Monday, May 31, 2010

Gonzo Saves the Game for Gregg

Kevin Gregg decided to make things interesting tonight, but the Jays managed to prevail, beating Tampa Bay 3-2, in a big part by Gonzo's heads-up play to get Longoria at the plate.

This next stretch of games are important for the Jays and Jays fans. With games against the Yankees and the Rays at both home and on the road, the Jays will let the MLB know just how "for real" they are, and will allow Jays fans to adjust any potential hope for this season.

So far this season, the Jays have not fared well against TB, or Boston, but so far in this stretch, so good.

Tonight's Player of the Game is Aaron Hill for going 3 for 4, with 1 run, 1 RBI and was one of only two batters with no LOB. This was nice to see for Aaron, hopefully he can start swinging the bat a little better.

The Jays only 3.5 game out of first place, and 9 games above .500 after 53 games, which is is almost one-third of the MLB season, and I wish I know what to think about expectations for this season.

Hechavarria Starts Road to the Jays

Adeiny Hechavarria, our new Cuban shortstop of the future, is off to a decent start for Class A Dunedin. So far his line after 18 games reads: .278 AVG, 0 HR, 6 RBI, 10 R, 2 SB, 11 SO, 1 BB, and a OBP of .288.

Perhaps not quite the start some were hoping for, but one has to greatly appreciate being in a new country, not to mention learning a new language, being away from his family, and playing against Americans (mostly). His complete season stats are here.

Bob Elliot wrote this on him. Bob Elliot is a complete retard, and I basically take nothing he personally has to say, I do value his sources of scouts and what they have to say. Seemingly, Hechavarria will be a strong Tony F., who will most definitely play a solid shortstop.

Jays Complete Sweep of Brutal Orioles

Jays 5, Orioles 0 - POG is Marcum
Jays 5, Orioles 2 - POG is Cecil
Jays 6, Orioles 1 - POG is Romero

Sorry about not writing much... weekend and I've been sick.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Blue Jays Are Buyers?

I love MLBTR.

For those of you who don't read it religiously, you should.

But this is a little absurd.

MLBTR lists the Jays as SP buyers this season, presumably for the post-season push.

I won't pretend to know as much about rebuilding as perhaps some, but I'm not sure the rebuilding process includes stocking up on veteran pitching at the first sings of a plus .500 team.

In fact, I'm pretty sure that's about the worst thing you can do.

I'm all for the Jays being competitive this year, and if they make the playoffs?! Fucking sweet!!!

But, being realistic, I know that to throw away our stockpiled draft picks for one year Roy Oswalt is pretty fucking dumb.

This year we will ride out whatever the team we have now happens to do.

So MLBTR, on behalf of Blue Jays nations, please remove us from the list of buyers.

The list of MLBTR SP sellers, is here.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

A Game To Forget

Tonight was pretty ugly. Romero got rocked, and the Jays could only muster 4 hits against Ervin Santana who loves to pitch against the Jays this year.

Three out of the four hits were solo home runs, and JoBau launched his 15th earning him a POG.

"But you should be working banker's hours!!!"

I have to say that after tonight's game I am pretty fucking pissed off. I know it wasn't the best game, and it's a long damn year and loses are bound to happen, but I think it's the fucking commercials that Sports Net shows about 100 times a commercial break.

If I hear one more old man talking about banker's hours or one more garlic pizza add I will fucking kill myself.

Seriously Sports Net, wins don't feel as good as they should, and losses sting worse than they should after suffering through those fucking adds time and time again.

I would almost prefer Jamie Campbell in between the innings.


Long Weekend Edition

Arizona In a Flash

Arizona 8, Toronto, 6 - POG Encarnacion
Arizona 8, Toronto, 5 - POG R. Lewis
Toronto 12, Arizona, 4 - POG JoBau

Cecil Dominates Angles

I agree. Thumbs up for Brett Cecil after a dominating 7.1 inning of ball against the Angels. For his effort, he wins another POG award.

Big Deal News Over the Weekend

Dana Eveland was designated to AAA, but of course his awesome stats will have to pass the waiver wire first. No real shock here. Although he did say this about the Blue Jays organization, "Top to bottom, it's the best organization I've been in."

With the demotion of Eveland, let the speculators speculate who will be the 5th starter. Purcey Lewis was called up, but he will be in the bullpen. This week the Jays have opted for a 4 man rotation, so no answers for a bit.

While perhaps the Jays will call up someone from AAA, my guess is that it will be our Weather Man, Brian Tallet. He is due for a return "late-May." Long shot off the DL would be Jesse Litsch who could possibly be back June 3. All injury updates here.

