Wednesday, November 30, 2016

iambic pentameter day

By 98 LB baseball BOSS' request, this is the day nocramps has been waiting for. Iambic Pentameter baseball poetry, the style favoured by Shakespeare and friends.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

The 2017 BBWAA HoF Ballot

The 2017 BBWAA HoF ballot has been released, and once again it's pretty crowded. There are 34 players on this year's ballot, which can be seen (just the names, along with the 2016 vote tally if there was one, and how many years the player has been on the ballot) here. There's also one with a bit more info at the website of the National Baseball Hall of Fame here. Finally, there's one at Baseball-Reference, which has some stats and stuff beside the player's names. For some reason, it hasn't been updated though, and if you want to use it you have to knock off Danys Baez, Julio Lugo, Aaron Rowand, and Javier Vazquez, as they were not put on the ballot by the BBWAA, and you have to add Casey Blake and Matt Stairs, who were put on the ballot. More after the jump.

Monday, November 28, 2016

David Andrew Stieb and the HoF (Part II: Top o' the Mountain to ya!: 1982 - 1985)

From 1977 through 1981, the Jays had stumbled through five seasons of mostly bad baseball. How long could .359 baseball (270 - 482) bring fans out to the ballpark? How long could you sell them on coming to see the stars of the American League, with very little hope for the home nine ever getting their act together? To be fair, they were assembling quite a lot of young talent, but that hadn't translated into wins yet, and let's face it, wins are what bring fans out to the ballpark in droves. The novelty of big league baseball in Toronto and seeing all the different stars on the opposing teams was starting to wear thin with the fans, and it showed. In 1981, they had their worst ranking for attendance in the history of the franchise. They finished 11th in the 14 team American League in attendance. Something needed to change.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Party weekend!

Every weekend is an open thread to shoot the shit. There will be a challenge each week but don't feel confined by it.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Transaction Friday!

It's transaction Friday! What do you think is going to be announced today?

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Hello from PitchTalks Toronto. November 17, 2016 Edition


So I'm sitting on the couch, pondering my navel, (I'm considering umbilicoplasty, I want to look younger and you gotta start somewhere ),when a friend calls and says we should go to PitchTalks, drink beer and shmoose with the celebrities. The navel thing is stressing me out and I need a break Tickets are purchased.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

The 2017 TBJ Over/Under

Future Superstar Dalton Pompey

14/1. That's the Vegas odds on our Toronto Blue Jays to win the 2017 World Series. That sounds lofty but it's actually 8th overall. Out of 30 teams? And only Boston and Cleveland are ahead in early Vegas prediction on who will win the AL Championship. That's not so shabby!

My guess for the over/under is 87.5 (2017 Over/Under official numbers have yet to be released).Over should be very close to a wild card spot. What do you think?

Stake your claim. Claim victory. Call it now. Over or under? Make a stance. How many games will your Toronto Blue Jays win in 2017?

Predict wildly!

Pete Rose never bet against his own team. 

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Your Favorite Jays Photos of the Past Year

Post your favorite photos from the past season.
Feel free to add reasoning, descriptions, captions or anything else.
Here's just a few of mine, wanted to leave it mostly wide open for you folks.

Monday, November 21, 2016

David Andrew Stieb and the HoF (Part I: The Early Years: 1979 - 1981)

Yeah, that's right, I put the words "Dave Stieb" and "HoF" in the same title. Am I out of my mind (hint: highly probable)? After all 176 Wins, a 3.44 ERA, a shade over 1,500 K in fewer than 3,000 IP doesn't exactly scream "Cooperstown!" as a body of work does it? The surface numbers just aren't there.

Ok, what about the awards? 7 All-Star selections (1980, 1981, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1988, and 1990), one 4th place Cy Young finish (1982), one 5th place Cy Young finish (1990), and back to back 7th place Cy Young finishes (1984, 1985). 7 All-Star games in 11 seasons is extremely impressive, but the rest of it doesn't add up either. In fact it's kind of meh for HoF consideration. So what the hell am I on about?

