12:09 PM EST, Mon December 17, 2018
1 hour ago
Shapiro/Atkins three years in: the bigger picture

Shapiro/Atkins three years in: the bigger picture

A last post looking back over their first three years The new front office headed by Mark Shapiro and Ross Atkins has now been in charge for three offseasons, and while that’s far too early for definitive judgments, it is enough to start making some reasonable evaluations. Thus over a series of posts, I want to comprehensively examine what they’ve done over the first three years of their tenure. Part 1 looked at free agent signings, part 2 their trades, part 3 a variety of other areas. This last part is far more belated than intended, but to tie together the bigger picture. Thus far,...
Dec 15, 2018
Saturday Bantering: Catching Up

Saturday Bantering: Catching Up

There is depressing little for blue Jays news. I was listening to MLB Radio and Jim Bowden was talking about Troy Tulowitzki. Bowden said how surprising it was a team with a corporate ownership to let go of a guy with so much money left on the contract. I think it doesn’t really get how big a corporation Rogers is. For a smaller company, yeah that would be a tough thing, writing off so much money. For Rogers, they won’t hardly notice. And, of course, it is easier for Ross and Mark to sell the idea of dropping him because they can say ‘hey, it isn’t our fault, it was the last guy...
Dec 14, 2018
Question time: Tell us about you favorite baseball books of the year?

Question time: Tell us about you favorite baseball books of the year?

With Christmas being less than two weeks away (Christmas is two weeks away? Excuse me I have to run to the store), I thought we could talk about our favorite baseball books of the year. I like getting books for Christmas and, of course, I like baseball books. Here are a few that I have read or I am reading: Power Ball by Rob Neyer Rob writes about changes in the game of baseball in the past little while. He frames it around watching a single game, a game from September 8th, 2017, Houston Astros visiting the Oakland A’s. He uses the game as a background to discuss the changes in the game...
Dec 13, 2018
Today in Blue Jays history: A bad trade and Clemens signing

Today in Blue Jays history: A bad trade and Clemens signing

22 Years Ago The Blue Jays signed Roger Clemens. Roger had played 13 seasons for the Red Sox. Had a 192-111 record and a 3.06 ERA in 382 starts. He had won 3 Cy Young awards and had finished 2nd and 3rd and 6th in the voting other times. But, he wasn’t quite as terrific in his last couple of seasons with Boston, putting up a 3.83 ERA and a 20-18 record in 57 starts. Yeah, still very good, but kind of a step down in performance. When he hit free agency, the Red Sox didn’t want to give him the money he expected. He talked to the Yankees, but wasn’t happy with their offers. In came...
Dec 13, 2018
Encarnacion, Happ and Smoak: Updates from the Winter Meetings

Encarnacion, Happ and Smoak: Updates from the Winter Meetings

Things are heating up for the Blue Jays. Although the first few days of the Winter Meetings were pretty dull, save for the release of Troy Tulowitzki, it looks like things are picking up on the Blue Jays’ front — or, at least, in matters somewhat related to the Blue Jays. The Seattle Mariners acquired former Blue Jay Edwin Encarnacion from the Cleveland baseball team in a three-way deal involving the Tampa Bay Rays on Thursday afternoon. The Rays sent Jake Bauers to Cleveland, with Yandy Diaz heading the other way. The Mariners, who also received cash considerations, sent Carlos...
Dec 13, 2018
Rule 5 Draft: Jays lose Jordan Romano and Travis Bergen, select Elvis Luciano

Rule 5 Draft: Jays lose Jordan Romano and Travis Bergen, select Elvis Luciano

Jays select RHP David Garner and lose LHP Sam Moll in minor league phase The 2018 Rule 5 Draft was an eventful one for the Blue Jays — or at least the first couple minutes were — as they made an off-the-board selection of an 18-year-old who wouldn’t normally even be eligible. But before that, they had already had two players selected by them. Drafting third overall, the White Sox took 2014 10th round pick and GTA native Jordan Romano, then flipped him to the Rangers (ugh). Right before their pick, the San Francisco Giants made lefty Travis Bergen the 8th player selected. This caps an...
Dec 13, 2018
2018 Rule 5 Draft Background and Open Thread

2018 Rule 5 Draft Background and Open Thread

The 2018 Winter Meetings wrap up today with the annual Rule 5 Draft. Once a solid source of talent, changes in the 2006 CBA that allowed teams an extra year before their prospects were eligible have reduced the chance of finding high impact players. But Joe Biagini is a good reminder of the ability to find diamonds in the rough. And let’s face it — other than arbitration numbers being exchanged in January, this is the last formal thing on the calendar before Spring Training. With the gathering out west, the major league portion gets underway at 12:00 ET / 9:00 PT followed by the minor...
Dec 13, 2018
Thursday bantering

