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Saturday Bantering: Bits of Jays stuff

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MLB: Toronto Blue Jays-Workouts Douglas DeFelice-USA TODAY Sports

There isn’t much out there for Blue Jays news this morning.

Kevin Pillar signed with the Red Sox, one-year, $4.25 million. I can’t see him playing center field with Jackie Bradley there, but lots can happen during spring training. You know what you are going to get with Kevin, a OPS within spitting distance of .700, some power and all-out defense.

The Athletic has a story on Dillon Gee, one of nine pitchers who were optioned or DFAed after a bad outing against the Astros in 2017.

“It sucks to get cheated and now that you got the short end of the stick,” Gee said this week. “They get to go out and pad their numbers and then ruin mine and I get screwed. I can see why there’s a lot of animosity about this.”

And there was this:

But once Gee entered, bangs could be heard five more times. Up big in a game they had well in hand, it seems that the Astros had no hesitation about using Gee as a punching bag.

Pretty scummy that, even with the game won, the Astros felt they had to continue to cheat. The story notes that Derek Fisher hit a home run that day. I haven’t heard any of the Jays beat writers talk to Fisher about the scandal.

Mike Bolsinger has to get some of those nine guys to join his suit. Or at least get some to testify if it goes to trial.

Baseball America has ranked the MLB farm systems and the Blue Jays come in sixth. That’s pretty good when you consider Vlad, Bo, Cavan and Danny graduated last season. The Jays have 3 players (Pearson, Groshans and Woods Richardson) in their top 100 prospects list.

The Jays were number 3 on the list before last season. I figured they would drop further down the list this year.

The announcement that the plan is to play Randal Grichuk in CF leaves the team with the question of where Teoscar Hernandez plays (likely playing some DH and some right field) and who gets the bulk of the time in right. They could platoon Fisher and Alford, but if those two were to play anyway, why not use them in center?

Whatever they do with the outfield, I hope they give up on the idea of having the outfield play so damn deep. I think the outfield could rate as, at least average, if they don’t give up so many hits between the infielders and the outfielder.

Shi Davidi has some quotes from Bo Bichette on the cheating scandal:

Would he have done what the tainted 2017 World Series champions did, he was asked.

”No. Absolutely not.”

So, you would have said, no banging on the trash can for me?

”I would hope that I would have made a pretty big ruckus that we were doing that in the first place,” he replied.

That’s nice to think and easy to say from a distance. But if Bo had been a rookie, it would have been tough to fight all the veterans on the team

I’ve never been a fan of Trevor Bauer but the Athletic has an interview with him, on the Astros (and other subjects) and he comes off pretty good.

Why is it important to you to speak out?

Because for two years, three years, they mocked me for bringing up the fact that they could possibly be cheating.

What I brought up, there’s no denying that they’re doing it, which is the ridiculous part. There’s that part of it, how can you know you’re cheating and then just go and attack someone for saying it?

And about Jim Crane’s non-apology:

What did you expect from them? The entire time they had been super dismissive and it’s very obvious that they don’t think it affected the game. They feel like they were in the right.

The other subject that I’m in total agreement with him is his complaint about broadcasters putting down the game all the time:

Then if you watch the game, you have announcers that are supposed to be working on behalf of the league to promote the game and then televise it and stuff like that, just shitting on it non-stop. “The product is so bad. The players strike out too much.” It’s all this negative crap.

It is a good interview. Go read it.

Sportnet has some comments from Dodgers players about it all:

Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw said he has come to terms with the scandal, yet he also understands why his teammates are angry.

“You start talking about how it really affected people,” Kershaw said. “You’ve got guys who maybe got kicked out of the league because they got beaten by Houston in 2017. You got guys who maybe should have won MVP or whatever. Stats that are changed. It’s just a bad feeling, because you’re kind of helpless. I think guys don’t really know how to feel, because it’s never happened before.”

One more. Dusty Baker doesn’t want pitchers throwing at his players. I don’t want it either. I think it is a stupid, immature thing to do. I know that’s how baseball was for 100 years, but then baseball did other dumb things for years too.

I will remind here that we have a rule against calling for people to be hurt.

For the Expos fans among us: