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Jim Furtado
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Editor - Baseball Primer


Blue Jays Newsbeat

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Blue Jays acquire Jesse Chavez from Athletics

The Blue Jays have acquired right-hander Jesse Chavez from the Athletics in a deal that will send Liam Hendriks to Oakland, according to Ken Rosenthal of The deal is a one-for-one swap.

Chavez, 32, has drawn significant trade interest from many teams this offseason and was made expendable by Oakland’s recent signing of left-hander Rich Hill. Toronto has been known to be looking to add starting help this winter, and will add Chavez just a week after re-signing Marco Estrada to a 2-year deal.

Chavez is a veteran of eight major-league seasons, posting a career 4.55 ERA in 253 appearances (49 starts) with the Pirates (2008-09), Braves (2010), Royals (2011-12), Blue Jays (2012) and Athletics (2012-15). He has the ability to work as both a starter and reliever, giving Toronto another rotation option alongside Estrada, Marcus Stroman, Drew Hutchison and R.A. Dickey. Chavez is only under control for one more season, and will hit free agency next winter.

Hendriks, 26, posted a solid 2.92 ERA out of the bullpen for Toronto last season and will provide relief depth for the Athletics. The Australian right-hander is under team control for four seasons, and is thought to be a rotation candidate as well as a solid reliever.


RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 21, 2015 at 10:59 AM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: athletics, blue jays, jesse chavez, liam hendriks

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Jays’ Travis sidelined 4-5 months after left shoulder surgery

The headline covers the salient details. With Pennington gone to California, looks like Ryan Goins is the starter at second. Whither Aaron Hill?

mathesond Posted: November 18, 2015 at 04:45 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, devon travis, injury

Monday, November 09, 2015

Bautista: Are You Flipping Kidding Me?

Jose Bautista writing about his game 5 home run and subsequent bat flip; as well as the culture clash and how the game is celebrated.

mathesond Posted: November 09, 2015 at 12:35 PM | 88 comment(s)
  Beats: bat flip, blue jays, jose bautista, players' tribune

Sunday, November 08, 2015

Simmons Says: Anthopoulos left Blue Jays’ bank account in great shape | SIMMONS

There were 48 million reasons to keep Alex Anthopoulos, all of them dollars, and by April that number could be closer to $70 million.

That’s how much the Blue Jays took in with ticket and merchandise sales between August and late October — all of that above what was budgeted for. And that’s not counting upcoming Christmas sales and new ticket buyers, all of which will certainly up those numbers for the coming season.

Jim Furtado Posted: November 08, 2015 at 06:58 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: alex anthopoulos, blue jays, general managers

Sunday, November 01, 2015

Rogers: Anthopoulos’s job would have been the same under Shapiro -

Did Anthopoulos jump the gun?

Asked if Anthopoulos, named Sporting News Executive of the Year on Thursday in a vote of his peers, would have had full autonomy and final say on baseball decisions, Rogers quipped: “If you meet a person that in their life has full autonomy I’d love to meet them, I’m not sure that exists.”

Then, turning serious, he replied: “There are two things there. One is the premise that Paul Beeston was some sort of shrinking violet, that he wasn’t fully engaged, is for people that know Paul, quite a silly notion. And I think Mark would have been engaged differently and may have had a different approach or focused on slightly different things, like we all do with different people we work with. But I’d say both people are fully engaged presidents of the Jays, so I think that notion is false. Secondly, and the main thing is, Mark Shapiro hasn’t started yet, Mark starts on Monday, so we tried to ease (Anthopoulos’s) mind by, beyond having a contract length for a long period, also giving him an offer that if he wasn’t satisfied within one year, he could exit gracefully and be released from his contract.

“When you speculate about the future and what will happen it’s impossible, I think you’ve got to work with a person for somewhere between many weeks and many months, go through cycles and go through business events, trades, to see how people work and complement each other. Our notion was let’s try it for a year and see if that would have worked.”

Jim Furtado Posted: November 01, 2015 at 07:39 AM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: alex anthopoulos, blue jays, general managers

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Inside Baseball: Personality clash led to Anthopoulos’ gutsy call; more notes -

But while everyone was surprised anyone would have the guts to turn down a guaranteed $10 million or more when all the other GM jobs are filled and nothing else comparable is available, some did wonder whether this was an odd pairing that ever made sense. Shapiro is highly structured and “all about process,” according to former co-workers, while Anthopoulos is seen as a frenetic mile-a-minute thinker and mover who can seem all over the map at times.

