As I watched the game tonight and was happy about how entertaining it was overall, I couldn’t help but wonder who the Jays were going to add at the deadline, if anyone. Would it be a chase for Justin Upton, a player they’ve coveted in the past (if you believe the rumours), or a pitcher to help their injury decimated staff? All of those thoughts disappeared in a flash when Jose Bautista clutched his wrist after hammering a pitch just foul but well clear of the fence.
The broadcast team related the injury to an earlier scoring play, when Bautista was forced to reach for the plate and seemed to put a lot of pressure on his wrist in the process. However, there seemed to be more damage done on the follow through of his extreme torque swing, as he finished it and bent the wrist in an awkward position. His left wrist will definitely need at the very minimum a few games to heal, but it’s more likely that he’ll need to more time off than just a few games. Wrist injuries tend to be finicky, and if not addressed correctly the first time they show themselves, they can linger for a very long time.
Yes, you are all correct, this is the last thing the Toronto Blue Jays needed to experience. Right before the trade deadline, just as they were getting some momentum going after the all-star break.
The first piece of good news is that the wrist is not broken. Bautista will have an MRI Tuesday and we’ll get news thereafter. Until then, it’s cross your fingers and hope the Jays don’t have to try to “replace” the most powerful bat in all of MLB.
The second piece of good news is that the Jays have a whole heard of outfielders in the minors just chomping at the bit to get a shot in the majors, or to return there.
- Eric Thames: .317/.402/.493 – 3 HR
- Travis Snider: .313/.409/.544 – 10 HR
- Moises Sierra: .295/.366/.474 – 14 HR
- Anthony Gose: .293/.376/.434 – 5 HR, 29 SB
The point? The Jays have the talent in house to at least put someone very capable in the lineup and in RF. Whether it’s calling up Gose, having him man CF and moving Rasmus to RF, or calling up any of the others and having them play RF, the Jays will likely get a chance to take a look at one of these players if Bautista goes on the DL. It’s an opportunity for that player to prove himself, even if it is a major downgrade overall for the Jays.
Could this force the Jays hand and have them get more involved than they would have with the DBacks and the Justin Upton sweepstakeS? Possibly….
The same holds true for the replacements of Sergio Santos and Luis Perez, as they go under the knife and will be out for a very long time. Aaron Loup is getting some experience under his belt and has shown real potential, as has Chad Beck. Casey Janssen wouldn’t be thriving in the closing role if Santos was still around, but now the Jays know what Janssen can do and will benefit from the experience he is getting as a closer. I do sometimes wonder how great the Jays pen would be with a healthy Santos and Perez all season long. Things surely would be different and more promising overall for the Jays and their fans.
Let’s say for one moment that Jose Bautista is out 4-6 weeks. What happens then?
You would have to believe that Alex Anthopoulos will tread much more carefully around the MLB trade deadline, and will not as aggressively pursue a deal that is intended to help the Jays from here to the end of 2012. But, as we all now how Alex works, it wouldn’t surprise me in the least if he still made a big deal that was intended to help the Jays through 2014 and/or beyond.
I mentioned Justin Upton as potential help in the OF if the Jays wanted to strengthen that position due to a Bautista injury, but there are others out there that could help at a cheaper cost. Josh Willingham, Alfonso Soriano, and Bryan Lahair come to mind. All have decent power numbers and could help (Lahair in a platoon) retain some form of power in the lineup that could help the Jays remain competitive until Bautista returns.
As I write this, I just read that Anthony Gose was pulled from the game in AAA. It seems like the Jays decision may have been made, and if he does get the call, get ready to see an extremely talented and energizing player in Toronto! I just wonder, if correct, what Snider and Thames think of that decision after having tasted what it’s like to be in the big leagues and doing so well in AAA. I’m sure they’re happy for Anthony if he gets the call, but it still has to hurt a little.
What do you think of the Anthony Gose call up, if accurate?