About 3 weeks until the pitchers and catchers report to spring training and there is very little for news.
Richard Griffin has a nice profile of assistant general manager Tony LaCava in the Star today. He sounds like a great guy. I like what he said here:
"Some kids, especially the high school kids of the 2007 (draft) class, were challenged to levels of play just a little ahead of themselves," LaCava said. "They're 21 years old and for the most part are going to be repeating Dunedin and that's not a bad thing. What we're going to do is slow it down a little bit and let guys get their legs underneath them, have some success before moving them along."
The hard part about bringing prospects along is how hard to push them. Guys like Jackson and Tolisano didn't have a great year but then they played against players that were older then them. How important is it that they have great statistics compared to how important is that they are challenged to improve? I'd rather they have a poorer statistical year a level up then have a great year a level too low.
The lack of news and free agents left has Tao of Stieb talking to himself.
Baseball Prospectus has a list of the worst players at each position in baseball. No Jays made the list, but they had Rod Barajas and Raul Chavez as runners up for worst catchers.
And Alex Anthopoulos talked to Bob McCown on the Fan 590 yesterday. If you want to listen to it go here. Bits of interest:
- 32 pitchers are coming to spring training.
- They talked for awhile about how many wins Roy Halladay will get this year. I'm not sure I buy the idea that he's sure to win 25, but we'll see.
- Shaun Marcum has no restrictions going into the season.
- Travis Snider plays every day or won't be up with the Jays. I hope Cito is along with that. Personally, I don't care if he doesn't have a great year, I want him up and playing every day. He has nothing to prove in the minors. Personally when Jose Bautista and his career year 101 OPS+ is considered a lock to make the team and Travis' 98 OPS+ as a 21 year old rookie isn't a lock, I think you got your priorities wrong.
- He compared Brandon Morrow with Nolan Ryan. No pressure there. He's right that it took Nolan a few years to get the control needed to be a great pitcher but there are hundreds of pitchers that have come along that threw hard but didn't have enough control to win and never became Nolan Ryan.
- He was asked, by a fan, why should we pay to see the team, and he talked about the young pitching, Lind, Hill, Snider. To me, it depends what kind of fan you are. If you need to see the team win, maybe don't watch that much, but if seeing young players and young starters develop, this year and next year are the ones to watch.
- Alex talked about improving the scouting. He's says you want to have the ability to have more than one scout look at players of interest.
- Not signing the three draft picks was 'not a mistake' but he ran out of time while explaining why it wasn't.