Why? Well, the majority of their top off-season acquisitions came from losing cultures. Josh Johnson, Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle and Emilio Bonifacio were all on a terrible Miami Marlins squad last year that underachieved significantly. They also signed pitcher R.A. Dickey from the equally bad New York Mets and outfielder Melky Cabrera from the San Francisco Giants, who was nowhere to be found on the Giants’ World Series Championship roster because he was suspended in August for taking high levels of testosterone.
Posts Tagged ‘Alex Anthopoulos’
I admit. I am very skeptical of the Toronto Blue Jays this season. I am not completely convinced the core group of talent that Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos has brought in is the right mix.
In many ways, the Blue Jays are trying to do the same thing that the Miami Marlins did last season and that is to bring in several missing pieces and contend for the playoffs. It was a disaster for the Marlins last year, and the Blue Jays not only made several offseason acquisitions, but they acquired four Marlins in the process.
The slow start at 2-5 for the Blue Jays was no surprise to me. However, the win on Tuesday in Detroit was as much of a character win you can get at this stage of the season. The Blue Jays were losing 6-1 on the road against the defending American League champions, when the offensive flood gates opened.
The Blue Jays scored three times in the sixth inning, highlighted by a Mark DeRosa two-run RBI double, and a three-run RBI double by J.P. Arencibia in the seventh inning en route to a 8-6 victory.
The Blue Jays may only be 3-5, but the impressive comeback win could bring definitive confidence in their locker room going forward.
The Toronto Blue Jays have gone back to the future in hiring their manager for the 2012 season. On Tuesday, Blue Jays General Manager Alex Anthopoulos shocked the world by hiring John Gibbons as the team’s next manager.
Remember him? Gibbons managed the Blue Jays from 2004 to 2008 and posted a record of 305-305.
My initial reaction is this. Why isn’t the team starting fresh? Why have they decided to return with a guy who is ordinary?
Gibbons is obviously excited. Since being fired from Toronto four years ago, he has managed the San Antonio Missions in the AA Texas League and been the bench coach for the Kansas City Royals.
Gibbons was not on anybody’s radar but did fit the credentials for a manager Anthopoulos was looking for– someone with major league experience he was familiar with.
Finally thumbs up to hall of famer Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun, who wrote two days ago that Toronto would hire a manager, but his name would not be Jim Tracy or Jim Riggleman, the two weekend favourites for the vacancy.
The Toronto Blue Jays have made one of the biggest deals in the history of the franchise, maybe the biggest deal they have made since acquiring Roberto Alomar and Joe Carter from the San Diego Padres in 1990.
On Tuesday, the Blue Jays acquired starting pitchers Mark Buehrle and Josh Johnson as well as shortstop Jose Reyes, catcher John Buck and second baseman Emilio Bonifacio from the Miami Marlins for pitcher Henderson Alvarez, shortstops Yunel Escobar and Adeiny Hechavarria and catcher John Buck.
Redmond played with the Florida Marlins, Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians from 1998-2010, where he batted .287 in 764 career games. However, he did not have much power as he only had 13 career home runs.
This is an interesting move by the Marlins because Redmond spent the last two seasons managing in the Toronto Blue Jays A system, last year in Dunedin. Redmond also has never even had a managerial interview at the Major League level before.
Redmond will replace the controversial Ozzie Guillen, who managed the Marlins to a 69-93 record and dead last in the National League East.
We now know that Yu Darvish is off to the Texas Rangers and is not going to Toronto.
One could argue that Christmas just did not come for Toronto Blue Jay fans, but if you take a look at the grand scheme of things, is Darvish going to Texas instead of Toronto really that bad?
I say it’s not. Thumbs up for the Blue Jays for finally willing to spend a lot of money in an effort to acquire a key free agent. But, as I wrote last week, Darvish is simply not the biggest fish in the pond.
That my friends continues to be Cecil Fielder. So my question for Blue Jays General Manager Alex Anthopoulos is why would you be willing to spend upwards of $50 million on just Darvish’s negotiating rights, when you could spend half of that on one of the best power hitters in the game? Fielder wants to come to Toronto. His pops played there. Anthopoulos needs to show some compassion now and go after Fielder. Then take a look at a starting pitcher.
