Friday, August 29, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
Thursday, August 28, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
It’s a homecoming of sorts for Litsch as he grew up in Pinellas Park, Florida which is just a mere 15 minutes away from Tropicana Park. Jesse was raised in Dunedin, and as a child went to many Jays and Rays spring training games with his father.
I came across a very interesting article about Jesse’s days with the Devil Rays. Apparently players used to rub his head for good luck, and pitcher Albie Lopez even clipped some of his red locks and took it on the road for good luck. Is it just me, or does that sound like something crazed-fan would do?
So tonight Jesse Litsch goes up against Edwin Jackson - the two have nearly identical stats this season: Litsch at 9-7 with a 4.01 ERA, and Jackson at 10-8 with a 3.83 ERA. Jesse has been phenomenal since returning from the minors, and has yet to surrender an earned run.
Wednesday, August 27, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
Incredibly, Garza has completely shutout the Jays in back to back games. I don't know if it's because he was at the Trop or maybe it was because Garza had the Happy Heckler on his side. Either way, give the man credit for shutting out the Jays ... again. Unfortunately, David Purcey's stellar start was overshadowed by the Rays win. Purcey is now starting to look more and more like a possible 5th starter for next year.
Your Jamie Campbell "WTF Comment of the Night" came in the 5th inning when good old JC made a very crucial observation about Purcey.
"You might notice that David Purcey tends to perspire a lot".
Thank you Jamie Campbell for noticing David Purcey's overactive sweat glands. It's not as if David wasn't already embarassed about his hyperhidrosis - now you have to let everyone know about it. And someone please remind Jamie Campbell that he does in fact work for the Toronto Blue Jays - so he shouldn't call a game-ending catch by the Rays as if it were a walk-off game-winning hit. Oh wait, he already did that.
If the Blue Jays were to finish the season in third place ahead of the Yankees, I would consider that to be a success. A secondary goal for the 2008 Blue Jays should be to finish 10 games above .500, or higher. And believe it or not, the Jays have not finished 10 games over .500 since … you guessed it, the magical year of 1993. In fact, the best season in recent memory was 2006 when they finished with a 87-75 record - finishing in second place ahead of the Boston Red Sox.
Let’s hope that the Red Sox hand the Yankees another few losses, so that the Blue Jays have a chance to catch up. I have a feeling that a good finish by the Jays this year will convince good old Uncle Ted to open the purse-strings a little more, so we can land a great DH for the 2009 season.
Tuesday, August 26, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
The Blue Jays are still stinging after that 6-5 loss in extras at the hands of the Boston Red Sox, while the Rays are also coming off a tough loss against the White Sox where an interference call lead to the eventual game-winning run. Weird.
It should be a great matchup tonight; 15-9 Roy Halladay against 11-7 James Shields. Look for it to be a low scoring game that just might go into extra innings once again. Neither pitcher tends to give up many homeruns, so this might be a game of small-ball.
The other thing about the Tampa Bay Rays that blows my mind is how there aren't 30,000+ fans at Tropicana Field every night. They are holding down first place in the AL East, yet still only averaging around 21,000 fans per home game. If you're wondering, the Blue Jays average about 29,000 per home game.
Give the Rays fans credit though - in 2007, only about 17,000 fans were at the Trop. In the matter of less than a year, Rays attendance has gone up 25 %. That's what a cinderella season will do for your team.
Monday, August 25, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
J.P. walked in on his wife getting nailed by Marcum. It’s as simple as that. J.P. couldn’t outright fire or let Marcum go, so as punishment Marcum is sent to the minors to think about what he has done. Think of it as a “sexual timeout” - whatever the hell that means.
Sunday, August 24, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
Friday, August 22, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
Scattering 5 hits across 7 innings work, Halladay was his usual dominant-self. The only explanation I can offer for why he didn’t go the distance is that he wasn’t used to having a 13-run cushion to work with. Doc pitches extremely well under pressure, and maybe he got a little too comfortable knowing it would take a complete and utter meltdown for the Jays to lose this one.
It didn’t help that Cliff Lee also won his 18th game yesterday, which pretty much solidifies him as the American League Cy Young winner. Speaking of which - wouldn’t it be crazy if CC Sabathia won back-to-back Cy Young awards in different leagues?
That’s just another reason why I am the officially the stupidest Fantasy Player in the world for trading C.C. for George Sherrill and Vladdamir Guerrero. Such an IDIOT!
