Who ya gonna call?

Over 162 game season you gotta figure this thing rings over a thousand times.  If you are sitting in the 100 level outfields you can hear it.  Under normal circumstances, it means that something bad is about to happen or is happening in the game and the coaching staff is trying to stop it by changing pitchers.  The way major league rosters are currently structured, they allow for 7 relief roles.  This post will examine the options available for your Toronto Blue Jays if the season started tomorrow.

54 Jason Frasor RHP: Basically a lock for a spot most likely the set up or closer role.
37 Scott Downs LHP: See above.
56 Brian Tallet LHP: Wolverine is the "swinger".  He has value as a long man and spot starter.

57 Shawn Camp RHP: Tough on right handed hitters
39 Jesse Carlson LHP: Deceptive delivery.  Frequent, short outings.  Cito abuses Jesse.  

I figure these 5 guys, if healthy, break camp and go north.  Cito used all these players in specific roles last year and is comfortable with them.  That leaves two jobs up for grabs.  Both would be true middle relievers, fifth, sixth or seventh inning type guys.  We already have three lefties, which is a luxury, so I anticipate both men will be right handed.  The candidates:

33 Josh Roenicke RHP: Power arm.  Top prospect.  Needs to update his official website.     
49 Jeremy Accardo RHP: Certainly pitched well enough to earn a spot.  Seems to have fallen out of favour with the field manager.  His agent used the media to talk to the brain trust.      
11 Zechry Zinicola RHP: Rule 5 draft pick.  He would have to remain on the 25 man roster ALL season or be offered back to Colarado before going to the minors.  Based solely on his numbers, he's probably going back.
58 Dirk Hayhurst RHP: Cito seems to have a soft spot for this guy.  Last spring, he agreed to be demoted off the 40 man and sign a minor league deal.  If he pitches well, will get a long look at camp.
44 Casey Janssen RHP: Mentioned more as a courtesy.

That list does not even take into account any starters that don't make the rotation (Richmond, please God) or other young farmhands that might emerge during the spring.  I think that a guy who shows he can be effective more than one inning will have the inside track on one of the roles.  I also think that we need a cleaner.  Someone who can come in and get a strikeout in tough situations. 

Here is what Boy Wonder is saying:

"It's really too early to tell. We've got a lot of good bullpen candidates," Anthopoulos said. "I think a lot of that will sort itself out in the spring. Really, with all these guys, the more players we add with options, the more of a true competition we can make it and, hopefully, break with the best team."

Translation: We got two spots open.  Grip it and rip it.

I think the "break with the best team" is bullshit.  The way I see it is it will all come down to who is out of options and the Rule 5 guy.
 Hope ZZ pitches better than he dresses.....

Anybody want to rank the candidates?  Did I miss someone?


What are my options?

John Mayberry, The Shaker and some guy going to be optioned to the minors.

The main thing I was not sure about when I decided to start up this blog dealt with copyright.  What I'm about to do right here is test the boundaries.  The reason why I'm doing this is because I can't explain it any better.  But I am going to delete ONE thing from the original and call it my own.  For reference here is the original.

An option (optional assignment) allows a club to move a player on its 40-man roster to and from the minor-leagues without exposing him to the other 29 teams.

After 4 or 5 years as a professional, a player must be added to his club’s 40-man roster or exposed to the 29 other clubs in the Rule 5 draft. (A club has 5 years to evaluate a player who signs his first pro contract at 18 years old or younger, but only 4 years to decide on a player who signs at age 19.) For purposes of calculating years as a pro, the counting begins the day a player signs his first pro contract, not the season he begins to play.

When a player is added to the 40-man roster, his club has three "options", or three separate seasons during which the club may to move him to and from the minor leagues without exposing him to other clubs. A player on the 40-man roster playing in the minors is on optional assignment, and within an option season, there is no limit on the number of times a club may demote and recall a player. However, a player optioned to the minor leagues may not be recalled for at least 10 days, unless the club places a Major League player on the disabled list during the 10-day window.

