Sunday, 31 March 2013

Wednesday, 27 March 2013

The Bench and Bullpen Bind

I was listening to Behind the Dish (Keith Law's podcast) yesterday, in which he and Dave Schoenfield discussed the concept of the 13-man pitching staff, and the more-or-less uselessness of the LOOGY (starts around 9:40).  Naturally, I immediately thought of our good friends, the Toronto Blue Jays, who are, in all likelihood, bringing 13 pitchers up North.

Law calls the LOOGY the "biggest waste of a roster spot" in baseball, for example, and he'd rather have a guy who can go a few innings in the bullpen, so as to deepen a bench.  Makes sense.

To me, this isn't a huge deal, especially given the way that the Jays (presumably) are planning on going about this.  I really hope that the plan is to trade, outright, or possibly option a pitcher to AAA once Brett Lawrie returns to action.  Until that happens, we're going to see both Emilio Bonifacio and Maicer Izturis playing practically everyday, which makes the bench as follows: Rajai Davis, Henry Blanco, Mark Derosa.


Not that there's a whole lot else available, but still.

A look at these guys (Career wOBA, 2012 wOBA, career wOBA vs. LHP and career wOBA vs. RHP):

Blanco: .223, .286, .317, .264
DeRosa: .330, .257, .362, .319
Davis: .306, .299, .338, .253

So basically, Davis can kind of hit against lefties (.285 wOBA vs. LHP this past season, over a small sample), while Blanco and DeRosa seem polite.  DeRosa could hit lefties in 2009, and has done dick since.  He can at least take a walk, so he might be an improvement over Adam Lind, especially against LHP.

I tend to like a bench to mask the weaknesses of the lineup.  In this particular case, I see the weaknesses being Adam Lind and Colby Rasmus vs. LHP, and JP Arencibia pretty much always.  If this were 2008, DeRosa would be great to be able to plug one of those holes.  This is five years later.

I realize that once Lawrie is back and playing 3B every day, we'll see Bonifacio or Izturis filling that last bench slot, and seeing as they're both switch hitters, things will probably improve, and that this will probably only last for like 6 games max, but still.

Hopefully everybody's nice and fresh to begin the year, because this is probably the worst bench in baseball right now.  It's not like we're playing National League baseball here, so we don't need to worry about multiple pinch hitters every night; I just hate having such an exploitable detail about a team.  Lind and Rasmus are both really vulnerable to lefties, and at the moment, there are no alternatives that make me at all comfortable.

Demotion-gate: Day 2

So we've had a day or so to let this one digest.  What's coming out on the other end?

First, and probably most importantly, JA Happ was sharp today against Tampa, in their 6-1 win.  Happ entered today with a 1.89 ERA over 6 spring appearances, and only gave up a single run over 4.2 innings.  Colby Rasmus hit a grand slam in that particular game as well.

Alex Anthopoulos spoke with the media yesterday about the Romero demotion.  The money quote, if there's one at all, was at the end-- "he definitely took a step forward today; he just needs a bit more time."  I assume that's speaking about the mechanical adjustments made last week, but you never can tell with this guy.  Anthopoulos was also on the FAN590, presumably discussing the same thing, but I've yet to listen to that.

Romero being sent down kinda sorta opened up a spot on the 25-man roster, if you squint.  I say that mostly because Brett Lawrie's injury was the real catalyst in that, but also because Brett Cecil is one of the benefactors of the extra room.  Assuming JA Happ was never going to be a member of the bullpen, Romero's demotion doesn't really matter either way here, but Happ being in the rotation may have theoretically opened up a spot for whichever of Brett Cecil and Jeremy Jeffress wouldn't have made the opening day roster.  As it stands, both Cecil and Jeffress are going to make it, at least for now, as the Jays will go with an 8-man bullpen to start the year.   More from Gregor.  I think it's going to take some getting used to, seeing Cecil on the big club, with Romero in the minors.  Of course, if you listened to Keith Law's new podcast, Behind the Dish, you'd know that 8-man bullpens don't sit well with him.  I'm fairly confident that this will only last until Lawrie returns, at which point one of Jeffress or Cecil will be traded or outrighted and everything will return to normal.

