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Today in Blue Jays History: The Return of Gibby

Houston Astros v Toronto Blue Jays Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images

Six Years Ago

We traded Liam Hendricks to the A’s for Jesse Chavez. The comment thread was mixed, some liked it, some didn’t.

Yeah, it turned out to be a terrible trade.

After being a swingman, a part-time starter for the first four years of his career, the Blue Jays put Liam in the pen in 2015 and he was good. As a starter, in those four seasons, he had a 5.80 ERA. Then, in 2015, he had a 2.92 ERA in 58 appearances.

The A’s kept him in the pen and he was ok there for the first three seasons (4.01 ERA in 148 games). Then, in 2019, he became their closer and a star. He had a 1.80 ERA and 25 saves. 2020 was more of the same, in the short season. And, before the 2021 season, he signed a big free-agent contract with the White Sox.

Chavez? Well, he had a 4.43 ERA with us until we traded him to the Dodgers for Mike Bolsinger in August. Since then he’s played for the Angels, Rangers, Cubs, Rangers against and the Braves (he made seven appearances in their playoff run, without giving up an earned run).

I mostly bring up the trade because I know all the blood drains from Matt’s face when reminded of it. Matt wrote about Chavez a couple of days after the trade.

Also Six Years Ago

Cee Angi wrote us a post telling us we were going to love Mark Buehrle. I mostly note it because the comment thread went way off the rails.

A little history, SB Nation came up with this idea of having a small group of writers, Designated Columnists, who would do one post a week for each of the sites (headed by a writer I respect, Steven Goldman). I liked the idea, but many didn’t, feeling the guest writers were intruders on their ground.

Cee did a couple of posts for us. I liked them, but folks would focus on one line and complain. Then Cee wrote a post for DRaysBay, which basically ended the guest writer program. The post was fine, but the comment thread was the worst thing I’ve ever read on any SB Nation site, full of sexism, general stupidity and then out-and-out threats to do harm to Cee. Many folks were banned, and there was a change in the blog’s management. And the Designated Columnist idea ended.

Nine Years Ago

The Jays signed John Gibbons to be our manager for a second time. you’ll likely remember that John Farrell left the team to take his ‘dream job’ with the Red Sox (that went well for him).

We were happy.

He would lead the team for six seasons, getting us back to the playoffs twice. He has a very very fan-friendly personality, was a lot of fun in interviews. Career he has a 793-789 record, all with the Jays. In that second stint, he was 488-484.

I hope he gets another shot at a manager’s job.