Thursday, August 21, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
Jose Bautista. He was let go by the Pirates a few weeks ago, and this season has hit .242 with 12 HR's and 44 RBI. That's about average for the players on the Blue Jays right now. I'm assuming he will be filling in at third base until Rolen feels better, or until he gets let go by the Jays.
Wednesday, August 20, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
So now I have to make the tough decision - do I go to meet Joe in person, or do I go to bring home a lifelike replica of him celebrating his walk-off HR? I imagine it's going to be an absolute clusterfuck on the Flashback Friday - anyone and everyone will be there wanting to get an autograph from Touch 'em All Joe. On the Jays website, it says he will be there from 5:45 - 6:30pm signing autographs. So if you are anticipating on being there, plan on getting there Backstreet-Boys-concert type early.
And oh yeah, the Jays will be playing the 1st place Tampa Bay Rays that weekend too. Do you think there's any chance that Joe might come out of retirement and DH for the Jays that weekend?
Tuesday, August 19, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
I guess we also have Johnny "Butterfingers" Damon to thank for the victory as well - if it weren't for his error in the 8th, the Jays might not have picked up the victory. And holy shit, props to Lyle Overbay for sprinting like a mad-man to catch that blooper single and nail A-Rod at second.
We're gunning for ya, pinstripes. Blue Jays 1, Yankees 0.
Monday, August 18, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
With a series versus the New York Yankees looming, it's important that Blue Jays fans be prepared with a lot of verbal ammunition to fire at Alex Rodriguez. He is arguably the most hated visiting player to the Rogers Centre, and last year's "ha incident" solidified his place on the Level Of Douchebag Excellence.
Because of the recent rumours, the obvious choice would to be to make fun of A-Rod parking his car in Madonna's 30 car garage. Some fans have chosen to go with the visual route to distract Rodriguez, others have decided to use their words to throw him off. Whichever method feels most comfortable to you is appropriate.
Short and simple heckles are always effective. "A-Rod Sucks" or "AAAAAAAAAA-Rod" are acceptable, and widely used at the ballpark. Fans in the first 1-5 rows also have the option of yelling "ha" every time Rodriguez swings. Though, if you want your heckle to stand out and have fellow fans chuckle at your insult, maybe use something catchy such as "A-Rod is A-Douche" or "Gay-Rod".
If he so chooses, Alex Rodriguez could use the rebuttal "oh yeah, well at least my girlfriend can get the early bird special!" Touche!
Luckily, A-Rod makes it very easy for fans to pummel him with insults. His widely publicized public life is fodder for hecles on the field, and sometimes it almost feels too easy. Do not take this as pity, and continue to relentlessly heckle him. Because after all, he makes fucking $28 million dollars a year, so he should expect this kind of shit.
Remember, the goal of heckling Alex Rodriguez is to affect his play on the field. If you are unable to affect his game, fans will also be satisfactory knowing that he might go home at the end of the day and cry his eyes out to his Material girl. See what I just did there?
*** Note: If you have any great A-Rod heckles, feel free to leave them in the comment section. Any suggestions are welcome.
For the next 3 weeks, it’s nothing but heated competition against division rivals for the Toronto Blue Jays. With 37 games remaining in the season, there are 30 to play against American League East teams.
Things are actually looking pretty favourable for Jays down the stretch; they have a 21-20 record against division rivals this year. Aside from the Rays and the Orioles, every other team in the division is basically playing .500 baseball against each other:
Tampa Bay Rays 28-19
Boston Red Sox 21-23
New York Yankees 23-22
Toronto Blue Jays 21-20
Baltimore Orioles 19-28
The difference from 2007 to 2008 is that there are now three teams the Blue Jays have to look out for in the penis race …I mean, pennant race. What used to be a three-horse race with the Yankees and Red Sox, has now turned into a four-horse race with the Tampa Bay Rays contending. It just so happens that the Blue Jays have had the most trouble with the Rays in their own division:
vs. the Tampa Bay Rays 3-8
vs. the Boston Red Sox 6-2
vs. the New York Yankees 4-5
vs. the Baltimore Orioles 8-4
So if the Jays don’t end up contending for the Wildcard, they can at least play spoiler to another team in the division. This week would be a great opportunity to deliver a knockout punch to the Yankees’ playoff hopes. I’m sure Madonna is available to provide some on-field distractions for A-Rod, and maybe Stoeten from the Drunk Jays Fans can convince Johnny Damon to regrow his beard.
Saturday, August 16, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
Friday, August 15, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
Congratulations Jays Fans; we’ve endured 7 years of J.P. Ricciardi’s “5-year plan”, the Tim Johnson scandal, we were the birthplace of the biggest steroid scandal in baseball, plus countless other disappointments. As our reward for years of punishment, Forbes Magazine has listed the Toronto Blue Jays as having the 6th most loyal fans in baseball.