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Party weekend!

Every weekend is an open thread to shoot the shit. There will be a challenge each week but don't feel confined by it.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Free Agent Friday!

Image from

It's announcement Friday!

We know Atkins loves his Friday afternoon announcements. What do you think it will be this week?

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Bad Umpiring

Bad Umps. We know they're out there. (Sorry Wince, you know some guys are just. not. good.) So instead of agonizing over free agent signings, talk about the worst umpire calls of the year.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

It's too early to worry about Edwin and Jose.

So I'm sitting on my couch, pondering my navel, wondering the usual things like "how much would it hold? It would make a great place to put ketchup for my fries". When a call comes in. It's a friend of mine, hyperventilating about the boys at Sportsnet and conflicting messages.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Limerick Day

By 98 LB baseball BOSS' request, since you all enjoyed the haikus so much (and because I have no content) it's make up a baseball limerick day!

Monday, November 14, 2016

The stupid Bautista steroids accusation rises again

So over the weekend I'm on a website discussing the latest Pitch episode and I run across this:

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Party weekend!

Every weekend is an open thread to shoot the shit. There will be a challenge each week but don't feel confined by it.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Haiku contest

This was suggested by Travis Snider's Lunchbox a while back:
How about a haiku contest? Appoint two or three to be judges and give a virtual prize or something (worth .00003 cents). The haiku could be related to the Jays or to put down our opponents. A prize for the best Jays one and the best opponents one, perhaps?
So, who's down? What should the prize be?

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Back to baseball, What's Happening.

Hint: Rerun

People are nervous and angry and scared over recent events. The Jays were eliminated in the ACLS and Cubs won the World Series. It's a tops-turvy world we live in and it's full of unsuspected surprises. Never get out of the boat, another season's just around the corner, so let's see what's happening.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Open Thread

I suspect there's not a lot of interest in talking about baseball today. Moratorium is now lifted on discussing the US election.

My only rule is GTFO if you're going to refer to HRC as a criminal, witch, paid shrill of Wall Street, or any similar invective. She's still my gal. The Bernie Bros have tons of places you can go do that if you wish. I've got enough of that shit on Facebook. I'm not going to tolerate it here.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

The Search For The 2017 Backup Catcher

Odds are against Dioner returning in 2017...
Remember when the Jays brought back Navarro for the playoff run in 2016? Neither do I. He had a mere 36 AB's and 6 singles, no extra bases, good for a .182/.250/.182/.432 slash line. Thole has a higher OPS at .474... What an entirely forgettable stint!

So who might be playing backup next year for your TBJ's?

Internal Options:

Reese McGuire:  Reese who? A forgotten piece of the "shocking" trade deadline deal that sent Drew Hutchison to Pittsburgh for Franciso Liriano, rising OF prospect Harold Ramirez (currently our 35 prospect!) and this kid (22 in March),  who is the #4 catching prospect in all of baseball, mainly based on his plus D. Probably another year away, but could turn heads in Spring Training. No power but decent hitting average. Keep him on your radar.

Reese Mcguire, the #4 catching prospect in MLB

Max Pentecost: Long story short. He can hit. He was a first rounder (11th overall in 2013). He's recovering from shoulder surgeries. He did not catch at all last season. He's basically a DH at this point. Maybe they can convert him to 1B. Still a couple years away.

Buffalo has Erik Kratz (perfect .200 career Mendoza BA) and A.J. Jimenez, classic 3.5A (AAA1/2A) player, who, in a pinch could possibly fill in for a bridge year until one of the two prospects above are ready. As Stoeten always says, backup catchers don't add up to much in the W column (Thole hit .169 last year)...

