Not a lot of Jay news out there, but over in the Star Morgan Campbell talks to Paul Beeston about telling the New York Post that Roy Halladay doesn't want to sign here. Beeston "can't figure our why his comments created such a splash in the media". That he wasn't giving the Post any "new information". And yes we all know that. But the question is "why does he feel the need to keep telling the press Doc doesn't want to be here?"
JP Riccardi got roasted over the coals for telling the press he would listen to trade offers for Doc. This time, we were told, it would be done much quieter. And yet every time there is a new reporter within ear shot we have to tell him how much Doc wants out of Toronto. Then we fain surprise that what we said is a story, so that we can tell another reporter that Doc really wants out of Toronto.
I have to ask, if there a strategy to saying this over and over again? Is there some idea that we haven't got the message yet? Do they think they can get a better deal if they keep telling all the other clubs how desperate they are to make this trade? If we all sign an affidavit stating we know Doc will be traded could they shut up about it for a bit?
The great thing about telling us this over and over, is that they can remind us of corporate message number two: We aren't going to compete next year. Because, heaven forbid we give the public a reason to buy tickets. That meshes nicely with last week's announcement that ticket prices will 'likely' be going up. Who does that? Who tells their customers that prices may be going up. I could understand it if you were saying 'get your tickets now, tomorrow they might cost more'. But no, they are just saying the tickets you buy for next year might be more expensive.
I hope they remember all this next season if ticket sales are down.
Over at bluejays.com Jordan Bastian has a story about Robert Ray pitching in the Arizona Fall League. He was 2-1 with a 4.81 ERA in 7 starts. He struck out 25 in 24.1 innings and walked 7. It is nice to see that he is healthy again. Jordan also lists how other Jays did in the Fall league.
And at Fox Sports Ken Rosenthal talks to Alex Anthopoulos about the Jays renewed emphasis on scouting and the Moneyball vs. traditional methods of putting together teams. Of course since Moneyball was about finding inequities in the system that would allow small market teams to compete with the rest. Maybe scouting is the in inequity. Billy Beane seem to think so:
"Alex talked to me about it," Beane says. "We've increased our scouting staff, not as dramatically in one year, but over the last couple of years. Everything is about getting as many looks as you can."
To Beane, many small- and mid-market clubs finally grasp that the first step toward success is to go "bottom-heavy," creating a strong foundation of scouting and player development.
And scouting doesn't cost a lot:
"Scouts get paid $30,000-$35,000," Anthopoulos says. "They've got no job security. The reason some scouts are with eight to 10 teams is because there's no loyalty. They have to jump ship for a $2,000-$3,000 raise.
"If we pay our scouts well, allow them to be home more, we'll make it a more attractive place for them to work. Hopefully in time people will say, 'The Blue Jays are doing great things. They're great for my family. It's a great place to work.'"
For now, who is to argue with such a plan?
Hire the best scouts. Find the best players.
I think the idea is good, but saying you are going to find the best players is a lot easier than actually doing it. We'll see if it happens.