Everyone else is talking about it, so let's join in and pile on J.P. Arencibia. I'm going to take a number of quotes out of Shi Davidi's excellent piece about him, go over and read it, to make up for my thieving.
Shall we start with the first line:
Let's see J.P.'s stats by season:
Where some see flaws, J.P. Arencibia sees progress.
I'm not seeing the progress. Are you?
Well, he's been throwing better the last little bit. He's always been okay at throwing out runners, right around league average. The rest of his defense? He's never been good at blocking balls in the dirt, that hasn't changed. I really don't see much for improvement in any defensive area. I could be wrong I guess.
So JP, tell us the progress.
The lack of results, Mottola stresses, shouldn't diminish the effort, as "he's tried 100 per cent; there's never been a day where he hasn't shown up and not tried to apply what we're talking about."
So he is trying hard to improve and it's not happening, at what point do we decide he is unteachable?
I get that he tries. I hear it all the time, JP's a very hard worker. That's a great quality. It is always good to be a hard worker. Sometimes you can work very hard at something and not succeed. That's the great part about life. Sometimes no matter how hard you work at something, you fail.
I mean, I can't draw. I've worked at it. I understand intellectually how to do it. I just can't. You could spend years teaching me to draw and I still wouldn't be able to do it. I like art. I'm love to watch people draw. In that area I'm unteachable.
I'm starting to think that JP is like that with hitting.
Offensively, obviously, there are adjustments I have to make, with just being able to get better knowledge of the strike zone....
JP we are 3 full seasons into a major league career and your knowledge of the strike zone hasn't improved. It is gone backwards.
I get that it is hard. Batting isn't as easy as we all think. We sit back and watch on TV and we think we could recognize a slider in time to decide to swing or not swing. We couldn't. If we could, we'd be playing. It is hard. That doesn't mean that someone that gets worse at it, each season, should be excused. I couldn't learn to hit major league pitching, I don't play baseball. Pretty soon, if JP doesn't prove he can learn to hit major league pitching, he won't be playing either.
"The world, I feel like, thrives on negativity, you have to write some things sometimes, and you can't always be positive," he continues. "I'm not worried about that stuff."
Ummmm JP, you have spent this whole season showing us that you are worried about that stuff. You've been on sports radio telling us how worried about that stuff you are. This whole piece by Shi Davidi screams 'I care about the negatives that people say about me'.
Please, JP, stop showing us you are worried about what we say about you and start showing you can play baseball.
"People are going to have bad things to say, if I was hitting .300 and I only had two walks, people would say I'm not taking enough pitches, whatever it may be."
I don't know, JP, try hitting .300 and we'll see. Moises Sierra isn't taking a lot of pitches and no one is complaining about that, at the moment, mostly because he is hitting the ball hard. Your best month this season, you hit .253 (with two walks), by your standards, it was a pretty good month, but it was a long way short of .300. Hit .300, with some power and I won't worry if you only take 2 walks.
I really don't like that JP dismisses walks, dismiss getting on base. It makes me apprehensive about his pitch calling. It makes me worry that he doesn't understand that our pitchers giving up walks is a bad thing. And it makes me worry he will never get better.
"This is a very down year for myself, but I could have tapped out a few months ago when I was told I could go on the DL if I took a shot so the pain would go away, or I could stick it out and play it out."
Please, please, please JP, if you are hurting, go on the DL. You aren't helping anyone with 2 singles in a month. Itis admirable to play with pain. Well, let's change that, it is admirable to play decent with pain. If you are playing in pain, and not helping the team, it's selfish. If you aren't helping the team, take a couple of weeks off.
About 10 times a years, someone on Twitter will tell me how wimpy baseball players are and talk about some hockey goalie, in the 40's, who played 2 periods with a broken leg. My answer is who cares. NHL goalies in the 40's did not have long careers, find one that played much longer than 5 seasons, and you'll have something. It isn't a good idea to play hurt.
Yesterday I twitted:
You know, JP, if your knee hurts, get it fixed. You aren't helping anyone at the moment. Well, other than bloggers.— Bluebird Banter (@bluebirdbanter) September 19, 2013
So, ummmm, thanks JP.
You know JP, I think you are a good guy. I think you deserve the nomination for the Roberto Clemente Award. I watched you play with children at the YMCA here in Calgary, 3 years ago, and I was very impressed. I really do think you could be an All-Star catcher. I'd really like you to be a good player for the Jays, because of all the things you do off-field, how good you are with the fans. Heck, it doesn't hurt that you bring in female fans. But you have to play decent. You have to start understanding that getting on base counts. You have to stop worrying about what the press, bloggers, Dirk, Zaun or anyone else says.