Anthopoulos is also all about bold moves, and this is just another one of them. While he may seem scattershot, he often ends up in the right place. This may be for the best for two very different people.

Anthopoulos only said it wasn’t the right “fit,” leaving much to the imagination. But the reality is, he didn’t feel he’d be able to work comfortably with Shapiro, according to people familiar with the situation.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 31, 2015 at 11:06 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, general managers, notes

Friday, October 30, 2015

Blue Jays ownership responsible for this ridiculous ending: Arthur | Toronto Star

Ed didn’t mention the terms, though. Anthopoulos wasn’t going to accept being anything less than the general manager of this team. Would you? He built a top-four team in baseball, so of course that’s how he felt. That’s why he left.

Shapiro, meanwhile, wanted control. Wouldn’t you? The consensus in baseball was that Shapiro had been pushed upstairs from the GM job in Cleveland after 65- and 69-win seasons. Running the business operations of the Cleveland Indians — 29th, 29th, 28th, 29th, 24th and 30th in attendance the past six years — doesn’t seem like the job of a lifetime. Shortly after he was hired by the Jays, word began filtering through baseball that Shapiro was telling people he couldn’t wait to get back into player personnel. You can be sure Rogers gave him that power.

And that’s where it broke. In a face-to-face meeting with the senior members of the Jays’ front office, Shapiro said he strongly disagreed with some of the deadline choices that sent prospects out. The initial contract offer to Anthopoulos, according to an official who was briefed on the talks, was a two-year deal, with the second year an option.

It was an insult. By the time Rogers tried to give Anthopoulos a five-year contract, it was already too late.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 30, 2015 at 06:15 AM | 31 comment(s)
  Beats: alex anthopoulos, blue jays, general managers

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Sunday, October 25, 2015

Blue Jays’ Troy Tulowitzki never quite felt at home in Toronto this season after shocking trade left him feeling betrayed

Troy Tulowitzki has never felt at home as a Blue Jay.
Blue Jays’ season ends with Game 6 heartbreaker in Kansas City

Home, for a decade, was in Colorado. Tulowitzki felt secure there, immersed in the Denver community. In 2011, shortly after the Rockies gave him a 10-year contract extension, he bought a bigger house there.

“Knowing this is where I am going to be, possibly the rest of my career, I was able to buy a home with more space,” Tulowitzki told the Denver Post early in 2011. “I am looking forward to being an even bigger part of the community.”

That all changed on July 28 of this year when, with no warning, he was traded to Toronto, probably the last place on Earth he expected to land. He did his best to deal with the shock. He gave Jays fans some memorable moments. But from then until now, he has never felt grounded.



EvilBoWeevil Posted: October 25, 2015 at 12:06 PM | 108 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, rockies, troy tulowitzki, whining, wtf

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Royals fan nearly interferes with Mike Moustakas home run in ALCS Game 6

The catch guaranteed a run, nearly incited an international incident and made the bearded Humpreys — a 19-year-old community college student who works a part-time job at a nearby Gasmart — into a Kansas City cult hero — a Midwestern Jeffery Maier, with a little more facial hair.

“I wasn’t going to bring it,” Wilson would say, peering down at his Wilson glove.

Zach Posted: October 24, 2015 at 01:44 PM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, jeffrey maier, replay, royals

Friday, October 23, 2015

Kansas City and Toronto Libraries Exchange Literary Insults on Twitter

Team pride is running so high in both cities that even the local librarians are getting in on the trash talk. The Kansas City public library instigated the feud following their Tuesday night win by tweeting an image of some snarky book spine poetry. As you can see from the exchange below, things got pretty heated from there—or at least as heated as a battle between Midwestern and Canadian librarians can get.

Tom Nawrocki Posted: October 23, 2015 at 03:32 PM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays

Big Bad Bautista

Reimagining this “disrespectful” and “arrogant” Bautista caricature as firmly on the side of good is an excellent exercise. He’s confident, loyal, defends and supports his teammates, and patently refuses to let anyone speak for him.

mathesond Posted: October 23, 2015 at 11:24 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, jose bautista

Toronto’s continued misuse of David Price puts the ace in a difficult ALCS position - Yahoo Sports

I didn’t agree with his use in that game either. Although it’s true that they needed to win that game, it’s also true they need to win all the other games as well. So, using your best starter in relief with a six run lead isn’t the best use of your ace. The best thing Price can do for Gibbons is a dominant performance today.

