Saturday, March 27, 2010

Things are coming together (even as they fall apart)

As much as we'd all like to see every spring story be a positive one....that'll never be the case. Seems one player's good fortune is always tied to another's, um... misfortune. Case in point: Brandon Morrow looks ready to resume throwing after taking a break to quiet his barking shoulder. This is huge for the Jays, in that the team (and fans) are counting on the flamethrower to be a big mid-rotation presence for the club during the Building! (TM).

Meanwhile....hard-luck Dustin McGowan has been shut down for another two weeks as his barking shoulder doesn't seem to want to come around (just yet). The club is loathe to call it a "setback", but let's be honest....the news fucking sucks. Dunno about you, but I've latched onto ol' Dusty as a guy who I'd love to see succeed. So much talent, yet so many injuries sapping all momentum from his career. Here's to hoping....

Sticking with pitchers, Brett Cecil (who should be - at the very least - in the running for the 5th spot in the rotation...yet isn't at the behest of Clarence) tossed five scoreless against the Red Sox. Much like Morrow, the Jays need Cecil to emerge as the horse he's projected to be, even if it involves opening the year in Vegas. Tallet may have the job locked down, but there's no way a healthy Cecil doesn't claim that job in a few months time...right?

Meanwhile....opening day ace Shaun Marcum got knocked around in his last start (9 runs in his 5 IP), but both pitcher and manager don't appear concerned. Spring stats are bullshit, right? .....which makes the preceding statement about Cecil meaningless, I suppose. If you want to be a cynical prick, that is.

Blair weighs in on Snider...

...and fucking nails it. Question: why is it that everyone is so ready to "write-off" (wrong choice of words, but you get the drift) Travis Snider as a one-dimensional slugger, slow afoot and a butcher in the field? He's a 22 year old kid still learning the craft, and while he'll never be Ken Griffey Jr. in the outfield, who's to say he can't work towards being average - or a tick above? Jeff Blair illustrates what Snider's doing to make himself a more rounded player, and I for one will give The Future the benefit of the doubt.

Also, let's not overlook the improved footspeed shown by the kid. You paying attention, Bastian? (heyo!)


10 comments:

Swagmanjay said...

I read Blair's piece. He does nail it but I do have a question. Why does the best photo of the man, that they use in the newspaper, look like he's squeezing a peanut laced deuce?

mike in boston said...

you need 7 or 8 starters to get through a ML season. Hopefully Eveland and Cecil will be the first to fill in (assuming Clarence doesn't cost the Jays Eveland), with Dusty getting a shot when he's healthy. He wasn't going to pitch a full season after being off that long anyway, so if it means that he comes in mid-season and then sticks that's just as good as any alternative.

After those 3, who is next in line? I don;t see Purcey getting another shot at being a starter with the big club until next spring training.

Gil Fisher said...

I think we should see a bunch of "shut-downs" late in the season - Marcum, Morrow, Rzep, Cecil could all be victim. Certainly Drabek and Stewart will be shut down as well and won't be able to step in. Guys like Purcey, Mills, Ray, Litsch, McGowan and Richmond may get their shot in late August.

The Ack said...

See, here's what i just don't get: you've got Rzep and Cecil, presumably, battling for one rotation spot, with the "loser" heading to Vegas.

Cito calls for the need to have a long relief guy who can log multiple innings. Doesn't that just scream "BRIAN TALLET" to you?

Why not just give both spots to the young lefties and let Tallet work his mojo from the pen, and take over in the rotation if one falters badly? Doesn't that just seem too obvious?

But that's just me.

Steve G. said...

The player comment in BP 2010 is still high on Snider, but I'd be worried about what PECOTA spit out for him - 253 / 332 / 449, with comparables of Dee Brown, Jack Cust, Ricky Ledee and Rich Becker.

SP said...

What if "dead arm" is just something they came up with as a reason to shut him down and it's really nothing? Maybe they just want to take it slow and build up more arm strength, which was the plan all along. Or am I just being to hopeful? I guess I just miss my Dusty.

Anonymous said...

Same goes for Lind.

Ty said...

Does anybody know what the rules are for putting a guy on the DL? I assume you can't just put a guy on the DL if he's perfectly healthy, but who exactly regulates that kind of thing? The whole thing with McGowan makes me wonder. Obviously he still needs more time to build up arm strength, so he should be starting the season on the DL, but what if he'd started pitching again this week and felt fine? If that would have prevented them from putting him on the DL to start the season, then yeah, shutting him down for a couple weeks extra seems to make perfect sense in that regard.

The Ack said...

I love BP, but I don't put a lot of stock in the player comparisons. For example, 2 of Jacoby Ellsbury's comps are Coco Crisp and Juan Pierre. Some of "the next big thing" Jesus Montero's comps are John Buck, Derek Bell, and Justin Huber.

re: McG.....I don't know what to think anymore, to be honest.

Steve G. said...

Ack, I actually think Coco Crisp is a pretty fair comparison for Ellsbury. While a lot of Red Sox fans like him because of the stolen bases, I'm worried that he'll be overvalued when he hits his arbitration years. He's only valuable until he gets expensive, like Crisp and Pierre.

Montero's issue with PECTOA is more one of health and a short pro career. He fractured his finger last year, which probably deflated his numbers a bit, and PECOTA tends to be a bit conservative with prospects too.