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New York Mets State Of The Union: 2014 Preview

The Mets are destined of another catastrophic year in Flushing Meadows.  The only saving grace may lie with the young players starting to flourish in 2014, and the 10 Year Stalwart David Wright.  A bad Bullpen. shaky rotation dependent on health, and a Strikeout laden club, with HR power, but low OBP fuels a fan to think 'what the hell is the ownership doing?

The Mets are destined for another catastrophic year in Flushing Meadows. The only saving grace may lie with the young players starting to flourish in 2014, and the 10 Year Stalwart David Wright continue to stake his claim as an ALL – Time Met. A bad Bullpen. shaky rotation dependent on health, and a Strikeout laden club, with HR power, but low OBP -  fuels a fan to think ‘what the hell is the ownership doing?  As tough a situation as it has been for the teams brass, Sandy Alderson and Moneyball’s Paul DePodesta’ have actually done spade work in rebuilding the Minor League System and big club with prospects.  I am afraid 2014 will be another dull year at Citi Field.

Hunter Stokes (Chief Writer): 

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To fully describe the current state of the ‘Big Apple’ franchise we must go back to Sept of 2013.

New Team icon, and filthy dominant Right Handed Pitcher, Matt Harvey was looking to put up an awesome end to his 2013 campaign, and give the Mets fans full fledged hope for the following season.

Harvey underwent Tommy John Surgery just a few months later, which has both curbed expectations, but also excitement at the same time for the upcoming year.

Sandy Alderson pursued Curtis Granderson and landed him on a 4 YRs/$60 MIL deal, and also signed SP Bartolo Colon to a 2 YR Deal worth $20 MIL.

In a smaller move, he also inked Chris Young to a deal for one year. Read the rest of this entry

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The Toronto Blue Jays Players, Organizational Affiliates, Prospects + Depth Charts (MLB + MiLB)

The Blue Jays have been trading away all of their top prospects in recent years, and so far, not one of the players has come back to burn them.  Unfortunately, the veterans brought in via trade haven't pushed them over the top either.

The Blue Jays have been trading away all of their top prospects in recent years, and so far, not one of the players has come back to burn them. Unfortunately, the veterans brought in via trade haven’t pushed them over the top either.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner): and Jeff Kleiner (Salary, Roster and Depth Chart Expert for the MLB) – visit his website  here  

For all of the Rosters, Depth Charts, State of the Unions and Salaries Posts that we do, please visit our dedicated page link here.

The Blue Jays have invested a great deal of their future in trades in recent years.  First they traded away several prospects to acquire Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle, Josh Johnson and John Buck.

The 2nd move was to also trade Travis d’Arnaud and Buck for R.A.Dickey.  However the moves backfired on them in 2013.

What is worse for the team, is the franchise has not been able to develop their own talent over the last several years.  Their best players on the club were all brought in via trades.

Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion were absolute steals for the guys they doled out to reel them in (Robinson Diaz, never played in the Majors for Pit in the Joey Bats deal, and they originally acquired in the Scott Rolen traded to Cincy.  He was selected off of waivers by Oakland, before he came to the club via Free Agency.

Jose Bautista 2013 Highlights

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The Miami Marlins State Of The Union – Winter 2013 + A 1 Year Look Back At MIA/TOR Trade

It has almost been a year since the Blue Jays and Marlins deal that saw Josh Johnson, Jose Reyes, Emilio Bonifacio, John Buck, Josh Johnson come to Canada - in exchange for a bushel full of prospects, Yunel Escobar and Henderson Alvarez.  Toronto suffered the same fate nearly as the 2012 Marlins - in terms of record.  All of the Miami players struggled at the MLB level, but primarily that is because they were all 1st or 2nd year players.  It will be plenty of seasons until the final verdict is handed down on this trade.

It has almost been a year since the Blue Jays and Marlins deal that saw Josh Johnson, Jose Reyes, Emilio Bonifacio, John Buck, Josh Johnson come to Canada – in exchange for a bushel full of prospects, Yunel Escobar and Henderson Alvarez. Toronto suffered the same fate nearly as the 2012 Marlins – in terms of record. All of the Miami players struggled at the MLB level, but primarily that is because they were all 1st or 2nd year players. It will be plenty of seasons until the final verdict is handed down on this trade.  Reyes still slashed .296/.353/.780 – and posted 113 Hits and 58 Runs in 93 Games Played the for Toronto Blue Jays.  He did miss 69 Games due to injury.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner):

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A year has almost gone by since big blockbuster move made by the Miami Marlins and the Toronto Blue Jays.

In a bullet version of this story, the Miami team only finished with 7 wins less than the 2012 version of themselves, yet they have stockpiled many of young assets, and all for about a one-third of a payroll they had last year.

Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle and R.A. Dickey (parlayed by throwing Travis d’Arnaud and former Marlin John Buck via trade) had average years only, and Emilio Bonifacio was eventually moved to Kansas City for bad play.

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The New York Mets Payroll In 2014, Organizational Affiliates, Prospects, Depth Charts, (MLB + MiLB)

 

Citi Field is one of the newest Ball Parks in the Majors and was the host to the 2013 ALL - Star Game.  It is light years ahead of where Shea Stadium was.  Despite having a great young core of players - including a dynamic young Starting Rotation, the team is 12th in Home Attendance.  A lot of the problems stem from poor ownership over the last few seasons.  The Wilpons are lucky enough to have a plethora of young controllable Infielders and Pitchers, the big need is for the OF going forward.  The club should definitely invest some money in this area for 2014.  Lucas Duda, Kirk Niewenhuis, Eric Young Jr, are simply not starting OF at the present time.  Their best patrolling player beyond the grass this campaign has been Marlon Byrd - and he is a Free Agent in 2014.

Citi Field is one of the newest Ball Parks in the Majors and was the host to the 2013 ALL – Star Game. Despite having a great young core of players – including a dynamic young Starting Rotation, the team is 12th in Home Attendance. A lot of the problems stem from poor ownership over the last several seasons. The Wilpons are lucky enough to have a plethora of young controllable Infielders and Pitchers, the big need is for the OF going forward. The club should definitely invest some money in this area for 2014. Lucas Duda, Kirk Niewenhuis, Eric Young Jr, are simply not starting OF at the present time. Their best patrolling player beyond the grass this campaign has been Marlon Byrd – and he is a Free Agent in 2014.  Juan Lagares, Andrew Brown, Mike Baxter have also seen time out there in 2013.  None of them have had resounding success – that would translate into a playoff contender.  While some of them could improve, spending some $$ on proven OF talent, could be the right elixir to contend even in 2014.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner): and welcome Jeff Kleiner (Salary, Roster and Depth Chart Expert for the MLB) – visit his website  here  

You guys are all in for a treat.  Jeff Kleiner recently contacted me about a partnership merge for the website.  He has developed a site (prosportsrosters.com) that covers all organizational affiliates in the Minors for all of the Major League Baseball Clubs. 

We are going to combine efforts to bring you the best look at salaries, current 25 Man Player Rosters and Depth Charts for all 30 teams. 

Jeff is going to provide the documents in form of spreadsheets and I am going to accompany the posts with deep analysis of what the numbers tell us from my perspective. 

If you can’t wait for all of my assessments for each club, go and visit Jeff’s website over at http://www.prosportsrosters.com.

In Speaking with Jeff, he is one of the more passionate fans I have come across towards the game of baseball.  He spends enough time in updating his MLB Facts for it to be a Full-Time Job. 

So after the usual Video Clip and READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY button, you will find some serious &*!@?!#!

Jeff updates this page below on a daily basis.  After you click on it….Bookmark it.  There is a 3 year salary forecast and stats not listed here on this page.  Jeff updates these pages daily and these changes include any Roster moves!

For a Full 3 year Salary Outlook plus last years Stats for every player in the Mets Organization click here.

Read the rest of this entry

New York Mets Payroll In 2013 And Contracts Going Forward

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Monday, July.15, 2013

The Mets have arguably the best young right-handed pitcher in baseball. He is the ace of their starting rotation, and has a chance to be their best pitcher for a long time. Harvey has seven wins on the season with a 2.35 ERA with 147 strike outs in 130 innings pitched and a WHIP of 0.91. He has a SO/9 of 10.2 and has only surrendered seven Home runs.

The Mets have arguably the best young right-handed pitcher in baseball. He is the ace of their starting rotation, and has a chance to be their best pitcher for a long time. Harvey has seven wins on the season with a 2.35 ERA with 147 strike outs in 130 innings pitched and a WHIP of 0.91. He has a SO/9 of 10.2 and has only surrendered seven Home runs. He is holding the opposition to a .196 average, while holding left-handed batters to a .175 average. He is especially good with runners in scoring position, as teams just hit .231 in this situation.

By Chris Lacey (Lead Baseball Columnist/Minority Website Owner)

The New York Mets are fourth in the National League East division going into the All-Star break and that won’t change in the second half of the season for this club.

The teams that are ahead of them in their division are more adept at scoring runs, and have better starting rotations. The second part could change with two young arms already in the rotation with Harvey and Wheeler.

The 2013 New York Mets 

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Blue Jays’ Was It Worth The Risk?

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Thursday, July.11, 2013

Dickey is not the same pitcher he was with the Mets a season ago. He had a 2.73 ERA in 233.7 innings pitched with 230 strike outs and a 1.05 WHIP. He was third in WAR for pitchers, with it at 5.8. This year for Toronto he has a 4.77 ERA in 122.2 innings with a WHIP of 1.28.

