The Ervin Santana saga doesn't seem to be coming to a quick conclusion.
The Jays players seem to want him, they sent him a picture holding a sign saying 'Come to Toronto'.
The Orioles and the Twins have each made 3 year offers, in the $30 million range, but Ervin figures he can make more with a one year deal and then get on the free agent treadmill again next summer.
And Kenny tells us there could be a new suitor. The Braves have had Brandon Beachy leave his last start with 'biceps tightness', Kris Medlen left his last start with a forearm strain and Mike Minor is taking some time off with his own soreness (they could be the Blue Jays). So they might be in the market for starter. Or three.
When I was at the gym this morning, TSN was on and their "baseball expert" said that signing Santana would be what the Jays need to be a contender this year. I have a hard time buying that, if they aren't a contender without him, I'm not sure how the extra 2 or 3
innings wins they might get from him makes them one.
Of course, the expert also said that the Jays need someone that can go 200 innings, because Dickey had problems last year and Buehrle has a history of injury troubles. I missed that I guess. He also said the only team that he doesn't see as a contender, provided the Jays sign Santana, in the AL East, is the Yankees.
In other links, Keith Law, at ESPN.com scouted some Blue Jay players over the last couple of days.
He liked Drew Hutchison:
His slider wasn't sharp -- he hung that one that Lord Byron shot into the palm trees -- and he had more control than command. His delivery is good, very clean in back and repeatable; sometimes pitchers do everything right and still blow out. Hutchison showed enough of the total package for the Jays to feel comfortable with him as the fifth starter, should they choose to put him there.
Didn't like Kyle Drabek:
Drabek used to have a hammer curveball, but that wasn't in evidence in this outing, as his best curveball came in at 78 mph with 11/5 break but loose rotation. His changeup is very firm and not a major weapon for him right now. He's approaching two years since the surgery, so more of his stuff would be back by now if it is ever going to come back.
Or Brett Lawrie:
I'm not sure what to tell you about him. He's still a great athlete, he still runs well, and there should be some power in there, but he was on top of everything today, hitting almost every pitch where he made contact, fair or foul, into the ground.
Did like Marcus Stroman:
I have no questions about Stroman's ability to be a starter in the majors beyond the matter of getting his fastball down in the zone. He's roughly 5-foot-9, very strong and athletic, but not tall enough to stay on top of the ball consistently. The A's faced a similar hurdle with Sonny Gray, but worked with Gray to give up a little velocity for more consistent downhill plane so he could avoid becoming a severe fly ball guy.
Not Ricky Romero:
The Jays had Ricky Romero out there ... but it was ugly, 89-92, half of them in the dirt or way off target.