So, yeah, we have these posts on 'confidence' that are part of the Gillette advertising campaign.
I guess the person I have that I have most confidence in in the organization is Alex Anthopoulos.
When he was hired, I'm not sure how much confidence I had in him. He's pretty young for a GM, though that seems to be the way things are going. It used to be that GM's were, well, old. They had been in baseball for 30 years and were thought to have learned all that was needed to know to run a team. Now teams want young guys that keep up with all the new ideas and come up with some of their own.
I didn't know much about Alex when he was given the job, though I had emailed him about 6 months before, asking for an interview, back when he was assistant GM. Funny enough, he replied the week they gave him the GM job. But I didn't know enough about him to have confidence in him. I figured he would have wanted to bring in his own manager right away, especially since there had been some trouble in the clubhouse right about them, but then he was smarter and wanted to take his time picking the right man.
Alex seemed to be saying all the right things and adding to the scouting staff was a good move, but anyone can say the right things. Then came the Halladay trade, which, for a trade that the Jays had to make, looked like a very good one. I really liked the League-Morrow trade. Anytime you can trade a reliever for a starter, it is a good thing. The Gonzalez for Escobar trade was great. I'd liked the Marcum for Lawrie trade. And course, the Wells trade was too good to believe.
There are other things, of course, the draft last year went well for the team. I liked the international free agents we signed. I liked how thorough his search for a new manager was and, even though I was hoping Butterfield would get the job, John Farrell looks like the right choice.
Alex has earned our confidence.
But he grew even more in my eyes when in an interview during the opening day telecast, he talked about the spring that J.P. Arencibia had. JP hit something like a buck 50 this spring. But Alex said that he told JP that he had a really good spring, both with the bat and the glove. I was very impressed that Alex looked beyond the numbers and used his eyes to decide how JP did. We always say that the number don't matter in spring training but when a guy doesn't hit much better than .100, it is hard to remember that. Getting the work in, what you do in batting practice, means more than what you do in 50 spring at bats.
All those things, how thoughtful he is when he speaks, how well the trades he has made have turned out, how he has hired good people to work with him, it all makes me have confidence in him.