Instead, the continued misuse of Price stood front and center as the series shifted back to Kansas City. There was Price, again, in a repeat of the division series, when Blue Jays manager John Gibbons inexplicably used him in relief during a game Toronto led by six runs. Price never got into Game 5 on Wednesday, spared by Kansas City’s inability to create a scenario that would have goaded Gibbons into deploying him again. It got close enough that Price started getting loose in the bullpen, even as Toronto led 5-0, as setup man Aaron Sanchez and closer Roberto Osuna loomed with fresh arms, as using Price would’ve meant going to Marcus Stroman in Game 6 on short rest and using someone else – Price? R.A. Dickey? Cliff Pennington? – in Game 7 on even shorter rest.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 23, 2015 at 07:05 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, david price, playoffs, royals

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Royals’ anti-Moneyball approach has them on brink of another pennant

Verducci cleverly omits other two highest pitch per PA teams this year: Cubs and Mets. Plate discipline is so 2002.

The four teams in the league still playing Moneyball—the teams with the most pitches per plate appearance—combined for zero postseason wins (Red Sox, Yankees, Indians, Mariners).

bigcpa Posted: October 21, 2015 at 07:48 PM | 22 comment(s)
  Beats: alcs, blue jays, ignorant writers, royals, sabermetrics

Derek Holland not a fan of Jose Bautista on the field, and ‘personally, I don’t like him, either’ | Dallas Morning News

The Bautista bat flip - have you ever seen a bat flip like that?

Holland: He’s the most animated player I’ve ever seen. After watching him in the outfield cry about every single thing, it’s unbelievable. I don’t care if he hits a home run off me, that’s fine, I give up home runs, I’ve struck people out, I do all that stuff, it’s how baseball goes. But the way you do it - is he better than the game? Yeah, you lived in the moment, that’s great. You hit a home run? Yeah, you can pimp it. That’s fine. But the way he did it, I just think that one - that’s a bit much. That’s cool if you want to stare at the pitcher, because obviously the pitcher made the mistake. If it’s me, I made the mistake; you hit the home run? Cool, stare at me. I’m going to be the one that’s not actually staring at you, I’m going to watch and see how far you just hit it because that’s how I am. I like to punish myself by seeing that. But the way he did it, I don’t like it at all. I mean, personally, I don’t like him, either. Especially after seeing more about him during the game, and being out in the outfield and seeing how he complains about every single thing. It’s like, no matter what, if you throw anything close to the plate, and it’s a ball, it’s supposed to be a ball for him - no matter what. It’s like we can’t have any calls or anything like that, it’s always his way. I just don’t like that. I’m not a big fan of him.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 21, 2015 at 09:41 AM | 39 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, derek holland, jose bautista, rangers

Stroman and Price to be members of the Gibbons all-hands brigade in Game 5 -

The sad side of the playoffs. Somebody has to lose.

I’ve been a defender of Gibbons, particularly his bullpen use, and will continue to be – especially since I realized going into the postseason that the one pitcher whose absence would completely change the way Gibbons manages a game was Brett Cecil, who hasn’t been available since Game 2 of the AL Division Series.

But, yeah, he lost me there a bit when with the score 5-2 he replaced Hendriks with Hawkins, who hasn’t looked healthy or reliable. True, the Royals were into their usually impermeable bullpen but, man … with Edinson Volquez due to pitch Game 5 and the Blue Jays quick-strike offence a threat at home … I don’t know: I might have gone with the more dependable Lowe instead of Hawkins, or kept Lowe for Game 5 instead of bringing him in for Ryan Tepera.

Turns out Gibbons effectively wanted to stay away from Lowe.

“He’s been so good, he’s been one of our go-to guys,” Gibbons said. “It was getting so ugly. You try to have a little pride, anyways. I hate to use position players … maybe we made a little history today, I don’t know. A big game like that and a position player pitches …

“But we were trying to stay away from him. He had a tough time.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 21, 2015 at 09:18 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, playoffs, royals

Role players boost Royals’ World Series hopes |

One of the best things about the playoffs is seeing secondary players take over center stage.

