Category Archives: General Fun

Chris Archer Got Mike Trout This Time

archer (2)On June 2nd, Tampa Bay Rays’ pitcher, Chris Archer, set a career-high with 15 strikeouts in his 6-1 win over the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. What’s interesting is not so much that Archer struck out 15, it’s that he struck out Angels’ slugger, Mike Trout, three times! Let’s have a look … Continue reading→

Aaron Sanchez’ Improving Pitch Mix

Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Aaron Sanchez works against the Boston Red Sox during first inning MLB baseball action in Toronto on Friday, May 8, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darren Calabrese

Toronto Blue Jays starting pitcher Aaron Sanchez works against the Boston Red Sox during first inning MLB baseball action in Toronto on Friday, May 8, 2015. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darren Calabrese

In the second half of last year, the Toronto Blue Jays called upon prized pitching prospect, Aaron Sanchez, to pitch out of their bullpen and boy did he ever impress. In 33 MLB innings, he only surrendered 14 hits and 4 earned runs along with 9 walks and 27 strikeouts. He relied on a sinker, fastball, curveball and occasional changeup mix, but last September, he essentially became a two pitch pitcher … Continue reading→

Candidates for the Canadian Roster at the Pan-Am Games

Above is that of Maxx Tissenbaum.

Above is that of Maxx Tissenbaum.

Last week, JP Morosi of Fox Sports wrote about the potential American roster for this summer’s Pan-Am Games taking place in Toronto from July 10-26th. The roster is truly stacked – go ahead, and click on the link to have a look. As a result, I thought it would be interesting to delve into who the candidates would be for the Canadian roster. Keep in mind, eligible players must not be on any MLB club’s 40 man roster, and they would also have to receive permission to play in the tournament…Continue reading→

Good Comes to Those Teams Who Wait

neshek (2)

Pat Neshek turned a minor league deal into a big 3 year free agent contract.

At this point in the 2015 offseason, there are still numerous teams looking to fill holes to improve their rosters. Take the Blue Jays for instance who still need help at second base and in the bullpen. Teams like the Giants, Orioles, and Rangers could use added punch in the outfield. The Diamondbacks don’t have a readily available big league catcher, and the Athletics, Mets, Phillies and White Sox could use added depth up the middle. We’re after the New Year already and multiple clubs still have a lot of work to do. The question is, has the boat sailed for these teams in trying to secure major league talent, or are there still opportunities on the free agent market to be had? Continue reading→

Royals vs. Giants Postseason Comparison

WS royals-giants2With two Wild Card teams in this year’s World Series, baseball’s postseason couldn’t be more exciting. Consider the fact that the San Francisco Giants are once again playing for the championship in an even-numbered year, and the Cinderella Kansas City Royals haven’t made the playoffs in 29 years and yet have swept the Angels and Orioles to go 8-0 in the playoffs to make it to the Promised Land.

Let’s have a closer look at these two playoff teams to see how they stack up thus far as they prepare for the start of the World Series…Continue reading→

8 Reasons Why the Padres Are the Nicest Organization in MLB

bud black2

8. Giving Jason Lane a chance – At 37 years old, Jason Lane has made a remarkable comeback to the major leagues – as a pitcher – and the Padres granted him this opportunity despite average stuff. He appeared in two mop-up situations out of the bullpen in early June and then was promptly designated for assignment. Lane cleared waivers, was recalled to make a spot start on July 28th and pitched pretty darn well through six innings, but ended up … Continue reading→

Baseball Affects Me So

I care a lot to describe you see,

How a Blue Jays loss affects me.

I want my team to win so badly,

I don’t care how they do it, gladly.

If the bullpen blows a late lead, it’s ghastly,

Issues free passes like they’re candy,

Offers up fastballs that say “hit me”,

Or serves up a hanger on a platter, kill me.  Continue reading→

Ranking of MLB Team Aggregators

Today’s MLB fan most likely has apps that combine news about their favourite teams on their phones, however for this post, I wanted to undertake a little research project to find out which MLB teams are covered in an aggregator format via website. As it turns out, no other aggregator compares to the one that covers the Toronto Blue Jays – www.bluejaysaggr.com.

I did this primarily because I love www.bluejaysaggr.com and check it everyday for all my Blue Jays’ news. I love the one-stop-reading that the site provides – from major news publications like ESPN to local papers and columnists, to blogs of all types – which is all listed on one glorious, incredibly handy and eye-pleasing platform that they’ve created.

Of the eight other teams that I found to have aggregator sites, I ranked them in descending order according to how comprehensive their coverage was of their respective team. This consisted of the amount of news provided and the number of sources listed from both major news outlets and local blogs. The Yankees’ aggregator, I think, is the best one out of the list below.

New York Yankees – lists their own content plus the site aggregates from a rather large number of sources.

