11:45 PM Eastern

Roy Halladay must not have known what was going on, having to sit in the dugout for so long between opportunities to go out and stick it up the Bronx Bombers’ ummm… bombers.  The Jays fell just six runs short of matching their combined total of runs scored in all of Halladay’s nine losses this season.

The offensive blitz was the Jays’ third 20+ hit game of the season, and the second time in four games that they’ve torched the scoreboard for double-digit runs.  This time the charge was led by Joe Inglett and Marco Scutaro, each of whom had four hits, and Alex Rios and Adam Lind, who chipped in with three hits each.

The top three hitters in the batting order combined to go 11-for-17 (.647) with three doubles, a homer, eight runs scored and seven RBIs.  The clean-up guy was the only one to take the collar, but Vernon Wells absolutely scorched two balls – a line-drive out to left in the 4th, which was the hardest-hit ball of that three-run inning, and a line drive that Johnny Damon ran down in left-centre.

I could go over every offensive player tonight, because everybody hit, but I’ll specifically highlight just a couple more things.  John McDonald had another great day at the dish, with a big two-out two-run single to cap the five-run 3rd and a single to lead off the 5th.  Both balls were hit to almost dead centre, and in his next at-bat, he flied out to deep left.  I’ve said it dozens of times – if McDonald can even be an average big-league hitter, heck, even slightly below-average – he’s a huge asset to any team.  He bounced back very nicely from a pair of 0-for-3s, and has hit .289/.319/.400 over the last two weeks.  With his glove, that makes him an outstanding player.

Roy Halladay just “shoved”, as Joe Inglett said after the game.  I guess you can add “the ball up their ***es” to the end of that.  Halladay took a three-hit shutout into the 7th, walking one and striking out eight to that point, and was staked to a 7-0 lead through three and a 13-0 lead after five.  It was an embarrassment of riches for the Jays’ ace, who isn’t used to much run support at all – in fact, the Jays have scored a total of 20 runs for Halladay over his nine losses – and he still pitched as though he was in a one-run game.  Best pitcher in the league, the Jays have to trade him, right?

Good to see quick healer Scott Downs back on the mound, as well.  After collapsing with that right ankle sprain in Detroit last Wednesday, it looked like he’d be out a while, but he didn’t miss a beat in taking down the Yanks 1-2-3 in the 8th on a three-pitch strikeout, high chopper infield single and double-play grounder.

Speaking of trades (I did!  A paragraph ago!), the Jays picked up Jose Bautista from the Pirates in a waiver deal before the game.  They’ll option Kevin Mench down to Syracuse to make room, and Mench will be back on September 1st.  Bautista is a cheap add, he’ll cost the Jays just over $400,000 for the rest of the year, and he’s been a strong bat against lefties this year, hitting .253/.363/.547 with six home runs in just 75 at-bats.  Sad as it is, Bautista brings his 43 career homers in just over three seasons and becomes the Jays’ home run leader this season – he’s hit 12 for the Pirates, even though National League numbers don’t carry over.

The Jays will send a player to be named later to the Buccos to consummate the trade, we should find out who that is late this week or early next.  In order to trade a player on the 40-man roster, he has to clear waivers, and the Jays would have to put the PTBNL through trade waivers if he’s on the 40-man, but not the 25 (since it’s safe to assume almost all of the 25-man guys would already have been put through).  If I had to guess who the player heading to Pittsburgh is, I’d guess John Parrish, Curtis Thigpen or Russ Adams.

Bautista will battle Scutaro for playing time against righties, and should take away David Eckstein’s playing time against lefties, with Scoot moving over to second base.  It’s a minor improvement, but it doesn’t cost the Jays much.  Just another one of those moves that so many critics love to hate.

It was a fun JaysTalk tonight, though I always wonder why people don’t ever seem to want to talk about the actual game that just finished.  The last caller was a beaut.  I love people who say stuff like “stats are for fools”.  The funny thing is, your eyes and your heart will deceive you – any listener to the fine post-game that is The JaysTalk knows that happens all the time.  The stats are the only way you can tell what is actually happening.  Statistics can lie, of course, and they can be manipulated in an attempt to prove or disprove a point.  That’s why I always say no one statistic can tell a complete story.  But all of them together certainly do.  And no, Marco Scutaro isn’t even in the conversation as to who should be this team’s MVP.  Here’s the whole show – listen up!

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Rational, reasonable comments are always welcome!

94 Responses to “Adding Jose Bautista To This Offense? Overkill.”
  1. 1.

    But Mike! JP himself said that he thought Scutaro was deserving of being the Jays’ MVP!

    Not that I care. If you are including pitchers, that would have to be Mr. Halladay. If we’re only talking about position players, despite his mental lapses, I’d have to go with Rios, though it would be Wells had he played those extra couple of months.

    Thanks!

    MW: I don’t believe that J.P. said that.

    - Rory
  2. 2.

    Maybe they picked up Bautista so they can move Eckstein very shortly, seeing Eck will get little or no playing time. I’ve heard the Angels are interested.

    The Yankee radio announcers said a lot of nice things about the Jays tonight. They called Doc “the best pitcher in baseball…..period”. Joe Girardi also said after the game “the Jays will decide who gets in the playoffs if they don’t get there themselves”. I just like hearing my team get a little credit.

    Bring on the Red Sox!

    - Jim in Ohio
  3. 3.

    Hmmm, maybe it’s Scott Downs space age tattoo that allows him to heal faster??

    MW: Could be, could be.

    - Wes
  4. 4.

    Yes we get Jose the slugger! Mike, have you been surprised how quickly Diaz, Jeroloman and Arencibia have jumped ahead of Thigpen who was thought to be last year “a part of the future”?

    MW: Yes, I have been, but Curtis simply hasn’t hit – he’s been as much a part of those other guys passing him as they have.

    - Ak
  5. 5.

    Mike, let’s say a guy like CC Sabathia. Would you give him a 7 year contract?

    MW: No.

    - andrew
  6. 6.

    Hi Mike.
    I really like the Bautista pick-up. I’m of the belief that you have to assume Rolen is done as a plus hitter until he proves otherwise. In the off season, if the Jays do sign Giambi, be prepared for numerous fans frustrated by the Giambi shift. I predict many Jays Talk callers asking why Giambi doesn’t simply bunt or hit the ball to the empty left side of the infield.

    Giambi turns 38 next year, an age when hitting ability tends to diminish markedly. Giambi is always good for a .380+ OBP, but the Jays don’t lack in OBP. Giambi’s SLG is in decline. A much better signing is Milton Bradley, who is undervalued because of his attitude. Move Lind to first or DH and stick Bradley in LF. That makes for a better team.

    MW: Bradley is brittle and has a hair-trigger temper, I’m really not interested in having him around. Giambi does hit a bunch of singles through the shift, he’s done it to the Jays several times this year. As for Bautista vs. Rolen – is Bautista a plus hitter?

    - Asher
  7. 7.

    I know this is off topic, but why are the Olympics getting rid of baseball after this year?

    MW: Because the major leaguers don’t go. It’s a shame they had to get rid of softball along with it, though.

    - Mark
  8. 8.

    Mike just wondering who you think is the Jays best fit for DH next year? and would you say King Carlos is a credible option. Also I know this is completely spitballing, but is Eligah Dukes within reach of a trade? The kid’s got an edge for sure and has his problems, but can flat out rake the ball

    MW: I wouldn’t take Elijah Dukes no matter how good he is, but the Nationals certainly aren’t looking to move him. I think the best fit for DH next year is Manny Ramirez, I don’t think Delgado will be available.

    - Jesse
  9. 9.

    The problem though is that John McDonald is not an average hitter, or even a below average hitter. He’s a terrible hitter and nothing in his career shows otherwise. John McDonald is 34 years old. I hope you’re not getting fooled by this hot streak he’s on.

    MW: When did I say he was an average hitter?

    - Andy
  10. 10.

    Mike, have you watched the Olympic games and if you did, which events caught your interest?

    MW: I’ve watched some, when I could. Whatever event is on, I’ll watch it, though I couldn’t bear to watch the women’s 3K walk.

    - andrew
  11. 11.

    Another start by Cliff Lee, and again he did the constant touching of the hat before each pitch. Here’s a picture that shows his cap scuffed in both the front and back. I really wish someone would look into this, for Doc’s sake!

    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/60/Cliff_Lee_Follows_Through.jpg/800px-Cliff_Lee_Follows_Through.jpg

    - Ari
  12. 12.

    Michael of the Ballyard:

    Oh man, I am so baked. I can’t believe that I have an Internet connection at the end of the dock.

    How did you find U of T, socially? Were the people aloof and competitive, or was it easy to meet lots of wothwhile people? How should I feel, baked out of my skull on the end of a dok at 1.30 in the morning less than two weeks away from my University career?

    Kay, some baze-ball (as the Frenh say)

    Do you think, despite what you have previously said, that John Mcdonald (macdonald? I’m baked, as I said… I think) could become a hitter at age 34 or whatever the hell it is? If so, could he have a full-time spot on the team next year? If not, is his defense and Cito’s approval of him (which I assume, seeing as you said he’s beome a starter under Cito — I’ll take your word for it as I have been baked for most of the summer) enough to still possibly give him a full-time spot on the team? Does he deseve said full-time spot? Is it wise from a baseball standpoint? You get my train of thought.

    What is Joe Inglett’s future with this team?

    Art the Yankees’ dynasty finally in an irreversible downward spiral?

    Okay, I am sbsolutely baked and Iam going to go fishing now. FYI, despite what you implied last night, I do not eat potato chips when I am baked — tonight, it will be tarts and some trout I caughht today. I find it very satiftying to have personally killed my own food.

    MW: You really seem quite proud of the fact that you’re baked. I met some terrific people at U of T, great classmates who let me borrow their notes despite the fact that I hardly ever went to class, that sort of thing. I don’t think McDonald can become a good hitter, but I think that he can be a good enough hitter to stay in the line-up. I think Inglett has a place on the team next year as the super-utility guy who will force his way into the line-up two or three times a week and can start if anyone gets hurt. And no, the Yanks aren’t in an irreversible downward spiral – they’ll be fine next year and could still make a charge this year.

    - JCL
  13. 13.

    Rosenthal thinks Toronto will go after Matt Holliday in the off-season. Do you agree?

    MW: No. Well, they might go after him, but I doubt they’ll get him.

    - Renegade
  14. 14.

    My thinking in suggesting Frasor was that it would be a player announced after the season, and with speculation about Frasor being a non-tender candidate….

    Anyway, yeah, if it’s a player we’ll learn about soon then Frasor wouldn’t be a logical guess.

    Getting him for as little as Thigpen would be exceptional IMO.

    - WillRain
  15. 15.

    Mike… I was very suprised to hear you say that Cito and Gene have had a “Profound Effect” on Johnny Mac. I understood that you believed that the coaches and managers had very little effect on the quality of performance that the players put out on the field. Anyway I’m not going to continue this conversation beyond this blog. Maybe your changing your thoughts on the type of influence that coaches and managers have on players but I dought it because your almost as stubborn as I am! Also I have a question if you have time to awnser. What are the Yankees thinking when they signed sir Sidney? The Rangers let him go because he was a headcase! Also this guy can’t seem to stay out of trouble with the law! Not that I’m complaining! I love it when the Yankees make stupid moves!

    MW: I do believe that in general, coaches and managers have very little effect on players’ performance, but there are exceptions, of course. McDonald, over the course of the last two months, has become a pull hitter, and a reasonably successful one. What were the Yankees thinking? That they needed somebody, anybody.

    - Matt from BC
  16. 16.

    hey mike, scutaro’s 4 hits don’t count remember? so he has been one of the poorer hitters on the team you say? gee funny how he is only 2 rbis behind superstar overbay! whenever anybody criticizes lyle overrated you claim “he’s 3rd on the team in rbi’s!” but I guess scutaro’s rbi’s don’t count. I mean he had all those runners on batting cleanup

    MW: Why do Scutaro’s four hits not count? Even with the four hits last night, his OPS is better than only John McDonald’s among Jays’ regulars. And when people criticize Overbay I claim (interesting choice of words) that he leads the team in OBP. Good listening, though.

    - chubby
  17. 17.

    How about ‘Mighty Joe’ for mvp? after Hill went down Joe has been a very pleasant, and very consistent suprise, and he currently leads the team in batting average. With Rolen on ther D.L. as well, the Jays would have been stretched on the infield had Joe not been so good. Also he’s not at all bad defensively.

    MW: How about Rios for MVP? Or Wells? Or Lind? Inglett has done a terrific job filling in for Aaron Hill, for sure, and has really established himself as a legit, solid big-leaguer. However, despite all the brain cramps, Rios is leading the team in hits, runs, doubles, RBIs and stolen bases and is one off the team home run lead.

    - ukJay
  18. 18.

    mike, when it comes to vw’s contract, please stop saying that’s how much he would have got on the open market. the fact is he wasn’t a free agent. you said wait till grady sizemore becomes a free agent and see how much he gets. EXACTLY. you have to be a free agent to command the money. vw was not. as a fa, there is a bidding war. JP did not outbid anyone, he was the only offer. you don’t give free agent money when a player is not a free agent. that’s just stupid. andru jones got far less money as a free agent. you can’t just assume vw would have got that money. he would have had to repeat his 2006 year which he didn’t.

    MW: Andruw Jones got exactly the same yearly average as Wells did.

    - chubby
  19. 19.

    Last night was great and very fun to watch Blue Jayically speaking (is that how you spell it?) However, while enjoying this win for what it was, it does add to the growing sense of frustration for the season as a whole. This year will go down as a real opportunity missed, if as i suspect, we fall short of the play off’s.

