As we wait for Marc Rzepczynski's first major league start (What are we up to now, 5 guys to have their first start for the Jays this season, hmmm, Romero, Ray, Cecil, Mills? Am I forgetting anyone). In case you are wondering about Marc, I just happened to write about him Sunday, as part of our Prospect Midseason Report (Hugo did part one):
11. Marc Rzepczynski: Likely the guy that has done the most to solidify his place as a Jay prospect on our list. After 14 Double-A starts, he's moved up to Vegas. Two starts and 2 wins in Vegas with a 0.79 ERA has us looking at him as a possible call up if (please no) another starter goes down with an injury. Between the two levels he is averaging 10.6 strikeouts/9 innings and has only given up 1 homer in 88 innings. He is an extreme ground ball pitch, getting 2.35 ground outs/ fly out. Only negative this year is he is walking a few too many, 4.1/9 innings though he has done a little better in his two Triple-A starts. A lefty that throws low 90's, has a curve, slider and changeup can have a good major league career. 23 years old now, he likely will be fighting for a rotation spot in spring of next year.
I should have known better than to hope we wouldn't have another starter go onto the DL. What I didn't mention is his name is worth 40 points in scrabble, if you somehow missed the all the point multiplier spots.
More after the jump.....
In other news SB Nation has added a couple more features to the place, you can read more about them here but features are:
We are very excited to introduce mobile commenting to the platform. You can now sign in to each blog you are a member of and comment in GameThreads from the game or the bar or participate in an interesting discussion happening on a blog from anywhere with your phone.
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They keep adding things, soon this place will write itself.
Will Carroll isn't a favorite writer for Hugo and me and here is an example why:
Scott Richmond (15 DXL) One knowledgeable Twitterer said "don't we know Brad Arnsberg by the trail of dead?" after Richmond completed the set, giving every Jays starter this season a stint on the DL before we even get to the All-Star break. Arnsberg and his "throw harder" mentality certainly makes for an easy target, but I'm not sure he's the right one. The Jays' pitchers have had different injuries to different parts of their arms that have occurred in different ways. Dustin McGowan and Francisco Rosario have been injured initially in the minors, while Jesse Litsch and Ricky Romero made it up before showing any real problems. More confounding is Roy Halladay, who's only had minor problems and shown no ill effects during the Arnsberg era. Richmond's bicipital tendonitis is no big deal in the longer term, but when even the 'safety net' arms are breaking down, it's time for a hard look at the risk factors the Jays are taking on. While Arnsberg may not be saving any arms, it seems to be the front office and scouting staff that can't seem to judge the skill of health.
"Judge the skill of health?" What's that supposed to mean? Don't sign that Downs guy, he can't run to first without hurting himself? 'Litsch will need Tommy John after 2 seasons in the Majors, don't sign him?" Oh well.
In the National Post Jeremy Sandler asked JP if Arnsberg is to blame for the pitching troubles:
But Toronto general manager J.P. Ricciardi said he has full confidence the team’s staff is doing everything they can to minimize risk. "They’re not indicative of our trainers, our strength guys, our pitching guys at all, they just happen," said Ricciardi. "Actually in Richmond’s case we’re being proactive instead of reactive. We’re going to say ‘Okay, let’s shut him down and this should give him about three weeks off so he should be okay.’
Gaston also felt good about how the team handled its pitchers, though he seemed to think the injuries warranted a second look at the team’s pitching programs. "It’s certainly something that you’re going to step back and look at and say ‘What can we do better to prevent this from happening again?’ " he said. "Sometimes you can’t. Downs was just swinging a bat."
I'm glad Cito thinks we should look at how things are done though.
Sandler also talks to Brian Tallet about how is trying to improve how he hides pitches:
Blue Jay watchers may have noticed Tallet rapidly opening and closing his glove before he transfers the ball to his pitching hand, a trick he started earlier this season to try and keep prying eyes from figuring out what he is going to throw. "It’s just one of those thing instead of having an open glove on a change-up and a closed glove on a fastball, if I’m doing that every pitch it’s just one less thing they might be able to pick up," said Tallet. The 31-year-old said Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston first recommended he add the flutter after noticing a possible tip in his delivery earlier this season.
I'm always glad Cito is on our side.
There are stories all over about B.J. Ryan's troubles. Here is Richard Griffin's and here is a quote from BJ:
"It's tough when you don't get consistent work to go out there and be sharp. You can't use it as an excuse. You get your work done in the bullpen. It's just about going out there and making pitches. If you don't, you probably won't pitch again for a while.
I do feel sorry for the guy, it would be rough when you've had success for all your career then stopped having success. Fans always think we have the answers 'He's not working hard enough' or 'he doesn't care'. In reality the players work very hard and they care. Sometimes it doesn't work out. I'm not a fan of Kevin Millar's play but you won't ever hear me suggest that he is doing poorly because he doesn't care or doesn't try.
The Globe and Mail has a story by Greg Bishop about comic book artist and toy company owner Todd McFarlane's $10 million dollar balls. I mean the baseballs he paid $10 million for, including the ball Mark McGwire hit to break Roger Maris' home run record. Todd's balls aren't worth $10 million anymore. Somewhere there is a youtube video of a fellow singing about Todd McFarlane's balls.
SI.com has a mid-season look at who should win baseball's awards. Ricky Romero, Doc Halladay, Cito Gaston and JP all get some love. It is nice when a national publication notices our team.
To show the bad side of being noticed, Ken Rosenthal trots out the Halladay will be traded crap again. If you are a baseball expert, shouldn't you have to get things right now and then. I hate the title too, "Halladay all but gone in Toronto". How do you jump to that conclusion? Because JP said he would listen to offers for anybody. Ummmm of course he will listen, that's his job. Can you imagine a GM hanging up on another GM because he made an offer for the wrong guy? Ohwell, I guess trading for Doc is a dream for fans of all other teams.