Jays From the Couch brings you the latest Toronto Blue Jays News & Links. This edition: Encarnacion, Bautista, Sanchez & more!
It seems like there are only a couple of narratives that keep getting thrown around lately and they circle around a couple of sluggers who, may or may not, be departing soon. For the Toronto Blue Jays, so much is caught up in the fate of Joey Bats and that parrot guy. But, we managed to find some other talking points for you in our Morning News. Here you go:
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*In case you needed a laugh this morning, I’ll lead off with a piece from Steve Simmons at the Toronto Sun. He says that the club does not seem to be in any hurry to sign Edwin Encarnacion. In fact, Simmons tells us that they seemingly aren’t that serious. To get you riled up, he tells you that over half way through the exclusive 5 day window the Blue Jays have to negotiate with the player, nothing has come to fruition. Simmons is basing this on Encarnacion’s agent saying there is nothing imminent.
Well, duh. Let’s say that, even if the club has been banging on his door, throwing open the keys to the city, does Simmons really think that anything would be imminent? Edwin is about to test free agency for what could be the last time in his career. As much as he loves Toronto, and wants to be back, he and his agent would be crazy to not test free agency and explore the offers out there. Just because a deal with Toronto is not in place, it doesn’t mean one will not happen eventually. So, hopefully Simmons’ efforts at getting you angry have not worked.
*As always, Brendan Kennedy brings us another gem. This time, he writes about the emergence of Jose Bautista, but from a different angle. He brings us former Blue Jay infielder, John McDonald‘s perspective of watching Joey Bats’ coming out party. Watchign the transformation in September of 2009 must have been pretty incredible to watch. McDonald described it thusly: “We were in a little bit of awe at what he was doing, even though we knew he was capable of it…It was the swing we’d seen every day in BP,” he said. “But now he had timed it up to 90-plus miles an hour.”
*At the Star, Richard Griffin brings us a piece about shifting the role of Aaron Sanchez…yet again. After the 2016 MLB postseason likely has redefined (again) how clubs use their bullpen, Griffin opines that should the Blue Jays look to emulate the performance of Andrew Miller, they have a guy in Sanchez that very well could fit that bill.
Now, before we get too worked up with the “Haven’t we beaten the Sanchez as starter or reliever conversation to death?!” screams, Griffin is suggesting this as an approach to the postseason, rather than the regular season, where the club would need an effective starter like Sanchez to even compete for the chance to move him into the bullpen. But, depending on how this offseason goes, and the following regular season, it could be something worth looking at. Gotta get there, first!
*Over at the Blue Jay Hunter, Ian Hunter says that it is time for the Blue Jays to move on from Michael Saunders. Aside from his terrible second half- a stretch that saw him hit just about as poorly as you can hit- he also represents the type of player the Blue Jays already have in tow. And, that’s a good point. Do we really need to watch another guy who strikes out so prolifically? He’s an average defender in left field, he’s a guy who can hit for power, if you’re content in waiting through the whiffs. But, aside form being a lefty bat, he’s no different than Melvin Upton Jr. or Justin Smoak.
*At Clutchlings, Doug Fox brings us the redemption story that is Anthony Alford. After suffering through a concussion earlier in the year, Alford is turning things around in the Arizona Fall League. That’s good to see since we’ve all been high on the kid for a while now. His injury filled summer caused his stock to drop a bit (albeit not much) and Vlad Guerrero Jr pass him on Baseball America’s Top 10 list.
Around the League
*At Plate Coverage, Jeremy Lehrman opines that, despite his bursting onto the scene, Yankees rookie, Gary Sanchez, should not be the AL Rookie of the Year. He was brought up too late and will likely take a back seat to Tigers’ hurler, Michael Fulmer.
*At Chin Music Baseball, Matt Musico explains why he thinks Francisco Lindor is the best young shortstop. I can’t really argue this one. After watching him against the Blue Jays in the ALCS, one can’t help falling in love with this guy. Wouldn’t it be great if a couple of the people responsible for his being successful in Cleveland could come to Toronto and have influence in the future of the organization? Oh, wait…
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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.