The return of Brett Lawrie could have been better, but a quality start from Josh Johnson and a couple of tough breaks made last night's game an encouraging one in a number of respects. When Bautista returns this lineup will really start to look powerful. Dig into some morning links as some conciliation for the Jays inability to reach that coveted .500 mark.
Jays waste strong Johnson start vs. White sox - Sportsnet.ca
"The latest strong outing from a Toronto Blue Jays starter went to waste thanks to one costly mistake to Paul Konerko, and a ninth-inning that quickly spun out of control as they fell 4-3 to the Chicago White Sox."
Davidi on Jays: The trade that almost was - Sportsnet.ca
"The exploration of trade possibilities for White Sox pitcher Jake Peavy helped set the stage for Alex Anthopoulos to pull off November's blockbuster with the Miami Marlins."
Aaron Sanchez: Lansing's lone wolf - Sportsnet.ca
Here's hoping AA kept the right guy, i suspect he did.
"Everything you’ve heard about Brett Lawrie is true." The first line sums it up but check out what makes our returning hero tick. Spoiler Alert: It's not books.
Got to keep showing Kawasaki love while it still makes some modicum of sense.
I'm always on board for irrational love of a below average player. Kawasaki could be the next Joe Inglett type to capture my affections, though he would have to consider some high socks to truly win my heart.
On a team that was clearly pressing, he seems to have been somewhat of a ray of sunshine, Damien Cox writes. Couldn't resist the Kawasaki hat trick. You can bet that won't happen again.
Whatever your opinion on Arencibia, it looks like he's the guy for the time being. When he's on he makes hitting homers look so easy, the rest of the time he kind of sucks.
AL EAST LINKS
It would be really cool to see an all knuckler Wright-Dickey matchup at some point.
The .500 Orioles kick off a nine-game homestand against the last-place Rays. Too bad there is no way to split a three game series....
Baseball’s unbalanced schedule benefits fans and owners, not competitive fairness - Pinstriped Bible
"Unbalanced scheduling in baseball will make it more difficult for the Yankees to get the wild card. Do fans actually show up more for divisional games than the rest of the league?" It's fun to note that Yankees fans are already merely hoping for a wild card berth.
Does Wil Myers belong in the majors? - Baseball Nation
As a fan of baseball I wouldn't mind seeing Wil Myers play but as a Jays fan I'm happy for him to rot in the minors for a bit.
THE REST OF THE BASEBALL UNIVERSE LINKS
Salvador Perez looking like building block Royals have long sought - MLB - Albert Chen - SI.com
"An exercise: You are starting a baseball team. A team built to win now, and for the next five years. Which under-25-year-old major league player do you build around?" Probably not Salvador Perez, but he is quite the impressive ball player.
Lance Berkman says Wrigley Field is ‘one of the worst places in baseball’ | Big League Stew - Yahoo! Sports
As someone who has traveled to Wrigley Field to see a ball game I would have to disagree pretty vehemently with Berkman's opinion on this one. Perhaps as a Toronto sports fans I'm just more tolerant of lovable losers like the Cubs.
The Rejuvenation of Carl Crawford | FanGraphs Baseball
I've always liked Crawford, and he's easier to like on a team way out in the NL West.
Do baseball players make too much money? - Baseball Nation
"A one-sentence rebuttal to an oft-used argument. (Surrounded by hundreds of other sentences.)"
Out-Of-Character Season: American League Central - SBNation.com
"The out-of-character seasons of Norm Cash (Tigers), Adam Dunn (White Sox), Kevin Millwood (Indians), Brad Radke (Twins), and Jeff Francoeur (Royals)."
A riveting account of hit-by-pitches in the PITCHf/x era.
NON-BASEBALL LINK OF THE DAY
A Border Force worker from Stansted Airport resigns from his job with the help of a cake. Some people are just inherently classy/hilarious. When Pat Tabler or Buck Martinez rant about a "class act" keep in mind that this is actually what a "class act" is, not some utility player who has hung around baseball for 10 years.