After three options are exhausted, the player is out of options. Beginning with the next season, he must clear waivers before he may be sent to the minors again.  Additionally, a player with 5 years of Major League service may not be sent to the minor leagues on an optional assignment without his consent.

Counting option years
  • If a player is not sent to the minors during a year, an option is not used.
  • If a player is on the 40-man roster in spring training but optioned to the minors before the season begins, an option is used.
  • If a player’s optional assignment(s) to the minors total less than 20 days in one season, an option is not used.
A player may be eligible for a fourth option year if he has been optioned in three seasons but does not yet have five full seasons of professional experience. A full season is defined as being on an active pro roster for at least 90 days in a season. (If a player is put on the disabled list after earning 60 or more days of service in a single season, his time on the DL is counted.) The 90-day requirement means short-season leagues (New-York Penn, Northwest, Pioneer, Appalachian, Gulf Coast, Arizona Rookie, Dominican and Venezuelan Summer Leagues) do not count as full seasons for the purposes of determining eligibility for a fourth option. 
Perfectly said if I may say so myself.  Let's see what happens now.....


Remembering: Bill Risley

Look for RHP Jeremy Accardo, RHP Shawn Camp, RHP Jason Frasor, RHP Casey Janssen, RHP Shaun Marcum and LHP Brian Tallet to sign one year deals in the not to distance future thus avoiding the salary arbitration process.  Your Toronto Blue Jays have not gone to arbitration with a player since 1997.  Their last case to be heard was against Bill Risley in which the team won and he was awarded $380,00.  You will be hearing his name a lot in the coming weeks.


Brandon League has the toughest pitch in all of major league baseball to make contact with.  Let the second guessing begin.....now.


Catcher: Buck vs Barajas

So, we've signed a new catcher to replace our old one. Some people will tell you it's an upgrade, let's have a closer look:

Name: John Buck

Pos: Catcher

Height: 6'3"

Weight: 220lbs

Bats: Right

Throws: Right

Born: 07-July-1980, in Kemerer, Wyoming

College: None

Drafted: 1998 - 7th Round by the Houston Astros

2010 Salary: $2 Million

Batting Stats (Three Year Average)

G - 94

AB - 301

R - 35

H - 69

2B - 18

3B - 2

HR - 12

RBI - 44

BB - 29

K - 81

SB - 1

CS - 1

AVG - .231

OBP - .304

SLG - .426

OPS - .730

Fielding Stats (Three Year Average)

Innings Played - 747

Errors - 8

Fielding % - .985

Past Balls - 3

% Thrown Out - 18%

While in the minors John Buck made a name for himself for being a defensive minded catcher who was known for handling a pitching staff well. But, since he's reached the majors, his defense has steadily declined, specifically his throwing. He threw out 33% of potential base stealers his first three years but then tanked the next three throwing out only 20%. Offensively he has some decent pop, and is a hitter who can work the count. He does swing at bad pitches from time to time, and his average will never be more than .250.

Name: Rod Barajas

Pos: Catcher

Height: 6'2"

Weight: 250lbs

Bats: Right

Throws: Right

Born: 05-September-1975, in Ontario, California

College: Cerritos (CA) Junior College

Drafted: Undrafted

2009 Salary: $2.5 Million

Batting Stats (Three Year Average)

G - 92

AB - 300

R - 34

H - 71

2B - 17

3B - 0

HR - 11

RBI - 43

BB - 19

K - 53

SB - 0

CS - 0

AVG - .235

OBP - .301

SLG - .402

OPS - .703

Fielding Stats (Three Year Average)

Innings Played - 687

Errors - 3

Fielding % - .994

Past Balls - 3

% Thrown Out - 35%

Rod Barajas was an undrafted free agent signed by the Arizona Diamondbacks, and was on the team that won a World Series in 2001. He has decent pop, hits for a low average due to his abnormally long swing and supremely slow running speed. He is able to produce with runners on, but his swing is too long to continuously produce when he is down in the count. He has an inconsistent approach at the plate, often going into prolonged slumps. Defensively he handles the pitching staff well, has a good arm and is a smart catcher.

