put all the sins of the Steroid Era onto a handful of players, absolving all the users who somehow avoided suspicion, and the entire rest of the industry that did absolutely nothing about it.
Lastly, as you’ve probably heard by now, former Jay (among several other clubs, most notably the Reds), and long-time Jays farmhand Ryan Freel committed suicide over the holidays. Awful news. John Lott of the Post has an excellent read on the sad story.