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Blue Jays Newsbeat

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Mark Shapiro gets 5-year extension as Toronto Blue Jays CEO

Mark Shapiro has been given a five-year contract extension as the Toronto Blue Jays’ president and chief executive officer.

Rogers Communications, which owns the team, made the announcement Wednesday.

Shapiro worked for the Cleveland Indians before becoming the Blue Jays’ president on Oct. 31, 2015.

Rogers chairman Edward Rogers said Shapiro’s leadership and commitment over the last five years have been critical to the team’s growth and development.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 13, 2021 at 11:13 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays

Monday, January 04, 2021

Here’s the actual situation with the Mets and George Springer

The rumored deal between Springer and the Mets that popped up in several places over the holiday was five years, $125 million. In reality, Springer is expected to sign for much more than that. Two league sources said that he was still asking for well over $150 million. Springer’s representatives at Excel Sports Management did not respond to messages seeking comment.

The Mets might be willing to approach $150 million for Springer, but the sides haven’t found sufficient common ground to even get near a deal.

As SNY reported earlier in the offseason, Springer is a more likely target for the Mets than free agent starter Trevor Bauer. There has been no evidence of a serious pursuit of Bauer to date.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 04, 2021 at 06:17 PM | 33 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, george springer, mets

Sunday, November 29, 2020

Blue Jays have ‘progressed beyond just talking’ with George Springer?

George Springer is one of the most prominent of the many free agents the Blue Jays are reportedly exploring this offseason, but the Jays’ initial interest in Springer seems to be developing.  According to’s Shi Davidi, the Jays have “progressed beyond just talking” with Springer, which would seem to indicate that Toronto has issued at least one offer to the former World Series MVP.

Such a step doesn’t necessarily indicate that a deal could be close, or even that Springer is the Blue Jays’ top free-agent target.  However, the Jays already made one early signing in bringing Robbie Ray back to the club on a one-year contract, and the wide net Toronto is seemingly casting over so many free agents could indicate that the Blue Jays are looking to strike while many other teams are still figuring out their payrolls or (along those same lines) planning to wait to make moves later in the offseason in order to find bargains.  Davidi opines that the Jays first seem to be looking at position players in order to “nail down their lineup adds, figure out what’s staying, and then trade to get pitching help.”

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 29, 2020 at 11:44 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, george springer

Saturday, November 28, 2020

Sportsnet parts ways with Toronto Blue Jays broadcaster Mike Wilner in surprise move

In something of a surprise move, Sportsnet has parted ways with Mike Wilner, who spent over 20 years working with the Toronto Blue Jays and has been the team’s full-time play-by-play announcer since 2019. Wilner confirmed the decision on Twitter….

Born in Toronto, Wilner seemed destined to be the Blue Jays announcer one day. Following a stint with the University of Toronto, he made the rounds of various sports as a play-by-play announcer before working as a backup announcer and hosted the “Blue Jays Talk” pre- and post-game shows starting in 2002. Between 2014 and 2017, he would call select innings of some Blue Jays home games. In 2018, he took over calling duties for many of the Blue Jays games following the retirement of Jerry Howarth and eventually took over as the full-time voice of the Blue Jays in 2019.

Both Sportsnet and Wilner are mum so far on the reason for the change. The company did make an announcement of their own, lauding Wilner for his work with the Blue Jays.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 28, 2020 at 03:58 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays

Rogers Centre owner pauses plans for Toronto Blue Jays’ stadium amid pandemic

Rogers Communications Inc. says it was exploring the future of its Toronto stadium before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, but the virus has caused it to put those plans on hold.

“Prior to the pandemic, we were exploring options for the stadium but through this year our primary focus has been keeping our customers connected and keeping our employees safe, so there is no update on the Rogers Centre to share at this time,” said the telecommunications company’s spokesperson Andrew Garas in a statement to The Canadian Press.

His remarks come after the Globe and Mail reported Friday that Rogers and Brookfield Asset Management Inc., were looking to tear down the stadium as part of a larger development project.

