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Happy Birthday Teoscar Hernandez

MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at Tampa Bay Rays Mary Holt-USA TODAY Sports

Teoscar Hernandez turns 28 today.

If you want to get him a birthday present, you can vote for him to win the Hank Aaron Award.

He is in the prime years for a ball player, the next few years should be fun. He’s had five seasons in the MLB and now he’s got a full-time job.

He had a 102 wRC+ last year and a 146 this year. If he can keep that up we’ll be very happy or, he says hopefully, if he can take another step forward, we will be ecstatic. He has some things to work on defensively, but there was improvement this year.

I think we can safely say that we won that trade with the Astros. Francisco Liriano pitched 14.1 innings for Houston.

Happy Birthday Teoscar. I hope it is a good one.

Carlos Garcia turns 53 today.

Carlos, you might remember, had one disastrous season with us. Back in November 1996 the Jays traded for Garcia, Orlando Merced and Dan Plasac from Pirates. We sent them Brandon Cromer, Jose Pett and Jose Silva and then December sent them Mike Halperin, Abraham Nunez and Craig Wilson to complete the deal. Have I mentioned I was never a fan of Jays GM Gord Ash?

In 1997 he hit a .220/.253/.309 in 103 games, playing mostly second base. He had 3 homers, 29 runs, 23 RBI and 11 steals. To make matters worse, he didn’t even play great defense for us, and we paid him a big $2.55 million for that season. By WAR values that was as bad a season as any non-pitcher had ever had for the Jays.

After the season, he signed with the Angels as a free agent and hit just .143 in 40 at-bats with them, then he went to San Diego doing no better, and then he was out of baseball.

He only had one decent season in the majors, hitting .269/.316/.399 as a rookie for the Pirates. He had 12 homers and 47 RBI in 1993, so it is hard to see what the Jays thought they were getting.

Of the guys we sent to the Pirates:

Craig Wilson went on to have a pretty decent MLB career. He played for 7 seasons, 6 with the Pirates, hit .262/.353/.474 with 99 home runs. His best season was 2004. He played 155 games, hit .264/.354/.499 with 29 home runs.

Abraham Nunez played 12 seasons, 8 with the Pirates. He hit .242/.313/.314 in 1030 games, mostly has a utility infielder.

Jose Silva pitched in 7 MLB seasons. He finished with a 25-28 record and a 5.41 ERA in 154 games, 53 starts.

Anyway, Happy Birthday Carlos.

Chad Mottola turns 49 today.

Chad was an outfielder. He only played a handful of MLB games, 59 spread over 5 seasons. 13 were with the Blue Jays.

But he was a long time minor leaguer. His last season in the minors was 2007, playing in Triple-A for the Jays (hitting .267/.324/.467), but at 35 he was transitioning to coaching.

In 2008 he became the Gulf Coast League Jays hitting coach. He became the roving minor league hitting coach in 2009 and then the hitting coach for the Triple-A Las Vegas 51s from 2010 to 2012. He was the winner of the Bobby Mattick Award for ‘excellence in player development’ in 2011.

For 2013 he was promoted to the Jays. And then Chad was fired at the end of the season. One year he was considered a miracle worker, the next, he’s fired—the life of a coach.

The Rays hired him, and he was the roving instructor for them. In 2017 he became their major league hitting coach, and he’s still there.