The Upgrade?

So where exactly is the upgrade here? We just sent $6 Million to the Phillies, so saving $500,000 on an everyday catcher probably isn't the issue. Is it age? Buck is 5 years younger than Barajas. Offensively they look identical, except for the fact that Buck both walks and strikes out more than Barajas. Defensively though is probably where the difference is. Going from a catcher who throws out 35% of runners trying to steal to 18% is a big jump. Especially on a team that is trying to rebuild with young pitchers. Buck signed a one year deal, leading me to believe that he's just a fill in for the rebuilding Jays until any of the long list of catchers of the future are ready. With Barajas wanting a multi-year deal and the Jays firmly in the "bed shitting" mode, John Buck fills the gap nicely. He's gonna be playing for a long term contract as well. He wants to show the other 29 teams that he can be a steady contributor. So I guess it's all part of the master plan of new GM Alex Anthopoulos. Sign a major league tested free agent catcher to get the team over the hump until (insert catcher of the future's name here) is ready.


New turf at the Dome

The cheap bastards @ Rogers are going to pony up for some new turf.

Hope they save some cash to sign their fucking high round draft picks this year.  Speaking of which: Why the fuck do we feel the need to tell everyone that we intend on spending 16 million US dollars on the draft this year?

If I recall, it was the Beeston and JP that made reference to going over slot before last years draft.....and how did that work out?  A week before the deadline to sign picks, JP does this interview saying stuff like "we're just waiting for them to accept."  How do you think a guy like super agent Scott Boras reacts to reading shit like that?

Beeston ends up feeling the need to explain why he couldn't sign three of his top four picks after they asked for to much money.  In doing so, James Paxton, represented by Boras, gets worked over by the NCAA for using an agent thereby breaking their rules.  He might be ineligible to pitch his senior year of college which starts in February.  There is talk he may have to pitch for an independent professional team if he loses his amateur status.  This potentially could affect his draft status.  Beeston's comments are the reason why the investigation was launched.

In short: The 2009 Amateur Draft, was and still is, a clusterfuck.  Poor management by the brain trust.  Hope we try to draft him again this year just to see what happens.

Is it worth noting that Paxton, our second pick at number 37 overall, is now being ranked inside the top ten picks in mock 2010 drafts?  I think it is.  We could have had a premium pick a year before it was a premium pick.  We said we were going to go over slot, we did go over slot but in the end we didn't want to go that far over slot.....


I miss you already Doc

He set the standard for class and professionalism, even as walked off into the sunset.....


“My wife, Brandy, sons Braden and Ryan and I would like to express our deepest gratitude to the Toronto Blue Jays organization, its incredible fans and the City of Toronto. I feel blessed to have been part of the Blue Jays since 1995 and am extremely grateful for the opportunities it has provided. Throughout this past 15 years, there have been so many people within the organization that have made a wonderful and significant impact on my life, it would be impossible to name them all. I am sincerely grateful for the incredible support and compassion the Blue Jays fans have always shown me. I am in awe of your overwhelming passion and devotion. Toronto will forever have a special place in my heart. The memories will last a lifetime and so will my gratitude. Best regards, Roy.”


Look similar?

I wish sometimes that I was born in a place that had more people that gave a shit about baseball. 
Chicago, is one of those places. 

Question: You know the thing I'm going to miss most about your Toronto Blue Jays minus the Doctor?

Answer: The 2 hour and 45 minute average game time for the 32 starts he made last year.  


Merry Christmas

This year due to economic restraints, I cheaped out.  All I got you was these shitty minor league free agents.  Hope you like!

Brandon for Brandon

He certainly is putting his stamp on this team.  The deal for Brandon Morrow was made official today after much speculation in the media.  We gave up Brandon League and minor league OF Johermyn Chavez.  It is important to note that he has said he views Morrow as a starter.  

What we gave up:     

Having watched Brandon League pitch in Toronto as a reliever for the last few seasons has been frustrating.  Every time he entered a game, you just never knew what to expect.  He has overpowering stuff and when he's on, he's almost untouchable.  There just isn't that many guys walking around this planet that can touch 100mph on the gun.  We have been patiently waiting for him to put it together and show some consistency.  On numerous occasions I thought he could be our future closer.  As an organization, it must have been difficult to part with such a good, young arm.

From where I'm sitting Johermyn Chavez looks like a long shot to make it to the big leagues.  His numbers for 2009 in single A look impressive.  But it was his second full season there after a slow year in 2008.  Top prospects tend to move through the lower ranks of the minors very quickly before reaching AA.  He played some winter ball this year and no one should be blown away by his performance.  Young hitters tend to strike out a lot due to lack of patience at the plate and he appears to fit that category.  Will he turn it around?  Who knows.  Some do, some don't.  With some good coaching he may.

What we got in return:

Brandon Morrow was drafted 5th overall in the 2006 MLB draft.  He has had some success as a starter, reliever and closer in the Majors.  He has two plus pitches, fastball and power curve.  He mixes in a change, probably only when guys start to time his heater.  As a starter he will need this pitch to be successful.  The biggest knock against him is his command of the strikezone.  He does have a history of arm problems but really what pitcher doesn't?  I think the way Seattle used him over the years may have been a contributing factor.  He never had a defined role on their pitching staff.  He has 15 career starts and 22 save opportunities.  Perhaps now that he has the comfort of knowing that he will be given the ball every five days, he will be able to get in a routine.  We can afford to be patient with him and live through the growing pains.


This trade helps both teams fill a role in the short term.  Therefore it must be viewed as a fair trade right now.  Seattle is loading up for next year and they did not seem to have a spot for Morrow.  League will try to help them get guys out in the 7th and 8th inning most likely with runners on base.  These are important outs to get for a team in the hunt.


Starters will always have more value to a team than relievers.  They throw more innings and directly effect the outcome of more games.  League can be replaced from within the organization.  I think we got the best player in the deal if Morrow is able to get into a rhythm.  He is under team control for one extra season and should be viewed as a top of the rotation type guy.  These guys are hard to get your hands on via trade especially when they are young.  Boy Wonder did very well in this transaction.  We may have an answer to my virgin posts question of: Who toes the rubber on opening day?

Things to watch for:
  • Does Morrow have a maximum number of innings or cap for next year?
  • He is a type 1 diabetic and wears an insulin pump.
  • If he fails to work out as a starter, does he get a chance to close for us?


Your name's Vernon

Hat tip to Chris Creamer's Blog for the pic.

So what the fuck are we going to do with Vernon Wells III?

We drafted him 5th overall in the first round of the 1999 draft.  He once won three consecutive gold gloves for his defense and a silver slugger for his hitting.  He ranks fourth in home runs on the all-time career list with the team and should move into second sometime this year.  He is a former All Star.  He had the most hits in the AL in 2003.  He is our clubhouse leader.  He is the team player association representative. He has his own foundation which is dedicated to supporting and protecting children in need.  He is our longest serving active player with 1236 games.  We have grown up with him.  I once waited in line for three hours to get his autograph and was fucking happy to do it.  And he's got a shit load on money coming his way.  I mean a fucking truck load.  He is scheduled to make $107 million in the five years.  Check this out.....miracles really can happen:
Vernon Wells of
7 years/$126M (2008-14)
  • signed extension with Toronto 12/06

    • $25.5M signing bonus ($8.5M payment each March 1, 2008-10)
    • 08:$0.5M, 09:$1.5M, 10:$12.5M, 11:$23M, 12:$21M, 13:$21M, 14:$21M
    • full no-trade clause
    • Wells may opt out of contract after 2011
    • award bonuses: $0.25M for MVP, $0.2M for WS MVP, $0.15M for LCS MVP, $0.1M for most All-Star votes in league
    • Wells to donate $143,000 annually to Blue Jays charity

For the sake of comparison: Here are the other players in MLB making 20+ million next season.
  1. Alex Rodriguez
  2. CC Sabathia
  3. Johan Santana
  4. Manny Ramirez
  5. Mark Teixeira
  6. Derek Jeter
  7. Miguel Cabrera 
For the sake of reference: Rogers paid 25 million FOR THE ENTIRE FUCKING STADIUM.

