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Bluebird Links - Spring Training has Started!

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Phew, now that pitchers and catchers have reported, the long wait is almost over.  Who else is excited for the start of some baseball - meaningless games or not?  I know I am.  To wet your baseball appetite, check out this link.  Looks like some good baseball weather down in Dunedin.

Jeff Zimmerman over at Beyond the Boxscore posted a spreadsheet last week to help in predicting the 2011 standings.  I filled it out for the Jays (using the 2011 Marcel projections available on FanGraphs).  The numbers came out as follows:

Projected 2011 Pitcher WAR:  22.05

Projected 2011 Player WAR:  12.66

Projected 2011 Record:  83-79.

Sound about right?  Do you think the Jays have 83 wins in them this year?  Your Monday morning spring training links are after the jump.

Jays Links

No kid gloves for Lind
This article is mostly about Lind's transition to first, but I found this interesting:

"He thinks that my swing has changed because I’m so much bigger across here," said Lind, indicating his chest. "When I got to the big leagues, I was 190 pounds and now I’m at 225 pounds. (Shirley) said I’ve gotten so bulky that it has altered my swing. Now I’m working on keeping my shoulders back a little bit and standing more upright because my shoulders have rolled forward a bit. "It frees my hands up and it has felt good in the cage. We’ll see throughout the spring. Hopefully, my private hitting instructor — he works for free — knows what he’s talking about."

McGowan, Richmond face uncertain baseball future
Robert McLeod with a piece about the potential returns of McGowan and Richmond. We shouldn't expect anything from Dustin, but this has to be good news:

McGowan said so far, all is well with the shoulder and he threw off a mound for the first time since the second surgery on Wednesday and reported no problems. "The only thing I’ve really experienced is what I like to call normal soreness which is good to feel again," McGowan said. "I haven’t felt that in a long time. Each and every day it feels like it’s getting a little stronger, the soreness is going away."

New manager Farrell aims to broaden Blue Jay horizon
I like this about Farrell:

There were several familiar players milling about on the field during batting practice, including the likes of home run king Jose Bautista, Adam Lind and Travis Snider.

The new manager of the Toronto Blue Jays ignored them all and instead made straight for Anthony Gose, the young prospect who is attending his first major-league baseball camp. For the next 40 minutes John Farrell and Gose stood in centrefield and shot the breeze like a couple of old saloon pals in what was a telling snapshot of life with the new skipper.

Projected rosters: First Look
The Southpaw takes a crack at predicting the opening day rosters of the Jays and most of the minor league affiliates.

Are the Oakland A’s Going to Trade for Jose Bautista in 2011?
Mat makes the case for the A's trading for Bautista. Here's a question - if the Jays do trade Bautista mid season, what do you think a potential return could / should include? Assuming that he hasn't totally regressed back to his pre 2010 numbers.

Top 50 Jays Prospects, Jays Journal Edition: #10 Adeiny Hechavarria
Jays Journal has made it to the top 10 in their prospect ranking series. Number 11, number 12 and number 13 were also posted in the past few days.

2011 Minor League Players - Starting Pitchers
Batter's Box continues their series by looking at Starting Pitching depth.  They also took a look at outfielder depth throughout the system.

How A Slide Step Won The Jays The World Series
Parkes summarizes some dialog between Joe Carter and Mitch Williams for an upcoming MLB Network special.

Around the League

Albert Pujols Reportedly Rejects Latest Contract Offer
Are the odds that Pujols makes it to Free Agency increasing yet?

Leftover MLB Valentine’s Day Cards
Forget about Valentine's Day today? That's okay, Parkes has some MLB Cards for your significant other...

Harper swings the lumber
This is a big bat - 36 inch, 47 ounce. I can't imagine actually hitting a baseball with a bat this size.

Baseball's Superheroes
Larry Granillo gives a run-down of MLB players with super-hero nicknames.