Third things first: Russell Martin at third base, eh? I… uh… I get it. I do. He was due another night off behind the plate anyway in the next couple of games, and this is a way to keep his bat in the lineup while only replacing Chris Coghlan, or whoever was going to be asked to play third tonight anyway. And if you missed this weekend’s games, believe it or not, you really do still want to have Martin’s bat in the lineup.
On the other hand:
On the other other hand:
Second things second! Our friend and contributor, Stacey May Fowles, has a new book out, and you can check out an excerpt over at the National Post, and get yourself a copy (or digital copy!) of Baseball Life Advice at Amazon.ca — or, I’m sure, your fine local bookstore, too!
John Lott of the Athletic takes us on an outstanding journey through the Blue Jays’ walk-up music selections (which, sadly, don’t include Journey).
Joe Biagini is making his ERA disappear, writes Dave Church in one of a trio of great ones from BP Toronto. The other two: Evan Peaslee talks to Steve Pearce about breaking through his early-season slump, and Mike Passador looks at how Kevin Pillar is making good on his off-season promises (so far).
Rob Longley of the Toronto Sun talks to Pete Walker and Aaron Sanchez about the Jays’ young ace, who is feeling good after his “high-end pedicure,” which club and player alike hope will help him get past the blister issues he’s apparently been dealing with for the past two years. (Gregor Chisholm tweeted on Tuesday evening that Sanchez threw a 30-pitch ‘simulated-type game’ in the bullpen, according to John Gibbons, and isn’t far from being ready to rejoin the rotation).
Elsewhere at the Sun, Longley also spoke with Kevin Pillar, about the changes he’s made to his approach, which — as noted earlier — seem to be paying off.
Our old friend the Tao of Stieb wonders what sort of impact the Maple Leaves’ success will have on the Blue Jays.
Dave Cameron wonders what a great three weeks is worth, asking his readers at FanGraphs what they’d pay Eric Thames now. As in “now that the former Blue Jay (and guy we all kinda hoped the club would give a chance to this off-season) appears to be fucking awesome.”
Dominic Leone has been optioned back down to Triple-A to make way for the return of J.P. Howell, but according to Nick Ashbourne of Yahoo! Sports (in what feels like a rare positive piece on the Jays!), the Jays may have found something in the former Seattle Mariner. We’ve probably not yet seen the last of him!
Jim Bowden of ESPN.com lists the Jays among teams that ought to already be thinking about making trades. He adds this: “They’re probably in the toughest position of any team — they’re built to win now but they aren’t; they already have holes; and they have injuries that might handicap their getting any kind of deals done that would get them value in return.” Yeesh.
So long, Delabar! The former Blue Jays All-Star, who is currently in the Cleveland organization, has been suspended 80 games for PED use. The Cleveland Plain Dealer has the story. Lisa needs braces.
Blue Jays From Away looks at Edwin Olivares, who hit for the cycle this week for Lansing (or whichever affiliate he’s with).
Matt W. of Bluebird Banter looks at Francisco Liriano’s 2017 ERA progression in one handy chart.
Elsewhere at BBB, Mark Colley explains why the Blue Jays should have played Monday’s game in Anaheim under protest, following the botched catcher interference call, and why it wouldn’t have mattered anyway.
Interesting stuff from Bill James on aging patters, which… y’know… given the composition of the Blue Jays’ roster…
Lastly, holy shit on the latest Jonah Keri Podcast, Jonah interviews the damn Prime Minister about, among other things, Montréal baseball. Meanwhile, double holy shit, our old friend Aaron Cibia did a podcast at SXSW on the physics of baseball, among other baseball-y things (which includes, I’m told, some good Jays stories). Give ’em both a listen!