Where I'm from we have a phrase to describe what I'm feeling right now.....

On a good note: It's not my money.  It's not your money.  And I don't think we have to worry about him getting any "bonuses" considering we are not getting anywhere near the playoffs and he sure as hell is not getting anywhere near the All Star game.  Someone offered that contract to him and he signed it.  Every single last one of us would have done the exact same thing given the chance.

Here is his stat line for the 2009 season:

630 AB .260 AVG 15 HR 66 RBI 84 RUNS 164 HITS 48 BB 17 SB .711 OBPS*
* Good for 4th worst outfielder rating in all of baseball.

You say: It was a sub par year.  I have a gut feeling he will bounce back.  It was just one bad year, that's all.  He showed a lot of heart playing through pain.

I want to believe you.

I say: In the interest of being thorough let's look at his three year average.   Just so happens to be the same three years since Vernon inked his monster deal.  This is, GULP, how do I put this.....concerning?

547 AB .265 AVG 17 HR 75 RBI 77 RUNS 145 HITS 42 BB 10 SB .745 OBPS

So how much of a down year was it?  Fuck, he had over 75 extra at bats and the only stat line he showed improvement in worth noting was stolen bases? Fucking stolen bases?  The extra AB's actually HURT his average.  Think about that for a minute.  Is this about what we should come to expect from V-Dub in terms of production?  Has he peaked offensively? 

I really hate to put my foot on a man's throat when he is down but hey.....why the fuck not, what else I am I doing?  It actually gets worse.

In 2007 he underwent major left shoulder surgery in the off season.  His prognosis was he should be ready for spring training.

In 2008 he missed about 2 months of time on the DL with hamstring and left wrist surgery.

Last month he underwent "successful" surgery on his left wrist.  Again.  His prognosis is he should be ready for spring training.

As a fan, I want my players to play as good as they can. I want the manager to put them in a spot in the line up where they have the best chance to use their skills and succeed. I want us to root for them no matter what, no matter how bad it seems.


It's downright sad watching this fat, bald guy try to patrol center field still.....let alone hit.  He has turned into a "guess" hitter.  He is breaking down physically.  He doesn't walk.  He swings at far to many pitchers pitches.  He NEEDS protection in the line up to be successful.  He won't get that hitting 5th, 6th or 7th in 2010 which is where Cito will choose to put him.
Yeah I said it again.

I guarantee we can't trade him even if he waived his no trade clause, we ate salary and he has a climb in production.  He is getting killed at home by us fans. I'm guilty of it, so are you.
The only silver lining for all you positive thinkers out there is this: He has the option to opt out of his contract after the 2011 season.  Since we are stuck with him until then, we need a plan.  We need to decide together.  I vote for making his life a living hell.  It will make me feel better.  Fuck him.  Fuck his family.  Fuck his pussy American Eskimo dog Lacee.  Fuck his man crush Michael Young.  Fuck yo couch Vernon.  Fuck JP for signing him.  Fuck Godfrey for taking it to ownership. And finally fucking fuck Ted Rogers for giving it the thumbs up.  Given that long list there shouldn't be any shortage of targets that we can direct our rage filled voices towards but unfortunately for Vernon, he is literally the only villain left still employed with your Toronto Blue Jays.

I propose initiating: Operation Opt Out

Do what you have to do. Get this stiff outta here. We have two full years to get it done.  Look on the bright side: I graduated college in less time. We have to make it so bad that he walks away from 63 million dollars. Not likely. So let's get right to it.  Consider this article a head start on step 1 of How to: Heckle.  I'm sharpening my pitchfork.

