Friday, July 15, 2011

Tweet Bag - Your Tweeted Questions Answered...Definitively!

So, we were considering taking a pass on the Tweet Bag this week, mostly because we figured it would be a waste of energy to write up this here blog entry if you all were headed out to the tamed wilderness to sit drink and bask in the glow of sunsets over the lake, whilst we remain stuck to our couch, icing our allegedly repaired knee back to health.

But we're not that petty. (Also, we may have just watched She's Out of My League for the third time, which probably indicates that we could stand to be more productive. Still, that Alice Eve is a looker.)

Let's roll.

First up, asks: Does David Cooper have any trade value whatsoever? Did we just become best friends? Do you wanna do karate in the garage?

Sadly, we had to look up that pop culture reference, only to realize that we knew it from the trailers. Still...have you seen how pretty Alice Eve is?

In spite of some pretty glorious PCL stats, we can't think of a team that really has a need for a player like Cooper. First base just seems like a spot where anyone with a bat can get plugged in, and so most teams would likely have some kid who was drafted as a shortstop who they'll need to move there. It's not to say that we don't think Coop is devoid of value, because his Las Vegas numbers were/are better Brett Wallace's. But he'll need to post another good half year in AAA before he really starts to push his way into any team's plans.

Go go go! asks: With Janssen about to come back, who gets sent down? Perez? Or is a trade going to free up a spot?

Good question, and one that we hadn't really pondered until just now. There's some time, we presume, between Casey's call up from the treehouse, so it could be that there is someone on the roster who'll move to the DL (gulp) in the interim. Still, all things being equal, we'd concur with your assessment as to the most likely candidate to go. We like Luis Perez quite a bit, but his last handful of performances have been less than exemplary. Also, the Jays might want to send him down to get stretch him out a bit so that if he returns to starting next year, they're not faced with cutting his innings at 150 or fewer.

And another thing! (who is a dude named Wayne from Edmonton) asks: Do you see Loewen in the jays line up this year. Or is he a long term project?

Loewen has already been a bit of a long-term project for the Jays, having spent three years in their system, turning himself into a pretty credible hitter. The catch is that if the Jays recall him, they have to be somewhat certain that they are going to stick with him, because he is out of options due to his dark days in the OriLOLes system. Still, we'd figure that the Jays likely give him a shot this season if a roster spot is available due to someone hitting the DL. (Double gulp.)

After this season, we'd figure that the Jays will let Loewen explore his options on the market in case there is another team who might be able to use him. It's the honourable thing to do.

Next! Someone flatter us...! Hey you sexy son of a bitch. How much better of a ballplayer would Eric Thames be if he would learn to take more walks?

Sexy? You don't know the half of it. We've got a week and a half of beard going right now, so we kinda look like that werewolf Alcide from True Blood. Without all the muscles, mind you. Sookeh!

As for Thames, yeah, we've developed a bit of dread over the past week or so about his free swinging ways. Yes, all is peachy keen right now, but even a former Silver Slugger winning 2B who puts up big counting stats can see his career crumble beneath his feet if he doesn't work to curb his free swinging ways, so Thames isn't immune to such things.

(Mind you, Thames drew 23 walks in 241 PAs at Las Vegas this year, and for his minor league career drew a walk about once every 11 PAs. So while we wouldn't call that one of his "tools", he's shown that he can be patient enough. Given some time, we're optimistic that this will come.)

Did someone refer obliquely to Aaron Hill? asks: If Aaron Hill is not here next year, who will be his replacement? Maybe If Aaron Hill was not here, who would be? Tenses...

Hey man, keep fighting the fight for good grammar. Respect. As for Hill, it's really hard to say if he will be back, or who might replace him. There's no obvious candidates in the minors who are pushing their way onto the MLB roster, so the replacement would likely come from outside the franchise. As we've noted before, we're not a soothsayer, so we'd prefer not to float out random trade scenarios.

Speaking of which... asks: Morrow for Rasmus - your fair and balanced thoughts please.