The two companies would build a new stadium half the size on the southern part of the current site and use the remaining land for residential towers, office buildings, stores and public space, the Globe said, citing unnamed sources.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 28, 2020 at 01:18 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, rogers centre, skydome

Sunday, November 08, 2020

Source: Toronto Blue Jays agree to 1-year, $8 million deal with Robbie Ray

Free-agent pitcher Robbie Ray and the Toronto Blue Jays have reached agreement on a one-year deal, the team announced Saturday.

The deal is worth $8 million, a source told ESPN’s Jeff Passan. Ray becomes the first of 181 free agents to get a new contract this offseason.

Ray accepted a 15% cut from his $9.43 million, one-year deal with Arizona last year, which turned into $3,492,593 in prorated pay in the pandemic-shortened season. The Diamondbacks traded him to the Blue Jays on Aug. 31, and he pitched in the playoffs for Toronto.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: November 08, 2020 at 10:11 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, robbie ray

Thursday, September 24, 2020

Blue Jays part ways with staff members Hentgen, Quantrill, Huckaby

The Toronto Blue Jays have parted ways with franchise icon Pat Hentgen, fellow special assistant Paul Quantrill and triple-A manager Ken Huckaby, according to multiple industry sources.

The reasons for the changes weren’t immediately clear.

Hentgen, the club’s first homegrown 20-game winner and a beloved part of the 1992-93 World Series winning teams, was in his eighth season as a special assistant to the club, having also served as the Blue Jays’ bullpen coach in 2011 and ’13.

Quantrill spent six seasons with the Blue Jays, earning an all-star nod in 2001, and joined the team as a consultant in 2013 before serving as a special assistant.

Huckaby was promoted to manager at triple-A Buffalo this past off-season after spending the past couple of years as the organization’s catching coordinator, and ran the 2020 alternate training site in Rochester, N.Y., which shut down this week.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: September 24, 2020 at 05:19 PM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays

Monday, August 31, 2020

Dodgers send Stripling to Blue Jays

The Dodgers have traded right-hander Ross Stripling to the Blue Jays for two players to be named later, the clubs announced on Monday.

Stripling, an All-Star in 2018, is 23-25 with a 3.68 ERA over 143 appearances (59 starts) in his five-year MLB career, all with the Dodgers. He has a 5.61 ERA in seven starts this year.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 31, 2020 at 05:27 PM | 16 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, dodgers, ross stripling

Blue Jays Acquire Jonathan Villar

The Blue Jays have acquired infielder Jonathan Villar from the Marlins, tweets Jon Heyman of MLB Network and Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic.  The move comes on the heels of the Marlins acquiring Starling Marte from the Diamondbacks.  Meanwhile, the Blue Jays have already stocked up with trades for Robbie Ray, Taijuan Walker, and Dan Vogelbach.

Blue Jays shortstop Bo Bichette was placed on the IL on August 16th with a knee sprain, which is expected to keep him out until at least mid-September.  Rosenthal had previously reported the Jays’ interest in the versatile Villar, and Toronto was also said to have checked in on the Angels’ Andrelton Simmons.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 31, 2020 at 03:14 PM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, jonathan villar, marlins

Blue Jays To Acquire Robbie Ray

The Blue Jays have acquired lefty Robbie Ray from the Diamondbacks, tweets Rob Longley of the Toronto Sun.  The D’Backs will receive southpaw Travis Bergen in return, according to Shi Davidi of  Arizona will also be sending over $300K in cash, according to Nick Piecoro of The Arizona Republic.  Ray has approximately $1.42MM left on his contract this year.

