2014-02-21

And They're Off!


The field in this year's edition of The 25 Man Roster Challenge is jam-packed with all-star calibre participants. We were able to get ballots from the president of the Canadian Baseball Hall of Fame, the MLB beat writer for the Blue Jays, a finalist from the MLB Fan Cave, the beat writer for the biggest newspaper in the country, a writer who is in the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, and many great bloggers and fans of the team alike.

We want to thank all of you for interest and wish you all good luck.

Before we get to the individual ballots, we'd like to point out some interesting facts about them. This year, there were 22 ballots cast and all of them contained the following 14 players:

R.A Dickey, Brandon Morrow, Mark Buehrle, Casey Janssen, Brett Cecil, Dioner Navarro, Jose Bautista, Melky Cabrera, Colby Rasmus, Adam Lind, Brett Lawrie, Edwin Encarnacion, Jose Reyes, Maicer Izturis.

A few players only appear on 1 ballot; these are the long shots, so to speak:

Drew Hutchinson, Neil Wagner, Rickey Romero, Sean Nolin.

We hinted that the Blue Jays may be forced to carry an extra reliever to start the year due to the volume of quality pitchers in camp who are out of options. The brain trust has already started to float the idea. Of the 22 ballots cast, 8 contain a 13-man pitching staff while the remaining 14 go with the more conventional 12-man pitching staff. How the team ultimately decides to go in that regard will be the deal-breaker in this challenge.

Height doesn't measure heart, but nobody seems to care just yet. Top prospect Marcus Stroman did not find his way onto a ballot, which is somewhat surprising.

As for the mystery pitcher, it was interesting to note that over half the ballots cast selected a player that is not currently on the 40-man roster. The voting breakdown was dead even, with 6 participants selecting Ervin Santana and 6 going with Ubaldo Jimenez.

In what can only be described as random, all 22 ballots are different. There is no favourite this year. Think about that for a second. We asked all of you to give us just 25 names and nobody came up with the same 25 names. That's the current state of this team in a nutshell.

So that's the deal. Below you will find the individual ballots. There isn't really a good way to do this in terms of presentation so apologies for the long and repetitive nature of this post. The numbers after the names on the ballots is the tiebreaker—the team's spring training record.

Team Mrs. Man With The Golden Arm
Ervin Santana
J.A. Happ
Steve Delabar
Sergio Santos
Esmil Rogers
Aaron Loup
Dustin McGowan

Josh Thole
Ryan Goins
Moises Sierra
Kevin Pillar
17-13

Santana
Happ
Santos
Delabar
Loup
McGowan
Rogers

Thole
Goins
Sierra
Munenori Kawasaki
17-13

Santana
Rogers
Delabar
Santos
McGowan
Loup
Todd Redmond

Thole
Goins
Sierra
Kawasaki
14-17

Santana
Happ
Santos
Loup
Delabar
Rogers
McGowan

Goins
Erik Kratz
Brent Morel
Anthony Gose
11-17

Santana
Happ
Delabar
Loup
Rogers
Redmond
Neil Wagner
Jeremy Jeffress

Kratz
Goins
Sierra
16-12-1

Team Human Rain Delay
Santana
Happ
Rogers
Santos
Delabar
McGowan
Loup
Luis Perez

Thole
Goins
Sierra
15-14

Ubaldo Jimenez
Happ
Delabar
Santos
McGowan
Rogers
Redmond

Thole
Goins
Sierra
Pillar
14-16

Jimenez
Happ
Delabar
McGowan
Perez
Rogers
Santos

Kratz
Goins
Morel
Sierra
13-17

Team Ant
Jimenez
Happ
Santos
Perez
McGowan
Rogers
Loup

Thole
Goins
Sierra
Morel
13-16

This was the only ballot to not select the name Steve Delabar. We did some follow up on this omission and the reasoning behind it was solid. Delabar has an option remaining left and it was a difficult decision but he was left off this ballot. From All Star to Buffalo? 

Jimenez
Happ
Santos
Delabar
Loup
Jeffress
Rogers
McGowan

Thole
Goins
Gose
12-18

Jimenez
Happ
Santos
Delabar
McGowan
Rogers
Jeffress
Redmond

Thole
Goins
Sierra
15-13

This was the only ballot that had a brief write up attached to it. You can see it by clicking here.

Team Jays Are My 2nd Favourite Team:
Jimenez
Happ
Rogers
Santos
Delabar
Loup
McGowan
Perez

Thole
Sierra
Chris Getz
15-13 

Happ 
Santos
Delabar
McGowan
Loup
Rogers
Drew Hutchison

Thole
Goins
Gose
Sierra
13-16 

Happ
Santos
Delabar
Loup
McGowan
Rogers
Sean Nolin

Kratz
Goins
Gose
Sierra
15–15 

Happ
Rogers
Santos
Delabar
McGowan
Loup
Perez

Thole
Goins
Sierra
Kawasaki
16-14

Team Jimmy Triggs
Happ
Delabar
Santos
Loup
McGowan
Rogers
Redmond

Thole
Goins
Gose
Morel
15-15

Happ
Santos
Delabar
Loup
Jeffress
McGowan
Kyle Drabek

Thole
Getz
Morel
Sierra
12-18

Happ
Santos
Delabar
McGowan
Redmond
Loup
Rogers

Thole
Goins
Sierra
Gose
17-13

Happ
Rogers
Delabar
McGowan
Loup
Redmond
Perez

Thole
Goins
Kawasaki
Sierra

No tiebreaker selected!

Team Last Row 500’s
Santos
Delabar
Loup
McGowan
Rogers
Jeffress
Drabek
Ricky Romero

Thole
Sierra
Morel
15-15

Happ
Redmond
Santos
Delabar
Loup
Perez
Rogers
Drabek

Thole
Goins
Sierra
17-13

Team Man With The Golden Arm
Happ
Rogers
Santos
Loup
Delabar
McGowan
Perez
Redmond

Thole
Goins
Sierra
16-13

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