Thursday bantering

A few whispers and rumours concerning the Jays at the moment, mostly about pitching it seems. The Jays haven’t landed J.A. Happ, Charlie Morton, Lance Lynn and Tanner Roark and instead are expected to target a secondary tier of starters where some value can be found on short-term deals. In that regard Scott Boras is adhering to the #CheapRogers mindset and has blasted Rogers and the Jays for not spending enough. But we are casting our net wide and far to add to our pitching stocks: #BlueJays will present to Japanese lefty Yusei Kikuchi later this month in LA, when he and agent Scott...
Dec 12, 2018
Yankees “close” to three-year agreement with J.A. Happ

Yankees “close” to three-year agreement with J.A. Happ

It’s not done yet, despite earlier reporting by Ken Rosenthal. The New York Yankees are “close” to agreeing with former Toronto Blue Jays starter J.A. Happ on a three-year deal, but nothing is done yet. Ken Rosenthal reported earlier that the two parties were in agreement, pending a physical, but has since corrected his reporting. Walking this back. Indications are #Yankees are close on Happ, but no agreement in place. https://t.co/FvR5bwUVDw— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) December 12, 2018 Jon Heyman also reported that the two sides were close. After trading Happ to the...
Dec 12, 2018
The Blue Jays and Troy Tulowitzki part ways as each set out to embark on a new era

The Blue Jays and Troy Tulowitzki part ways as each set out to embark on a new era

That ball, like Tulo, is outta here. What began as a baseball bombshell on a hot July night in 2015 ends with what feels like a footnote in the darkness of December. Troy Tulowitzki’s tenure with the Blue Jays is over; and as it turns out, it’s technically been over for 17 months as he hasn’t appeared in a game since July 28, 2017 - Exactly two years to the day after he was traded to Toronto. The transaction ends the latest chapter in Tulo’s complicated career which has featured pain, passion, wonder, amazement, frustration and melancholy. With the Jays, Tulo provided just 4.7...
Dec 12, 2018
Wednesday bantering

Wednesday bantering

Post Tulo era, the possibility of openers and Texas choking Troy Tulowitzki’s time with Toronto ended with a bang (no not an injury) and not a whimper as he was surprisingly released yesterday. The move itself wasn’t that shocking but the timing certainly was. The Jays will pay out the remaining $38m on his contract. Its not the worse deal though: Big Baseball Buyouts (paid not to play)1. Josh Hamilton, Angels, $68M2. Pablo Sandoval, Red Sox, $48.6M3. Troy Tulowitzki, Blue Jays, $38M4. Prince Fielder, Tigers, $30M5. Bobby Bonilla, Mets, $29.8M**Deferred Deal— Darren Rovell...
Dec 11, 2018
Blue Jays Release Troy Tulowitzki

Blue Jays Release Troy Tulowitzki

The Blue Jays will pay out the remainder of Tulowitzki’s $38M contract The Blue Jays have made the move that is quite possibly the most shocking thing they could do at the Winter Meetings this week: The Toronto Blue Jays today announce the release of SS Troy Tulowitzki.— Blue Jays PR (@BlueJaysPR) December 11, 2018 Tulowitzki is owed $38M guaranteed per his contract - $20M in 2019, $14M in 2020 and a $4M buyout for 2021. Due to injuries, he hasn’t played in a baseball game in over a year and a half. With all the comments Ross Atkins has made publicly over the past week, it seemed...
Dec 11, 2018
Happy Birthday Derek Bell

Happy Birthday Derek Bell

And Dalton Pompey It’s former Blue Jay Derek Bell’s 50 birthday. Derek Bell was a 2nd round draft pick for the Blue Jays back in 1987. He moved up the Jays system pretty quickly and made it to the Jays in late June of 1991, played a few games and then was sent back down, then came back out as a September call up. He hit .143/.314/.143. The next season Derek had the 4th outfielder role. He played in 61 games, hitting .242/.324/.354, with 2 home runs and 15 RBI. He even had 3 plate appearances and 2 walks in our playoff run to our first World Series win. Unfortunately, we had a pretty...
Dec 11, 2018
Tuesday Bantering: Rumors or a lack of rumors

Tuesday Bantering: Rumors or a lack of rumors

The Winter Meetings are supposed to be an oasis in the desert for those of us that blog about baseball. We are supposed to be knee deep in rumors, if not actual news. This year? We are still out in the desert and all we can see is sand in all directions. The only Blue Jays rumors out there are about the possibility of trading Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez. I get the feeling they aren’t actively shopping them but they are will to listen to offers. I also think they are softening us up so that when/if there is a trade we aren’t too surprised and we can process it. I’m not a big...
Dec 9, 2018
Blue Jays Rumors: Fiers, Graveman

Blue Jays Rumors: Fiers, Graveman

And Baines and Smith voted into the Hall of Fame. Jon Morosi tweets that the Jays are interested in Mike Fiers and Kendall Graveman to ‘build depth’ in case Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez are traded. I wouldn’t be against offering Fiers a one-year deal. He’s averaged 168 innings per season over the past four years and had a 3.56 ERA last year (maybe helped along by pitching in larger home parks in Detroit and Oakland), but he should be able to give us some low cost innings. Graveman? Well, he’s made 78 starts for the A’s in the four seasons since he was part of the Donaldson...