Chicago Cubs – lists eight sources for Cubbies news, but you have to scroll down to find their section. I also found CubsChronicles, but they do a much worse job only listing three sources.

Pittsburgh Pirates – this site actually lists many sources and does a pretty comprehensive job.

Cincinnati Reds – lists many local Reds’ blogs but has no major newspaper coverage.

Boston Red Sox – has 10 sources listed but some are dated or are not relevant to baseball.

Cleveland Indians – you have to scroll down to the Indians section where it lists three news and three blog sources.

Philadelphia Phillies – a lot of news is posted here, but it’s mostly from PhilliesNation and philly.com, nothing else.

Chicago White Sox – from the same site as the Cubs above, however they only list three sources for the south-siders.

For all other 21 MLB teams, I found a generic sports news aggregator, SportSpyder that does a pretty darn good job of listing news from national and local media coverage in addition to blogs galore! You just have to click on the team that you want to see from the top drop down menu. Enjoy the reading!

Top Six MLB Teams That Have Surprised In 2014

Kirk Gibson, Trevor Cahill

*Note that records and stats shown are from end of day Thursday, April 17, 2014. If you click the link, you can read my full piece at Baseball Hot Corner, which is back, baby!

For every MLB season, despite our ever-thoughtful preseason predictions, there are bound to be surprises that occur which shock fans as to how teams perform. Granted, it’s only three weeks into the season, but here’s a look at some teams who are off to some pretty astounding starts, both good and bad.

Honourable mentions go to the New York Yankees, 10-6, 1st in AL East… Continue reading→

Trying to Validate Blue Jays Relying on Internal Options

By now, everyone’s seen the latest comments by Alex Anthopoulos via Jayson Stark of ESPN, “We’d love to add a starter to maintain that depth,” Anthopoulos said. “But we’re comfortable with what we have. If the right guy were to come along at the right price, we’re definitely open-minded to the idea of adding one more starting pitcher.

“But again, we’re comfortable with our internal options.”

Say what?

The common theme earlier in this offseason was that the Jays need to do something to not only make the starting pitching stronger but also to show something to the casual fan that would maintain their interest and ultimately propel the Jays to the promised land! Now the team is spewing lines like the above indicating that they’re okay with what they have. Richard Griffin had a nice commentary about how AA said this and AA said that, however considering that right now nothing has materialized to improve the team, this offseason is an utter failure.

At the State of the Franchise event, AA used terms like emergence by referring to players like Bautista and Encarnacion that have only become what they’ve become thanks to this organization.  Even R.A. Dickey is preaching that there are real sleepers on this team that every organization needs in order to win championships. In essence, we as fans are being told to wait and watch what we already have. The common fan however cries “give me a solid starter!” and that is hard to argue with.

Common sense dictates that the Blue Jays buy another pitcher to combat injuries that will invariably occur, and to bide time for the young arms in the minors while awaiting an opening thus creating sufficient depth that all organizations need. It really does make sense. But somehow, the Blue Jays are going against that grain by drawing a line in the sand and telling all listeners that they will not budge from their own interval valuations of free-agent pitchers. In the end, what they are left with are their internal options which by the way, they’re quite comfortable with it seems.

Let’s pretend we’re a Blue Jays analyst working in the Baseball Operations department, deep in the bowels of the Rogers Centre underbelly, we’ve done some number crunching, manipulated some variables and the computer spits out the following comparables:

i) Marcus Stroman is our Michael Wacha – see below.

ii) Drew Hutchison is our Shelby Miller – hey, why not another Cardinal.

iii) Kyle Drabek is our Charlie Morton – two guys that have had injuries. Morton’s been pretty okay since his return to the Pirates.

iv) Sean Nolin is our Tony Cingrani or Jeff Locke – good lefty arms.

v) Todd Redmond is our Kevin Slowey — the April 2013 one, not the May, June, July, August or September 2013 one.

vi) Esmil Rogers is our Scott Feldman – a reliever turned starter had success last year.

vii) Rickey Romero is our Scott Kazmir — the reinvented one, not the one that was out of baseball for two years prior.

viii) Finally, probably for 2015 though, Aaron Sanchez is this year’s Archie Bradley.

Are you buying any of these comparables? Didn’t the 2012 Jays fall into a lack of depth as a result of relying on two many young guys to hold rotation spots that went down due to injury?

To go a full season with this list of pitchers is questionable at best. A lot has to break right for any one from this list to even resemble their respective comparable. It just doesn’t infuse confidence to the fan base, and if this doesn’t work, AA will have to be ready to pack his bags should this experiment implode.

Who knows, maybe I’ll be the one with egg on my face after this season. I’d like to hope that the front office knows what it’s doing and us fans can just enjoy the ride. I really hope that’s the case.