As fans of the Toronto Blue Jays, we are lucky enough to have one of the strongest online communities in all of baseball. An army of excellent beat writers and bloggers keep us up-to-date when it comes to everything Blue Jays.
With no minor-league games to cover until the Arizona Fall League starts on October 8th, we are forced to switch gears with our morning rotation. We’ve never been able to stay committed to a regular link dump but it sounds like a great way to mail in the rest of this season so why not give it another shot?
Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star recaps last night’s pounding by the Angels. Mark Buehrle was hammered for eight earned runs as the Blue Jays were scorched 12-6. Anthony Gose hit a grand slam for his second career home run to tie the game at four in the second but that would be as close as the Jays would get. With the game well out of hand in the seventh, we even had our first Ricky Romero sighting since he was called up last week. He managed six outs and allowed two hits, one walk and an earned run, which I guess is at least something to build on. Could we see a Romero start before the year is over?
Speaking of Romero, Shi Davidi at Sportsnet tells us that Ricky returned with a different mindset. Apparently Romero doesn’t feel like he has a lot to lose these days and after looking relatively comfortable last night says he felt more like himself on the hill. It’s nice to see Ricky not get shelled but I’m skeptical how well this “let it fly” approach will work as a starter, which is what he is paid to be.
Gregor Chisholm writes in his latest Blue Jays notebook that the Blue Jays may be facing a log jam of arms to close out the season. John Gibbons says for now he doesn’t plan to change the rotation and is “just going to roll these five guys”, at least for now. Call-ups Romero and Kyle Drabek have each been limited to a single mop-up appearance so far and it looks like we won’t be seeing either in the starting rotation for at least the next five games. But the good news is that Colby Rasmus might actually play again before the season is over. He wouldn’t commit to a timetable but it sounds like a return to the lineup by the end of this week isn’t completely inconceivable.
The 2014 MLB schedule was released yesterday and as always there was lots to talk about. It was confirmed that the Blue Jays would be playing in Montreal on March 28/29 and as Andrew Stoeten at DJF shares, Olympic Stadium is looking as ready as ever for baseball. Stoeten also provides us a nice overview of some of the highlights of the 2014 schedule.
SB Nation asks if Ryan Goins is the Picasso of second basemen. In only 15 MLB games, Goins has already been credited with 8 runs saved according to Baseball Info Solutions’ metric. That puts him among the top 25 defenders in all of baseball (based on this metric) for the entire season. If that pace held up over an entire season he would lap the field in runs saved (not that it would, but still it’s crazy to think about). And they included lots of “visual evidence” in case numbers bore you.
Another one from Davidi, who writes that a Blue Jays spring training game in Vancouver is unlikely, with a proper baseball venue being the biggest obstacle. B.C. Place Stadium has a huge scoreboard overhead of where second base would be so that doesn’t really work for baseball. He also includes a quote from Paul Beeston who says “we’re going to be rebuilding [...] when I say rebuilding that doesn’t mean reconstructing, (it means) building on our strengths so we can bring in here something that we can all be proud of.” What that means, I’m not really sure.
More from the Star, this time it’s Brendan Kennedy who breaks down the historic rarity of Edwin Encarnacion‘s power/contact combination. Encarnacion sat out for the second straight game last night with a sore left wrist but if he finishes the season with 40 home runs and less than 70 strikeouts he would be only the ninth player in the past 20 years to accomplish the feat. His strikeout rate is 9.9%, which is top-10 in the league. And he’s the only player on that list with more than 15 home runs. I’m not sure if we are we appreciating Edwin enough in Toronto.
Not directly Toronto Blue Jays related but Yankee’s manager Joe Giradi was back at sign-stealing accusations, this time going after the Baltimore on Monday night. At least he didn’t try to blame the man in white.
Tom Tango is looking for help with his eleventh annual Fans’ Scouting Report. As a fan you can submit fielding evaluations for any player that you’ve watched play at least 10 games in 2013. Blue Jays fans have already clearly answered the call as the Jays already have four times as many player evaluations than any other team in baseball.