In spite of the title of this post, we don't want to unnecessarily feed into any b.s. about how J.P. is singlehandedly wrecking the arms of the entire pitching staff. Because seriously, you know that whole argument is coming, don't you? How else are the dyspeptic Jim Kelley's of the world going to deal with Shaun Marcum's name being added to the list of fallen pitchers, alongside Dustin McGowan, Casey Janssen, and Jeremy Accardo.
When as many pitchers start to hit the 60 day DL with elbow and shoulder issues, you have to take a look at how they are utilized and whether if there is some level of unnecessary abuse that is coming into play. There's nothing that immediately comes to mind for us, and a mere recounting to the pitchcounts and innings totals for the fallen will probably not tell the whole story. Those numbers don't tell how many pitches the pitchers were throwing in the bullpen before the game, nor do they tell how many pitches they threw in their side sessions in between starts/appearances.
We'd guess that what is happening with the Jays is just part of the peril of relying on young homegrown pitching talent. Yankees fans can probably spill volumes on this after the year that their future pitching stars have had. (Or not had, as it were.)
Incidentally, there's a great interview with Jays pitching coach Brad Arnsberg that was posted at Baseball Prospectus last week. In it, he mentions that Roy Halladay has significantly cut down his side sessions to ensure that he has more left in the tank (or the arm) for his starts.
Viva Las Vegas!
The word isn't yet official, but it appears as though the Jays' Triple A activities will be run out of Las Vegas next year. Given how few options the team had, the City of Broken Dreams is probably as good a spot as any for them to stash their top minor league prospects.
Although if Travis Snider gets sent down to start 2009, we sincerely hope that he's kept away from the cheap and plentiful buffets.
The Dodgers got the hell out of Las Vegas after this past season, noting that the facilities at the cavernous and rapidly aging Cashman field were inadequate for their prospects.
As a side note, Las Vegas is changing their franchise's nickname. The new ownership group which purchased the franchise last year didn't care for the name "51s" and the associated alien/UFO/conspiracies that are tied to it.