General manager Dayton Moore might not have grabbed offseason headlines, but he took care of business, finding the right pieces to fill the right holes, and then came up with Ben Zobrist ahead of the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline. Zobrist is a switch-hitter who they acquired to provide depth, but he played himself into the role of Kansas City’s everyday second baseman and No. 2 hitter. Zobrist got the Royals on the board in Game 4 with a two-run blast in the top of the first.

“It all speaks to Dayton Moore and [assistant general manager] J.J. Picollo, how they shaped the team with the evaluations from the scouts and coaching staff,” said Game 4 starter Chris Young, one of those under-the-radar acquisitions. “They look for that intangible of character that doesn’t get a lot of attention anymore. They look at how guys fit together and complement each other.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 21, 2015 at 08:53 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, playoffs, royals

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

KC 1 win from WS after chasing R.A., piling on |

That wasn’t a good outcome for the Blue Jays. It was brutal to watch.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 20, 2015 at 09:02 PM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, royals

Blue Jays pound Johnny Cueto as Royals lose 11-8 in ALCS Game 3 | The Kansas City Star

Just last week Johnny Cueto was once again on his way to a huge payday. He won’t go hungry but starts like last night aren’t putting more money into his bank account.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 20, 2015 at 07:02 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, johnny cueto, royals

R.A. Dickey’s Game 4 start will showcase elusive knuckleball to huge audience: DiManno | Toronto Star

Blue Jays manager John Gibbons does not appear to be a fan — perhaps because it’s not a manly pitch. It’s fickle and fey. Not to bang on about it, but Gibbons did pull Dickey in Game 4 of the Division Series against Texas with two out in the fifth and Toronto cruising along, up 7-1. The early hook, which denied Dickey pitcher-of-record status, remains controversial. Certainly it was disrespectful to the right-hander.

After that game, a gracious Dickey said he and the skipper would likely have a discussion about it at some point. That point has yet to arrive.

“To be honest, I don’t know if it was necessary,” Gibbons said Monday, veering towards testiness ever so slightly. “I don’t think I ruined his career. I don’t think that he was overly sensitive about it.

“Maybe I’m wrong.”

You’re wrong.

“We’ve talked briefly,” Gibbons added. “There’s been so much going on, I haven’t had a chance to sit down. But he knows I’m on his side. He may not have understood the move. A lot of people may not have.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 20, 2015 at 06:58 AM | 29 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, mets, r.a. dickey

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Toronto Blue Jays ace David Price fails to exorcize playoff demons after seventh-inning explosion from Kansas City Royals | National Post

When is a good time to give up hits?

That was the pitcher’s version of events. “I just gave up hits at the wrong time,” Price said after the game. He said he still felt good, but that the Royals kept battling. Asked if it was frustrating to struggle in the seventh when he has sailed through six, Price gave one of his few pointed answers: “It’s frustrating, but I didn’t struggle.”

Jim Furtado Posted: October 18, 2015 at 10:55 AM | 17 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, david price, royals

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Who are the celebrity fans cheering for MLB teams left in playoffs? | Toronto Star

I know you are dying to find out which team Rachel MacAdam is rooting for.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 17, 2015 at 07:12 AM | 45 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, cubs, mets, playoffs, royals

Kelly: Toronto’s thin pitching a worrying sight - The Globe and Mail

Not the way to get the biggest contract.

Playoff weeble-wobble David Price follows Estrada for Saturday’s Game 2. On that score, nobody’s worried. Except when you ask them about it.

A question that would have been laughed at a month ago – “Is Price all right?” – has become the sort that now elicits sober nodding.

“I don’t worry about him at all,” manager John Gibbons said before Friday’s series opener. Then he explained why he’s worried about him.

“I know he’s had his struggles in the postseason, but to accomplish what he does every year, you’re good. You’re really good. I think what happens to those guys – your workhorses – you get to the end of the year, they’re gassed. They throw a lot of innings … and so that takes its toll on them.”

Price-as-worn-out rather than Price-as-mentally-shot – that makes more sense. It shouldn’t make you feel any better, but it makes more sense.

You can’t ask Price to give it a little more because it’s the postseason. A throwing arm is a precision instrument. Trying to make up in effort what you’re lacking in stuff is a little like asking a surgeon to do better heart transplants by pressing down harder on the scalpel.

Price has either had one of those little dips even the best pitchers have, or he’s just trying to hold it together. We’ll see on Saturday.

Jim Furtado Posted: October 17, 2015 at 07:07 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, royals

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