Toronto Blue Jays News
The Blue Jays were edged by the Chicago White Sox 3-2. J.A. Happ was coming off a stretch of three consecutive solid starts but looked like himself again last night (5 IP, 3 ER). The Jays Triple-A lineup couldn’t provide enough juice as the Jays fell in the meaningless battle of the division cellar dwellers. Chalk one up for Tank Nation. Here’s the full recap from MLB.com.
Richard Griffin at the Star says that the Blue Jays need to work more on fundamentals in Spring Training next year. I really think that this whole “fundamentals” thing is getting blown out of proportion. Every year players don’t make plays that they should. It’s part of baseball. But if you looked at defensive runs saved using FanGraphs, the Blue Jays are actually ranked 12th in MLB. They don’t rate quite as well using UZR (23rd) but the combination of Maicer Izturis and Mark DeRosa at third base alone accounts for -8.9 UZR in only 444.1 innings. Rajai Davis and Moises Sierra are responsible for another -6.3 UZR in only 387.2 innings in right field. Even before Ryan Goins took over second base it wasn’t quite the problem that everyone was making it out to be, at least not defensively. So you would have to think with a healthy Brett Lawrie at third, someone other than Maicer Izturis at second and a more defensively capable fourth outfielder in Anthony Gose or Kevin Pillar could very easily fix some of the Blue Jays defensive issues. I’ll admit there has been some sloppy defense at times but I think in our frustration to identify what is the matter with this team too much emphasis is putting on a few misplays. Even Mike Trout isn’t perfect. What the Blue Jays need is a group of starting pitchers that can keep the ball in the park.
Another one from the Star, this time it’s Kevin McGran who writes about the positives that bench boss John Gibbons has found this year. Gibby mentions that they still like the core group (as do I), was more than impressed with the bullpen and loves Munenori Kawasaki. He states the obvious as their downfall – consistent starting pitching.
Tom Maloney at the Globe and Mail writes about the scrutiny Alex Anthopoulos will be under next season. AA may not have the Midas touch with every transaction like he did in the past but remember that Ricky Romero led the 2012 Toronto Blue Jays in games started. Imagine how bad this season could have been if Alex didn’t at least go out and pick up Mark Buehrle and R.A. Dickey?
Jay Blue released his Blue Jays From Away awards for the 2013 Dunedin Blue Jays.
Andrew Stoeten at DJF shares some old pictures circa 1985 of what SkyDome could have looked like.