    I’m with you Mike, i just don’t see how you could get enough back to justify what you lose, by trading Halliday at this point of his career. We also have to remember if we don’t quite have him at a bargain basement price, we do have him a whole lot cheaper than if he were a Yankee or Red Sox (heaven forbid) It was also his choice to stay, which makes it all the sweeter.

    How much would you have to pay an inferior replacement compared to Roy’s salary.

    MW: Carlos Silva makes $12 million a year, Halladay has averaged $12.25 million over the last two years. Why would you put an apostrophe on the word playoffs?

    - ukJay
  20. 20.

    who in your opinion is the
    best Blue Jay pundit, excluding yourself of course?
    And who do you enjoy better Rance or Pat?

    MW: I can’t answer that, because I haven’t heard any of the TV commentators in years.

    - lukespeaks
  21. 21.

    Now that we’ve upgraded over Mench let’s hope J.P. can find a lefthanded hitting upgrade over Wilkerson… Bringing in Mench and Wilkerson was not one of J.P.’s finest hours although I must acknowledge Wilkerson did make a big catch on last Saturday at Fenway to help Halladay win; otherwise he’s been a bust (grand slam against Seattle ? wasn’t a game breaker if I recall); what else have these 2 guys done to help the ball club ?

    MW: You mean the first inning, two-out Grand Slam that made it 4-0? Not a gamebreaker, right. It was against the Royals, by the way. The Jays are 41-30 when Wilkerson starts, I know that means something to some people. All that said, there’s no question that bringing in Mencherson was a cheap gamble that has certainly failed, to this point.

    - Mark from Ottawa
  22. 22.

    Mike, speaking of stats, much has been made about how much better the Jays are hitting under the Cito/Tenace regime.

    Well — the facts are that — on a per-game average — the Jays hit better this year under Gibbons/Denbo than they have since.

    By my calculations, (undoubtedly subject to minor errors) in 74 games under Gibbons, the Jays had 709 hits, for an average hits per game of 9.581.

    In 53 games under Cito/Tenace, they have 478 hits, for an average of 9.019 — even with 3 20+ hit games included.

    By another measurement, under Gibby they had 9 games in which they had 5 or less hits, an average of 1 every 8.22 games. Under Cito, it’s already 8 games of 5 or less, one every 6.63 games.

    Clearly, as many of us (yourself included) have been saying all along, it’s not “how many”, but “when” that is important!

    MW: And the “when” rarely seemed to be the right time early on this season.

    - Norm
  23. 23.

    I do remember JP saying that he had been “ONE” of our MVP’s this year.. I kinda laughed at that. But there is no doubt he has been a huge part of this team.

    MW: If there are seven offensive MVPs this season, he’s probably one of them.

    - Brandon F
  24. 24.

    MW,

    If I were to have to pick an MVP this year I would not be looking to the hitters (Lind has not played long enough to qualify in my mind) for a candidate. For my money, the MVP should come from the pitching staff and Halliday is the obvious choice. Here’s another take. For overall contribution and year-over-year improvement, my vote would go to A.J. This will drive the A.J. haters crazy but let’s face it, he has added so much more this year. Your thoughts?

    MW: Burnett has actually been significantly worse this season than he was last year or the year before.

    - George A
  25. 25.

    “I’ve said it dozens of times – if McDonald can even be an average big-league hitter, heck, even slightly below-average – he’s a huge asset to any team.”

    If indeed. But that is a big if. Nay, a ginormous if. If my aunt had…, well, you know how that saying goes.

    McDonald is 33 (not the age when players suddenly get better) with a lifetime OPS+ of 57. For readers unfamiliar with OPS+, 100 is defined to be average among ALL players (i.e., at all posiitons). Shortstops tend to average out in the 80′s.

    McDonald is so far from “even slightly below average”, even just for a shortstop, that the calculus of determining if he deserves to be play or not will almost always come out against him, no matter how fun he is to watch.

    And for any fans who hold out hope that McDonald is just a thumb’s width away from being a passable hitter, well, it just isn’t so. Nor will it ever be, no matter how much he starts pulling the ball or taking pitches or praying to Allah.

    MW: Was there a reason you felt you needed to add “praying to Allah” to that?

    - Chuck V
  26. 26.

    Roy Halliday, must be pinching himself this morning to check it was not a dream, yikes, 14 runs of support! Perhaps the rest of the players, heeded Citos’ comment in the media, stating, that he, hopes we can finally get some runs for the Doc.

    Maybe JP wants the “lid” kept on tight as to Collins, just in case he is let go at season’s end – then when he lands a new job he can wisk away this pet project of his. Hey, why not! Anyway, JP is not going anywhere!

    You know, when you think about it. It is next to impossible, for any one team to go into a hitting slump, I mean everyone. In reality, I believe, the Jays did run into some games where the opposition pitcher was having a great game – it can happen.

    My prayers go out to Carl Yastrzemski (Yaz) – growing up, he was my all time favorite ball player. Imagine, being able to replace an all time great like Ted Williams in your outfield with a guy like Yaz. Then the “dream team” of 67! Makes one wonder, how the Red Sox never won a WS back in those days. I believe, Yaz is still the last player to win the triple crown in MLB. Get well soon Yaz.

    My “blind optimism” is still working away here Mike – I said 11-3 on this latest stand. So far 2-1 and after the weekend series with my beloved Red Sox – the Jays will be 5-1. The hitting, has just begun!

    Thanks.

    MW: And I thought I used a lot of commas. Why is it that no one can seem to spell Halladay, by the way?

    - Bob -
  27. 27.

    Mike,

    I can’t believe the comments by Matt (on the previous blog) where he says that Cito should have taken Halladay out of the game after 5 or 6 innings, thinking that would enhance his Cy Young chances.

    You don’t take a pitcher out of a shutout game ‘because he might get hurt’, unless he had already thrown an enormous number of pitches. Halladay hadn’t at that point. You give him a chance to up his CG and SHO stats – which WOULD enhance his Cy Young chances. He had given up three insignificant singles up to that point and struck out 8!

    I guess Cito should have ‘known’ that Halladay was going to give up the three run homer and taken him out. Get a crystal ball, Cito!

    I’m sure if they took him out of the game while the shutout was in tact, Matt would have been calling for Cito’s head for not leaving him in. It’s so easy to criticize after the fact.

    Unfortunately, Halladay’s Cy Young chances are relatively slim – hard to compete with Lee’s 18-2 record and similar ERA.

    MW: I believe that it’s only the rare, rare case in which a manager should make a move with the chance to compile stats in mind.

    - Wayne
  28. 28.

    Beburg: “Going by your theory, every athlete can be suspicious and if we’ve that frame of mind, then what’s the use of watching any sport. Doesn’t it take away the fun and excitement”?

    MW: “It doesn’t take away the fun and excitement because the playing field is level”.

