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Saturday Bantering: Thoughts on firings, replay and other bits

Toronto Blue Jays v Boston Red Sox Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

In our LDS Prediction Contest, 2 of us got 3 of 4 series right. Dexfarkin and I both picked Astros, Cubs and Dodgers (missing on our Cleveland pick). But Dex picked the right number of games in all 3 series. He had the Astros in 4, Cubs in 5 and Dodgers in 3. That’s pretty impressive.

Great job Dex.

Watching the Cleveland/Yankees series, I can’t believe Cleveland still has that stupid grinning logo on their helmets. I thought they were phasing that out?

I’ve avoided talking about the mass firings in the Blue Jays front office, mostly because, from where I sit, it is hard to tell if those people were doing a good job or not.

Among those out of a job were a strength coach, Chris Joyner, and an assistant trainer, Mike Frostad. I have no idea if they were good at their jobs, but I hate to see people lose their jobs (John Farrell excluded).

In the PR department Mal Romanin (whose son plays in the Jays minor league system), Sue Mallabon and Erik Grosman were let go, along with digital marketing manager April Whitzman.

The only one I’ve dealt with was Mal, who seemed to be a good guy. I know he worked hard, and tried to present a positive spin on things.

Occasionally Mal would send a note after a press conference asking ‘what I thought’. I remember after the Yunel Escobar press conference, following the ‘eye black’ incident, he asked my takeaway. I said I thought it was going well until Yunel said ‘some of my best friends are gay’ (or something to that effect), which invited reports to ask who they were. That caused a stumble where Yunel mumbled something about his ‘hair dresser’ and his ‘interior decorator’. Mel wrote back saying ‘you can’t prepare the player for everything’.

My problems with the PR department center on them being over worked and not having time to reply to every email or answer every request. I’d send emails saying ‘I’m going to be at this series, could I get a few moments to talk to this coach’. Instead of getting an answer I’d get ignored, likely because they didn’t have time to set it up. Personally, I’d much prefer a ‘no’ than not getting an answer. I get that dealing with me isn’t their most important issue, but if the answer is no, say no. That’s easier to deal with than being totally ignored.

After a few of these non-answer to requests, I gave up on asking.

My favorite story, about the PR department: One time I was at a game and I member of the front office happened to be close, so I went over and introduced myself and said ‘I’d like to interview you sometime’. He said ‘Have you tried to set it up with the PR people’. I said ‘Yeah’. He said ‘And they blew you off, right?’. I said ‘Yeah’.

Anyway, I can’t see that firing 34 of the PR department will make them less overworked and more able to deal with requests. Personally, I think they should have hired 2 or 3 more people, not subtract. I think Mal and all were doing the best job they could but couldn’t keep up with everything.

The other part I don’t understand is, if you had a problem with the PR department, why keep the top guy (Jay Stenhouse). If there is a problem, doesn’t it come from the top?

A couple of day ago, Peter Gammons tweeted this:

I can see it happening. I think Farrell future is, more than likely, off the field. A front office job of some sort. There is no doubting he has baseball knowledge, I just don’t see anyone giving him an ‘on the field’ job.

I’m not sure the optics of the Jays hiring the guy that left them, for his ‘dream job’, would be great, and there are some members of the Jays media who would be irritated if they brought him back, but, if you think he could be of value, those are minor concerns.

Matt Gross and Grant Brisbee have already written about this, but the replay system needs some tweaking.

That replay, in the Cubs/Nationals game was terrible. You had a very exciting moment. Just the type of moment that you want in a ‘winner takes all’ game and it is erased because a foot may have come off the first base bag by a centimeter or so.

Personally, I think if you have to sync two separate camera views, maybe you say ‘inconclusive’.

This is nice to see:

Is it really 2 years since the Bat Flip? It doesn’t seem like it was that long ago.