Lyle Overbay just recently has put his average over the two-hundy mark. Keep it up Lyle! Maybe we will be able to trade you for more than a roll of bubble tape and water bottle after all!

Aaron Hill just cannot seem to figure it out at the plate. I have the utmost faith that he can regain his stroke, but it would be nicer to see sooner rather than later.

Adam Lind has seen his average slowly drop the past 2 weeks. He hadn't hit a home run in awhile, but took one large in Arizona, and has been hitting a little better since then. Let's hope, he's out of his little funk.

My esteemed colleague found perhaps one of the internet baseball worlds most interesting websites. This website ranks all umpires on whether they are pitcher-friendly, or hitter-friendly. Most definitely worth a read.

Tonight's game features Slick Rick and rumor has it that the Angels may not even bother showing up.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Jays Split Again

Kevin Gregg Likes Balls (More Than Strikes)

Kevin Gregg, seemingly bored with being the AL saves leader, decided to allow fellow closers to catch up by blowing the fuck out of this save.

Romero is obviously the POG from that game. In line for his fifth win, but Gregg blew that game.

I know Gregg had pitched pretty solid until this, but I mean come on. 25 pitches, 13 of which are balls? 2 walks? Interesting strategy for a closer.

When Trevor Hoffman pitches now he gets hit hard, but at least he's not fucking walking batters. At least then you can say the hitters beat you, but this game, Gregg, you totally lost that one yourself. You cannot tell me that the Mariners beat the Jays tonight. The Jays were winning, Kevin Gregg lost.

The fucking Mariners. When you blow a save to a team that has Mike Sweeney as a clean-up hitter, well, let's just say you are buying the beers for the foreseeable future.

How long does it take me to forget Gregg as the the AL leader in saves?

One game.

Jays 3, Mariners 2

I know this is a game we won, but I'm still not sure who the POG goes to. Cecil was OK, Loverbay went 2 for 4, but had 2 KO. Call it a tie?

Good Luck To Ruiz

AA obviously gets his advice from The View, and even one upped me. Ruiz was released and signed to a Japanese team.

Good luck, Randy.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Troubles of Randy Ruiz

When Randy Ruiz broke Spring Training with the team, I rejoiced, as many other Jays fans did.

Today, I stand here a broken man, almost begging for a demotion for Ruiz to AAA.

Ruiz came north with the team as a 33 year old, the first time he had ever broken Spring Training with a MLB job - I spare you the rest as I'm sure you have heard it before.

After the chains of Minor League ball were removed from Randy, and he finally thought he would get some serious time at the Major League level, Cito Gaston happened.

Ruiz knew he would be a bench player. But who knows, maybe an injury here, or an under-achiever there and he could take the job, and flourish. Enter Loverbay. Overbay is still struggling to find his bat, and his defense has not been as stellar as it should be.

And still, Ruiz rides the pine.

Ruiz is a slugger through and through. Sluggers don't ride the pine, especially not those that can DH and stand at first base.

Ruiz is not succeeding with the Jays because he doesn't get enough playing time, and is moved around in the lineup more than V-Dub last year.

So, AA, please. Send him down to AAA. Let him swing there, get his timing, rack up the numbers we all know hes capable of, and trade him. Trade him to someone who can use him. Someone who can use him full time, and let him get one season of 30 HR season before he is too old to swing. God knows he has nothing left to prove at the AAA level, but any numbers he gets there will look better than what he has now.

Randy, my heart truly feels for you. You manage to make the team, Overbay still struggles, and yet you still don't play.

I sincerely hope you get a full time chance in the Majors, but I feel that time will never come with Cito at the helm.

Minnesota Split

Marcum and Wells take the POGs for these two games. One was awesome, one was shit.

Monday, May 17, 2010

False Hope Once Again??

I am a virgin to the blogging world, so bear with me on my first ever post. Now that the Canucks have once again been eliminated from the playoffs in disappointing fashion, I can fully appreciate the over-achieving Blue Jays who remain in third place in the toughest division in all of sports.

While the Jays are all but destined to fall back into mediocrity as they have in years past following a quick start, there is reason to believe that these Jays who begin a new Doc-less era are a little bit different.

The Jays began season 1 A.D. (after Doc) without a legitimate staff ace, or a veteran presence in the rotation (unless you count Tallet.) However, this has caused pitchers such as Marcum to grow up quickly and take on the roll of teacher rather than student, which was never more evident than after hearing the news that Marcum actually helped tweak Morrow's delivery following his disastrous start at Fenway. This advice from Marcum at the very least gave Morrow the confidence that there was only just a miniscule problem with his inconsistent delivery and shows the camaraderie between the starters.

