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Monday, November 29, 2010


Just some thoughts I've had as Blue Jays fan over the last 30 years or so...

- The biggest hit in Blue Jays history was Ed Sprague's hr in Game 2 of the '92 series. Joe Carter's was more dramatic, certainly...but Toronto would have been down 2 games to 0 without Sprague's hr, and tied 3 games to 3 without Carter's (assuming Toronto didn't have a two-out rally against Mitch Williams which seems possible....I wonder if Darnell Coles feels slightly cheated that he didn't get the chance to be a pinch-hit hero).

- Speaking of Carter, there may never have been a better guy to wear a Blue Jays uniform. Class act from Day One. Of course, he's also the most overrated Blue Jay ever. Not to jump on the anti-rbi bandwagon, but clearly Carter was the beneficiary of batting behind great on-base guys his entire career. I will hop on the OBP bandwagon for long enough to point out that Carter's career number in that category is exactly one point higher than Manny Lee's. Great guy, productive middle of the order hitter for us for seven seasons, but remembered with a fondness that has greatly exaggerated his on-field prowess.

- The Brandon Morrow for Brandon League trade is going to go down as one of the greatest trades in Jays' history. I think Morrow is going to be a monster.

- Cito Gaston gets a lot of justified credit for the development of Toronto's young hitters...but I can't help thinking that John Olerud would have been much better off without him, just like Lyle Overbay would have been much better off without Gaston/Murphy. It really seems to bother Toronto's coaching staff to have a first baseman who doesn't hit 30 home runs a year. I honestly believe Olerud could have been a borderline hall of famer if these guys hadn't messed around with his swing and his approach. It didn't help Overbay either.

- Toronto's infatuation with Russ Adams (2005, 2006) and delusions of contention (2007, 2008) probably cost Johnny Mac at least two gold gloves for his mantlepiece.

- Fuck Bill Madlock.

- The World Series victories aside, my favorite Jays memory was the game where they came back from a 10-0 seventh inning deficit to beat the Red Sox at Fenway. Ernie Whitt's grand slam off the Pesky Pole (from one knee, no less) gave Toronto a one run lead in the ninth. Henke blows the lead. Junior Felix hits a two run homer in the 11th off of old friend Dennis Lamp. I grew up in southeastern Connecticut so I watched the whole game on TV38 and just listening to the disgust in Bob Montgomery's voice after Whitt's slam was wonderful.

- This really has nothing to do with Toronto, but man did Bob Stanley suck.

- Rajai Davis is going to surprise some people next season. I hope John Farrell gives him a chance to play everyday.

- I think Raul Mondesi may have been the most amazing player ever to play for Toronto. The guy had a cannon arm and could run...but was still a lousy on defense. He had good power and could steal bases,..but was still a lousy on offense. Plus he was a douche. He was a douche on every team he ever played for, and wherever he is now, I'm sure he's doing something douchy. Also, I never once saw him get a runner in from third with less than two outs. Not once. I'm sure it must have happened, but I never saw it.

- I like to think of Gregg Zaun as the anti-Mondesi. No speed, not much of a throwing arm, not a lot of power...but he was a great situational hitter, underrated as a catcher despite a poor cs %, and he was well liked by his teammates.

- I generally don't like legacy moves, but if Toronto hasn't solved the 1B/DH issue by the start of spring training...and Delgado says he's healthy....I wouldn't mind seeing him come to Dunedin as a non-roster invitee. Even if he doesn't stick with us, if he shows he still has something left I'd like to see him catch on somewhere else and get a shot at the 500 club.

- I hope Robbie makes the HOF this year. The first plaque with a Jays cap on it has been a long time coming. I think our next best chance will be Doc. I'd love it to be Delgado, but if he's all done I think he falls short ala Fred McGriff.

Enough for now.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Off the wall rumor

As in every offseason, the lockers have barely been cleaned out when the rumors and wishlists appear from everyone with a keyboard. Most of these can be summarily dismissed as the well meaning hopes of a ten year old who really really hopes his Jays can get Albert Pujols this winter. Or maybe sign Mariano Rivera. Or Crawford. Or Beltre. None of these, of course, will happen but it does make for interesting debate. One name that I've seen on a couple of Blue Jay blogs, with varying degrees of incredulousness, is Prince Fielder.
Let me say this right now. If Manny Ramirez is a bad idea, Prince Fielder is New Coke. The cost in salary alone should end the conversation. Fielder is a Scott Boras client and is said to be asking for $200 million. Hopefully this is the point where Anthropoulos chuckled to himself and changed the channel. And that's just what Boras and Fielder would want. The Brewers would want at least one of our young starters and two premium prospects. No way this happens. Not even if Fielder's numbers hadn't fallen off the table in 2010 (rbi's down 58, slugging percentage down 131 points, batting average down 38 points). Not even if we had some sort of guarantee that Fielder's knees could support his already substantial and rapidly increasing girth on artificial turf. Not even if we wouldn't be locked into this contract for the better part of a decade. There is no way a deal like this makes any sense. Not for a mid-budget team building itself on young pitching. Let Boston or the White Sox make this deal.
This of course is all speculation on speculation. I have seen nothing indicating that the Jays front office has discussed this, or even that they could entertain this notion without convulsing with laughter. That's probable the appropriate response anyway.