Blue Jays Morning Brew: Syndergaard, Defensive Runs Saved, Exhibition Games and Rubber Arms


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Toronto Blue Jays News

It might be the weekend but that doesn’t mean we are going to serve you some watered-down, decaf garbage. The Blue Jays Morning Brew continues for the fourth day in the row, look at us being all committed and stuff.

Despite the return of both Edwin Encarnacion and Colby Rasmus the Toronto Blue Jays couldn’t hold off a late charge from the Baltimore Orioles as they were defeated at home 5-3. Chris Davis led off the eighth inning and crushed his 50th home run off Steve Delabar in what turned into the game’s winning hit. Ben Nicholson-Smith recaps the game with quotes from Davis and Rasmus at Sportsnet.

More from Sportsnet, this time it’s Shi Davidi who give us rankings of the Blue Jays by position using Plus/Minus and DRS. Using both metrics first base was their worst position, followed by shortshop. The information is a bit out-of-date since it’s only through September 8th, so if you’re interested here’s a link to updated player defensive stats from Davidi correctly points out the contributions of Kevin Pillar in left and Ryan Goins at second have helped the team rankings significantly at that position. It’s also not a perfect system since it depends greatly on the number of opportunities a player receives. The Jays might have figured (as did most others) that they would create enough runs and have adequate enough fielding independent pitching to offset any defensive limitations. But with a questionable rotation going into next year, GM Alex Anthopoulos must play the balancing act of finding players who can produce and create enough runs at the plate while also helping to keep runs off the scoreboard.

Andrew Stoeten does some prospecting at DJF and reminds us that although Noah Syndergaard looks like he could be the next Justin Verlander the Blue Jays aren’t exactly in bad shape with Drew Hutchison, Kyle Drabek, Marcus Stroman, Sean Nolin, Aaron Sanchez, Roberto Osuna, Daniel Norris, Matt Smoral, Franklin Barreto, Richard Urena, Dawel Lugo, Mitch Nay, Clinton Hollon and Rowdy Tellez to name a few. I still find the R.A. Dickey trade a bit of a tough pill to swallow giving that the Jays gave up their number one and three prospects according to Baseball America and based on principle alone I never like the idea of a team trading that much potential talent for a 38-year old player coming off a career season. But hindsight is 20/20 and to be fair we probably need more time before we can judge who was the absolute winner of the deal.

Bluebird Banter asks if the Jays should consider acquiring James McDonald, who was recently designated for assignment by the Pittsburgh Pirates. I’m not sure if Toronto should chase another number five starter, which Blue Jays Plus points out they already have plenty of lined up for 2014. Hopefully back-end depth won’t be an issue next year but hey, it is the Toronto Blue Jays we are talking about.

The Blue Jay Hunter looks at the rubber arm man, former pitcher Paul Quantrill for his Flashback Friday. And ICYMI, here’s Charlie Caskey’s interview with Quantrill from earlier this year at Jays Journal.

John Lott at the National Post looks into the struggles of J.A. Happ. Apparently Happ thought that his last start would go better. But I think that for most of us it was pretty much exactly what we expected from him at this point. He better show something soon or he could be on the outside looking in for a rotation spot yet again next year.

SB Nation shares the release point on R.A. Dickey’s sidearm knuckleball to Mike Trout using Brooks Baseball.

Bluebird Banter breaks down the seating chart and kindly shares a link to a presale for tickets to the Blue Jays two exhibition games in Montreal versus the New York Mets scheduled for March 28/29 at Olympic Stadium. Tickets go on sale today to the general public at 10:00 AM and can be found at Ticketmaster here.