The one I like the most that is still a free agent, is ironically also from Japan. Hiroki Kuroda, who has played the last three years with the Dodgers, and had a solid 3.07 earned run average in 2011, is still available. He should be in the $6-$7 million price range. The other two I am very high on are Paul Maholm, who is a solid pitcher despite his poor won-loss record in Pittsburgh and Chris Young, who can be very strong on the mound and could be a solid no.2 or no.3 guy in the rotation, if healthy.
It is nice to see the Toronto Blue Jays and Rogers Communications are heavily pursuing a free agent. Unfortunately though it is the wrong player on the market.
A week ago it seemed the Blue Jays were going all out in their attempt to sign Prince Fielder from the Milwaukee Brewers. Prince would have been solid and don’t forget, his daddy Cecil played for the Blue Jays. Prince Fielder would have been a great fit at first base, where he batted .299 and was second in the National League in home runs (38), and runs batted in (120) in 2011.
So why are the Blue Jays going after a 25 year-old unproven commodity from Japan? Yu Darvish might be stellar. He did go 18-6 with 276 strikeouts and an earned run average of 1.44 last year, but there are a few key things to consider. 1) Darvish is 34 years of age, so much of a window of an opportunity is there for him where he could be a dominant pitcher? 2) Unlike Fielder, Darvish would only be playing once every five days. Should a huge amount of money (neighborhood of $50 million) be spent on Darvish? 3) How good could Darvish really be? The last time a Japanese pitcher made this kind of hype by coming to the Major Leagues was Daisuke Matsuzaka, and he simply hasn’t developed into what Boston hoped. His career earned run average is 4.25, and is WHIP is a poor 1.40, despite having an overall record of 49-30.
Blue Jays General Manager Alex Anthopoulos says there is some risk here, and he’s probably right. Fielder at this time may just be the better option if the team is willing to spend millions on an offseason free agent commodity.
In other free agent signings, the Minnesota Twins have signed left fielder Josh Willingham to a three year contract worth $21 million. Last year, Willingham batted .246, with 29 home runs and 98 runs batted in for the Oakland Athletics.
Also, the Colorado Rockies have signed right fielder Michael Cuddyer to a three year deal worth $30 million from the Twins. Last year, Cuddyer hit .284 with 20 home runs and 70 runs barred in.
The Toronto Blue Jays have acquired Sergio Santos from the Chicago White Sox to close for them this upcoming season.
Santos was 4-5, with 30 saves and an earned run average of 3.55 as Chicago’s primary closer in 2011. The Blue Jays traded from pitching prospect Nestor Molina to the White Sox for Santos.
Frank Francisco was the closer for the Blue Jays last season and recorded 17 saves in 21 opportunities with an earned run average of 3.55. But he seemed to be in manager John Farrell’s doghouse at times throughout the year. With the signing of Santos, and Francisco being a free agent, it appears Francisco’s days in Toronto are now over.
With the signing of Santos, Casey Janssen will likely move to the setup role and expect to see Joel Carreno to see some key innings as well. Carreno had an earned run average of 1.15 in 15 2/3 innings of work in 2011.
The other story with the Blue Jays is if they will make a serious run at Prince Fielder. The three-time all-star formerly with the Milwaukee Brewers, has hit as many as 50 home runs in a season and has expressed his interest in coming to Toronto. Now the question is if Blue Jays’ General Manager Alex Anthopoulos really wants Fielder and if he fits into the team’s long-term plans. My answer is go get him right now and figure out your budget later. Your league has no salary cap, and in order for the Jays to finally play with the big boys in the American League East, they could definitely use a power bet to compliment Jose Bautista.
Wednesday night saw the coming out party for the rising Canadian baseball star Brett Lawrie of Langley, British Columbia. The 21 year-old third baseman hit his first career grand slam last night as the Toronto Blue Jays defeated the Oakland Athletics 8-4.
It should have been a great time for Lawrie, who has had a great start to his career since joining the Blue Jays last week. He is batting .389 in his first 18 Major League at bats.