    For the playing field to be level, all or the majority of players have to be on drugs. I don’t think it’s the case in any sport, atleast it hasn’t been proven so. It’s always the minority who try to get ahead of the pack by taking drugs. Therefore, the playing field is not level. I think we’ve two oppsoite views. I believe in “innocent until proven guilty” philosophy and you believe in the opposite.

    MW: It’s sad, but true. But I think it’s exceedingly naive to believe that the majority of Olympic track athletes, or football players, for example, are playing clean.

    - Beburg
  29. 29.

    Hi Mike;
    I wholehartedly agree with the assertion on Macdonald, as if he finds a .280-.300 average he can be one of the best shortstops in the game, and Allan Ashby stated last night on the telecast the Jays are .622 with Johhny mac in the lineup-nuff said.

    Halladay and Downs were stellar, and Halladay is the consumate professional, when he surrendered the hr to Matsui he seemed angry with himself, he always strives to be perfect and to keep he era close to Lee and keep tallying the wins; I think the Bautista trade was another stellar move by riccardi, and shows why he deserves a chance to finish out his contract as gm for the jays, but I hope the jays only surrender either one of “mencherson” or parrish or thigpen, trading Russ Adams would be a costly mistake, also Joe Inglett was exceptional as always and Riccardi deserves ample credit for that waiver steal pickup! It seems Inglett is almost as adept @ getting on base as Reed johnson was, reaching four of five yesterday. In closing I think Wilkerson is marginally better than Mench simply because of more hr hit and slightly higher average. The only trade I would consider for halladay is maybe jason bay/lester/and or buckholtz, or hamilton from texas with pitching(we need to fill the hr vacuum on the team) or we could just keep the best pitcher in baseball period, great show and game last night.

    MW: Inglett is actually more adept than Reed Johnson at getting on-base (.352-.346 career obp). Trading Russ Adams would be a costly mistake? How’s that?

    - robert s
  30. 30.

    Mike,

    I listen to you all the time and I used to be a big fan of yours, well, I still am, but your becoming cockier and more arrogant as every show passes..not sure where this stems from, maybe since you lost all that weight your confidence has skyrocketed, but its not well warranted, let me tell you… why you so rude to your callers? cant they say, “hey how are you”? I mean, thats common place, stop giving people *** because they greet you? Maybe I should call in and say, hey *** off mike, lets talk about roy halladay, how does that sound? or go *** yourself ******, I wanna know if the jays are gonna make the wild card spot, what do you think? i mean, maybe we should call in and say that… you dont seem to like to be greeted, so maybe I’ll come down and slap you first, then ask if cito is gonna be back next year…. maybe thats what I’ll do…
    you should be happy people are calling in, because when they stop, i bet you mind if people start saying, “hey mike, hows it going”… your a good baseball guy, but your obnoxious behaviuor, especially this year, is getting way out of whack…

    MW: Glad to hear you’re a fan.

    - Mark Giacco
  31. 31.

    Nothing like watching the Jays lay a tanning on the Yankees. Hopefully they can do the same to the Red Sox this weekend.

    My softball season ended last night after we dropped both our games rather convincingly to teams who finished much higher than us in the standings. Yours truly played centrefield but struggled at the plate which isn’t good when you’re the team’s clean-up guy! Readers of this blog would have me run out of town if I was a Blue Jay

    - Derek
  32. 32.

    Now, that’s more like it, Mike. A slaughtering of the Yankees! Only negative thing I can think of in this (yes, my dad dropped a car battery on my head when I was a kid and the negative terminal imbedded in my skull) is that after an offensive output like this, their offense dries right up for a week. Let’s hope they reverse this pattern.

    MW: I don’t know what to say to someone who feels as though he has to come up with something negative to say about a 14-3 win.

    - Vito From Hamilton
  33. 33.

    Mike,
    That was a great game to be at! I’ve been to 27 games this year, and that was by far the most excited crowed I’ve seen this year. (The 14 runs did’nt hurt)
    I was just wondering your opinion on a few things –
    1) Cito’s use of the bench, Why would’nt we see Ex or Zaun get a few hacks up by 10 runs?
    2) I want to know why we used arguably our two best pitchers out of the pen tonight? I understand why the got downs in there too test out the anckle alittle, but I dont understand League with a big boston series coming up where he is proablly going to be very valuable?
    Thanks for you time,
    Hope to be blogging in October!!

    MW: 1 – I was wondering why Cito didn’t empty the bench as well, but he didn’t do it in the 15-4 game in Boston, either. 2 – Downs is perfectly understandable, and League hadn’t pitched since Sunday.

    - Darryl
  34. 34.

    Jays’ MVP…hmmmm

    All inclusive, Halladay hands-down!!

    Offense only, ADAM LIND. This came back when Cito was hired and the offense has followed his lead. At the rate he’s going he’ll be the team’s triple crown winner with 1/3 less games than the regulars.

    - JJ
  35. 35.

    Is Mench optioned for sure? Or are we going to do something dumb like outright Eckstein? I really hope that no one significant is going over there.

    If you don’t like Eckstein for his defence, why are we bringing in a guy who is worse defensively and offensively than Eckstein?

    Eckstein: .285/.351/.362
    Bautista: .240/.328/.397

    Bautista has a lifetime fielding percentage of .959 which includes 133 games in the outfield! The Pirates put him out there because they were sick and tired of the throwing errors he made at third. 19 errors last year and it had nothing to do with range.

    The only way I can support this is that we finally rid ourselves of Russ Adams. But I think the Pirates will fleece us for something better because of Bautista’s “home run” capabilities.

    MW: Nobody had rid anybody of Russ Adams. And no, Mench wasn’t optioned. As it turned out, they put Wilkerson on the DL instead.

    - Jim B
  36. 36.

    Mike, J.P. actually did say he thought Scoot was the MVP of the team. I sure hope J.P. doesn’t actually mean that I hope he doesn’t atleast.

    You said yesterday the big bat the Jays claimed was probally Ibanez but I think it was the Tigers who claimed him.

    Also yesterday when someone tooko a shot at Percey you replied by saying “take a look at Halladay and Carpenters first year in the majors”
    Halladay was 21 when he made his debut
    Carpenter was 22
    Purcey is 26 thats a big big difference. Purcey stuff isn’t anything to write home about either he has a live fastball but its rather inaffective because he has poor control of it. His slider doesn’t have much break too it and he can’t control it either. He has a good change up that he doesn’t use enough because he constantly behind in counts and he profiles as nothing more then a fifth starter and comparing him to Halladay and Carpenter isn’t right.

    MW: Please proofread. Also, please listen again to Wednesdays with J.P. and tell me if he actually said that Scutaro was the team’s MVP. I’m pretty sure he didn’t. As for the Purcey comparison, age is a major issue, without question, but Halladay and Carpenter’s first sorties into the majors hardly portended major success.

    - Dave
  37. 37.

    Mike:

    In regards to my comment (#42) yesterday about JP still saying that he diddn’t offer Rios for Lincecum at the GM meetings.

