Good times never seemed so good, eh?
Since the last edition of the Monday Morning Media Mashup, the Toronto Blue Jays went through a very eventful down and up week. The joy of winning two straight against the Cleveland Indians at home was quickly crushed by a horrible in New York, where the Yankees swept the Blue Jays out of town on straight sets, 6-3, 6-1, 6-0 (joke courtesy of MjwW). On top of that, the Jays lost All-Star slugger Jose Bautista for 15 days, and third baseman Brett Lawrie looked like he was going to be gone for a long time as well after hitting his leg hard on a railing in the Yankees stadium camera bay. Add a right forearm injury to bullpen stalwart Jason Frasor (who became the 8th Blue Jay currently on the disabled list), and even the most optimistic Jays fan would've been depressed.
But suddenly out of nowhere, in the late hours of an off day Thursday, the Twitterverse started rumbling with the news that Las Vegas 51s' outfielder Travis Snider was taken out of the game after a single at bat (in which he had hit a homer). We were all wondering what was going on--was Snider called up? Was he injured? Did he get traded?
Of course, on Friday morning, we found out that Alex Anthopoulos had completed a big 10-player deal with the Houston Astros, acquiring J.A. Happ, Brandon Lyon, and David Carpenter in exchange for three prospects, a player to be named, as well as fan favourites Francisco Cordero and Ben Francisco. To fill a roster spot, Travis Snider was recalled. (By the way, I had a post up asking you which former Blue Jay you would add to the current roster; no one said Brandon Lyon for some reason...)
Then, as if Travis Snider's recall was not enough, the last place Toronto baseball club strolled into Fenway and swept the Red Sox 6-1, 7-3, and 15-7, strolling out in 4th place and just a half game behind the 3rd place Tampa Bay Rays. Watching the offence this weekend was a treat, and so were the pitching performances by Aaron Laffey and Carlos Villanueva. But one of the greatest part of this series was watching the Snider-Rasmus-Gose outfield playind defense, especially Snider's expert handling of the Green Monster. Sure, the playoffs are still a long shot, but we all feel better than we did last Wednesday, right?
The Blue Jays will be hosting the Oakland A's starting Tuesday. It will not be an easy task, as they are on some sort of hot streak, having won 9 of their last 10 and coming off of a four-game sweep of the Yankees. But look: the Jays are 3 games behind the A's for the Wild Card, and a 3-game series.
Enough of my ramblings.... here are what you came for, your Monday morning links:
Blue Jays Related
Toronto Blue Jays put Travis Snider on a plane while you were sleeping - National Post
Talking about the Twitter ramblings last Thursday, Guy Spurrier, gave yours truly and Bluebird Banter a shout out in the National Post! Thanks, Guy, here's yours on Bluebird Banter!
Our guide to the Toronto Blue Jays-Astros 10-player trade - National Post
After the trade was completed, Guy looked at the Blue Jays - Astros trade by the numbers. My favourite? Finding out that David Carpenter used to be a catcher.
Edwin Encarncion, what’s going on? - Infield fly
Over at Infield Fly, Greg Wisniewski uses Brooks Baseball's new hitter cards to analyze what has changed for Edwin Encarnacion between 2010 and 2012.
Stepping Up - The Tao of Stieb
The Org Guy writes about how much he enjoyed watching Travis Snider and Colby Rasmus this weekend.
Bonus Pool Spending - Baseball America
The taxman cometh! The Blue Jays were allotted $8.83 million in their draft bonus pool this year, but ended up handing out $9.27 million for autographs on a contract. They now owe Major League Baseball a 75% overage tax, which amounts to $330,900. According to Jim Callis' calculations, the Jays will be paying the most tax out of any team--don't you hate it when they tax the rich? Callis also noticed that the Jays were just $341 away from having had to forfeit their first rounder in 2013. If I were Andrew Tinnish or Alex Anthopoulos, I would've offered Marcus Stroman, the last of the top 10 to sign, a $1,800,340 bonus just to make Bud Selig twitch.
Which Teams Have Been The Most "Clutch" - Beyond the Box Score
John Perrotto looks at cumulative "clutch" statistics for each of the 30 teams' offense, and finds that the Blue Jays are 4th last in the Major Leagues.
The many gloves of Yan Gomes Video - Sportsnet.ca
For the glove of the game: Yan Gomes introduces all the gloves he brings along to every city he goes to. So far in the Major Leagues, he has played 1B (42 innings), 3B (41), C (4), and LF (3).
Down On The Farm and Around The League links after the jump!
Down On The Farm
Adjustment time for Dyson - Sportsnet.ca
Shi Davidi talks to Sam Dyson after he was optioned back to AA New Hampshire after a rocky first try in the Major Leagues.
Elbow scars bind 51s' staff - Las Vegas Review-Journal
There is a Tommy John club on the Las Vegas 51s.
Veteran Robertson eager to rescue career, aid 51s - Las Vegas Review-Journal
In a move no one noticed, the Blue Jays signed lefty Nate Robertson to a minor league contract back on July 14, signing him away from the Wichita Wingnuts, a team he co-owns.
Around The League
Not being worth it is big deal to Vernon Wells - Los Angeles Times
T.J. Simers talks to a very emotional Vernon Wells in Salt Lake City. He knows that he will be a bench player when he gets reactivated from the disabled list, he knows fans think he is a bust, he knows that he sucked last year, he knows that Toronto fans cheered when he was traded away.
Mobile, Alabama: Birthplace of Hall of Famers - Baseball Nation
San Pedro de Macoris, Dominican Republic may be known as the "cradle of shortstops", but Mobile, Alabama is the cradle of Hall of Famers, producing more of them than any city other than New York and Los Angeles. These were: Satchel Paige, Hank Aaron, Willie McCovey, Billy Williams, and Ozzie Smith--all of them black players.
'Unbelievable' day as Larkin, Santo enshrined in Hall - MLB.com
Much congratulations goes to Barry Larkin and the late Ron Santo for their induction to the National Baseball Hall of Fame.
After Santo And Larkin, What's In Store For 2013? - Baseball Nation
Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens, Curt Schilling, Craig Biggio, Mike Piazza, and Sammy Sosa are the most prominent names on the 2013 Hall of Fame ballot. Who will be elected into the shrine?
Donors Seeking to Monetize Memorabilia Put Museums on Guard - New York Times
Former Yankees pitcher Don Larsen is best known for throwing the only perfect game in the World Series in 1956. Ball players back then made more than the regular Joe, but their salaries were nothing compared to what players make today. Larsen wants to auction off the uniform he wore that game to pay for his grandchildren's education, much to the chagrin of the San Diego Hall of Champions, who thought the item was a gift rather than a loan.
Alex Rios Is Good Again. Maybe. - FanGraphs
Our old friend Alex Rios is having quite a season this year after a horrific 2011. How "real" is his bounce back?
Mets designate Miguel Batista for assignment - CBS Sports
Which team would snap him up first? I noticed that no one mentioned him on that "bring back a former Jay" post.
Someone (or some people) have gathered all of the walk-up or warm-up songs from the Major Leagues and put them into a searchable database. Did you know that the Los Angeles Angels' Kevin Jepsen uses "Call Me Maybe", the hit song from his sister* Carly Rae? (*- not really his sister, but someone had vandalized Wikipedia)