Today is Joey Hamilton's 38th birthday. Joey came to the Jays in one of the worst trades of the Gord Ash era. The Jays traded Woody Williams, Carlos Almanzar and Peter Tucci to get Joey from San Diego. Apparently Dave Stewart gave him a strong recommendation after coming to the Jays to be assistant GM having been the Padres pitching coach the season before. And Stewart wonders why he's not been hired as a GM.
Hamilton had been pretty good as a Padre going 55-44 in his five seasons there with ERA ranging from 2.98 to 4.27 in that span. Then his first year as a Jay he went 7-8 with a 6.52 ERA in 18 starts. The next season, 2000, he was on the DL most of the year making only 6 starts for the team. In 2001 Joey was 5-8 with a 5.89 ERA when the team released him on August 3rd. It is tough to release a guy you are paying $7.25 million to, but JP had no trouble admitting Gord Ash's mistakes.
All in all the Jays paid $17 million for 14 wins. Not exactly what you would want from someone you figured would replace Roger Clemens.
"I think he's just coming into his own," Stewart said. "What I like about Joey is that he is a real, real strong competitor. And, I still think there's room for growth."
"We have in Joey Hamilton a pitcher who can go in the front end of our rotation," Toronto general manager Gord Ash said.
Woody Williams went on to win 104 more games in his career. Almanzar had a couple of decent seasons in an up and down career and Tucci never made the big leagues. And Gord Ash was fired.
Oh and it is also my middle son's 16th birthday. Happy Birthday Tommy!