There obviously were a lot of people who jumped on the bandwagon back in ‘92 and ‘93, but the true fans have stuck around even after the mid-season collapses, and missing the playoffs for the last 15 years.
I wouldn’t say that Blue Jays fans are the most loyal in the Toronto - that title is reserved for fans of the Maple Leafs. Fortunately for Jays fans, they do not desperately cling to their team regardless of what dumbass moves management makes and how poorly the team plays. Refusing to pay upwards of 40 bucks for the shittiest seats in the house is also what sets Jays fans apart from Leafs fans.
Much like Canadians themselves, Toronto Blue Jays fans for the most part sit quietly in hopes of another World Series title. They are not so quick to abandon their team, but do often question the moves (or lack thereof) of J.P. Ricciardi and upper management of the team. 6th place sounds about right - we’re not quite absolutely die-hard, but not quite flighty either.
Thursday, August 14, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
Jays hurler Brandon League once got roughed up in the off season hanging too much ten in Hawaii. Tigers’ Utility man Brandon Inge suffered a pulled oblique this season trying to reach for a pillow. And possibly the funniest of them all, is Joel Zumaya’s wrist and forearm inflammation due to an obsession with Guitar Hero (either that or pounding off too many knuckle children).
Though not quite as funny, Scott Downs twisted his ankle last night while jogging backwards after a routine play. Downs is day-to-day and will be re-evaluated today - which means he’s probably headed to the 15 day DL at least.
Thanks to Brandon League for not totally fucking up and blowing the game with a 4-1 lead in the bottom of the 9th. For a while there I was having flashbacks to last year’s late-inning collapse at Comerica Park. Thankfully, history did not repeat itself.
Bring on the afternoon game, and get out your brooms as the Jays go for the sweep in Detroit!
Wednesday, August 13, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
Generally, a Cy Young award winner will be great in the categories of ERA, Strikeouts, and Win-Loss record. To date, Halladay has put up impressive numbers; but not as impressive as his biggest competition for the Cy Young award, Cleveland's Cliff Lee:
Halladay: 13-9, 182 IP, 2.72 ERA, 155 SO
He has thrown 7 complete games thus far - 4 more than any other starting pitcher in the American League. Roy Halladay’s run support has been abysmal compared to Cliff Lee’s. His average run support is 4.15 runs per start, whereas Cliff Lee receives an average of 5.79 runs per start. There is no question in my mind that if Halladay received a few runs here and there, his Win-Loss record would look a lot more like Cliff Lee's.
So if Cliff Lee continues his torrent pace, I definitely think has a lock at winning the American League Cy Young award. But all it takes is one line-drive to the shin to change it all - and Roy Halladay is all too familiar with that.
Maybe we should lobby for the Jays to play the Indians again so Kevin Mench can take down his second Cy Young contender in his career.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
On another note, I had the pleasure of being on Jays Talk tonight with Mike Wilner. I asked Mike whether A.J. Burnett might possibly be a candidate for consideration for the Cy Young award. He said that Burnett's ERA and Win-Loss record are preventing him from being in the race.
Thanks to Mike and everyone at the Fan590; I've never called into Jays Talk before and everyone I dealt with was very polite and accomodating. Despite what some people might think, Mike Wilner is NOT an asshole. He just gets frustrated when people ask him ridiculous questions, and he is a very knowledgeable and usually understanding person - from what I have gathered. If I were asked 30-40 times a night "How are you", I would get a little testy too.
Monday, August 11, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
If we break it down purely statistically, St. Louis wins this trade by a landslide. Here is a comparison of Glaus and Rolen to date in the major categories:
Glaus: .269 AVG, .368 OBP, 21 HR, 79 RBI
Rolen: .252 AVG, .349 OBP, 7 HR, 38 RBI
Let's keep in mind though, that Scott Rolen was out the first month of the season. But still, that's a big discrepancy. After starting with a hot bat late in April, Rolen has dropped off the radar. In his defence, has has been plagued by a sore shoulder lately. But when J.P. Ricciardi made that trade, he knew he was taking a risk by signing the injury-proned Rolen.
The most shocking part of all about this trade, is that Troy Glaus has flourished in St. Louis. He may not be in his All-Star form of 2006, but Glaus is still having a very respectable season. Far more respectable than any of the Blue Jays hitters - Glaus has more homeruns and RBI's than any of the Jays.
