Let's look back at the Bluebird Banter archives and see what we've posted on November 12 in 2008, 2009, 2010, and 2011. At the end I will ask on which November 12th you felt the best, most optimistic, regarding the Toronto Blue Jays.
#1 Song on Billboard's Hot 100 chart: Maroon 5 - One More Night
The Blue Jays just acquired Maicer Izturis and Jeremy Jeffress. They are still looking for a manager and a coaching staff, a better starting second baseman, starting pitching, and someone to play left field. The Blue Jays' strengths are their bullpen, and of course the depth in their minor league system.
And also, John Olerud got a couple of trees removed near his property.
One Year Ago
#1 Song on Billboard's Hot 100 chart: Rihanna (feat. Calvin Harris) - We Found Love
Tom did a quick recap of the week's headlines:
- Washington Nationals catcher Wilson Ramos was saved from his kidnappers in Venezuela after a shootout. Ramos spent much of this season on the disabled list with an ACL tear.
- Torey Lovullo was in Boston interviewing for their open manager job. Bobby Valentine would eventually be hired, and Lovullo will indeed return to Boston in 2012, but as bench coach.
- Jonathan Papelbon signs with the Phillies, and Tom thought it was a lot of money. It was a lot of money but he was an All-Star in 2012, finishing with 2.44 ERA, 1.057 WHIP, 11.8 K/9, and 38 saves for a 81-81 team.
- Rumours came out that the Blue Jays were interested in infielder Jamey Carroll right before he signed with the Twins. Caroll played 138 games with the Twins, spending most of his time at 2B and splitting the rest between 3B and SS. He hit .268/.343/.317, striking out 65 times and walking 52 times in 537 plate appearances, with above-average defense, good for a 3.2 WAR season. His batting average and on base percentage were both better than Yunel Escobar and Kelly Johnson, and his slugging was just 27 and 48 points lower, respectively.
- The Blue Jays were rumoured to be interested in Ryan Madson. The Phillies' former closer signed with the Cincinnati Reds for $6 million in 2012 and was injured the entire season after getting Tommy John done. He declined a $11 million mutual option for 2013. Looks like the Blue Jays got lucky here--at least Sergio Santos pitched in six appearances and is still under control for three more seasons.
- The Marlins offered contracts to Jose Reyes, Albert Pujols, Mark Buehrle, and Ryan Madson. They managed to sign Reyes and Buehrle. Their uniforms were ugly (but not as ugly as we thought), and they finished a very disappointing 69-93.
In the comments, ABsteve wrote "I’ll believe baseball fans in Florida will pack a stadium when I see it"--he was right. Miami's attendance was worst for any team with a new ballpark this century. I commented that "they will become a "have" team for a season, win, then ship everyone out", I was 2/3 right! Jono411 saw that Carroll was very underrated and that he'd be worth more than $7 million in 2012--and he was!
Two Years Ago
#1 Song on Billboard's Hot 100 chart: Far*East Movement (feat. Cataracs & Dev) - Like a G6
We reported that Edwin Encarnacion was claimed off waivers by the Oakland Athletics. Yes, the Blue Jays tried to outright EE (along with Brian Tallet and DeWayne Wise) in order to make room for Rommie Lewis, Jesse Litsch, and Dustin McGowan. Alex Anthopoulos got off easy here--quite a few Bluebird Banterers were not happy in the comments, with Jevant saying that it was a mistake and it was "the most upset [he has] been about any of AA's moves so far." That was still when AA enjoyed his honeymoon in Toronto. The A's allowed EE to leave as a free agent just a month later, and AA re-signed him one more month after that. But people were mostly happy that Brian Tallet was gone...not knowing that he would return for a brief, but horrible, appearance in 2011.
Three Years Ago
#1 Song on Billboard's Hot 100 chart: Owl City - Fireflies
Adam Lind (DH) and Aaron Hill (2B) were winners of the American League Silver Slugger awards for their respective positions. In the comments, someone's crystal ball saw more of such awards for Adam Lind... Actually, it was Aaron Hill who would be the first of the two to win a second Silver Slugger, winning it this year in the National League after two seasons of lackluster play.
Jon Heyman suggested that the New York Yankees were interested in Roy Halladay. Alex Anthopoulos traded him to the Phillies instead, saving Tom's life after he had threatened to slit his wrists (not using one of our sponsors' products of course).
Tom looked back at the Blue Jays' prospect list that was compiled in November 2008. Please stop reading right here if you don't want to be disappointed. The prospect order was: Travis Snider (now with the Pirates), Brett Cecil (possible bullpen arm in 2013), J.P. Arencibia (starting catcher in 2013, low BA, average defense, but has power), David Cooper (mayonnaise sandwich), Justin Jackson (split 2012 between struggling in AA New Hampshire and struggling in A-Adv Dunedin), Kevin Ahrens (never saw action above Dunedin), Scott Campbell (did not play in affiliated baseball after 2009, but made a brief comeback bid in spring training this year with the Blue Jays before retiring at the end of march) , Brad Mills (now with the Angels), Ricky Romero (came into form for a couple of seasons before a horrible 2012 campaign), John Tolisano (repeated AA New Hampshire last year, did not wow anyone).
Four Years Ago
#1 Song on Billboard's Hot 100 chart: T.I. - Whatever You Like
Two years before Dan Savage started his project, Hugo posted "It's Getting Better All The Time". He would be right on target about Aaron Hill's health and possibility to get his career back on track in 2009.
Also: am I the only one who has never heard of any of the five #1 Billboard songs listed?