    1. If you remember, JP was asked about the trade once before on the Jays Talk I believe and his response was something along the lines of “well as you can see Rios is still here so you see what we think of the player”. He made it sound like he valued Rios more than Lincecum and it was him that turned down the offer when everyone said that he made the offer and San Francisco turned it down because they wanted Lincecum more. The funny thing is that it would have been a great trade for JP since it looks as though Lincecum will be a future star in the game and JP tries to get away from it.

    2. Then on Wednesday night’s show, a woman called in and said that since he tried to trade Rios at the meetings would he look at Rios as a possible asset to trade again. He immediately takes a deep breath and avoids the question by talking about how it’s so crazy at the meetings (which you agreed with) and how a name gets out and reporters take it and run with it and make up stories without having all the facts. If that’s not a denial by avoidance I don’t know what is.

    It’s amazing that he doesn’t want that potential trade to be seen as him initiating it. I understand not mentioning names of players involved in potential trades if they haven’t gotten out to the media but when it’s out in the public and the other GM has verified it don’t run from it. He wouldn’t be badmouthing Rios in any way … it takes a good player to aquire another good player in a trade.

    MW: In your first point, Ricciardi didn’t deny offering Rios for Lincecum, but did try to spin it that he was the one who eventually backed away, which confused me at the time and still confuses me. You can check the blog archives from late February to see what I said about it then. As to the second, it IS crazy at the meetings, and the rumours fly around like crazy – most of which never come true. There was never a denial there about the Rios-Lincecum thing. A couple of weeks ago, he mentioned how well Lincecum was doing in San Fran. I haven’t seen any denials from Ricciardi that the Rios-Lincecum thing was on the table.

    - Peter B.
  38. 38.

    4-1 through the first 5 games of the 14 against the “Beasts of the East”. This just looks and feels like a different team than the last few years. In the past, and even earlier this season, this team would come up to a crucial part of the schedule and would just hit the skids.

    Should all the credit go to Cito? Are some of the guys in the lockerroom who have been through it before being that calming influence? They just seem like a looser bunch.

    Big weekend set against the Sox. It’s amazing what solid pitching can do for any team. You know going in that you are going to be in almost every game.

    I liked your comment while on the “Gameplan” – 8 more timely hits, the Jays would have 8 more wins and are right in the thick of the playoff race. Jays are still on the fringe and need a huge weekend to really assert themselves.

    Other than the Jays, what pitching staffs would you not want to face in a playoff series, AL or NL?

    MW: Rich Harden, Carlos Zambrano and Ted Lilly would be tough, as would Brandon Webb, Danny Haren and Randy Johnson. CC Sabathia, Ben Sheets and Manny Parra would be no picnic either, especially if you’re the Jays. John Lackey, Joe Saunders and Ervin Santana would be problematic as well.

    - Aaron Ker
  39. 39.

    The Jays do have their own song: OK Blue Jays (Let’s Play Ball!).

    - Patrick
  40. 40.

    Mike, I have an idea for Nelson. Give Raptorized John a talk show of his own on the Fan. He’s real cool and love when he calls in!

    - Vito From Hamilton
  41. 41.

    Mike, I’m pretty sure this is a simple question, but I’m really confused by MLB’s blackout policy.

    As I understand it, the only way to watch Blue Jays on TV is to be in Ontario, unless you’re in the city that they are playing in as a visitor.

    With their radio policy, I just get confused.

    I’m moving to New Zealand to do my masters degree next April. I’ll be there for a year, so I’ll miss most of a season. Is there any way for me to listen to yourself, Jerry and Alan when I’m overseas?

    MW: There’s the mlb.com audio package. I don’t think you’re right at all with the television blackout policy. As far as I know, most Jays games are on national TV across the country.

    - Sam McLean
  42. 42.

    Just wondering why NL numbers dont carry over when the player in question is traded to an AL team?

    MW: Different leagues, different awards, different stats.

    - James
  43. 43.

    So JP isn’t interested in a guy who’s hitting .237 even though he’s got 34HR, but he is interested in Bautista’s 12HR power and robust .242 average.

    I know it’s not a fair comparison because the cost is a lot different, but it’s still funny.

    It’s hard to let go of the Dunn fiasco when he’s got 34 and 1-5 in our lineup last night have a total of 35.

    MW: It’s not a fair comparison at all.

    - tj
  44. 44.

    Good for Dave from Oakville and his comments last night on the Cubbies song. I recall bringing this up earlier in the year and suggesting ‘Daydream Believer’ by The Monkees, or how about Buck Rogers by Feeder, it sticks with the Rogers theme, and contains the lyric ‘i think we’re gonna make it’.

    Failing that how about something home made, such as this for example.

    Hockey town oh hockey town wake up smell the coffee, you must surely know, these Blue Jays are once more stealin the show.

    Our fair city sits upon the lake, its called Turonah, comparisons with Chicago are not too hard to make.

    Upside down our flag might sometimes be hung, but it’s out on that crazy field turf where our work gets done.

    Twice we’ve climed the summit before.
    Alomar. Carter, Olerud and Sprague all knew the score, and have all since passed into local folklore.

    Does it have a roof, or does it not. It has the tallest foul pole in the majors, that’s what it’s got. So get down to the Ballpark check it oot, see for yourself what it’s all aboot.

    So come on Mike your the fan, if anyone can tell us you sure can. The words are by me the music I’m sure will rock, but will it fit the tune of ‘One night in Bangkok’

    You know what the bitter shame of it all is, ole ‘Blue eyes’ is no longer around to record this for us….

    MW: Very creative. I can’t see how it fits with One Night In Bangkok, though.

    - ukJay
  45. 45.

    Mike:

    Could you please find out about something I heard? Was JP on the selection committee for the Team USA Olympic baseball team? If so, might this have been a factor in calling up Scott Richmond, who is now in the bullpen and not a starter, to get him out of the Team Canada lineup as he was our star pitcher?

    Thanks and I look forward to your reply,

    A different John fronm Guelph than the guy you normally hear from

    MW: Ricciardi helped out with the U.S. Olympic team in 2000, I believe. There’s no conspiracy theory. I mean, there are lots of conspiracy theories, but that one is particularly ridiculous.

    - John Starzynski
  46. 46.

    No Mike! “Hey Toronto” sounds too much like hate-Toronto.

    - Vito From Hamilton
  47. 47.

    On a more lighthearted note, have you seen enough of Jose Bautista on defense to form an opinion on him?

    MW: Nope. But what I know of his defensive reputation isn’t good.

    - ukJay
  48. 48.

    Has thigpen’s stock dropped so much that he is mentioned in such company as adams and parrish?

    MW: Yup.

    - jeremy
  49. 49.

    Hey Mike, I was wondering what you thought of Ken Rosenthal’s report that the Jays might be interested in Matt Holliday in the off-season. I guess we’d see Lind either move to first or DH. Unless Lind or Rios were sent back to the Rockies it might create a sort of logjam with Snider coming along soon.

