Here’s a run down of what’s happening in Jays land as we continue to ponder just who will land Zack Greinke – if anyone – and whether or not the Jays still have a few moves up their sleeves before the holidays:
- Lyle Overbay has signed a deal with the Pittsburgh Pirates. The 1B will get a chance for a new start and will hopefully prove himself on a club that definitely needs strong play from their 1B. At the very least, Overbay will provide the Pirates with some of the best 1B D that they’ve had in a very long time, which bodes well to help out their young pitching. It’s the end of a tumultuous time for Overbay in Toronto, but we at Jays Journal wish him well in Pittsburgh;
- Jeremy Accardo has reportedly signed a 1-year $1.08 million contract with the Balitmore Orioles. He’ll make the same am0unt as he did with the Jays in 2010 despite spending most of that season in AAA;
- It is possible that Kevin Gregg will be joining Accardo in Baltimore as they are reportedly close to a deal with the ex-Jays reliever. The Gregg signing would mean a new closer for the Jays in 2011 and would leave them and the Rays as the only 2 team in the A.L. East without an experienced closer on board. If Gregg does wind up in Baltimore, the Jays will get a sandwich pick after the 1st round;
- Russell Martin‘s signing with the Yankees is only for one season, indicating that the Canadian wants to prove that he is worthy of a bigger deal for the 2012 season and beyond. I certainly hope for him that he can do just that, because if he under-performs in NY or gets injured he very well may have left a lot of money on the table. I can honestly say that I’m not surprised he chose NY, but that I am disappointed he didn’t give Toronto a try;
- The Yankees are giving Mark Prior a shot with a minor league contract at a very affordable rate. Both the Martin and Prior moves make sense in terms of low-risk and possible high-reward scenarios for the Yankees, so I applaud them for those moves. I’ve said for a long time that Prior should try his hand at relieving, just as his ex-teammate Kerry Wood has. Perhaps the 2 will rejoin forces in NY if Kerry resigns there as well;
- Courtesy of Baseball America, the Jays made a couple of minor league transactions as they have re-signed both RHP Clint Everts and SS Manny Mayorson;
- In case some of you care, Baseball America also ranked Johermyn Chavez, the OF prospect the Jays traded in the Brandon Morrow deal, as the 7th best Mariners prospect during this off season’s rankings. This after Chavez hit 32 HRs in HiA with a .315/.387/.577 line. They mention in the article that Chavez has been added to Seattle’s 40-man roster. I still like Brandon Morrow more and am sure most Jays fans would agree;
- Michael Taylor, the prospect who was acquired in the Roy Halladay deal and then flipped to Oakland in return for Brett Wallace, who was then flipped straight up for Anthony Gose – breath – was ranked 10th out of all of Oakland’s prospects by Baseball America. He had finished much higher on Philadelphia’s list before the 2010 season, so this is a little bit of a regression by Taylor. He only managed 6 HRs and 26 doubles in 464 ABs for the Oakland AAA affiliate, so this ranking is no surprise. At 25 years old, Taylor has to start proving himself in AAA or he may not get a fair shot in The Show in the near-future. This has to make Jays fans feel a whole lot better about having Gose on board instead of Taylor;
- Jim Callis of Baseball America also provides us with a new ranking for Brett Lawrie in the Jays top 10 list and states:
- “Lawrie will rank No. 2 on our Blue Jays list, between righthanders Drabek and Deck McGuire. I don’t think Lawrie will stay at second base and think his big league home will be right field. He should join Toronto at some point in 2012.”
- I’d like to remind Jays Journal readers that we have a new “International Signings” page setup in order to have all such signings in one place. It is still being developed as we go back in time, but the bulk of the last few seasons has been noted;
- And finally, the Top 50 Jays Prospects Jays Journal Edition is off and running and we hope you enjoy reading each post as much as we enjoy creating them.
That just about covers the notes for today!