I will give all you non believers a free pass for the entire 2010 season.  I didn't want to believe it either and I still hope to be proven wrong.

But if he doesn't pick it up drastically, I expect you same people to return to earth, face the facts and join me with Operation Opt Out come 2011.  I will be keeping a seat warm for you.     


Who is running the "Official" Jays Shop??

I know this is a Jays Blog site and while this post isn't about the product on the field it is about another kind of product.

I decided to pop over to the Jays shop today and see what kind of exciting gear was available for a Jays fan like myself.

First thing that catches my eye, game worn/used Jerseys and Bats...well, that's pretty f'in cool I say, let's dig in and see what we can get and I quickly click away. Well then boy oh boy does the shock really set in. You get your grid of products and what's the first thing that catches my eye! Well hold on to your hats and get your credit cards ready Jays fans! You to have a chance to buy and own a "Game Used Russ Adams Bat"!?!? Well wtf! I had to go look good ol' Russ up to see if he was still in the majors. He was, but not for us. Here's a kid that played a whopping 286 games for us in 6 years and I can buy his bat, for a $100 bucks no less. So I take a deep breathe and I calm down a bit, little did I know the rage that was coming. I move on, I continue to look around, it's gotta get better then a Russ Adams bat, right? An "official" Matt Stairs Locker Room Plate for a $150, no thanks. 

A Curtis Thigpen Locker Room Plate, another one of the infamous "Catcher Of The Future" guys. Seems like we've had this catcher of the future for a long time, like before Carlos got here long time. They never seem to materialize, but that's another story for another time. Let's continue browsing this mighty Jays store and see if there's anything for a current fan. We can't just have old Jays stuff on here, can we? Ryan Roberts, hmmm nope, Fransico Rosario, nope, Sergio Santos, nope. Tomo Ohka, Oh god nope. Josh freakin Towers, didn't fans drive this guy out of town for the team? Royce Clayton, Troy Glaus, Orlando Hudson, BJ Ryan, Bengie Molina, Reed Johnson. Hmmm, for those keep tracking at home, that's a nope, nope, nope, nope and yet another nope. I can't even remember some of these guys playing for us, why would I want their game worn Jersey? I understand that they must have piles of these things laying around. But holy hell, take them off the site, it's almost embarassing. When was the last time we sold a Russ Adams game used bat? Like, seriously. I'm guessing you're wondering, well can I get any current Jays Game Worn Jerseys? You can indeed, let's look at this list. Lyle Overbay, should be traded by Spring Training and Vernon Wells whom we wanted traded last spring training. Then we've got Jose Bautista, Shawn Camp, Brandon League, Jason Frasor, Scott Downs and McGowan. But I'm guessing guys could walk into a restaurant in Toronto and most people wouldn't know who they are. So I'm guessing real hot sellers. That being said, by the time spring rolls around we might not know a lot of players on these Toronto Blue Jays. So now I'm pissed and I'm moving on to another section to see what else I can get.

Back To Back World Series Celebration Gear, hmmmm, this sounds interesting. Let's take a look at some clothes from when the Jays were competitive. Tacky shit mostly, back to back plastic or rubber keychain, really? Oh, what's this...T-Shirts that kinda look like Jerseys, popular item...who do they have, Winfield, Molitor and Cito, woah, wait. Cito? We can't even put his last name on the back? Almost as good as when the Washington Nationals played in their Natinals Jerseys. Geez.

Needless to say, in pure frustration I closed my browser. I don't know who is running this Jays shop, but come on! Everytime a Jays rep opens their mouths they're selling the future, how bout selling it in the Jays shop? Try selling me a game worn Jersey of one of these kids whose back we're throwing this team on?