    MW: I don’t think it’ll happen.

    - Andy
  50. 50.

    Hi Mike,

    Just to back up Rory from the very first post to this blog, I read an article in the paper on Wednesday that quoted JP as saying something along the lines of, “I don’t know where we’d be without Scutaro in the lineup this year. He has been our MVP.”

    So yes, JP did say that.

    Thanks, Mike!

    MW: I checked all the Jays stories in the Toronto newspapers on Wednesday and didn’t find that quote. Can you be more specific as to where you saw it?

    - Jeff
  51. 51.

    (uhh) Would you (uhh) mind telling (uhh) Dave from (uhh) Oakville to (uhh) speed (uhh) up his (uhh) “takes”.

    - Joe Canada
  52. 52.

    Eh Wilner! How are ya? First time blog replier and, so far, still yet to call in. So I guess I’m still working on this closet thing. How’s it going?

    I’m one of these prefer-the-ballgame-on-the-radio types. Blame the cottage (no tv). I gotta say, I love listening now as much as ever, to the pre/game/post. Considering I grew up with Tom and Jerry I’m sure you realize that’s a big compliment.

    Which brings my first (hmmm is it the first?) point; I think you’ve been slacking on the whole Vote For Tom Cheek thing, so just a friendly reminder for you to plug that more, please, and for anyone who reads this to VOTE FOR TOM. Not just because we’re Jays fans, not just because we feel bad for the tragic, way-too-soon loss of him, but because he deserves it. Easily. A no-brainer. There shouldn’t even have to be a vote, but I guess that’s the way she goes. How are you?

    I’m another Johnny Mac (even though it’s spelled Mc) fan, and have wanted him to be the Jays starting shortstop since before he went to the Tigers. I’ve always thought that if he played every day and was allowed to hit aggressively, he’d put up at least decent numbers. Great to see him doing that now. Bringing up that Tigers thing again, I could be wrong, but I thought he hit pretty well, while in Detroit… and… hey, the guy got traded for himself! I think that’s the coolest trade ever, just adding to the Johnny Mac mystique. How’re ya doin?

    K, done. Thanks for the time and space.

    MW: Keep working on that closet thing! I’m not slacking on the Vote for Tom Cheek thing, it’s just that voting hasn’t opened yet. Don’t worry, I’ll be all over it all through the month of September. As for McDonald, he’s been hitting aggressively his entire career, hence his average of 7.11 walks per season going into this year. In his brief (73 at-bat) sojourn in Detroit, Mac hit .260/.308/.329, all above his career averages.

    - Dilly (it's a nickname) in Dundas (not the street)
  53. 53.

    Is picking up Bautista an indication that Scott Rolen may be done for the year? Or is it just a short term fix? If Scott Rolen does come bak, where do you see Bautista fitting in?

    This seems like another move by JP that really wont make a huge impact.

    MW: It doesn’t mean Rolen is done for the year, it’s just another guy who’s better than the worst guy they’ve got, so why not? As for moves by J.P. that didn’t appear as though they would make a huge impact, there have been a few that have worked out very well – such as claiming Scott Downs and Joe Inglett on waivers, for example.

    - Jesse
  54. 54.

    Hey Mike,
    2 Questions for you, How do the Jays determine which cap to wear? (Jay logo with Bird, T-Cap or Old school Retro Cap) I know, dumb question. Second, if the Jays can sweep or at least take 2 out of 3 from Boston, are we still in good shape for the WC Race?

    Thanks,
    Tom

    MW: 1 – I don’t know, except for the fact that the retro cap is only worn for Friday home games. 2 – Good shape? No. But definitely in it.

    - tom stewart
  55. 55.

    Mike, I think that Adding Bautista is a great move. Knowing that he is only 27 years old and that he has power in his bat with great fielding and base running. I really like this trade and I think that Bautista will be a good part of the Jays. Knowing that Scutaro will likely be the 3rd baseman next season he will have a good player like Bautista as the backup.

    MW: Great fielding? Great base running? Scutaro will likely be the third baseman next year? Where are you getting your info?

    - David
  56. 56.

    Mike,

    what’s going on with Chacin? Not that it really matters, more curious than anything. I checked the Dunedin roster and it appears that he hasn’t pitched since June. Like I said just curious as to what you’ve heard.

    Thanks

    MW: He blew out his knee back in June.

    - Howard
  57. 57.

    With Tim Lincecum destroying the NL, a couple more pitchers similar to his style in the Giant’s minor league system and the discussion of the Tim Collins, are we seeing a new breed of pitcher? I’m seeing the phrase “momentum pitching” being tossed around quite a bit. What have you heard about these pitcher’s mechanics and how it could influence pitchers going forward?

    MW: Nothing. But I really haven’t looked into it at all.

    - Patrick
  58. 58.

    Mike,
    Was reading your last blog and some comments. I just wanted to comment on Tiny Tim. I was in Lansing last month and was able to watch the kid pitch. First thing I thought was WOW. This tiny guy is throwing gas, the other pitchers were topping out around 90-91 and this kid hitting 95 on the gun consistantly It was pretty impressive. Not to mention his curveball looked pretty devestating. Im looking forward to what this kid can do, after watching him live there is little doubt in my mind if he stays healthy he will someday be pitching for the Jays.

    MW: I’m looking forward to seeing him pitch in Spring Training next year.

    - Denny
  59. 59.

    Hi Mike, after last night’s explosive offense, I hope they don’t follow with a 1-0 loss.
    Why are the Olympics getting rid of baseball?

    MW: See above.

    - Mark
  60. 60.

    How may years left on Jose’s contract?

    Jim

    MW: He’s on a one-year deal and is a second-time arbitration eligible player for 2009.

    - Jim
  61. 61.

    Hey mike
    I’ve noticed that Jp does not answer questions the way he used to prior to the dunn incident. He anwers most of the questions as if he has the dunn incident at the bact of his mind so he tries not to give out his real opinions, anyways that how i interpert wed’s with jp now.
    (don’t get me wrong i still injoy the show!)

    Jose Bautista…good move in my perspective although many tend to disagree.

    i wanted to ask you about your take on the which pitchers in the mlb, now, throws the best:
    1. curveball
    2. knukleball
    3. Fastball
    4. Sinker
    5. Slider
    6. change-up
    7. split finger

    Thank-you and keep up the good work.

    MW: Sorry, I don’t have the time to give that question sufficient thought. I’ll tell you that I think Halladay has the best sinker, though League can give him a run for his money when it’s on, Marcum has the best change and Burnett might have the best curveball. Tim Wakefield throws the best knuckler.

    - JaysFan
  62. 62.

    Mike, did you catch up with JP and ask him about the Tim Collins thing? What did he have to say?

    MW: Asked and answered.

    - Jason
  63. 63.

    I assume Bautista is under control of the jays through at least next year, right? Not that this is a high impact signing or anything, i mean, he is David Eckstein and Marco Scutaro with a slightly higher slugging percentage.

    MW: He’s not David Eckstein with a higher slugging, but the Scutaro comparison is reasonable. He’s under control through the end of the 2011 season.

    - Brett
  64. 64.

    Mike;

    with the acquisition of Jose Bautista do you think Scutaro will force MacDonald or Inglett to the bench?

    MW: No.

    - Chad
  65. 65.

    Hey Mike,

    What would you guess Blue Jays record would be had Gibbons not being fired?
    I know you may say that is impossible to answer, but I am sure they would be at least 10 games worse under Gibbons if not 20.

    CITO! CITO!

    MW: Impossible to answer.

    - Peter
  66. 66.

    Humm.. Stats are for fools??..U love to use stats to back up nearly everything you write and say on your show..Just look at the blog..Its all about stats..Baseball is all about stats because its what makes the game..How many times in a game does a manager think about stats?..Just about every pitching change and every pinch hitter and every lineup is based on stats..If it wasn’t then there wouldn’t have been any reason for the Jays to put Eckstein, Mench and Mcdonald in the lineup one after another against a lefty..Baseball is the one game of all the major sports in which stats mean alot..

    - gump
  67. 67.

    Mike I hope you are right about the player to be named later.Neither Parrish,Thigpen,nor Adams seems likely to crash the Blue Jays lineup so if that is the case they got Bautista for nothing.The price is right for insurance in case Rolen doesn’t make it back.

    - Paul McCreath
  68. 68.

    Hey Mike

    I thought you might find this interesting:

    http://www.wfan.com/topic/play_window.php?audioType=Episode&audioId=2844511

    It’s JP Riccardi on The Fan in New York. They talk mostly about the team, but also a little about Wednesdays with JP and the controversy from some of his comments on the show.

    MW: Did they call it “his” radio show?

    - James H
  69. 69.

    This late season surge gives one hope for next year. To bad JP did not pursue a power bat after releasing Thomas, I think this would of given a us the wild card. If both AJ and doc win 19 games how many teams have missed the playoffs with two 19 game winners in recent times? I am starting to think Rolen is damaged goods and will not be an offensive third baseman, to bad I was excited to see him as a Jay. Oh well nice to see the Jays make it more interesting at the end.

    - jason w
  70. 70.

    When did I say that you said that he was an average hitter? The way you wrote the paragraph suggests that there is a possibility that McDonald can become an average hitter. He can’t.

    MW: You said “the problem with McDonald is that he’s not an average hitter, or even a below-average hitter.” That would infer that you’re arguing against a point made that he is.

    - Andy
  71. 71.

    Curtis Thigpen???!!???

    Has he fallen that far?

    MW: Yes.

    - Joe
  72. 72.

    single, walk, walk, hit by pitch, single??

    You’ve got to be freakin’ kidding me!

    Get this bum out of here, he stinks.

    - Matt
  73. 73.

    Hello Mike

    Rance Mulliniks mentioned in the 3rd inning that Marcum never pitched inside all game. As I watched the game unfold, he was right, the batter sat on top of the plate

    My question to you is – why wouldn’t Zaun mix the picthes, or for that matter, why wouldn’t Butterfield or Gaston speak to Marcum between innings. For a fan watching, it just seemed to be the logical thing to do

    MW: Marcum was very obviously having trouble throwing the ball to the spot he wanted.

    - francis
  74. 74.

    Oops, your right, I did spell Halladay, incorrectly. To think, I actually proofed what I wrote and have been seeing it on his back – for how long now, makes it even worse!

    Some, may look at your response to my comment as being petty, however I would thank you, for pointing that out. Spelling someones’ name incorrectly, is not to be taken lightly.

    English Lessons…….

    Yes Mike, a lot of commas – likely too many – ha, ha. An old high school English teacher, once told me to forget the rules with commas (other than, in place of the word “and” – also never before the word “and”.) To place them, where you would, like, as to emphasis, pauses and for the most part, use them to reiterate with pen, how you would verbalize what it is you are writing. However, that was a long time ago and long before any scholastic rules or set programs for teachers to follow. So who knows, if this is still the case.

    Further to that, I was always taught never to begin a sentence with the words “and, but, or, nor, yet” (conjunctions)or the word “because” – is that correct? Perhaps just old school stuff. I notice you start sentences with the word “and” many times – so perhaps I am mistaken on that one, as you seem to have a very good command of the English language.

    I must admit – for a guy who never “proofs” his answers to comments on his blog, due to time constraints – you do a masterful job with spelling and grammar!

    Now, on to baseball!

    Thanks.

    MW: Your comma use kills me, it makes your comments very difficult to read. I can’t imagine you actually speak like that. I do start a lot of sentences with and, but and because – I’m not sure why I don’t mind breaking that particular rule. By the way, check YOUR first sentence.

    - Bob -
  75. 75.

    Mike, I’m just wondering why you would heistate to give a SP a 7 year contract like CC Sabathia?

    MW: Mostly because of his size.

    - andrew
  76. 76.

    If I were to rank top 5 MVP-wise for the Jays’ this year so far, I’d say:

    Halladay, Downs, Burnett, Rios, Marcum

    After that it’d be something like Wells, Inglett, Ryan, Lind, Scutaro

    MW: I’d put Lind higher.

    - Rene
  77. 77.

    Why does Cito even let Shawn Camp face lefties? Is he so old school that he doesn’t know the numbers?

    MW: It’s not like the lefties tonight took him to the woodshed (bunt single, 100-bouncer through the infield), and Cito can’t use League, Downs and Ryan every night.

    - Jim B
  78. 78.

    No, I was arguing the point that he COULD be, not that he IS.

    You wrote “if McDonald can even be an average big-league hitter, heck, even slightly below-average – he’s a huge asset to any team.” When I read that, I get the impression that you believe this is a possibility.

    Am I totally off base with this?

    MW: Not totally. I believe that there’s a possibility that McDonald could have a year or two of .260/.315, which would be just slightly below-average. The power will never be there, of course.

    - Andy
  79. 79.

    Okay, you’re a guy who uses career averages to predict what a hitter will do (and rightfully so). What in John McDonald’s career leads you to believe a .260/.315 year is possible? That’s all I’m asking. His career OBP is .278.

    MW: Everyone has outlier seasons. The fact that McDonald’s career obp is .278 doesn’t mean he can’t have a year, or even two, where his obp is .315. The fact that Alex Rios averages 11 homers doesn’t mean he can’t hit 24 one year.

    - Andy
  80. 80.

    Mike:

    What is this “injury” with Wilkerson? Not saying this is the case, but I have always wondered if teams have used the DL to protect their 40 man roster?

    Why not just outright Wilkerson like they did with Shannon Stewart?

    MW: They didn’t outright Stewart, they released him. What makes you think that Wilkerson isn’t really hurt? Remember, a couple of days ago, Mench came in to play defense late instead of him.

    - Jim B
  81. 81.