Often overlooked in reasons for the Jays success is their fielding. In fact, out of all the American League teams the Jays as of May 17, have the most TFC (Total Fielding Chances) with 1508 - yet hold the third LEAST errors. Furthermore, the under-rated Gonzo, Hill combination has helped the Jays surrender 43 Double Plays, good enough for the second most in the AL. Now that is how you help out a pitching staff that includes Dana Eveland, who holds no real skill yet somehow has managed a 3-2 record despite walking more batters than striking out. The Jays rotation also deserves some credit, along with the 'deadly' catching duo of John Buck and Jose Molina, who have allowed only 23 SB's this season and have thrown out over half that many. To compare, the Red Sox have allowed 46 SB's, while throwing out only 10 - so much for the acquisition of Victor Martinez, defensive catchers are highly under-appreciated, especially if they provide some unexpected pop ie John Buck. This is a nice change from consistently watching AJ Burnett willingly give up 2nd base to everyone he walked to put on first.

At the risk of being a stat nerd I am gonna whip out a few more numbers which help decipher just why the Jays are having so much success, despite boasting a .238 average, and without having a hitter above .300. Its easy to look at the 60 home runs and 102 doubles, which is unbelievable, but also note the 5 CS, and only 20 GIDP. The Jays simply do not give away outs. (Say what you will about their ridiculous strikeout rates, I still say that they are not as big a deal as everyone makes them out to be for both pitchers and hitters alike)

The 2010 Jays are also different because in years past their stats have been skewed by high averages, but no clutch performances. This year is the opposite and it is so much less frustrating to watch. It seems that every series, one or two guys come through in the clutch (see Bautista this past weekend, Snider against Boston, etc) Its not so much how many hits you get, but when you get them, and the Jays low LOB totals display exactly the clutch hitting that every competitive team needs to remain in the hunt well into the summer.

I know its still early, but there is a lot to like with the 2010 Jays so far, let us hope that the Red Sox continue to struggle, and the Yankees start to spend their ridiculously high contracts on hookers and blow - thus distracting them from their on field duties, to give the Jays a fighting chance for the ENTIRE season.

The Texas Series in a Flash

Blue Jays 16, Rangers 10, Friday's Game

Cecil and Harden disappointed as a potentially awesome match-up by neither lasting over 3 and both giving up way too many runs.

As the score would suggest, this was SlugFest 2010. Lyle Overbay had his best game to date this season, going 3 for 3, with 2 runs, 3 RBI, 2 BB, no strikeouts, and no runners left on base.

Congrats Loverbay on your POG!

Blue Jays 6, Rangers 0, Saturday's Game

Ricky Romero did his best Roy Halladay throwing a complete game shut out with 12 K (and only 1 walk!!!!) beating the Rangers. For another slick performance Rick gets another POG.

Blue Jays 5, Rangers 2, Sunday's Game

And the sweep is completed!

I know a little unorthodox but my POG is a three-way tie. Gregg, Downs, and Frasor all pitched scoreless innings surrendering only 1 hit with no walks.

That my friend, is what is expected of those three. Good job.

So the bullpen performance coupled with no one really hitting for the Jays, and Morrow being, well okay but not crazy good, the bullpen was the star of this game.

Jays Quietly in Third, 2 Games Out of Wildcard

Okay, I suppose it's still a little early to start the playoff expectations, but the Jays are quietly sitting in third place, 7 games above .500.

True, we were better last year and fell apart pretty quickly. I don't see how anyone can say that kind of epic fall apart is common for one team, yet alone common in baseball, or really any sport. I'm not saying we stay on pace to be way above .500, but so far, this rebuilding process has been okay.

While our rotation may not have as much experience as every other team, they are looking pretty stellar. Outside of Eveland and Tallet, our pitching has shown a ton, and look to be solid MLB starters.

The hitting is harder to get too excited about because most of the players in the lineup are not expected to be in Toronto's long term plans. Lind, Hill, Wells and Snider will unquestionably be around for awhile, but everyone else just seems to be inflating their stats to earn more than they should next year.

Anyways, I will stick by my predicted 4th place finish. Finishing 5th is going to be a disappointment regardless of a re-building year or not. Best place finish is 3rd, which would be sweet, but let's stay grounded.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Jays Finally Solve the Riddle that is the Red Sox

Er... Sorry, *Marcum and Snider* Solve the Riddle that is the Red Sox.

Marcum gets the POG award today for pitching lights out against the Red Sox. The zeros he put up over the 7 innings are impressive, but after watching Morrow and Eveland pitch like crossing guards, how nice is it to see a starter only give up 1 walk?