External Options:

Bleacher Report just did a piece on the top 10 free agent catchers available. I love to hate that website, they do good work but racking up page views by scrolling through each player/team by page is aggravating. Most of these FA's (and some trade options) are way beyond what I think the Jays would ever want to pay a backup catcher who might play in 30-40 games. Especially since Russell is getting 20MM for the next 3 years...

Fuck Brian McCann. Weiters is a non-option (can he play 1B?). Kurt Suzuki would not be terribly expensive. Carlos Ruiz is only 4MM. Nick Hundley at 3MM?

Carlos Ruiz

My best guess is the Jays invite 5 guys I've barely heard of and keep one, and/or reanimate the corpse of Henry Blanco, who died in 2012 (*played for Jays in 2013).

Good luck sleeping tonight beaches!

Take a shot at being a hero and pick you WHO think might backup next year!

Monday, November 7, 2016

Happy Qualifying Offer Day!

Rumour has it that Edwin and Jose are to be offered, Saunders and Cecil not. Keep track of all the news here!

Saturday, November 5, 2016

Party weekend!

Every weekend is an open thread to shoot the shit. There will be a challenge each week but don't feel confined by it.

Friday, November 4, 2016

If I had a (rocket launcher) BBWAA ballot, it would look something like this...

Part 2: The National League:

Why "Space Oddity" over "Rocket Launcher"? Why not? I just couldn't bring myself to run Bruce Cockburn back out there again, much as I like him. A little repetitive methinks. Besides, Major Tom would've needed a rocket and a launch pad to get into space, so it's close enough for me. And seriously, it's Bowie. Enough preamble, let's get to the goods.

Thursday, November 3, 2016

$17MM Reasons Why Michael Saunders Is Leaving Your TBJ's

The Power of Canadian Fans

First off, Saunders had an amazing first half; he did deserve an All-Star nod this year.

But what happened in the second half?

First half: 298/.372/.551 with 16 home runs and 42 RBI in 82 games and 305 at bats.

Second half: 185 ABs= .178/.282/.357, 8 HR, 15 RBI, 7 doubles.

Talk about a slump! So bad we had to bring in MUJ!

So the long story short on Michael Saunders is that he's set at 17.2 million for next season (assuming the QO doesn’t get removed in the CBA talks). 17MM for a bench bat with poor D. Sure, he's a lefty, but he's a liability on the corners, has poor speed, and too prone to epic slumps. Chill your maple boner. Michael Saunders is gone.

Thanks for the first half. Good luck elsewhere.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Brett Cecil's Market (Over) Value

His nickname is "Goggles"... Get it?

There's been a lot of hand-wringing amongst some fans over the idea of re-signing long-time Blue Jay Brett Cecil, AKA Goggles (I never liked that nickname), but you can forget about another one year deal, as he enters free agency for the very first time, and as according to Ben Nicholson-Smith:

“I’ve asked a lot of people about this in the last few weeks just how many years Brett Cecil is going to get,” says Nicholson-Smith. “And it’s surprising at first glance, but the answer I keep hearing from people is that he won’t have trouble getting three years.“I know he’s struggled at times this year, but I’ve become convince that he’s not going to have trouble landing a three-year deal and I think it’d be north of $20 million.”
- Sportnet's Ben Nicholson-Smith
I think many of us view Cecil through rose-coloured goggles (see what I did there?)... Yes, he's been with the team for 10 years, he played alongside Halladay through lean years, and he often did the Winter Tours. Hey, he was even an All-Star one year! (so was Steve Delabar).

But realistically he has had a very up and down career with the team, compounded by on and off-field injuries (remember the chicken and blender incidents?), which leads me to hope that he signs elsewhere. He ended the year great, but was terrible in the first half. I don't trust him anymore. 7MM+ for 3 more years seems like a lot of cake for this old unreliable lefty.

Go get paid Brett, go get paid, somewhere far, far away. Thanks for the memories.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Talk Amongst Yourselves

That's Madonna and Rosanne Barr with Mike Myers as Linda Richman

Since the writers are all on vacation right now, here's a thread to talk.