    Mike, how come hardly any player gets a unanoimus vote when voted in the hall of fame? I just can’t believe Hank Aaron didn’t get a 100% on his induction.

    MW: There has yet to be a player elected with 100% of the vote.

    - andrew
  82. 82.

    What do you mean, you don’t know what to say? When has anyone ever found you at a loss for words, Mike? Personally, I certainly have not!!

    MW: Sometimes a statement is just too ridiculous for words.

    - Vito From Hamilton
  83. 83.

    Mike,

    I noticed that you mentioned that you wouldn’t want Elijah Dukes no matter how good he is. Also, you cited the fact that Milton Bradley is hot-tempered as one of the two reasons why you don’t want him (I understand that the injury concern is a legit one).

    I thought you didn’t believe in the clubhouse chemistry?

    If Elijah Dukes fulfills his potential and Milton Bradley stays healthy, would you still not want them because of their off-field trouble?

    MW: It’s not that I don’t believe in clubhouse chemistry. I think such a thing exists, but what I don’t believe in is that all winning teams have good clubhouse chemistry and all losing teams don’t. I think that when a team is winning, the same things that are seen as detrimental to good chemistry on a losing team are turned around and looked at as positives. I don’t want Bradley because his temper is detrimental to his ability to perform on a regular basis, and I don’t want Elijah Dukes because he seems to be a vile human being.

    - Jaybird
  84. 84.

    Huh? So basically you’re banking on John McDonald having a career year.

    Your Rios example doesn’t make sense for a lot of reasons. Am I missing something? Is Alex Rios 34 years old? He hit 24 HRs when he was 26 and 17 before that. So one could resonably guess that he be around that area and that his power will return. I absolutely cannot see how the two relate to each other in any way. John McDonald has had his career year – in 2005, when he hit .277/.326. That is the outlier. It already happened. Do players have 2 career years?

    I’d appreciate it if you could clarify this a bit for me.

    MW: If you look at most players’ career statistics, you’ll find more than one year where they outperform their overall averages, and more than one year where they fall short. Outliers can come at anytime, look at what Matt Stairs did last season.

    - Andy
  85. 85.

    Mike, can you at least tell me one reason why no one elected to the hall has ever received 100% of the vote?

    MW: The obvious answer is because there’s been no one who ever single eligible voter has cast a vote towards. There are some voters who feel that no one is worthy of being elected on the first ballot, and will therefore never vote for anyone the first season they’re eligible.

    - andrew
  86. 86.

    Watching the game tonight was painful. Marcum brought a knife to a gunfight. This “miracle” seems to be fading. If Litsch comes in pitching BP, that’s 3 out of 5 that aren’t getting the job done. The best staff E.R.A. in the A.L.? It’s going to be a long September.

    MW: That’s why they’re called miracles – they don’t happen very often.

    - Jack
  87. 87.

    RE #37

    Maybe the reason JP says things like “Rios is still here so you can see what we think of him” has to do with trying to downplay the idea that because he once tried to move him for an exceptional young pitcher that he was therefore constantly trying to “get rid of him”

    that is, he can site the lack of OTHER trade explorations and the signing of a long term deal as a reason for people to kindly quit assuming that he’s on the phone every day trying to get Rios out of town.

    Possible?

    MW: Cite – but definitely possible. More likely, though, it’s because he wants people to think that he has confidence in the guys he has and that he wasn’t so much trying to “get rid of” Rios but trying to trade value for value.

    - WillRain
  88. 88.

    Re: Olympic Baseball

    Considering what happened in the U.S-China game it may be a good thing that baseball isn’t coming back.

    I’ve heard very little about this game anywhere and in fact only found out about what happened on the Internet. My apologies if it has been on the Fan or mentioned here in this blog, I may have missed it.

    Anyway, Team China is managed by former Cubs and Mariners manager Jim Lefebvre and Team U.S.A. is managed by Davey Johnson (former Mets, Orioles manager, etc.). Lefebvre became very upset at a couple of “rough” plays that went down, the big one being Matt Laporta (a Cleveland prospect) running over the Chinese catcher with what Lefebvre considered a dirty play at the plate. The catcher was injured and left the game.

    So in Laporta’s next at bat the Chinese pitcher hits him in the head and sends him to the hospital with a concussion. And this is at the Olympics, of all places.

    It certainly doesn’t portray the game in a good light to the world. Lefebvre has said he did not condone throwing at someone’s head but it’s hard to believe that the Chinese pitcher would have decided to do that on his own. Attitudes like this need to be eliminated in the game.

    I wonder what would have happened if someone had dared try to bunt with a four run lead…

    - Rob M
  89. 89.

    But my point is Mike, you’re basically banking on the fact that John McDonald will have an outlier year. What if he doesn’t? It’s far more reasonable to expect him to perform at his career average (which is what you have said about every other hitter on this team). Again, what in John McDonald’s career leads you to believe that he is capable and likely to produce .260/.315?

    MW: Again, it can happen. He’s doing things differently now than he ever has and is having success. Why is this such a big deal to you?

    - Andy
  90. 90.

    Mike, there is no statement, comment nor assertion in recorded history ever made to you by anyone that you have not somehow tried to refute. You either largely disagree with people or you find something in their comments to adjust. Ridiculousness is, will not be, and has never been any match for your verbal resourcefulness.

    MW: None of that is true.

    - Vito From Hamilton
  91. 91.

    Why is this such a big deal to me? It’s not really. But I think you’re contradicting yourself – you’ve continuously said that the Jays’ offence should be better, using career stats and past performance as your main argument. I agree with you on this. But why is it different for McDonald? He’s at his career average, yet you seem to believe he can be better, even though nothing in his past suggests that he can. I don’t understand this. How many hitters have improved at age 34?

    I don’t know, maybe it’s because I’m only 19 and have grown up in an offensive oriented era that I don’t truly appreciate John McDonald’s value. But I think I have made some valid arguments through our little debate here.

    Again, I really appreciate the time you put into this blog and I can only imagine how hard it is to respond to all of these questions. But your answers/arguments to my last few posts have seemed a bit shoddy.

    MW: I don’t think your age should have anything to do with how much you appreciate John McDonald’s value. I don’t think what I’m saying about him is really all that different than what I’m saying in general. Players can have good years and bad years and it’s not unthinkable that McDonald could have a good year next year. It’s reasonably unthinkable that EVERYONE can have a bad year at the same time, which is essentially what seemed to be happening to the Blue Jays the first half of this season.

    - Andy
  92. 92.

    Cite/Site/sight…

    That’s one of my own pet peeves – i can’t believe I didn’t catch that.

    Almost as bad as “accept/except”

    - WillRain
  93. 93.

    Burnett YOU SUCK!

    MW: From you, I expect this.

    - Vito From Hamilton
  94. 94.

    at this stage of the season, I rather we try someone with the prospect of being a good player for next year than a 27 year old with a batting average that is on the wrong side of .250 :(

    - Tim
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