Some injury scuttlebutt, just because we’re here: Aaron Sanchez threw a 60 pitch sides session today and per tweets like this one from Gregor Chisholm, if he feels good tomorrow he’s tentatively slated to start Sunday for the Jays. Meanwhile, Benny Fresh tweets that Tulo may play in rehab games this weekend “if his progress continues.” He was taking batting practice today at Rogers Centre and most who were watching think he’s looking like he’s getting close.
Whoa, and big news from elsewhere in the AL East, as O’s beat writer Britt Ghiroli tweets that Orioles closer, and notable SkyDome bullpen-sitter, Zach Britton is going to be out of action for the next 45-60 days. If the Jays weren’t 10 games under .500 that might even mean something for us! MOVING ON…
Josh Howsam of BP Toronto does an awesome job of going under the hood on Joe Biagini’s impressive first start. Money quote: “We should all be keeping a close eye on this going forward, as with the pending free agencies of Marco Estrada and Francisco Liriano, there could be a few holes in the rotation. Being able to fill one of those spots on the cheap with Biagini would go a long way to helping the team manage payroll issues in 2018 and try to contend once again.”
Trying to contend again in 2018 is I think what the majority of Blue Jays fans want to see, as opposed to a full-on, years-long rebuild. But it’s the “r-word” that’s central to Alex Wong’s latest at Sports On Earth, as he looks at Edwin’s return, the fact that it looks so far as though the Blue Jays made the right choice in not doubling down so hard on their aging core, and where they go next. Hopefully not a rebuild, I say!
Gibby The Motherfucking Best:
John Gibbons on an odd rundown play between Devon Travis and Francisco Lindor in the eighth — and the response of umpire Vic Carapazza pic.twitter.com/7AIb4700eM
— Arden Zwelling (@ArdenZwelling) May 9, 2017
If you don’t already subscribe to the Athletic, you really should. But if you’re of the faint of heart, maybe don’t make this one your first read, as John Lott talks to Russell Martin about the “Novocaine” feeling in his left shoulder, making it clear that the Jays’ catcher is worried about the injury that currently has him on the shelf — perhaps more than other reports you’ve seen have led on.
John, when not arguing with hilarious idiots, has posted another great one for the Athletic, as he talks to Josh Donaldson about finding the face of baseball and the responsibility that the game’s biggest stars have to grow the game.
Awesome stuff from Erika Gilbert of the National Post, as she went in-depth for a series preview late last week, talking about not just the Jays and the Rays, but examining Kevin Pillar’s newfangled approach using some Statcast data, and finding out why it so far has been paying dividends.
Head to TSN.ca and have a listen as Scott MacArthur chats with Ricky Romero about his life, his career, and his memories of his time in Toronto. As John Lott notes, “A good listen for Blue Jays fans (and others who may have believed his problems were entirely “psychological”).”
Dan Robson of Sportsnet gets some great insight from Cito Gaston into baseball’s history of racism and last week’s Adam Jones incident.
The great Bob Elliott considers the recent rumours about the Jays and Brazilian amateur signing Eric Pardinho, and for the Canadian Baseball Network looks back at a previous Jays-Brazil connection: José Petit.
Clutchlings tells us about the Blue Jays’ next catcher of the future, and his name is
Max Pente… Danny Jansen, apparently!
Nick Ashbourne of Yahoo! Sports looks at catching prospects, and why it’s so hard to find the next Jussell Martin.
Speaking again of the next… something, Mop Up Duty goes about targeting the next Marco Estrada.
Interesting stuff from Alex Stumpf of FanGraphs, who talks about the possible death of the sinker — something that’s probably not actually happening (Arrieta, Syndergaard, and Kyle Hedricks throw one, he notes), but that anyone who has watched a Jays broadcast must think sounds entirely bonkers. But it’s technically true! Apparently. If the classifications are right, at least (an issue Alex notes). “The top six league leaders in groundball percentage have not thrown a sinker this year,” he explains. “Kyle Freeland, Clayton Richard and Dallas Keuchel have two-seamers. Marcus Stroman, Robert Gsellman and Lance McCullers do not, relying on anything from cutters to knuckle-curves to get the job done.”
Apparently the Jays’ name has been thrown into the Doug Fister mix of late, as the not-good veteran looks to sign with a team desperate for a little lightning in a bottle. MLBTR has some details, but meh.
South of the Six writes a little bit about Fister and his potential fit with the Jays, if that’s really a thing you’re into.
Emily Waldon of 2080 Baseball takes a look at Bo Bichette, who — like many of his Lansing teammates — is tearing up the Midwest League. Of note, she tells us that the Jays are keeping both Bichette and Vladito on “a strict routine of four games on, one game off” this season. Plan your trip to Lansing accordingly!
Speaking of that pair of prospects, Blue Jays From Away has scouting notes up on both Guerrero and Bichette, as well as Justin Maese. Both posts are behind a paywall, but Jay Blue does good stuff, so a subscription is well worth looking into.
Jeff Q of Blue Jays From The Couch wonders why Jays fans tend to hate on Devon Travis, which… do they? I really don’t know that they do. Or maybe I’ve just successfully muted enough of the especially dumb ones that I don’t hear it.
According to MLB Daily Dish, Eric Gagne has parlayed his World Baseball Classic appearances for Canada into a contract… with the Long Island Ducks of the Atlantic League. Unaffiliated ball!
Lastly, here’s something Jays fans will find real profoundly fucking funny, I think: according to the New York Post, nobody wants to play third base for the Mets. José Reyes currently mans the position, and many think that it would be best for the Mets, defensively, to move him to shortstop instead of injury-riddled Asdrubal Cabrera. Cabrera is reluctant to switch positions, but– hold on. Wait a second. They see Reyes as a defensive upgrade??? Yowza.