For the record, we're going to be going with the following in an order determined by who I think of first: Dickey, Buehrle, Johnson, Morrow, Happ, Santos, Janssen, Oliver, Cecil, Jeffress, Delabar, Rogers, and Loup.  The Offensive side of things will feature Bautista, Reyes, Edwin, Lind, Cabrera, Izturis, Bonifacio, Rasmus, Arencibia, Blanco, Derosa, and Davis, until Brett Lawrie returns.  More on that in an hour or so, in a new post that's coming.

Elsewhere, Fangraphs' Jeff Sullivan examines RA Dickey, and his approach when pitching against other pitchers.  Sort of moot now, given Dickey's shift to AL baseball, but, much like AA, there's a money quote at the bottom.  Some quick context: Dickey threw a bunch of 80MPH fastballs to batting pitchers, striking them out just 17% of the time, vs. the league average of 38%.  As an above-average pitcher, with average or above-average strikeout abilities, this is peculiar.
In that regard, this post doesn’t mean much of anything. It’s strictly a look back at a curious phenomenon. But if there are people out there who think Dickey is due for a rough adjustment to the AL since he won’t get to feast on pitchers, well, about that. It should be less of a factor than you might think.

Tuesday, 26 March 2013

Breaking: Romero's Humility

It's happened.  Ricky Romero has been optioned.  Sent down.  Minorized.

The shocker of it all?  He's gone to A-ball.  Not Buffalo.  Not Lansing.  A-ball.  That's two A's fewer than what I was expecting.

Granted, the A-ball affiliate is in Dunedin, which is where the MLB camp happens to be.  Probably just a trip down the road, if not next door.

JA Happ has apparently been told that he'll be the #5 starter to begin the year, as if it could be anybody else.  If the Josh Thole demotion wasn't enough, the Romero demotion completely crushes my roster-bracket.

Naturally, we're all going to look back and say "Well, Roy Halladay went all the way back to A-ball, and he became the best pitcher of our generation."  I'll not be saying such a thing.  I'll instead be reflecting on just how shitty this is for a seemingly great guy like Romero.

For his part, Romero pitched today and went 4.1 innings, allowing 6 hits and 3 runs.

Monday, 25 March 2013

Roster Stuff

I think he can come back like 4 days in to the season or something like that, but still.  15 days from today is the 8th, but Lawrie hasn't appeared in games for like a month now, so it can definitely be retroactive.  The result?

It would appear that we're going to have both Boni and Izturis in the lineup most days, at least to start the year, given that there is hardly any middle infield depth.  Sounds kind of shitty.

This, of course, means that we're really likely to have a 13-man pitching staff, with an 8-man bullpen.  Brad Lincoln was optioned to AAA last night, but Dustin McGowan, Jeremy Jeffress and Brett Cecil (possibly Aaron Loup too) are all fighting for what appears to be a single bullpen spot.  Lawrie being sent to the DL probably allows the Jays another week or so to evaluate their bullpen options or make a trade or something.

Elsewhere, Josh Thole was optioned to AAA last night as well, and JP Arencibia will catch RA Dickey in the season opener.  JP will get the lions share of the work, and they'll split the Dickey catching duties.  Mike Nickeas has been told that he won't make the team, but will stick around with the team before reporting to minor league camp.

Anthony Gose has also been optioned.

Sunday, 24 March 2013

Breaking: Vernon Wells is Probably Getting Traded to NY

Vernon Wells has not been the worst player in baseball for the last two years.  That honor goes to Jeff Francoeur.  That's apparently good enough for the Yankees, as they appear to be willing to acquire Wells from the Angels, in exchange for probably several dozen million dollars and some collateral scrub.

