Two years ago right-handed pitcher Chad Jenkins was Toronto's top draft choice out of Kennesaw State University. In the time since then, Jenkins has climbed the developmental ranks, reaching the Double A level, where he is currently the ace of the New Hampshire Fisher Cats rotation.
The 6-foot-4-inch 235-pound Jenkins began his professional career just last year as a member of the Class A Lansing Lugnuts, where he was named an All-star. In 13 starts in the Midwest League, Jenkins posted a 5-4 record with a 3.63 ERA. He then earned a mid-season promotion to the Class A Advanced Dunedin Blue Jays, where he went 2-6 with a 4.33 ERA.
This season, Jenkins returned to the Florida State League with Dunedin and sported a 4-5 record with a 3.07 ERA through 11 starts prior to earning a promotion to New Hampshire of the Eastern League. In 13 starts with the Fisher Cats, Jenkins has gone 5-5 with a 4.08 ERA.
The 23-year-old possesses a repertoire that includes a sinker, which normally resides in the 90-93 MPH range, a slider and a change up, which are all improving and helping him excel upward in the Blue Jays' system.
As Jenkins advances in his career, he continues to be a key prospect to watch within the Toronto organization.
Check out the media player below to see footage of Jenkins at work in the bullpen prior to a start earlier this season.
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I`m sitting at work this evening and my boss comes by to talk baseball. Specifically Blue Jays baseball. This is an everyday occurrence and I can truly say that I look forward to it. After we finish, he tosses down the latest issue of SI and directs me to a very positive article about your Toronto Blue Jays. It`s called Coming Soon. You should read it.
But that`s not why I bothered to sit down in front of the computer tonight.
One of the other stories found a few pages later was called Trevor Bauer Will Not Be Babied. Found within it was an intriguing piece of information with respect to a "reg flag" in the pitching motion - keeping your throwing elbow below your shoulder.
Got me thinking.
All images courtesy of daylife
There are a few things from the "article" written by Amy K. Nelson and Peter Keating with respect to the unnamed team and players that we can examine further. The purpose of this exercise is to find the mystery team and maybe even the players involved.
The first clue!
From the visitors bullpen at Rogers Centre in Toronto, an American League pitcher screamed at Blue Jays right fielder Jose Bautista as he took his position late in a game in the spring of 2010.
Spring can technically be any date up to and including June 20th on the calender. Here is your Toronto Blue Jays schedule from April till June 2010. The team in question MUST be on this list.
New York played in Toronto June 4 - 6
Tampa Bay played in Toronto May 31 to June 2
Baltimore played in Toronto on May 28 - 30
Minnesota played in Toronto May 17 - 18
Texas played in Toronto May 14 - 16
Oakland played in Toronto April 29 to May 2
Boston played in Toronto April 26 - 28
Kansas City played in Toronto April 19 - 21
LAA played in Toronto April 16 - 18
Chicago played in Toronto April 12 - 15
The second clue!
Some guys on that team had actually seen the same man making the same motions in 2009. But that had been in the last series of the season against Toronto, and they let it go.
This right here is the only mention of the year 2009. I'll admit that it is extremely vague - most likely on purpose - but I decided to take a look at our second half schedule after the All Star break which reveals the following:
Seattle played in Toronto on Sept 24 - 27
Baltimore played in Toronto on Sept 21 - 23
Minnesota played in Toronto Sept 7 - 10
New York played in Toronto on Sept 3 - 6
Tampa Bay played in Toronto on Aug 24 - 26
LAA played in Toronto on Aug 21 - 23
Boston played in Toronto Aug 18 - 20
Cleveland played in Toronto July 21 - 23
So let's play some match em up! Here are the teams that appear on both lists:
New York (shocking I know)
When Bautista next came up to bat, he struck out. After the inning, he ran to right field, adjacent to the visitors 'pen, and the livid player issued Bautista a warning.
This one clue in conjunction with the next clue actually narrows down the list of teams BIG TIME. We now know Jose was playing RF and that he struck out.
The next day, the players who had seen the man in white headed to the field early. One stood in the batter's box while another stood on the mound.
We now also know that the game in question was not the final game in the series or else the players would have left the previous day.
That narrows it down to the following possible games in 2010:
June 5th vs New York - interestingly Bautista hit 2 bombs off AJ the day before.
June 1st vs Tampa Bay
May 29th vs Baltimore
May 28th vs Baltimore
Then I read this
This one is with AGM Tony LaCava from last month. I was meaning to post it and I got lazy. Can't promise it won't happen again.
This one is really current with the man who if he's not careful will soon only be leaving a lot of voice messages. Perhaps he needs to lose a trade or two. Perhaps he needs to do it on purpose.
And last but certainly not least is one with Pro Scouting Director Perry Minasian. Probably my favorite of the three.
I get started by going straight over to the appropriately titled Lineup Analysis. It requires merely a player name, OBA (which I'm rather confident is in fact On Base Percentage) & slugging. Right away we got problems. Brett doesn't have any of that in the Majors and I'm looking for some accuracy here. So over to the Minor League Equivalency calculator I go. It requires a whole bunch of stats, which the always rock solid Baseball Reference easily takes care of. Only problem is that they need to be manually inputted. After a couple I`m pretty thankful that I only need to do this for one player. That and you can't actually link back to the results. I guess that is really two problems. Whatever.
Here are all of Brett Lawrie's 2011 Minor League stats (AAA and High A) converted as if he had of played all year in the Big Leagues.
AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI BB K BA OBP SLG SB CS HBP
309 44 85 19 4 13 43 19 58 .275 . 332 .491 11 2 7
Nice. No idea how accurate it is and I don't even care. It's what I'm going with.
Right back to the Lineup Analysis I go and plug these totally fictitious numbers as well as all the other Blue Jays into this tool. Please note: I'm assuming that Thames is in LF, Bautista is back in RF and J.P. is behind the plate as we are facing righty starter Tom(my) Hunter. I get the rest of the team stats from The Official Site of The Toronto Blue Jays. Only minor wrinkle was I had to click on the new guy's page individually for his stats from the NL. Again I'm looking for accuracy here.
Here's what shakes out. Buckle up!
If we are looking to score a whopping 10700.285 runs per game then we just have to try this lineup.....
That's only if we go with the somewhat suspect 1989-2002 Model. However, if we decide to go with the larger and clearly more accurate 1959-2004 Model we get this:
That right there is good for 10411.223 runs per game. PER GAME people. Prove me wrong. You can't do it can you?
I removed the link on this site to the Baseball Musings Lineup Analysis for obvious reasons.