Blue Jays solidify coaching staff, for now

Your Toronto Blue Jays have put the finishing touches on the coaching staff for the 2011 season bloodthirsty uphill battle. We say hello to some new faces, good bye to some old ones and merely give the courtesy head nod to the familiar ones.

John Farrell
Don Wakamatsu
Torey Lovullo
Pat Hentgen

Brian Butterfield
Bruce Walton
Dwayne Murphy

Cito Gaston
Nick Leyva
Rick Langford
Omar Malave

Our new fearless leader has zero innings of managerial experience. That is a tad concerning to me. And his former employer is a mortal enemy of mine, so I need sometime before I can trust him fully. Is he a double agent sent by the Massholes to keep us in 4th place? Just saying.

Don Wakamatsu is already being considered for the vacant manager job with the Mets. Something tells me he won't be around very long in Blue Jay blue.

Torey Lovullo is a old friend of the new skipper. I'm glad John has someone around who he feels comfortable with. I did a bit of research on Lovullo with mixed results.....

MLB.com ran this story. Here is a paragraph I found interesting:

In Lovullo's first year in the Red Sox's farm system, the PawSox went 66-78 in the International League. Prior to his tenure with Boston, the 45-year-old spent eight seasons managing in the Indians' farm system and at times worked closely with Farrell, who served as the club's director of player development from 2001-06.

The Globe and Mail decided to go with this:

Lovullo, 46, joins the Blue Jays after completing his ninth season as a minor league manager, most recently with Pawtucket, the Boston Red Sox Triple-A affiliate.

So, yeah just how old is this guy? You would figure that would be pretty easy to figure out, no?

As for fan favorite Pat Hentgen, well shit, listen for yourself. And do it before MLB comes and tells me to take these videos down :(

How much do I really need to tell you about the returnees?

Fine. You win.

We have heard the pitchers praise Walton all year and everybody seems to love Butter. Dwayne Murphy has been sorta criticized for the team having a poor on base percentage last season. I ask this simple question: is it his fault he had an entire lineup of guys that thought they were playing in a slopitch game all year?

We did hit a shitload of bombs last year, 257 to be exact. But I respectfully submit that if we had more guys on base that number goes down. Nothing happens in a vacuum. Opposing pitchers, especially starters, baredown significantly when guys get on base. Even more so with multiple runners on. Pitch selection and location change based on the situation.

That's called baseball.

The one game that I think best represents our 2010 season, in a nutshell, was this one against the Diamondbacks in Arizona. We lost 8 - 6. We hit 6 solo homeruns. And 4 of them off a pretty solid pitcher in Dan Haren. Here is what he had to say after the game. 

"I know I gave up a few runs but I did what I needed to do out there," he said. "That team, it's a tough lineup. Every guy can hit it out. It looks like they have one thing in mind, to let loose and try and hit homers. I've never seen anything like it really."

Hopefully Murph will have a little more to work with in 2011 with respect to personnel. Yunel Escobar at the top of the lineup for a full season should help substantially.

As for the dearly departed, fear not. They all have jobs within the organization promised to them should they want to stay on board. Classy move by Boy Wonder. Click here to get his take on our new staff.


  1. OBP vs first pitch swinging is usually a team philosophy. The hitting coach has more to do with the mechanics of the swing, timing, load etc. I'm sure the directive from above is going to be much more balanced throughout the order with spots 7-2 working the count and 3-6 killing the ball. Of course it's not as simple as that but you get the idea.

    More importanly let's hope Murphy can get Hill and Lind figured out this year.

  2. I'm really liking this staff, except for Murphy. Murphy was great for some, and will continue to be great for some (mainly Bautista), but I'm not sold on him. Murphy is too much like Cito, and I don't think that is a good thing.

    Although, I'll give him another year and hope he can get this teams OBP up.

  3. Don Wakamatsu will be in Toronto. Take it to the bank. Other candidates have had their 2nd interview with the Mets.

    This dude was hired for 2 reasons. Be there for the new guy to bounce ideas off of when making in game moves. More importantly, be the personal development coach for Arencebia. Put the finishing touches on a guy on the cusp of being an A level starter.

    Don Wakamatsu has the rep for being among the best, if not the best, catching coach in baseball.

  4. @Mattt,
    I think you nailed it bro. I often wonder how much different 2010 would have been if Hill and Lind were hitting the way we know they can.
    Thanks for your thoughts.

    Thanks for stopping by!

    I remember a man named Gary Denbo. His was brought in because we had a shitty OBP. It was a disaster.
    I'm a believer in going with what you got. We had power last year. Not much will change in 2011 if we feature the same guys in the lineup.

    Yeah AA said whatever the amount of time he spends with us is a blessing. I'm looking forward to seeing his catching program work it's magic with ALL our young catchers.