Saturday, 17 July 2010
you may be asking . . .
. . . what the heck is going on?
At least if you are following Bastian and Lott on Twitter, or listening to Mike Wilner. if not, here's the news:
Travis Snider was activated from the DL - and assigned to AA New Hampshire, and this means that he'll have to stay there at least 10 more days (I'm not sure how the injury exception would work on that end - it's possible that if someone in Toronto were injured he could come up sooner).
Shaun Marcum was activated from the DL and Nick green was designated for assignment. For now the jays will go with 13 pitchers.
Marc Rzepczynski will start the third game in KC which will serve to let the Blue Jays skip Brandon Morrow's next start. the Jays are apparently instituting some rotation maneuvering designed to hold down the innings of certain pitchers in order to get them through the end of the season. Morrow is the most innings-challenged pitcher on the roster by a wide margin. So the rotation through the end of the month looks like this:
7/18 - @ Baltimore - Marcum
7/19 - @ K.C. - Cecil
7/20 - @ K.C. - Litsch
7/21 - @ K.C. - Rzepczynski
7/22 - @ Detroit - Romero
7/23 - @ Detroit - Marcum
7/24 - @ Detroit - Cecil
7/25 - @ Detroit - Listch
7/26 - Baltimore - Morrow
7/27 - Baltimore - Romero
7/28 - Baltimore - Marcum
7/30 - Cleveland - Cecil
7/31 - Cleveland - Litsch or Rzepczynski
(notice how neatly that breaks up the LH starters as well? not perfectly but never 3 in a row)
So - what's the implication of all this?
In my opinion, it means that the Jays anticipate some deals being made. A trade could relieve the "extra pitcher" imbalance, open a spot on the roster for Snider, and make room in the bullpen for Zep if the jays want to keep Litsch in the major league rotation. More than one trade (quite possible) provides even more manuvering.
That's not to say that managing Morrow's innings isn't a legitimate concern, it is, but it is smart roster management to take advantage of the current opportunity to make a payment on that account.
As for Snider, he's on a 2/26 streak right now, which shouldn't be the case against AA pitching. either his wrist is really affecting his swing, or, more likely given the eyewitness descriptions of his recent work, he's let the circumstances get into his head some again and he's pressing mightily. Hopefully he'll take a breath and realize what's really going on here.
there's two weeks until the deadline, and there are almost certainly going to be multiple Blue Jays leaving town in that time. Maintaining maximum flexibility right now is well advised. It would be a fascinating fortnight.