Monday, 28 July 2008


Lotsa stuff looming. The Rays are looming at the RC tonight and it'd be nice to finally solve that puzzle. McGowan's surgery is looming which directly impacts....

The looming trade deadline.

Call me crazy (many do!) but I think that even if JP were deceiving us about the possibility of AJ being traded, he dares not move him (short of a gross overpayment) until he finds out what they see Thursday inside McG's shoulder. IF it's a minor clean-up and he's certifiably good to go next spring it's one thing, IF they decide to repair his rotator cuff that's a 50/50 shot at not just a missed 2009 put a permanent trashing of a seemingly promising career. In the latter case, it is in the Jays best interest to cut a check for $4 or $5 million to AJ to buy that pesky option and ink him into next year's rotation.

I know, cue the tragic Greek chorus.

But the reality is that AJ at 12 per is as good or better buy than anyone else who is even remotely comparable to hm on the FA market, and none of those will sign for a mere 2 years either. CC Sabathia, Oliver Perez, John Garland, Kyle Loshe, Brad Penny, Derek Lowe, Ben Sheets....all will get as much or more money and/or more years this winter than AJ (and that's not to say that AJ on the free market would be any cheaper than what we are paying him - he wouldn't).

That said, I echo today's sentiment from the Inebriated - get the yard sale started. If you know you are going to pick up Barajas' option for next year and let Zaun walk, then deal him (one report said the Marlins would deal Cody Ross and that their injured catcher suffered a setback...let's get talking about that situation); Tallet has kicked away his chance to go to a contender but Frasor is a guy who, given our depth, is a non-tender candidate this winter....get something out of him, he's not doing anything Wolfe can't do. Stairs? It's only one million next year but if you are going to have to spend for pitching (i.e. AJ or a replacement) then clear the deals you can; Eckstein? Obviously. I have nothing against these guys - like all four actually. But if Gaston isn't going to use Zaunie or Eck, then he's not...move them. At least those two.

BTW, some are saying the Olympic deadline is Friday so if Richmond is sent down after his star Wednesday, he's cool on that score. Still, I must remake a point I have made before. The Jays organization knew that Parrish was on a short leash when they called him up, if they had bothered to reconcile Purcey's turn in AAA with the major league schedule (which was easy enough to do since it was his first start out of the break) then Purcey could have started last Friday and Parrish's turn would have fallen on the off day Thursday. It's always mistified me how there doesn't seem to be anyone in any front office that crunches the upcoming schedule to try to maximize pitcher usage.

One further note on pitching - and I know Twitchy disagrees with this - if Listch get's 3 or 4 starts in AAA and isn't showing progress, then I'm in favor of getting Cecil up here for a half dozen starts or so. Yes, the Jays have been limiting his innings in AAA, but by the standard rule of thumb (don't increase a young pitcher's innings more than 40 over his previous high) he should be good for 10 more starts or so. That's exactly how many he'd have if he pitched until the end of the major league season.


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