Our friend Andrew Stoeten at DJF relays some information from a recent article by ESPN’s Jayson Stark which claims that the Toronto Blue Jays would be interested in adding a veteran right handed bat to their Spring Training roster. GM Alex Anthopoulos cleared up any misconceptions about what would hold the team’s interest.
If someone were to say, “I want to come in to camp on a minor league deal,” we’d say we’re open to pretty much anybody. But in terms of adding a free agent on a guaranteed contract, we won’t be doing that.
As we inch closer and closer to real fake games being played, the list of leftover free agents become less and less likely to find themselves signing deals for guaranteed money. So, news that teams would be willing to take advantage of a jobless veteran’s desperation is hardly surprising.
I do, however, wonder why the Blue Jays would be interested in signing a right handed bat, given that Edwin Encarnacion happens to hit from that side of the plate and is most likely a better everyday option at designated hitter than any of the remaining available free agents.
Would it really be too much for Blue Jays fans to hope this rumour is a sign that Toronto intends on playing Encarnacion at first base against left handed pitchers, sticking another right handed bat in the DH spot and benching Adam Lind? Against left handed pitching, Lind is atrocious. Over the last two seasons, the Blue Jays first baseman has been the worst regular in baseball when facing southpaws, with a weighted on base average that’s more than 30 points below that of the next worst batter.
As I mentioned above, Toronto certainly isn’t the only team that would be willing to extend a Spring Training invite to any of the leftover players on the free agent market. Here’s a list of some of the more intriguing of the remaining options:
- Johnny Damon: DH/LF, LHB
- Mike Gonzalez: RP, LHP
- Vladimir Guerrero: DH, RHB
- Derrek Lee: 1B/DH, RHB
- Hideki Matsui: DH, LHB
- Magglio Ordonez: RF/DH, RHB
- Ivan Rodriguez: C, RHB
- Marcus Thames: DH/LF, RHB
And The Rest
It sounds as though whatever it was that was holding up an agreement on the Yadier Molina contract extension with the St. Louis Cardinals has been settled. [MLB Trade Rumors]
After all those trade rumours over the off season, it seems as though the Chicago Cubs are now interested in locking Matt Garza up for a long time. [Comcast Sportsnet Chicago]
Joe Girardi isn’t handing out spots in the New York Yankees rotation for free. Only C.C. Sabathia and Hiroki Kuroda have guaranteed places in the starting five. [LoHud Yankees Blog]
The Toronto Blue Jays are shutting down Jesse Litsch for a week, as he visits Dr. James Andrews to check up on his shoulder. [DJF]
Anybody want a Derek Jeter watch? [NotGraphs]
Davey Johnson sounds pretty convinced that the Washington Nationals are going to make the playoffs. [Big League Stew]
Could there be some middle infield position battles brewing up at the Minnesota Twins’ training camp? I probably wouldn’t be asking if there wasn’t. [Puckett's Pond]
Bobby Valentine is fully embracing his role as the new Red Sox manager by trolling Yankees fans. [Yahoo! Sports]
Some Yankees fans are taking the high road. Sort of. [It's About The Money Stupid]
Rod Carew talks about hitting and . . . the Beastie Boys. [Pioneer Press]
Will shuffling the deck chairs amount to anything in Chicago for the White Sox? [Getting Blanked]
Jamie Moyer’s 49 year old arm is feeling groovy in the Colorado Rockies’ Spring Training camp. [Denver Post]
Philadelphia Phillies first base coach Sam Perlozzo has opinions and stuff about this year’s team. [Philly.com]
The St. Louis Cardinals brought Sgt. Slaughter to camp, so of course the New York Mets brought Hulk Hogan. [Getting Blanked]
The years haven’t exactly been kind to Albert Belle, as far as his appearance goes anyway. [Cleveland.com]
Finally, Jason Varitek is set to announce his retirement from baseball tomorrow. [Over The Monster]
Whether you’re a Boston Red Sox supporter or not, you should be able to appreciate the fact that not only did he hold on to the ball in this play, but that the collision left the player who crashed into him, seventeen years his junior, more injured than him.