I was thinking last week or the week before about trying to figure out what the hell it would take to trade Wells, sort of in the way I've done with Carlos Zambrano and AJ Burnett, but I gave up since I determined that there was absolutely no chance of anything ever happening ever.

I was thinking that it would be entertaining to have Wells be terrible in New York, but I guess it couldn't really get any worse than it was in Anaheim.  Yankee Stadium is a joke park, so his raw numbers will probably improve a bit, but really, I doubt anyone even notices he's there.

Thursday, 21 March 2013

Stuff: PTS, Romero


 Holy shit, there were a lot of people on Prime Time Sports today.  Which is both good and bad, I suppose.  On one hand, we get some useful interviews with some familiar faces, but on the other hand, we need to listen to Bob McCown and Stephen Brunt speak.  It could be worse, but it could sure be a lot better.

I haven't found a version (2 parts) of it online (yet, at least), but at this present moment,; Paul Beeston is speaking on my television internet.  If I owned an external drive capable of doing so, I'd just DVR it and send it straight to the internet, but alas...

Beeston's highlights include:
  • Wants grass, and has been "given the green light to come up with a plan" to fire some grass in there.  It's gonna happen.  '16, '17 or '18.  Gonna happen.  Big issue is that there needs to be drainage systems implemented.  Can't just lay an inch of dirt and throw grass in-- gotta dig and create drainage.  Grass is going to happen though.
  • The complex formerly known as Windows is going to be accessible from 100s and 500s.  Walk around, have a chili dog or something, and go back to your seat.  Concession stands, maybe some kiddie attractions.  Brunt says that PTS will shoot from there sometimes?
  • Beeston says that a player or two have asked specifically to have the roof closed on a day where it was otherwise nice enough outside to have it open, or vice versa.  It depends on the pitcher asking.  So yeah, maybe we'll get Dickey requesting a closed roof to get some knucklers going, but for the most part, if it's a nice day out, the roof is going to be open.
  • The word "collegiality" was used not fewer than two times.  Atmosphere!  Teamwork!  Chemisty!  So much for the only excuse that old people have for the Jays this year.
  • Marcus Stroman is, apparently, the kind of guy that everybody just lines up to watch.  More on him later.
  • Big cudos to scouts and development staff of the organization, and the trade wouldn't have come without them.
  • Beeston expects fewer than three million fans this season, still expects there to be extra cash available at the deadline if there's a need.
  • Probably won't be able to get an extension done with Josh Johnson in-season, regardless of how badly they (i.e. the organization) would like to get it done.  Wait 'til after.
  • McCown ask his trademark troll question-- Would the offseason overhaul of the big league club have occurred if Farrell stayed?  As if the Jays improved this year because of spite for John Fucking Farrell.  What the fuck kind of answer were you expecting?  Christ.
Stroman's interview is actually pretty good, and is linked above.

His highlights:

  • He plans on going back to school to finish things up.  Me too buddy.
  • He measures in at 5'7''.  Me too buddy.  As long as you can create the downward angle, he says, height is no big deal.
  • He's throwing four pitches (Fastball, Curve, Slider, Change).  That sounds to me like he's starting moving forward.  Says he isn't sure what the end goal is-- he's got the mindset to close, or so he says, but he'll start if need be.
  • An over-the-counter stimulant led to his suspension.  Apparently he wouldn't have been suspended if he was on the 40-man, for some reason.  Either way, the plan is extended spring training, and then New Hampshire, after the suspension is served.
Arash Madani gave us a break from McCown, as he interviewed Adam Lind, who, as Madani pointed out, is batting OVER .400!!! this spring.

Lind highlights:
  • Yoga and a lot of reps with low-mass weights, was the fitness plan this past offseason.  Madani points out that Lind has been a weak link in the lineup in each of the last three seasons, to which Lind replies that he's had two bad half seasons over the past two years.  Sort of, yeah.
  • Lind acknowledges that he could be out of town at the end of the year (or sooner) if he doesn't improve.
  • Lind plans on pretending that lefty pitchers are righty pitchers... and just letting everything take care of itself, I guess.
  • Arash Madani is certainly not Bob McCown.  Don't confuse that for a compliment.

