Marco Estrada: Starter or Reliever?

marco estrada (2)Having dealt their fifth starter last year in J.A. Happ, the Blue Jays currently have an opening at the back of their rotation. While some people want stud prospect Aaron Sanchez to take that spot, or a free agent signee like Ryan Vogelsong or maybe even Chris Young, Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi still thinks there’s a chance Marco Estrada may end up as the fifth starter depending on what happens with Sanchez.

By using shear logic, Estrada shouldn’t be anywhere near a pitchers mound to start a game as evidenced by… Continue reading→

Munenori Kawasaki Resigns with Blue Jays

kawasaki2The Toronto Blue Jays have re-signed fan favourite Munenori Kawasaki to a minor league deal on Friday with an invitation to spring training. This is the third year in a row where the Blue Jays have signed the infielder to such a deal and they’ve generally made good use of the relationship as Kawasaki has appeared in 178 games over the past two seasons. Known for his delightfulness, eccentricity and fun-loving personality… Continue reading→

A Primer on Blue Jays’ Pitching Depth

Liam HendriksThe need for the Toronto Blue Jays to bolster their relief corps this offseason has been well documented. Meanwhile, they’ve been pretty busy stock piling minor league free agents or claiming pitchers off waivers that have been designated for assignment.  Will any of these pitchers stand up and make a statement in 2015 à la Juan Perez and Neil Wagner, or are the Jays kidding themselves that any of these players are worth keeping around? Here’s an introductory look at the relatively unknown pitchers the Blue Jays have acquired recently. Thanks to Roster Resource for the list… Continue reading→

Top 10 Books in Baseball Literature

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Immersing myself in baseball literature truly opens a window that plunges me into mostly times of baseball past, but also the present. This list is characterized by fascinating narratives – full of bigger than life characters and extraordinary stories of both major and minor league life – renewing ages of old and reliving the recent past. No other sport dominates the literature landscape quite like baseball, which to me, offers the opportunity to engross myself in the sport 365 days a year if I so choose. And believe me, I make every opportunity to do so especially during the offseason when sadly, no baseball games are played.

So, without further ado, here are my top 10 books in baseball literature… Continue reading→

Good Comes to Those Teams Who Wait

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Pat Neshek turned a minor league deal into a big 3 year free agent contract.

At this point in the 2015 offseason, there are still numerous teams looking to fill holes to improve their rosters. Take the Blue Jays for instance who still need help at second base and in the bullpen. Teams like the Giants, Orioles, and Rangers could use added punch in the outfield. The Diamondbacks don’t have a readily available big league catcher, and the Athletics, Mets, Phillies and White Sox could use added depth up the middle. We’re after the New Year already and multiple clubs still have a lot of work to do. The question is, has the boat sailed for these teams in trying to secure major league talent, or are there still opportunities on the free agent market to be had? Continue reading→

Why Fred McGriff Should Be Inducted Into The Hall Of Fame

mcgriff1Fred McGriff has spent five years on the Hall of Fame ballot and yet received his lowest ballot total yet in 2014 with only 11.7% of the vote. Whether he makes up some ground or not may be difficult as the 2015 ballot features many prominent names that are likely to be enshrined before McGriff is. With that being said though, does he deserve to be inducted in the Baseball Hall of Fame?

McGriff is likely best remembered for his four and a half year tenure with the Atlanta Braves … Continue reading→

Should Jeff Kent Be Inducted Into The Hall Of Fame?

????????????????The Hall of Fame ballots will be cast and voting results announced at 2 p.m. EST on Jan. 6th, and Jeff Kent will be eligible for a second time on this year’s ballot. There’s little doubt that Kent’s career will be compared to fellow second baseman, Roberto Alomar, who was inducted in 2011, and Craig Biggio who just missed induction last year.

Kent is perhaps best remembered for … Continue reading→

Where will he sign? Takashi Toritani

Takashi-Toritani (2)With Korean shortstop Jung-ho Kang being posted and subsequently awarded to the Pirates on Monday, the next international player that might make the move to play in MLB may be Japan’s Takashi Toritani. Toritani, 33 who also bats left handed, has played shortstop for the past 11 seasons in Japan’s Central League for the Hanshin Tigers. This past year, he achieved career highs in batting average (.313) and on-base percentage (.406), but is a career … Continue reading→

Reflections on the Winter Meetings

kendrick2To quote from Jayson Stark’s article on ESPN, we just experienced “the wildest 48 hours in the history of the winter meetings.” And given the flurry of deals that transpired, that feels about right.

After sitting back and digesting what’s occurred to the baseball landscape, perhaps what’s most glaring is the fact that big power-houses like the Los Angeles Dodgers and Boston Red Sox don’t dare give young players the chance to prove themselves – or put another way, to fail. This I find unfathomable, and yet I recognize that this opinion may just result from being a fan of a team that operates under a budget, like the Blue Jays or Reds for example, compared to those mentioned that have little regard for spending limits. Heck, the word “budget” is probably foreign to them… Continue reading→

Examining the Blue Jays Bullpen

Toronto Blue Jays versus the Boston Red SoxLast Friday in the shocking Brett Lawrie and Josh Donaldson trade, the Blue Jays sent to Oakland two pitching prospects that otherwise would have served as good minor league depth pieces. Gone are Sean Nolin and Kendall Graveman, who made their debuts with the Jays, which now forces Toronto to save the depth they currently have on the big league roster. This simply paves the way for Aaron Sanchez, who is too good to waste in Triple A Buffalo, to start the year in the bullpen so that they can maintain spots for J.A. Happ in the rotation and Marco Estrada as the swingman…Continue reading→