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March Madness Madness Weekend Links Sunday March 23, 2014

Here we go! Last week of spring training as the team goes thru its final tune ups in Florida and a bunch of links that won't include "best shape of his life."

Two real games have already been played in Australia.


Jose Reyes leaves game with hamstring tightness, Jays manager not worried | Toronto Star
John Gibbons has "zero" concern about his shortstop’s injury, as the Jays beat the Tigers 9-4 in spring training.

The Blue Jay Hunter: Adventures in Blue Jays Land: Romero, Stroman and Lind
Tuesday was a not a good day for the Blue Jays. Ricky Romero and Marcus Stroman got lit up, among other things.

What does new Rogers CEO mean for Jays? -
The Blue Jays parent company has a new CEO, a man known for shaking things up when necessary—but team president Paul Beeston says the early indications have been nothing but positive for the Jays.

The Blue Jay Hunter: Taking the Best Team North
Alex Anthopoulos said the Blue Jays would take the best team north. Is carrying players out of options compromising the quality of this team?

Dustin McGowan back in conversation for Blue Jays’ rotation | Toronto Star
Though he hasn’t started a game since 2011, the oft-injured Blue Jay is making a case for himself in 2014.

McGowan calling on the baseball Gods -
The baseball Gods owe Dustin McGowan one. Maybe they owe the 2014 Toronto Blue Jays one as well.

The Perils of Perception | 500 Level Fan
Perception is a funny thing. Different people perceive different events in different ways. Never has that been more evident than with Blue Jays fans this winter.


The MLB Regular Season Is Here, So Here's Vin Scully Speaking Australian
The Dodgers and Diamondbacks kicked off MLB's regular season today in Sydney, with L.A. taking Game One and Game Two underway now. Vin Scully is back, of course, and already giving us great sound bytes. Here he is introducing you to tonight's game with his attempt at speaking Australian.

Big League Baseball In Australia? What’s Up With That?
This weekend, the spotlight of the baseball world will be focused on Australia for the first time as Sydney hosts the opening series of the 2014 major league season, featuring the Dodgers and the Diamondbacks. It’s a first for Australia, and marks a significant moment in the long and colorful presence of baseball there.

Good Teams and Bad Players | FanGraphs Baseball
The Blue Jays still don’t have a real second baseman, and they’d sure like to play in October. (This October!)

The Final Year of Fred Hutchinson’s Life
Now let’s consider what a team faces when it deals with real-life tragedy.

The Tigers Don’t Need Stephen Drew | FanGraphs Baseball
One team’s needs in November and December might not be the same as their needs in February or March, and while players who sign late generally get less money than players who sign early, needs can develop that increase demand for a player closer to Opening Day. Note: Theme song... We Don't Need Another Shortstop?

More About Bunting and Beating the Shift | FanGraphs Baseball
Apparently what I’m really interested in these days is bunting. Which is a little odd, but which is also a welcome break from thinking about pitch-framing all the time. And though bunting is ordinarily associated with the dreaded and unproductive sacrifice, a well-placed bunt in fair territory can make for a hell of a weapon, in particular when it’s put down by a left-handed hitter against a defensive overshift.

Dodgers beat Diamondbacks on MLB opening day Down Under | Toronto Star
Clayton Kershaw dominant after brief rain delay. D-Backs bus breaks down half-mile from Sydney Cricket Ground.

D'Arnaud hits 2-run homer, Mets rout Marlins -
Ike Davis and Travis d'Arnaud each hit a two-run homer, leading the New York Mets to a 10-2 rout of a Miami Marlins' split-squad on Saturday.

Tanaka gives up three runs in Yankees’ win -
Masahiro Tanaka struggled a bit in one of his final tuneups for the regular season, allowing three runs while pitching into the sixth inning, but the New York Yankees still beat the Minnesota Twins.


Baseball History March 23rd - National Pastime - Baseball History
1963 On the day he is fitted for his big-league Orioles uniform, Steve Dalkowski, pitching in an exhibition against the Yankees, feels something pop in his left elbow. The fireballer from New Britain, Connecticut, who once struck out 24 batters in a minor league game, will never appear in the major leagues.