Toronto Blue Jays News & Notes: Bautista, Estrada & Offseason Rumors

 

Jays From the Couch brings you a collection of Toronto Blue Jays News & Notes on Bautista, Estrada and Offseason rumors

 

 

The Toronto Blue Jays began their final home stand of the 2017 season against the Royals on Tuesday. And, in a way, it couldn’t have come fast enough. This has been a disappointing season, to say the least. Yet, this time of year always comes with a little sadness as we look ahead to a long, cold winter with nothing but rumors and speculation with a few roster moves thrown in for fun. If we also consider that we could be saying goodbye to a Toronto Legend, things just look depressing.

 

Rather than attempt to force a few ideas into long winded, wasteful posts of their own, Jays From the Couch presents a collection of observations on recent events and situations involving the Toronto Blue Jays.

 

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Note 1

Nick Cafardo of throwing the Blue Jays into every rumor he can think of Boston Globe fame, says that Toronto will be interested in Alex Cobb this winter. And, why not? The Blue Jays need a starter. Cobb is one. Cafardo also lists every other team in the AL East, except the Red Sox, which are the team he actually covers. We can’t fault a guy for getting out ahead of the Offseason Hot Stove rumors (can we?), but this reminds that we probably should remember the protocol for these kind of rumors.

  1. Rumors are rumors. When someone says something like a team ‘could be interested’, or even uses the word interest, you have to take it with a grain of salt. I may have interest in packing up my life and heading to a beach in Thailand, but it is not going to happen. The Blue Jays are definitely interested in Mike Trout, but that doesn’t remotely mean they are interested in paying for him. This uselessness of these rumors is furthered by the use of “could”. Toronto could have interest in Trout if the Angels were giving him away and taking most of his salary.
  2. Critical Thinking is important. The Hot Stove season, winter or July, is the time of year for people to start dreaming on how their team will improve for the upcoming season. Be cool. Landing that big free agent might be exciting to dream on. But, you have to ask yourself if it is logical. A deal might make sense in the context of the roster, the lineup, needs, etc. But, there is so much more that goes into it. How about money? Are the Blue Jays about to back up a Brinks truck for everyone? No. This front office works on intelligence and calculating risks. Sometimes it doesn’t exactly pay off the way we like, but they aren’t about to cripple themselves for one of these fish. This also applies to trades. Money changes hands and logic will tell you if it is something management would do. There is so much that goes into any deals: housing, taxes, family, teammates, etc etc. So, even when deals seem to make sense, they still may not work out.
  3. Believe it when you see it. For some reason, professional sports Twitter has a large collection of users with nothing better to do with their time than create fake accounts of guys like Ken Rosenthal and send out “Fake News”. Don’t fall for it. Look for the blue check mark at least. And, make sure the source of your info is trustworthy. Generally, Rosenthal is the cream of the crop. But, a teenager aspiring to be Ken, or a former player appearing on the radio once in a while, might give you reason to pause.

With all that said and understood, get ready for what should be a fascinating winter. How Ross Atkins goes about augmenting this team will be nothing short of riveting.

 

Note 2

It’s a good thing that the above list is out there now because I wasn’t kidding about the Offseason Hot Takes Stove Season. Keep the above rules in mind as you consider the following.

 

Dirk Hayhurst appeared on TSN Radio and chimed in on what he thinks about Marco Estrada and his return to Toronto. Estrada is about to become a free agent and there are many who would like to see him return. First you have to listen to The Garfoose’s rant about Twitter. But, after that, he says that the past couple years of Estrada has been an anomaly and that this front office could do a similar contract that Estrada is just finishing. That would mean 2 yrs/ $26M. However, Hayhurst and the hosts hang their hats on the fact that Estrada has no leverage in negotiations; that he can’t keep touting success against Texas two years ago as his selling point. It appears that they feel that if the Blue Jays make him this offer, no other team would come close.

 

But, is that true? Does Marco truly have no leverage? Can we say that his mid-summer struggles are more than a dry spell? Hayhurst would tell you that with Estrada’s stuff, there is no telling if he is going to be effective from one start to the next. Which…yeah…Looking at his metrics, it would appear that his 2017 season hasn’t been all that different than the previous two. He’s given up a few more home runs than he have seen, but has also struck out more. And, with the proliferation of home runs all around baseball, thanks to hitters trying harder to put the ball in the air, perhaps this isn’t that much of a surprise. Consider this:

 

UPDATE

The above is all made that much more delicious when you consider that we woke up on Wednesday morning to find out that Estrada was signed to an extension. No leverage, indeed.

 

Note 3

Much has been made about this being the final home stand of the season and that means that we very well could be witnessing the final days of Jose Bautista in a Blue Jays uniform. A few days ago, Jays From the Couch paid tribute to the legend with this video:

 

 

At the time, it felt like a good way to acknowledge what Joey Bats has done for the Blue Jays organization, while also admitting that he has been a shadow of his former self this year. In the post, I mentioned areas of struggle for the slugger. Well, Dave Cameron of Fangraphs kind of cemented the idea of Bautista and his future in a piece that further digs into the poor plate performance. In fact, Cameron takes it even further and says that this could be the end of Bautista in the major leagues. That was a bit of a gut punch of reality, as true as it might be. The soon to be 37 yr old has struggled, but it is the way he has struggles that makes it concerning. His contact rate has taken a nose dive, as well as other concerning observations.

 

But, what if Cameron is right? What if this is the end of the line for Jose? It is so difficult to wrap the head around such an idea. Cameron says that baseball is better off with Bautista in it. But, what if he isn’t around anymore?

 

 

 

 

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Shaun Doyle is a long time Blue Jays fan and writer! He decided to put those things together and create Jays From the Couch. Shaun is the host of Jays From the Couch Radio, which is highly ranked in iTunes, and he has appeared on TV and radio spots.

Shaun Doyle

Shaun Doyle is a long time Blue Jays fan and writer! He decided to put those things together and create Jays From the Couch. Shaun is the host of Jays From the Couch Radio, which is highly ranked in iTunes, and he has appeared on TV and radio spots.