Ray, 29 in October, has pitched the vast majority of his career for Arizona after they acquired him in a December 2014 three-team trade.  He’s long been one of the game’s top strikeout pitchers, with an 11.9 K/9 mark that ranks third in MLB for qualified starters from 2016-19.  Never known for his control, walks have become problematic at times for Ray.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 31, 2020 at 02:09 PM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, robbie ray

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

He played for the Blue Jays? . . . Ruben Sierra

“My answer to Ruben is, show me where you won, show me what you’ve won,” said La Russa. “From what I’ve seen, he doesn’t understand what winning is all about. He ought to get off his ####### high horse and realize you’re accountable.”

Less than two months later, Sierra was dealt to the New York Yankees, where he tested the patience of Joe Torre, another Hall of Fame manager. The normally diplomatic Torre would write in his 1997 book, “Chasing the Dream,” that Sierra had “no clue what baseball was all about” and referred to the outfielder as the “toughest guy I ever had to coach.”

By this time, Sierra’s numbers (.263 with 19 home runs in 1995) were also in decline, but he still showed flashes of brilliance. That was enough to convince the Detroit Tigers to acquire him at the 1996 trade deadline in exchange for Cecil Fielder.

But Sierra’s numbers continued to plunge in Motown. He batted .222 with just one home run in 46 games with the Tigers before they traded him to the Reds.

With the Reds in 1997, he hit .244 and belted two home runs in 25 contests before he was released on May 9. As noted earlier, the Blue Jays signed Sierra to a minor league deal two days later.

“He’s the greatest talent wasted in 29 years I’ve been involved in baseball,” Luis Mayoral, a Puerto Rican broadcaster/executive hired by the Rangers, told the Toronto Sun after Sierra signed with the Blue Jays.

Fiore Gino Posted: August 19, 2020 at 07:25 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, joe torre, ruben sierra, tony la russa

Friday, August 07, 2020

Blue Jays forced to remove pitcher who wasn’t on umpires’ lineup card

A clerical error compounded by a possible umpiring error cost Jacob Waguespack an opportunity to pitch for the Blue Jays on Thursday night.

The right-hander was on Toronto’s 28-man roster for its game against the Braves in Atlanta, but he wasn’t listed on the lineup card that was transmitted to the umpires beforehand. When the Jays called upon him to relieve starter Nate Pearson in the sixth inning, home plate umpire Alan Porter, who had the lineup card in his possession, consulted with third base umpire Marty Foster. The two eventually told the Jays that Waguespack had to leave the game.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: August 07, 2020 at 10:01 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays

Friday, July 24, 2020

Blue Jays to play home games at Buffalo’s Sahlen Field

The Toronto Blue Jays will be playing their 2020 home games at Sahlen Field in Buffalo, Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi has confirmed.

The team has spent the last week looking for an alternate site for home games since the federal government denied their plan to stage games at the Rogers Centre in Toronto due to the COVID-19 pandemic concerns in the United States.


RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 24, 2020 at 12:23 PM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Sources: Blue Jays expected to play MLB home games at PNC Park in Pittsburgh

The Toronto Blue Jays are expected to play a majority of their home games at PNC Park in Pittsburgh this season, sources confirmed to ESPN, after federal officials in Canada refused to let the team host games at the Rogers Centre.

An official announcement is pending approval from the state of Pennsylvania, according to SportsNet, which first reported the news.

Canada’s government denied the Blue Jays’ request to play in Toronto because the regular-season schedule would require frequent travel from the United States, where COVID-19 cases are surging. The other 29 major league teams plan to play the pandemic-shortened, 60-game season in their home ballparks, without fans.

Toronto begins the season at Tampa Bay on Friday.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 22, 2020 at 09:52 AM | 51 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays

Sunday, July 19, 2020

Blue Jays denied approval to play in Toronto

The Blue Jays have been denied approval from the Canadian federal government to play their regular-season games in Toronto, the club announced on Saturday. The club is in the process of finalizing the best home location for the 2020 season….

“Dunedin is the only one that is 100 percent seamless right now and ready to go. That, from a player health standpoint, has some challenges,” Shapiro said. “Buffalo is certainly one we have spent an increasing amount of time in the past few weeks on. That is not done and there are some infrastructure and player facility challenges we would have to address to get that up to Major League standards.”


RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 19, 2020 at 03:55 PM | 34 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Jesse Barfield says arm tells all in war for drug-free baseball

Yikes! Greg Luzinski must have been on turanabull from a very young age!

Since Barfield is so familiar with strong arms he thinks it’s a giveaway to which players are on performance enhancing drugs. The giveaway is not when an outfielder suddenly develops a rocket arm. It’s when someone with a rocket arm suddenly can’t throw.

“When you look at guys, you have a pretty good idea of whether they are on something or not. It’s not natural to have muscles growing out of your neck like this,” Barfield said, holding his hands on his neck in a big circle.

Barfield said outfielders using PED’s build up their muscles so much around their shoulders, they can’t throw.

“They can’t get the arm up over the top because of how the muscles are built up,” he said. “It’s not natural. Guys who could throw, suddenly can’t throw.”

Barfield said it was never an issue with the Blue Jays of his era. With Lloyd Moseby and George Bell as his outfield mates, Toronto had one of the finest young outfields in the business.

“As close as we were as a team we would know if anyone was doing anything like that and if they were, we would have . . . stopped it right away.”

Repoz Posted: January 17, 2012 at 04:57 AM | 51 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, history, steroids

Sunday, January 15, 2012

MLB Trade Rumors: Bartolo Colon Agrees to Sign With Unknown Team

Bartolo Colon has agreed to a deal with an unknown club reports Bob Nightengale of USA Today (on Twitter). The right-hander wouldn’t divulge the team because he has not yet passed his physical.

Pretty sure it’s either the All-Stars or the Champs.

Monday, January 09, 2012

Blasts from the Past

With the Hall of Fame results being announced today, we decided to take a trip down memory lane and dig up some old scouting reports from the Baseball America archives on some of the ballot’s notable candidates. . .

8. Barry Larkin, ss, 21, 5-11, 175, R-R
Larkin looked right at home in AA, hitting .267 for Vermont. He didn’t show power (one home run in 255 at-bats), but that will come. The key for him was just getting his feet on the ground, and he was not overpowered by the high level of competition (21 strikeouts in 255 at-bats). He will have good power for a shortstop.

6. Edgar Martinez, 3b, 25, 5-11, 175, R-R
Martinez’s discipline will produce runs. He’s averaged 70 RBIs the last four years. In the field, he’s solid, with good reactions and the soft hands of a middle infielder.

Monday, January 02, 2012

White Sox trade Jason Frasor to Jays

Reliever Jason Frasor is headed back to the Toronto Blue Jays.

The 34-year-old righty was traded from the White Sox to Toronto on Sunday, five months after the Blue Jays dealt him to Chicago.

The White Sox got minor league right-handers Myles Jaye and Daniel Webb in this latest swap….

“It felt like I was never coming back. (His July 27 trade) was an emotional day. I think it was the first time I’d cried since I gave up five runs in Atlanta a couple of years ago,” Frasor said….

Frasor, from Chicago, was 3-3 with a 3.60 ERA in 64 relief appearances with the White Sox and Toronto last season. Chicago acquired him and pitcher Zach Stewart from the Blue Jays for pitcher Edwin Jackson and infielder-outfielder Mark Teahen in midseason.

Frasor had been the longest serving member of the Blue Jays and left as the franchise leader in games pitched when they traded him. He spent eight seasons—2004-11—with the Blue Jays, posting a 24-28 record in 455 games with 36 saves and a 3.69 ERA.

And who is 119th in franchise history in games pitched - who else? - Octavio Dotel.

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: January 02, 2012 at 09:45 PM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, white sox

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Griffin: Jays need to be transparent on Darvish and move on

But that policy sometimes leads to reported Jays participation and in interest being exagerrated and perpetuated, in rumours not being nipped in the bud and continuing to grow. That then encourages media searching out secondary sources, subject to interpretation. There Are even top player agents that will include the Jays as being interested in their client in order to drive up the price, confident that Anthopoulos won’t confirm or deny. It’s always been clear that there are times when the club would benefit from total transparency. Darvish is one of those times.