Unfortunately, the majority of the talk in the Blue Jays’ locker room yesterday centered on an ESPN story where the the Blue Jays have been accused of sign stealing. According to four Major League Baseball relievers, who were later identified by Blue Jays’ outfielder Jose Bautista as playing for the Chicago White Sox, a man dressed in a white t-shirt in the Blue Jays’ outfield made signals to Toronto batters during games played in April, 2010.
Blue Jays’ General Manager Alex Anthopoulos called the report “stupid”. I don’t think there is any validity to it. Obviously, the man in white didn’t help the Blue Jays in the win column that much because they were still 11 games back of the Tampa Bay Rays for first place in the American League East. But two statistics show some validity to ESPN’s report. The Blue Jays had 257 home runs in 2010, the most in Major League Baseball, and the highest isolated power (slugging percentage minus batting average) of any team in Major League Baseball since 1954.
With the Toronto Blue Jays thirteen games back of the Boston Red Sox in the American League East, it came as absolutely no surprise to me that Blue Jays’ General Manager Alex Anthopoulos made blockbuster deals today.
First, Anthopoulos traded reliever Jason Frasor and pitching prospect Zach Stewart to the Chicago White Sox for Canadian third baseman Mark Teahen and starting pitcher Edwin Jackson.
The Blue Jays then shipped Jackson, outfielder Corey Patterson, pitcher Mark Rzepczynski and possible closer Octavio Dotel to the St. Louis Cardinals for outfielder Colby Rasmus, and pitchers P.J. Walters, and former Blue Jays Brian Tallet and Trever Miller.
Rasmus is the best player the Blue Jays are receiving in the deal. He is batting .246 with 11 home runs and 40 runs batted in after hitting .276 with 23 home runs and 66 runs batted in during 2010. He became expendable a little bit in St. Louis’ lineup who has seen great seasons from Jon Jay, Matt Holliday and Lance Berkman.
Teahen, has represented Canada at the World Baseball Classic because his father is from St. Mary’s, Ontario, is struggling significantly offensively (.203, 3 HR, 11 RBIs) with the White Sox this year, and will probably be used in a backup utility role coming off the bench when needed. Teahen, is very versatile, as he has Major League experience through the infield and outfield.
Fifty-one weeks ago the Toronto Blue Jays shattered the collective heart of its fan base when the club sent Roy “Doc” Halladay packing, leaving the team without a sure-fire ace in its starting rotation.
Despite the loss of their star player, it was still a pretty average year for the Jays, who toil in arguably the toughest division in all of baseball; but there’s no question that Halladay was missed on the mound.
Well, it’s now exactly fifty-one weeks later, and a replacement may finally be on the way!
Word out of the MLB Winter Meetings is that Toronto GM Alex Anthopoulos is actively pursuing 2009 Cy Young winner Zack Greinke of the KC Royals, one of the two big name pitchers available this off-season. (more…)
The non-waiver trade deadline in Major League Baseball passed Saturday, with trades involving monster sluggers (Lance Berkman), all-star pitchers (Kerry Wood), and name players who actually went somewhere other than New York (Ted Lilly).
But through it all, the Toronto Blue Jays held firm, despite rumours and speculation to the contrary. Jose Bautista, John Buck, even reliever Scott Downs and first baseman Lyle Overbay, they’re all still there, for now at least.
Perhaps Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos should have struck while the iron was hot – arguably Bautista’s and Buck’s value will never be higher, with the former leading the majors in home runs – on pace to hit as many as he did in the previous three seasons combined – and fellow all-star Buck playing as well as nearly every other American League catcher.
These are career seasons for the outfielder Bautista and Buck, both 30 this year, and it’s quite possible neither will ever play this well again. If the opportunity was there to move them to contenders desperate enough to part with a top prospect or two, this armchair GM would not have been alone in giving it serious consideration – particularly if said prospect was a potential light-outs closer that could put an eventual stop to the revolving door at that position, currently occupied by the talented but maddening Kevin Gregg. The fact that both Bautista and Buck were picked up for a song (Bautista for future considerations a couple years ago, Buck as a free-agent last off-season) makes it all the more tempting to try and convert them into something bigger. (more…)