We love Rasmus, but good starting pitching is really hard to find, and the ceiling that Morrow has is just too high to ship him out for a bat. And sure, CF is a "premium position", as Alex Anthopoulos is fond of saying, but the San Francisco Giants won the the World Series last season with journeyman Andres Torres in the middle of the outfield. Meanwhile, their expensive free agent acquistion Aaron Rowand languished on the bench. (Our point being, you can shell out resources of personnel or money to get a premium player at a premium position, and then win with a guy who's not that much better than Rajai Davis.)

More? Why not? asks: with Reyes stumbling and healthy pitchers working to get back what are our options in Aug and Sept?

We think the Jays are likely to just ride this Jo-Jo thing right through until the end of the year. They've come this far already, why cast him out now? But if there are vacancies, we can see the Jays looking to Zach Stewart again, as well as to Brad Mills, and Jesse Litsch will eventually be allowed back. And one more name to remember: We keep hearing AA mention Joel Carreno, who is on the 40-man roster and is outperforming Zach Stewart at New Hampshire. (3.32 ERA, 115Ks / 49 BBs in 97.2 IPs.) He could get a call in a pinch.

Encore! asks: Did think "If Jays lose a few, MVP chance good, if Jays win I'll come back and 'grit it out' thus MVP chance good"?

Okay, we know 140 characters is a squeeze, but we're not entirely sure what you're getting at here. But we've had a few questions around the MVP and Bautista, and we're just going to say: Let go of that thought. Let it go. It's just going to hurt to damn much when the last two months of the season play out, and it all points to someone else.

Bautista will get votes, to be sure. But when a writer who we consider vaguely enlightened (that's you, Mr. Jeff Blair) hoarsely sputters out that he would pick Adrian Gonzalez over Bautista because his team is in contention, you know that there are a great many writers who remain locked into that mindset. (It's partly why we hate the "valuable" aspect of the award...we wish they would just refer to it as the "Player of the Year", and be done with it. Alas, that's just one of many impossible battles that we fight in our imagination.)

And as for what the One Man Gang is thinking? We wouldn't imagine that he's got his eyes on the MVP at this point. But if he did, there is no better way to make your case than to be in the lineup and performing at your best.

Last one! asks: What does your ideal Trade Deadline look like for the Jays? (What moves do you want to see?)

It's hard to believe that the Trade Deadline is just a couple of weeks away at this point, but there it is. We wouldn't expect the Jays to be overly busy on the day of the deadline, as Anthopoulos doesn't seem to be wired in that way. He made the Yunel deal in the days after the All Star break last year, so if there is a deal to be done, we can see him letting rip in the next week or waiting until August to work deals through waivers.

We've heard some speculate on Carlos Villaneuva as potential trade bait, and he is probably the most attractive piece that the Jays have to dangle at this point. However, the Jays still have one more year of arbitration rights on him, so there isn't a great urgency to ship him out. Not to exemplify our perpetual fence-sittingness, but we figure it's a 50/50 chance that Villaneuva gets moved.

As for what we'd like to see: We'd prefer that the Jays only be active if it is worth being active. There's no urgency for them to move a player at the deadline, as they can improve the team now or in the offseason. What can we say...we're not big on the trade speculation.

And with that, we bid you the finest of weekends, my ambulatory friends. We're likely to be tweeting often from our couch, facing out our rear window, so stop by and say hi if you're still in range.


Stedron said...

Thank you for the effort you put into making this post. I feel like the lack of comments is not a fair representation of how much the masses appreciate your toils...

Andrew said...

With regards to trades, I don't think we'll see much. JPA, Lind, Yunel, JoBau, Snider, Thames, Romero, Morrow, Cecil, Litsch, Perez and Rzep all seem like safe bets to stay in town, and I don't see there being much of a market for Hill, EE, Patterson, Davis, McDonald, Molina, McCoy or Reyes.

That pretty well narrows it down to Francisco, Rauch, Frasor, Dotel, Camp, Janssen and Villanueva. With Villanueva and Janssen being under control for 2012, you're right that there's no urgency to move either of them. The other five guys are likely to obtain type A or B FA status, meaning that the team would have to get something better than a supplemental draft pick in return for them now for a deal to be worthwhile.

Of course, when nothing seems imminent, that's when Anthopoulos seems to make trades, so maybe I've got it all wrong...