When the Jays added Rolen, they definitely added a better defensive third basemen. But at that cost, they may have sacrificed offence to get a Gold Glove infielder. In any instance though, I'd rather have a player who can produce runs rather than prevent them.
All in all, I don't blame J.P. Ricciardi for making the Glaus/Rolen trade. He was pretty much under the gun to make the move, and so was St. Louis Cardinals management. If Glaus was still with Toronto, he may not have necessarily had the same season - but it just fucking sucks seeing him do so great on another team.
It's kind of life seeing your ex-girlfriend another guy who has a better job, makes more money, drives a better car, and has a bigger trouser snake than you. Ouch.
Sunday Afternoon - Vernon Wells is taken off the Disabled List
Sunday Afternoon - Kevin Mench is optioned to Triple A Syracuse Sunday Afternoon - Scott Rolen is put on the Disabled List with shoulder soreness Sunday Afternoon - Kevin Mench is called back up from the minors Monday Afternoon - Shannon Stewart is released by the Blue Jays *tear*
Monday Afternoon - Aaron Hill is STILL in the Disabled List
Friday, August 8, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
That’s what it must be for the Oakland A’s right now.
They have lost 10 straight, and 20 of the last 22 since the All-Star break. That’s fuckin’ brutal - like Barbara Streisand brutal. Before the break the Oakland A’s were still in contention in the AL West, but now they don’t have a chance in hell.
Thank the Blue Jays for preying on the weak; the bluebirds swept the A’s four straight with 2 come-from-behind wins. Talk about kicking a team when it’s down, eh? But the Jays better get their wins in while they’re easy to come by; starting next Friday it’s 6 with the Yankees, 6 with the Red Sox, and 3 with the Rays. That is a make-or-break 2 weeks for the Blue Jays - and same goes for the Yanks, Sawks, and Rays too. But with Vernon back in the lineup next week, I will feel a little more confident in the offense for the time being.
Thursday, August 7, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
It was just yesterday that I posted a comment on Mike Wilner’s blog that I thought there might still be something wrong with Marcum. Ever since coming back from the DL, he has yet to pickup a win and has averaged an ERA of 5.33 in three starts.
It seems like Marcum has really struggled since coming off the DL. Is he just shaking off the cobwebs, or could he still be hurting from that sore elbow?
Too bad you posted this before he took a no-hitter into the 6th.
Wednesday, August 6, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
I knew Mench’s head was big, but I had no idea his head was a size 8 - wow, that is an ogre of a fucking head. Originally it seemed like the only motivation for J.P. Ricciardi to sign Mench was for an eventual “Kevin Mench Oversized Bobblehead Day”, but now he’s actually doing okay as a utility player.
Aside from his obvious GINORMOUS melon, Mench is still sporting his Texas Rangers threads in all his profile pages on ESPN and Yahoo! Baseball. Dude - get over it, that was over two years ago you left Texas. Either that, or get on that fucking webmaster to change those pictures!
Tuesday, August 5, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
His win-loss record may not be as impressive as Cliff Lee (15-2) or Mike Mussina (14-7), but Halladay is still putting up Cy Young worthy stats for 2008. Roy Halladay has more strikeouts (149), complete games (7) and he obviously looks more badass doing it, too. Don’t forget to take into account the craptacular run support Halladay gets from the Jays offense (less than 3 runs per game).
There is no question that Halladay is in the race to win the Cy Young award this year, but I think it will take a collapse of either Cliff Lee or Francisco Rodriguez for him to be the front runner. Baseball writers tend to have a hard-on for “rags to riches” stories, which is why Josh Hamilton will probably win the AL MVP award, and Cliff Lee will probably get the AL Cy Young. But there is an outside chance that our good ol’ boy Roy could add another trophy to his case.
Until then, let the demon hurling continue …
Friday, August 1, 2008 | by Ian Hunter
The rumour was that the Mariners were asking for a 2-for-1 deal that had Ibanez going to the Jays for David Purcey and Brandon League. While I wouldn’t have been totally heartbroken to see League gone, I think Purcey has a bright future as a SP for the Jays. Besides, with all the injuries to the rotation, it doesn’t really make much sense to deal away one of your starting pitchers for a DH at best.
After the fallout from the Mariners/Jays trade talks, we had reports roll in that the Jays were actually in the Jason Bay sweepstakes for a while. Though, Pittsburgh was asking for too much; Shaun Marcum and highly-touted prospect Travis Snider for Jason Bay. Again, no effing way that trade would go down. I would hope that Ricciardi would have enough sense to not deal away two up and coming franchise players.
Hell no, they won’t go!