Very. That's how nice.

Hitters pretty much did fuck all, except for T-Snides, who is quietly and slowly raising his average, and general level of his at bats.

Beyond those two? Well, the hitters didn't really hit, and Kevin Gregg and the ump managed to save the game, albeit barely.

That strike on David Ortiz? Shit, I hate this guy more than I hate Youkilis, but that ump should get half a save for that call.

Anyone else hoping Gregg didn't start the season on a hot note and is starting to cool off? He started out amazing, and has slowly worked his way to slightly-scary.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Eveland Waits to be Released, R-Zep Waits to get Healthy

Dana Eveland is probably not a bad human being.

That be said, he has little place in Major League Baseball, not to mention the uber-talented AL East.

Eveland may be a guy that could be a 5th start for San Diego or maybe even the Indians but not the Blue Jays.

In his starts this year, he has pitched well against the Royals, Orioles, White Sox, and arguably the Athletics (6.2 IP, 4 ER).

Against a good team?

Boston? 7 IP, 7 BB, 14 H and 13 ER.

For a guy who has not part of the future, no part of the present (at least not after R-Zep is healthy, or perhaps even Tallet), he has got to be getting worried.

Jays, Like Eveland, Have No Problem Beating Shitty Teams

Well we haven't played the Yankees, we have played the Red Sox and Rays and got dumbied.

Tonight's POG is Fred Lewis.

Last night's game's POG goes to JoBau.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

The View: Weekend Edition

Jays Take Series, Improve to 19-14, V-Dub the Man Once Again

Today's POG is Wells. He had over a quarter of the team's hits, had over a fifth the teams runs and RBIs, and did not strike out once.

Romero had a bad outing, but still managed 7 strikeouts, but a ridiculous 5 walks in 5.2 innings is simply garbage. I mean the 8 hits aren't great either, but 5 walks? A walk an inning? Recipe for trouble.

Freddy Lewis Makes Momma Proud

Fred Lewis has become an offensive rock and defensive bonus surprisingly quietly. His average is hovering around .300 and he is allowing Jays fans to take a big sigh of relief that we will never, ever, see JoBau in the lead off spot.

Falling Out Of First a Good Thing

Bad news everyone, we are no longer first in the MLB...

In strikeouts.

The Arizona D'Backs have taken the lead for strikeouts with 289, edging the Jays out by 7. So with a good game, we can have the lead back tomorrow!

While we are no longer numero uno in the league, we are however first in the AL by 42. Now I'm not saying we should sit back now that we have a solid lead, but that's a pretty good lead.

The Jays this year are striking out at an exponential rate, and tonight was no exception - 11 hits, 11 strikeouts.

Some of you may be that guy that always proclaims "Even if I strike out 9 out of 10 times at the bar, it's the one time I get a girl that I'll be remembered for."

Well... yeah I guess in a kind of sad way that really applies to the 2010 Jays. Yeah they strikeout a shit tonne, but that one time they don't, uh-oh. Home run.

Or at least a double.

Saturday's Recap

Cecil wasn't great, but kept us in the game until Roenicke pulled a Frasor.

Not of a log of greatness, or goodness for that matter, to be said about this game, but Freddy Lewis gets his first POG award for getting on base, and not striking out.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

What a Game!


Of all the games to miss because of a long Friday work day. The hockey game was on as well, but I didn't miss a damn thing there, but wow, I am really upset I missed this one!

After going over the boxscore, I was curious as to why a 2 for 3 Ruiz (with no strikeouts) was subbed out for an Adam Lind that hasn't exactly been on a tear lately, only to strike out 3 times? I know it's really easy for me to sit here and look at the boxscore and say it was dumb to sub in a guy who will strike out three times, but it's not like Ruiz wasn't hitting? I'm still a little confused on that one, did Ruiz try to catch another ball with his teeth or somethin'?

This game was absolutely filled with solid performances, Buck, Marcum, Gonzalez, Downs, Snider and even Wells.

Some not so stunning performances by Hill, Lind and Gregg.

So for our player of the game we have a slight problem. Marcum is deserved, but it would not have been a win if not for Gonzalez, even though 1 for 6 wasn't great. So for that, I will call it a push between Marcum and Gonzalez.

What Goes Up, Must Come Down

While the Jays continue to play longball, their HR totals are going up and up. Wells, 8, Gonzalez 9, and Buck 7 to name the top three, and Hill hasn't even hit his second yet.

