Blue Jays Podcast (VIDEO): Rotation & Reinforcements


This week’s episode of Jays’ Nest has us riding high thanks to the current 9 game winning streak the Toronto Blue Jays have put together. Oddly, our discussion took a bit of a less jovial turn as we talked about some pretty serious topics. We discussed the team’s current success, but turned it into an examination of the starting rotation. the next logical course of discussion is the potential upgrades the club should make heading into the Trade Deadline. Aside from our regular content, we also introduced a new segment called “Charge the Mound” where we lose our cool and sound off!

Toronto Blue Jays
Toronto Blue Jays /

Toronto Blue Jays

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To lead off this week’s show, Keegan and I talk about the nine game winning streak that has everyone buzzing. Perhaps it is not so much that it is nine games, but that in order to keep it alive, they had to come back from an 8-1 deficit. and, it’s against the Red Sox and John Farrell.

We moved into an interesting discussion about Marco Estrada‘s spot in the current rotation. He’s actually been a bit of a pleasant surprise. We went over his numbers including his HR concerns. When the Blue Jays first traded Adam Lind for Estrada, many bemoaned his home run issues. But, so far, he’s putting up his lowest HR/9 (1.20) since 2012. And when you think about it, he’s filling fine for a #5 starter. 

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This led us to a look at Daniel Norris and just where he fits in. An interesting discussion about the possibility of pitching him out of the bullpen took place. And, while it was a good chat, we can all agree that where Aaron Sanchez to the bullpen made sense (at one point), Norris has the stuff of a starter and needs to stay as a starter.

Of course, when you’re discussing the rotation and a current win streak that has the Blue Jays just 2 games out of first place, you have to talk about potential trade targets. there is still approximately 6 weeks until the July 31st trade Deadline, but teams (especially the Blue Jays) should be looking to pull something off. We all know that the Blue Jays have had difficulty in pulling off deals mid-season. Because of this, they should make a move sooner rather than later. As they wait, teams will increase their offers and an uncomfortable bidding war will ensue. This is the opposite of what GM, Alex Anthopoulos wants. So, strike early when costs are a little lower and the auction has not heated up.

We also weighed the options of bringing in a guy like Jonathan Papelbon, who has been linked to the Blue Jays lately. while Keegan has softened on his stance of avoiding the personality of Papelbon to the point where he’s willing to bring hi aboard if he helps the team, I’ve actually changed my opinion in the opposite direction. Previously, I would have said, personality be damned, I want a lockdown closer. But, a question has changed my mind. Considering the last 6 weeks or so, is bringing in Papelbon the best allocation of resources? Have there really been many opportunities that would necessitate spending money or prospects on him? there really haven’t been that many “closer” situations. 

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We moved in to talking about the recent MLB Draft. We didn’t break down each pick or anything like that. instead, we talked about whether this draft represents some meaning or sheds some insight into the way the Blue Jays are going about their business. once again, they took a lot of pitching this year. They focussed on the best player available so that AA can use these pieces to improve the team down the road. But, what we’re seeing is an admission that “using these pieces” has become more clear. The Blue Jays are looking to gain assets that will improve the team either by playign for themor by sending them to other teams to gain pieces that will play for them. Perhaps the only shift in philosophy though, is the openness about this approach.

Moving on, we took some great reader questions about whether the team’s current level of play can be sustained, the hate for John Farrell vs the hate for John Gibbons, and a potential package for Johnny Cueto. We love taking reader/listener questions! Keep sending them in. They lead to great discussion. This episode’s questions are no exception.

Our new segment entitled “Charging the Mound” brings you topics that we feel strongly about and need to vent about. This week, I went off on umpire Angel Hernandez for tossing John Gibbons for what seemed like no reason. I am constantly bothered when umpires interject themselves into games more than is required. People don’t come there to see them. Keegan sounded off about the vitriol thrown at John Gibbons when things don’t go well for the Blue Jays. Why blame him for losses, but ignore him on a 9 game win streak?

To wrap things up, we handed out our weekly awards. The Blue Jays Pitcher of the Week went to a guy who no one expected much from. And, the Hitter of the Week award was split between two very deserving candidates.

We hope you enjoy this week’s episode of Jays’ Nest. Thanks for listening.


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Next: Blue Jays Reinforcements on Their Way!