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Thursday Bantering: Alex Anthopoulos

Tom Szczerbowski-US PRESSWIRE

Alex Anthopoulos talked to Greg Brady and Jim Lang on Sportsnet 560 this morning.

Here's some of what he talked about:

On the Romero call up:

He said they weren't sure they were going to call up Ricky but Alex said he called him up and asked "I called him, where are you, what do you think you need, do you think you need to get away, to get home..... or would it be good just to come up and be with the team". He said they talked for 30 minutes. I believe him, I don't think Alex can talk for less than 30 minutes on anything, at anytime.

I'm not sold that bringing Romero up was a good thing, but it doesn't cost anything. Romero will be removed from the 40-man again, after the season it over, and he'll have to have a very very good spring training to make the team next year. I don't know what the answer is, but a pitcher that was as good as Ricky was, just 2 years ago, you have to give every chance to find himself again. I that I don't think it is likely to happen, doesn't mean you shouldn't try.

On untouchables:

"I always listen on every player". This is the generic answer that every GM gives. And sure, of course he'll listen on every player, even Jose Bautista. Then, he adds that it is tough to trade your best players because you may fill one hole by moving them, but you open another hole. It has been made painfully obvious of late, that without Jose (and Colby) we don't have much of an offense. I'd bet dollars to donuts that Bautista won't be traded this off-season.

Bad teams blame their best players for losing. I lived through the Expos lamely trying to blame Gary Carter for not winning. As much as folks might try to blame Bautista for this season, the reason we have had a crappy year is not Jose, but really it is the black hole at 2B, catcher, LF and injuries/inconsistencies at starting pitcher. If you think some magical lack of leadership from Bautista has hurt the team more than the -2.2 WAR that Maicer Izturis has put up, then, well, there isn't much I can say that will convince you otherwise.

On defense:

"There were things with didn't discuss enough" before the season. Alex said they didn't consider defense enough. I'm not sure that's totally fair. No one expected Bonifacio and Izturis to be as awful defensively as they have been. I don't think anyone expected that going off PEDs would cause Melky Cabrera not to be able to run. That Jose Reyes would be hobbled much of the season. That Brett Lawrie would miss so much time. That J.P. Arencibia.....well, yeah that one we should have known.

About Ryan Goins, he's "as good a defender we've had here in a long time", saying that no one has been better at second since Orlando Hudson. He added that they don't put any stock in his offensive numbers.

On Brett Lawrie:

"If you put him at any position on the diamond, he could excel at it", given time to learn it. He said that the first time he saw Brett at third he thought they had a lot of work to do.

On Josh Johnson:

They will decide whether to offer Johnson a qualifying offer 'at the beginning to mid-October', after they talk to his doctors, when he's recovered. I don't believe it. I'm sure they have decided not to offer him a qualifying amount, at least I'm hoping they have, but perhaps they will wait until Octobers to decide if they will offer him something less than the qualifying amount.

On why R.A. Dickey and Mark Buehrle started so badly:

"Spring training was a zoo", saying that the Jays lost more players to the WBC than any team and the media circus around the team didn't help.