And another thing while I'm totally ranting, isn't this supposed to be Canada's team? Then why in the hell do I have to browse through 9 pages of Camo Jays Hats to get to the special Canada Day Jays Hat? I know not everyone likes the Canada Day Hat, but it shouldn't be on page 9. To quote the great Peter Griffin, "That Really Grinds My Gears"

Happy Shopping Jays Fans

Remembering: Doughboy

Eric Hinske AND cash was traded August 17, 2006 to the Boston Red Sucks for a player to be named later OR cash considerations.

Personally, I'm still waiting for the player to be named later.....Officially, he was listed as purchased.

Think about that for a second.  We gave him away with cash.  They give us an undisclosed amount of the cash back.  So we just gave him away then.

And he got one of these:

And he's due another one at the start of this year for his efforts in the 2009 World Series.  Fuck me.


Who the fuck is Elias?

OK sports fans, it's time to put on your thinking caps.....

Elias determines how valuable each MLB player is, and not just free agents. Every player is put in 1 of 5 groups depending which position they appeared in the most games at over the last 2 seasons.

Group 1: first basemen, outfielders, and designated hitters
Group 2: second basemen, third basemen, and shortstops
Group 3: catchers
Group 4: starters
Group 5: relievers

Here are the stat categories used for each of the five position groups:
2B/3B/SS: PA, AVG, OBP, HR, RBI, Fielding percentage, Total chances at designated position
C: PA, AVG, OBP, HR, RBI, Fielding percentage, Assists
SP: Total games (total starts + 0.5 * total relief appearances), IP, Wins, W-L Percentage, ERA, Strikeouts
RP: Total games (total relief appearances + 2 * total starts), IP (weighted slightly less than other categories), Wins + Saves, IP/H ratio, K/BB, ERA

Free Agents

Type A: Top 20 percent in their positional group.  If arbitration is offered and declined, then a first round and sandwich pick between the first and second rounds are awarded to the team losing the player.  The Top 15 picks in the MLB Amateur Draft are protected. If any of these shit teams sign a Type A free agent, they would only lose their 2nd round pick.
Type B: Top 21-40 percent in their positional group.  Again if arbitration is offered and declined, a sandwich pick is awarded to the team losing the player.  Example: Did that foul tip hit him in the Rod or the Barajas
No Compensation - 41-100 percent in their positional group.

Partial List of shit teams for 2009 with record:

1Washington Nationals
2Pittsburgh Pirates
3Baltimore Orioles
4Kansas City Royals
5Cleveland Indians
6Arizona Diamondbacks
7New York Mets
8Houston Astros
9San Diego Padres
10Oakland Athletics
11Toronto Blue Jays
12Cincinnati Reds
13Chicago White Sox
14Milwaukee Brewers
15Texas Rangers
Compensation for unsigned 2009 1st round pick, Matt Purke

Hey.....wait a minute.....we are on this list.  AND we just traded away our best player?  Fuck me.

Partial List of Type A's for 2009: 

Matt Holliday        95.960
Jose Valverde       89.874
Jason Bay               89.859
Johnny Damon     85.634
Mike Gonzalez      84.268
John Lackey          83.865
Rafael Soriano       83.667
Marco Scutaro      83.069
Orlando Hudson    82.488
Bengie Molina        81.224
Miguel Tejada        81.143

So what does this mean to me you ask? 

Naturally there are exceptions.  Think GAY J last year and more recently Scutaro this year.  Both these guys walked away from arbitration and we got shafted because of our free spending fucking divisional rivals.  They just can't help themselves.

GAY J was signed with CC relatively early on in the off season last year.  CC was rated higher by Elias hence the Brewers got the Evil Empires first round 25th pick and we got their second round 73rd pick but only temporarily.  Just to be sure, they bring Tex on board for 8 years @ $180 million.  In doing so, we got bumped all the way down to a third round 104th pick and a sandwich for GAY J.

It happened again but this year it was the Red Sucks turn signing Lackey shortly after Scutaro bumping us to a second rounder.  So the Angels get the 29th pick in the 2010 draft and we get pick number 61.  And it's not over either.....Holiday, Valverde, and Damon are all still on the market.  Anyone of them sign with Boston, we get pushed down another round.  Again.