Finally, Ricky Romero got hit pretty hard against a minor-league version of the Pirates today.  Two innings, and something like 62 pitches, 5 walks and 4 hits.

I'm not sure why this particular spring training start means something, when we all know that no spring training start means anything, but hey, gotta get them pageviews.  In fact, I would submit that this start probably means less than each of his other spring starts, given the widely publicized tweaks to his delivery.

I don't know if everybody expected Romero to just make a little adjustment and start mowing people down, or what, but I mean...  I dunno, you look at a guy like Tiger Woods, who makes a pretty dramatic change in his swing and he sucks (as far as his standards go) for upwards of two years before things get awesome.  Maybe this is something that we shouldn't shit our pants about just because it didn't work out overnight.

Anyway, by the sounds of things, Romero isn't certain to have the 5th starter's job right out of the gate.  It's certainly possible that he stays in Florida with some fake injury or something, but he's also really unlikely to get claimed if the Jays decided that they'd like to send him through waivers to work on some stuff in the minors, given his salary and contract.

I'm probably going to read this Q&A with Alex Anthopoulos now.

Thursday, 14 March 2013

Jays Sign Muni

It would appear as though the Jays have inked Munenori Kawasaki to a minor league deal, according to Asia (Chrome users will get a very liberal translation of an otherwise Japanese website).  The Jays themselves have yet to announce anything on the matter.

Kawasaki will serve as minor league depth, just in case Mark Derosa fractures a hip.

Muni also happens to be, as once mentioned, the most giffable player in baseball.  Some highlights, courtesy of Jeff Sullivan, (formerly) of Lookout Landing (RIP).

If they weren't already the most giffable team in baseball, this certainly puts the Jays over the top in what may be the most important category.

Wednesday, 13 March 2013

Stuff: Prospects, Cooper, McDonald

John Sickels released his top-150 prospects list for 2013.  Nothing new up top, with Jurickson Profar taking the top spot, just as he's done in pretty much every list.  As for Blue Jays, well... Sickels is a bit more of a Negative Nancy with the boys in (this particular shade of) blue.

Aaron Sanchez still ranks highest, at 42.  As we've gotten used to, coming after Sanchez is Roberto Osuna, ranking 75th.  Marcus Stroman finds himself at 111th, though Sickels mentions that 101-111 could all certainly find themselves inside the top-100 without much fanfare.  Finally, Sean Nolin ranks 150th, but Sickels calls him a "big sleeper prospect".

Sickels ranks Travis d'Arnaud 13th, Noah Syndergaard 22nd, Justin Nicolino 60th, and Jake Marisnick 141st.

Elsewhere, in wake of the David Cooper release, there has been speculation abound on twitter.  Anything from his back injury is career-threatening, to him taking 2013 off and rehabbing to the Yankees considering him as a backup/stopgap for Mark Teixeira.  Careful what you read, folks.

Finally, John McDonald is being shopped by the Diamondbacks, who finally realized that they have too many people clogging up the infield hoarding roster spots.  Pennington, Bloomquist, McDonald... something had to give. The heartless-but-romantic side of me says we cut ties with Mark DeRosa and bring back McDonald to come back to where he belongs, but the heartless realistic me says that the John McDonald days are well behind us.

Jays Release David Cooper

MLBTR, via Jon Heyman of CBS Sports is reporting that the Jays have released David Cooper.  This is a move that really only makes sense if Cooper's back injury is going to have him out of action pretty much permanently.  Sucks.

Cooper was nice depth in the event that Adam Lind continues to suck terribly.  Guess we've got Lars Anderson now though.

Monday, 11 March 2013

Stuff: Prospects, Happ

JA Happ is mad.  Thinks he's a major league starter.  I'm not so sure, but whatever.  We'll see how this plays out.  It's not like he won't get a chance at any point this year, seeing as no team really ever gets through the year with all five of their starters not missing a start.