In their new all-or-nothing batting mentality they basically hit a HR or double or strikeout, and as a result, their HR totals keep moving up, and their averages continue to plummet. With the exception of Wells who has hit all year, and Lewis whose average is going up (OK and Travis Snider - I still don't want to jinx it!!!) the Jays have some ugly, ugly averages.

Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Eveland

I missed an entry of Eveland's last game, of which he gets the POG.

Dana is doing his best to frustrate viewers by pitching like a monster (see first 2 starts and latest start) and then pitch like a everyday Joe throwing up meatballs all game (see every other game).

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

It Ain't Over 'Till Lindy Says It's Over!

With pure determination on his face, Adam Lind stepped into the batter's box in the 9th inning, and promptly knocked a 2-run off-field home run to take the lead by one.

The one run lead was surprisingly enough for Frasor not to blow it, helping him to even his record at 1-1.

The 24 LOB were pretty freaking ugly, but beyond that it was a pretty decent game offensively. For example, 11 hits were sweet and having 4 walks and only 5 strikeouts was nice.

The pitching being shown early this year for the Jays gives some hope of a potential 3rd place finish? I'm not willing to suggest that at this point, but if the offense can keep hitting and not striking out, what's to stop them from finishing ahead of the aging and struggling Red Sox?

That being said, Cito should make Loeverbay contribute $1,000 to the Jays Care Foundation every time he hits into a fucking double play. Frustrating!!!

5.1 innings for Morrow with 9 strikeouts and a disappointing 3 ER. I suppose not horrible, but consider that 2 of the runs scored were from runners put on by a walk, and a hit batter.

If Morrow can ever learn to have a little better control, and that is a big if, he could be a steal from the Mariners. He also seems to struggle in the startings of things, IE: start of a game, start of an inning.

But man can that guy throw.

Player of the Game is Lind for breaking out of his mini-funk in a big way and for just generally being awesome.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Romero Shows Signs of Being Human, Snider on Mini-Tear

Tonight Romero proved he is indeed human. 5 runs over 6 innings, albeit with 9 punchouts, was not that great of an outing and this inflated his ERA to a whopping 3.00. Nice to see his offense pick him up a win after wasting some of his previous starts.

I hate to say this, as I do not want to be a jinx, but T-Snides is on a mini-tear right now. He has been hitting the ball hard, and against today he had a 2-out RBI, and scored two runs. For that performance, and to keep his self-esteem high, he is awarded today's POG.

Cecil Fans 10 Over 8

Brett Cecil is looking good. Tabler and Martinez both say he has a new found confidence, feeling comfortable enough to throw any pitch in any count. I agree. Obviously so do the Cleveland Indians.

The Indians struck out 10 times in 8 innings of Cecil, and managed one hit, and only scored one because of two consecutive walks.

So, yeah, Cecil is looking damn good.

And for that, Cecil is awarded another POG award.

The hitters. Well they do what they have done all year. Hit doubles and homeruns with a dash of singles. 3 long balls, 1 double, 4 singles for 8 hits.

Speaking of the hitters, one has to like the way Snider hit the ball yesterday.

I don't think there can be much denying what Cito said said in Spring Training. You know, the Jays have 7 guys that can hit 20 homeruns? Well yeah. They probably do. Wells, Hill, Lind, JoBau, Snider, Buck, and Gonzalez seem like they will, and Overbay could if he ever gets hit shit together.

Questions of the Day

Considering the way Cecil is pitching, and the way Eveland pitches (or doesn't pitch), what does it mean when Tallet comes back?

The most logic solution is to say goodbye to Eveland, and give Tallet a rotation spot. That being said, there has been some turnover in the bullpen and maybe Tallet will provide another lefty arm?

Similarly, what does it mean for Randy Ruiz and Mike McCoy when EE is back?

Being frank, I don't think McCoy will be sent down because Cito seems to appreciate his speed and defense capabilities. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said of Ruiz.

As much as I want to love Ruiz, and as much as I want him to crush 40, what team has a primarily DH on your bench? I mean, you can put him at first, but he's not the slickest fielder you ever did see.

A little random maybe, but I was thinking the other day.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

It's Good To Be Back

Sorry to be so long in between posts, my week of cleaning, packing, moving, and unpacking has finally ended. Now, in a nice short blog, I will catch up with my POGs only. Be back tomorrow with a real blog!

Red Sox 2, Blue Jays 1 - POG is Marcum
Red Sox 2, Blue Jays 0 - POG is Cecil
Blue Jays 6, Athletics 3 - POG is Buck
Blue Jays 10, Athletics 2 - POG is Morrow
Athletics 4, Blue Jays 3 - POG is Freddy Lewis
Blue Jays 9, Athletics 3 - POG is Marcum

Again apologies about the delay.