Two Pair, with a 5 Kicker

A Poker reference? Sure, why the fuck not?!?! The Jays starting rotation is much like a poker hand. We're sitting at the table holding a pair of #3 starters, a pair of #4 starters and the obligatory black hole that is the #5 starter. You can read all the articles you want on the state of the Blue Jays rotation and it is very possible that nothing will get figured out this year. BUT, not too long ago JP signed the likes of Victor Zambrano and Tomo Ohka to fill in the gaps and the young arms stepped up, hopefully our next generation of young guys can fill the gaps. So here are the list of BONAFIDE #3 and #4 starters the Jays employ:

#24 Ricky Romero. In the grand scheme of things, Ricky is a great #3 starter, but for the 2010 Toronto Blue Jays, he'll most likely be on the bump opening day. LL, err, I mean Romero went 13-9 in 2009 with a 4.30 ERA, and an almost 2:1 K to BB ratio. Drafted 6th overall in 2005, the Jays plucked Romero from Cal St Fullerton passing up on cornerstone infielder Troy Tulowitzki, slugging OF Jay Bruce and possible staff ace in Matt Garza, he's got a lot to prove to those who say we should have drafted those guys. Scouts rave about his changeup, he does boast an above average fastball and slider but with Brad Arnsberg being in Houston, can new Jays pitching coach Bruce Walton get the most out of the LL Cool J look-a-alike?

#28 Shawn Marcum. Again, a solid #3 starter. He'll eat up some innings, he won't cost you many games, but can anyone reading this remember when he threw a fastball over 90mph? I know guys like Jamie Moyer and Greg Maddux made careers out of throwing the junk, but Marcum is just not in that class of pitchers. He's got 4 pitches (Fastball, slider, changeup and curve) that he can throw for strikes, but he is also coming of Tommy John Surgery which obviously will keep us worried all year.

#27 Brett Cecil. I would actually suggest that Cecil is a borderline #3 or strong #4 starter, he's got a durable build and mixes in 4 pitches (Fastball, changeup, slider and curve). Throws in the low 90's and has the ability to make hitters miss and does get his fair share of ground balls. He'll be just 23 years old at the start of the season and is still building up his arm, as he was a closer at the University of Maryland.

#48 Scott Richmond. I think maybe Scott has some incriminating photos of Cito, because the Jays skipper LOVES this dude, I mean it's a certifiable man-crush. Richmond came out of nowhere after being signed by the Jays out of the always riveting International League, and actually pitched quite well. Going 3-0 with a 2.70 ERA in the month of April winning the Rookie of the Month award. He throws 4 pitches (Low 90's fastball, slider, changup and curveball) and has shown the ability to go late in games. The question with Richmond is durability, look at the ERA numbers as the season progressed: April - 2.70, May - 4.11, June - 4.02, July - 12.00, August - 6.00, September - 9.21 and October - 11.25. Wow wow wee wow!

So who is the Jays #5 starter?? No shortage of candidates to choose from, but who does Cito give the ball to? Marc Rzepczynski? Casey Janssen? Jesse Litsch (if healthy)? Or Brian Tallet? I still hold out hope that man with the chops, Dustin McGowan isn't done because I truly believe he has the makings of a great #2 or #3 starter, he is the wildcard in the Jays pitching plans. In the trade for Scott Rolen last year we netted young pitcher Zach Stewart (born in Texas) who Baseball America already ranks as our top prospect, which is kinda scary, no? He should be able to contribute maybe late 2010, but more realistically 2011. And let's not forget about the only pitcher acquired in the Roy Halladay trade, Kyle Drabek (born in Texas, I'm just saying). The Jays have the making of a very good young staff, but it's going to take some time for one of those arms to really step up and make a case for being the number 1 starter. Until then we're stuck with a shitty two pair and a 5 kicker, is that enough to go all in on?