Team Canada teased us with a nice effort against the US yesterday.  Ernie Whitt ultimately beat out Joe Torre in what appeared to be a competition between two managers who both wanted it less, what with all the bunting and pitching changes.  Still, some encouraging stuff out of the good guys-- Justin Morneau tore the cover off the ball for three games, Michael Saunders did even better than Morneau (and was named MVP of pool D), and Jameson Taillon looked downright nasty, with a knee-buckling curve and a fastball that touched 96.

Marc Hulet released his top-100 prospects list for Fangraphs this morning.  The same two Blue Jays that we're used to seeing are there-- Aaron Sanchez, ranked at 23, and Roberto Osuna, coming in at #81.  Hulet had opinions on his top-10, as well as a few randoms in the 11-100 range, of which Osuna is one.
81. Roberto Osuna, RHP, Toronto: I’m surprised Osuna doesn’t get more love considering his age, skill set and results from 2012. The right-hander impressed Toronto so much that they started to refer to ‘The Big 3′ (Aaron Sanchez, Noah Syndergaard, Justin Nicolino) as ‘The Big Four.’ The emergence of the young Mexican native helped ease the front office’s concerns over parting ways with Syndergaard and Nicolino while improving the major league product.
Other familiar names include Travis d'Arnaud (11), Taillon (14), Noah Syndergaard (46), Justin Nicolino (79), and Jake Marisnick (90).

Finally, a happy birthday to the late Doc Ellis of LSD-induced no-hitter fame.

Thursday, 7 March 2013

How Farrell Can Ruin Everything

Had a thought yesterday.  As much as I hated John Farrell costing the Blue Jays games for us these past two years-- what with the over-managing of the offense, and under-managing of the pitching-- it's probably going to be really, really fun to watch John Farrell blow games this year for the Red Sox.

I think we all know my opinion on managers in the big leagues-- players tend to win and lose the games on their own until the manager decides to stick his face in there.  Both short-term choices-- pitching changes, bunts, steals-- and long-term choices-- defined bullpen roles, "getting comfortable" with a spot in the batting order-- make up those points in time, and my personal belief is that Farrell didn't do a good job in those times that he did get involved.

Flatly defining the manager's role and Mr. John's ability to perform within it makes me want to consider some variables. We never really had a traditional (i.e. good) closer under Farrell's rule, or at least an unconventional one that was consistently good for an extended period, for example.  FrankFrank (and Santos) kept getting hurt, which led to Rauch and Coco being tossed in to the role, despite their flaws.  Both were mercilessly left in said role until Casey Janssen decided that enough was enough, and he took the job and ran with it, but only when Coco and Rauch failed miserably.  I'd guess that that's not really an issue for Boston now, given Joel Hanrahan's success over the last few years, as well as Andrew Bailey (and Daniel Bard?  Koji Uehara?) being a respectable contingency plan.  I just feel like we won't be hearing any of the same gripes from Red Sox fans about closers that we had over the last two years.

That's just one though.

Three things came to my mind immediately when I thought about what I hated about Farrell over these two years.

Flaw #1: Farrell completely ignored splits.  Instead of shielding Octavio Dotel from lefties, he freely allowed Dotel to get completely pummeled, to the tune of a .422 wOBA against vs LHB.  Little things like that.  I'm not good enough at baseball-reference to determine what the alternatives were on any given day/inning/AB, but of the other 10 people who threw 10+ innings out of the bullpen for the Jays that year, Dotel ranked dead last vs. lefties^.  And it wasn't a surprise either-- a career .332 wOBA against, with several seasons above .360, and two above .400.  We all knew that Dotel should be shielded from lefties, but that didn't stop anyone.

Let's not forget Adam Lind getting everyday AB's against lefties, either.

^-- Odd use of a table, I know.  Set a 10IP limit to get rid of clutter like Rommie Lewis and Brian Tallet, but yeah; very small sample size that was used conveniently to prove a point that nobody was arguing against in the first place.

