What changes would you make to the Blue Jays roster?

Justin K. Aller

Paul Swydan over at ESPN.com (subscription required) has a list of 4 changes that the Blue Jays need to make if they want to content. Lets take a look at his suggestions:

1. Find a solution at second base.

Well, yeah, we've been saying that since the end of last season. The Jays decided to go with Ryan Goins, figuring his defense would make up for his offense. They've changed their minds. Personally, I would give Getz a change but that's me. And there is still Stephen Drew sitting at home. I do agree with this:

This weekend, they tried playing Brett Lawrie at second and Juan Francisco at third, but this is a bad idea long term. Lawrie is a plus third baseman, but he didn't grade out very well in his limited time at second base last season, and Francisco has been a below-average defender at third base throughout his career as well.

Swydan makes four suggestion for the job:

  • Emilio Bonifacio (Cubs) - Swydan must be kidding, that's not going to happen.
  • Luis Valbuena (Cubs) - he's hitting .227/.378/.379, and Fangraphs has him at a -6.1 UZR/150 career at 2B. I think the high OBP is a result of batting 8th, in front of the pitcher. I'd rather keep Getz.
  • Danny Espinosa (Nationals) - he is hitting .270/.320/.449 and has a career 5.7 UZR/150. He's younger, just turned 27. I think his price would be more than Alex would be willing to pay.
  • Rickie Weeks (Brewers) - he is hitting .212/.278/.242 and hasn't hit for the past 3 seasons. He's a career -8.2 UZR/150 and he's 31, I don't expect his defense is going to suddenly improve. I'd stick with Getz.

There are a couple of names he didn't name, Nick Franklin and Dustin Ackley from the Mariners.

Personally, I don't see anyone that would be more than a marginal gain for the Jays, I'd stick with Getz and Tolleson for now and I'd keep considering Drew. I don't think any of the upgrades listed would buy us more than an extra win. Let's see how Getz does.

2. Colby Rasmus needs a platoon partner

I'm not against this but I like Colby's defense so I'll put up with his less than terrific bat against lefties. But yeah I'd consider bringing up Darin Mastroianni. after he has a couple of weeks in Buffalo to get his swing together. Kevin Pillar was international league player of the week, I wouldn't be against bringing him up to be fourth outfielder, and he'd be a good bit better than Bautista in spelling Rasmus in center field occasionally. But, again I think it would be a fairly marginal gain at best.

We do need a 4th outfielder and it would be best if he hit right-handed and could play center field, I think that leaves us with two possibilities Pillar or Mastroianni.

3. Put Marcus Stroman in the rotation

Let's see how J.A. Happ does tonight, but yes I'm in.

4. Make some changes in the pen

Yeah yeah I'm all for that. Fewer long men. Getting Janssen back would be a big deal. Stroman in the short term, I'm good with. Bring back Neil Wagner. John Stilson had a great game yesterday, 3 innings, 0 hits, 0 walks and 6 strikeouts. He's had a bad start to his season, but if he has 3 or 4 more outings, I'd much much rather him over Redmond or Rogers or Happ, I think it is time to give up on at least two of those three. 'Beyond that, if we really want a long man, let's give Sean Nolin the job. Swydan does point out that Santos has a 3.50 xFIP, he should be better in the future. Or I'm hoping he has to be.

The bullpen has to do better. Somebody is going to have to gain Gibby's confidence so he doesn't have to use Loup, Cecil and Delabar in every close game.

What do you think? Is there a move or two you'd like to make?

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