On Wednesday morning, Anthopoulos had staged a 15-minute conference call with local Toronto media to say nothing. He coyly deflected questions of what had been Jays’ interest in Darvish, of having made any offer at all and of the dollar amount that was reported by national sources said to be runner-up to the Rangers’ reported winning bid of $51.7 million.

He must have known that being recognized as runner-up would generate fan support since he would be perceived to have made a sincere effort. In this case the speculation was helping the team’s off-season image and interest. But, now, with all the denials of the $50 million bid that had been reported in multiple outlets elsewhere before being confirmed here, angles offered about the plucky Jays being competitive for Darvish, the previous fan and media support is turning to frustration and anger at being played. Are the Jays trying to take unwarranted credit for aggressiveness to curry public support?

Thanks to Sh.

Repoz Posted: December 22, 2011 at 02:37 PM | 18 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, business, media

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Boston Red Sox - Red Sox have more competition than ever - The Boston Globe

This week’s Boston Globe Sunday baseball column.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 18, 2011 at 02:32 PM | 43 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, braves, mets, miami, nationals, orioles, phillies, rangers, rays, red sox, yankees

Friday, December 16, 2011

NY Post: Blue Jays believed to outbid Yankees, others for Darvish

Having made a posting bid above $40 million and possibly close to $50 million, the Blue Jays are the favorites to land the negotiating rights to Yu Darvish.

Dan Evensen Posted: December 16, 2011 at 02:17 AM | 46 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, yankees

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Yahoo Sports: Passan: Darvish bidding process is a cloak and dagger affair

The deadline for bids on Darvish is today at 5 pm (eastern time).  Passan makes the whole process sound like executives have spent several years in Australia bulding up an immunity to iocane powder just for this moment.

The Texas Rangers, for example, have told rivals they’re cash-poor this offseason. A TV deal that will net them $80 million annually doesn’t kick in until 2015. The purchase price of the team for the ownership group – jacked up in an auction by Mark Cuban – wound up tens of millions of dollars higher than expected and sucked up the $90 million signing bonus Fox Sports delivered. And the TV contract itself wasn’t nearly as lucrative as Chuck Greenberg, the club’s deposed CEO, purported it to be.

To which one GM said: “Yeah, right.”

And another executive said: “They’re sandbagging.”

Matt Clement of Alexandria Posted: December 14, 2011 at 03:02 PM | 66 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, japan, nationals, rangers, yankees

Monday, December 12, 2011

Phillies Trade Francisco to Blue Jays for Local Product

The ‘Cisco Kid was a friend of mine.

Outfielder Ben Francisco was traded to the Toronto Blue Jays in exchange for left-hander Frank Gailey, the Phillies announced today.

Gailey, a 26-year-old native of Philadelphia, split last season between single-A Dunedin and double-A New Hampshire in the Blue Jays’ minor league system where he combined to go 5-6 with a 3.41 ERA in 45 relief appearances.  For his minor league career he has gone 23-15 with a 2.45 ERA in 175 games (one start).  Gailey, Toronto’s 23rd round selection in the June 2007 draft, attended Archbishop Carroll High School and West Chester University.

Posted: December 12, 2011 at 06:14 PM | 39 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, phillies

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Interpreting Scott Boras’ Comments On Prince Fielder: MLB Rumors -

The big concern for anyone signing Prince is that he will age like his father.

There has been some talk of Boras trying to get Fielder signed to a three or four year contract, so that Prince gets another bite at the free agency apple. That strategy, I would think, would work best for teams and Prince’s long-term earnings. Of course, who knows what silly offer could already be on the table? I am just glad the Red Sox already have Adrian Gonzalez.

Jim Furtado Posted: December 10, 2011 at 02:07 PM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: blue jays, brewers, cardinals, cubs, giants, mariners, miami, nationals

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