How it can cost the Sox: Well, Craig Breslow and Franklin Morales are both likely to miss opening day with injuries, which could leave Andrew Miller as the lone lefty coming out of the Boston bullpen.

The first thing I'd do in such a scenario, if I were Farrell or any of his coaches, is figure out which of my righties has handled lefties well, both recently and over the course of their careers.  These are the 9 non-Breslow, non-Morales members of the Red Sox that I see as most likely to get bullpen time this year (Forget Miller for a minute, since he's a LOOGY now in an otherwise leftyless bullepn).  Junichi Tazawa handles lefties nicely, albeit over a tiny sample, Koji Uehara has handled both righties and lefties nicely over his career since he's so awesome, and to be quite honest, only Clayton Mortensen truly stinks against lefties.  Put fairly simply, this bullpen is quite significantly better than any bullpen Farrell had at any point during his tenure in Toronto.  The return of Breslow and Morales should further help that.

For the lineup, catcher will probably be a platoon of Jarrod Saltalamacchia and David Ross, but the rest of the bench seems fairly thin, so it might be tough to shield anybody against their platoon splits.  Jonny Gomes might need to sit out against RHPs every now and then, but it's not like there are a bunch of solid bats on that bench.

Flaw #2: Lineup construction.  Corey Patterson getting AB after AB in the 2-hole, or Adam Lind batting ahead of Edwin Encarnacion so as to avoid have consecutive RHBs.  In the Patterson case, there weren't any options that were markedly better, especially when Patterson was swinging a halfway respectable bat there at the start of the season.  Hill, Lind, Arencibia and Davis all had OBP's below .300 for the year, Snider was getting dicked around in AAA, Eric Thames had a pretty horrific approach at the plate, and Brett Lawrie only joined the team in late July or early August, if memory serves.  Still, Corey Patterson.

The Patterson thing isn't everything-- let's not forget Adam Lind and Juan Rivera hitting cleanup, or Rajai Davis and Mike McCoy hitting leadoff solely because they're fast and short, respectively.

How it can cost the Sox: It's kind of hard to tell how he's going to set it up everyday at the moment, but the projected lineup seems pretty reasonable to me.  It will be interesting to see what happens in the event of an injury, but this isn't the 2011 Jays, where there were only three good hitters and 6 others who are either rookies or should be DFA'ed.  There are four legit hitters, and the rest are at least serviceable big league bats.  Kind of hard to fuck this one up too badly.

Flaw #3: Running in to outs.  Let's go out there and steal a bunch of bases and be aggressive!  Or get thrown out and kill rallies.  Or bunt and give away an out for the sake of 90 feet.  Whatever.

How it can cost the Sox: Between Shane Victorino and Jacoby Ellsbury, Farrell should have two pretty legitimate base-stealing options, not dissimilar to what he had in Rajai Davis over the last few years.  Beyond that, Pedroia stole 20 this year, and that's about-- Stephen Drew, Mike Napoli, Jonny Gomes and David Ortiz aren't really much for steals, and Will Middlebrooks only had 4 in 75 games this year.  The two Jays teams that Farrell has had have definitely been faster, and less proficient with the bats than this year's version of the Red Sox.  Running with the Jays kind of made sense, in a way-- running with the Red Sox isn't really going to be all that necessary, since there will be more than one person who can hit on the team.

Conclusion: Remember how Cito Gaston made us all really mad, since he sat Travis Snider and let Fred Lewis play in his place?  Which prompted us to realize that Cito was really only good at managing a team full of veterans and superstars, such as the '92 and '93 Jays teams?  I think I'm realizing that John Farrell wasn't very good at managing the young batch of guys that we had last year, but probably isn't going to have a whole bunch of room to fuck this Red Sox team up, based solely on the team that Ben Cherington has built for him.

At the present time, I really struggle to see how he could mess up the bullpen royally, even if he completely ignores any and all data that Bill James hands him; I don't see how he can construct his lineup in any way that really makes anybody start yelling at their TV, barring an injuries; and the mix of guys that he has are either adequately fast enough to steal a lot of bases, or so slow that they shouldn't even bother trying.  There are no mid-range guys like Kelly Johnson and Edwin Encarnacion who need perfect jumps to steal.

Dare I say it-- John Farrell is going to have an easy job this year in Boston.  No matter how terrible he is, there's no way that fans are going to hate him as much as they hated Bobby V.

Stuff: Niese, Lawrie

That nose.

Andy Martino of the NY Daily News reports that the Jays could have had Jon Niese for the same price they paid for RA Dickey.  I don't find that incredibly hard to believe, given how much better Dickey has been over the last three years, which may as well be Niese's whole career.  Naturally, Niese is a good twelve years younger than Dickey, and is signed through the 2016 season, with two club options (Dickey had one year left on his deal at the time of the trade).

Ricky Romero, Clay Buchholz, Jon Lester, Yovanni Gallardo, and now Chris Sale (among others), are signed to 5-year deals, worth somewhere in the neighborhood of $30MM; the Mets got a nice price on Niese, locking him up for $25.5MM over 5 years.  I don't think I'd give up quite the same package for Niese as the Jays did for Dickey (the catchers coming back would probably be unnecessary, too), but I don't think it would be too far off.

Elsewhere, it looks as though Brett Lawrie is going to skip the WBC, thanks to an oblique issue.  It's the left side, which isn't the side that he injured last year, causing him to miss two months of the season.  He told reporters that he's more worried about being ready for the season.  This is obviously a pretty huge blow to Team Canada and their already-slim chances of moving forward in the tournament, but Lawrie says that his main priorities lie with being healthy for the Jays to start the season.

Lawrie is likely to miss 2-3 weeks, which should give him a final week or so of spring training to get sharp.

Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Jose Bautista AMA on Reddit

And it's real!  Here's a link.  (AMA stands for "Ask me Anything" by the way.)

Elsewhere, the only important thing I see, or have seen in the last week, in Blue Jay land, is the fact that Sergio Santos had an MRI on his shoulder either yesterday or today.  It was apparently more of a caution than anything, which sort of makes sense, given the progression of events last offseason and early in the season.  Within that piece, Santos said that there was absolutely no issue, and that he knew it was going to come back clean, and he even could have thrown today if they allowed it.  He'll rest until Saturday anyway.  He's apparently already been appointed closer too, according to McArthur...

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Early Impressions

9:25 AT-- I'm awake, and off to get my copy.  I live in Canada, so this shouldn't be tough.

9:50 AT: I've been waiting for like two months for these 20 minutes.

A guy on the internet is telling me that the ball physics are greatly improved, but other than that, all I've got is this gentleman to look at.

In disappointing news, I have to go in to work at 3:00, which will force me in to taking a break from this for a couple of hours.  I'll also need to eat something, at some point.

10:25 AT: The first roster update has the Jays listed as the thirteenth best team.  Wat.

10:45 AT: Not that it has anything to do with the game, I just thought I should mention that the guy who broke the Melky Cabrera steroids story tweeted this yesterday, and I forgot to mention it when I had first heard it.

Seems kind of big, doesn't it?

I just signed Brian Wilson to round off the bullpen.  Mike McCoy DFA'ed.

11:30 AT: 1-0 Cleveland through the top of the first.  I feel like it's hard to accurately portray a knuckleballer in a video game, but that's just me.

12:00 AT: I've hit my first gapper.  I have no idea how to advance to second base.

12:11 AT: My first rage: trying to turn a quick double play results in a throwing error pretty well every time with this throwing meter.  Taking your time and getting the underhand flip from 2B-SS or vice-versa lets the runner get to first safely pretty consistently.  Probably turning off the defensive throw meter.

1:15 AT: Can't get them to say the name "Sweaty Bobandy" for my RTTS player.  Might take the game back.