Dickey is not the same pitcher he was with the Mets a season ago. He had a 2.73 ERA in 233.7 innings pitched with 230 strike outs and a 1.05 WHIP. He was third in WAR for pitchers, with it at 5.8. This year for Toronto he has a 4.77 ERA in 122.2 innings with a WHIP of 1.28. The opposition is hitting .245 against him, with right-handers hitting .238 , and left-handers hitting .251. When runners are in scoring position this is where he has issues, as teams are hitting .333 with a .996 OPS. When its two outs, it gets even worse, as teams  hit.347 facing him with a 1.090 OPS.

By Chris Lacey (Lead Baseball Columnist/Minority Website Owner)

The Toronto Blue Jays 2013 season has not panned out how many envisioned it would. They made a flurry of moves to bring new players to the team. The reason was that their General Manager Alex Anthopoulos saw an opportunity and was willing to take a risk.

He traded away a bevy of prospects to the Miami Marlins, and some more to the New York Mets for proven players that have done well in their careers. The team on paper looked like they could win the American League East division and contend for a World Series title.

Jose Bautista 2011 Highlights- So Parental Guidance Is Advised

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Toronto Blue Jays Organizational Charts: Payroll, Depth Charts And Rosters, (MLB + MiLB)

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Saturday, June.14/2013

The Blue Jays have played better baseball of late, are now 30 - 36.  They sit in last place in the AL East.  Mark Buerhle was great in a 8 - 0 win versus Texas Fri.

The Blue Jays have played better baseball of late, are now 30 – 36. They sit in last place in the AL East – 9.5 Games Behind the Boston Red Sox. Mark Buerhle was great in a 8 – 0 win versus Texas Fri.  The two teams continue a Series today.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner): and welcome Jeff Kleiner (Salary, Roster and Depth Chart Expert for the MLB) – visit his website  here  

You guys are all in for a treat.  Jeff Kleiner recently contacted me about a partnership merge for the website.  He has developed a site (prosportsrosters.com) that covers all organizational affiliates in the Minors for all of the Major League Baseball Clubs.  We are going to combine efforts to bring you the best look at salaries, current 25 Man Player Rosters and Depth Charts for all 30 teams. 

Jeff is going to provide the documents in form of spreadsheets and I am going to accompany the posts with deep analysis of what the numbers tell us from my perspective.  If you can’t wait for all of my assessments for each club, go and visit Jeff’s website over at http://www.prosportsrosters.com.

In Speaking with Jeff, he is one of the more passionate fans I have come across towards the game of baseball.  He spends enough time in updating his MLB Facts for it to be a Full-Time Job.  So after the usual Video Clip and READ THE REST OF THIS ENTRY button, you will find some serious &*!@?!#!

Jeff updates this page below on a daily basis.  After you click on it….Bookmark it.  There is a 3 year salary forecast and stats not listed here on this page.  Jeff updates these pages daily and these changes include any Roster moves!

For a Full 3 year Salary Outlook plus last years Stats for every player in the Blue Jays Organization click here

Read the rest of this entry

The Mets Should Call Up Zack Wheeler Right Now!

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Tuesday April.30, 2013

Zack Wheeer was brought to the Mets via Trade for Carlos Beltran   This 6 FT 4 - 185 LB Right Handed specimen was ranked #8 by Baseball America in 2013.  Last year, Wheeler was 12 - ,with a 3.26 ERA.  He fanned  148 Batters in 149 Frames with Binghamton (EL) and Buffalo (IL).  This year he has struggled in the PCL with hitter friendly parks.

Zack Wheeer was brought to the Mets via Trade for Carlos Beltran. This 6 FT 4 – 185 LB Right Handed specimen was ranked #8 by Baseball America in 2013. Last year, Wheeler was 12 – 8,with a 3.26 ERA. He fanned 148 Batters in 149 Frames with Binghamton (EL) and Buffalo (IL) combined. This year he has struggled in the PCL with hitter friendly parks.  Mets fans should not worry, the man can pitch.

Stephon Johnson ( Baseball Writer and Mets Correspondent):

Forget what you heard about his last few starts in Triple-A Las Vegas. It’s time for the New York Mets to bring up pitcher Zack Wheeler.  

Forget about the 5.79 Earned Run Average in Triple-A or the 15 Walks in 23.1 Innings playing in the notoriously hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League. Wheeler needs his shot in Flushing and he needs it now…and so do Mets fans.  

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The Mets Fans Have Good Reasons To Be Choked

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Friday, Mar.29/2013

Johan Santana signed a 6 YR/$137.5 MIL deal with the Mets prior to the 2008 season.  He only managed to start in 109 Games for the franchise in his stint.  With a 2nd shoulder surgery coming - he is likely finished for his Career.  He will receive a $5.5 MIL Buyout for the team declining his 2014

Johan Santana signed a 6 YR/$137.5 MIL deal with the Mets prior to the 2008 season. He only managed to start in 109 Games for the franchise in his stint. With a 2nd shoulder surgery coming – he is likely finished for his Career. He will receive a $5.5 MIL Buyout for the team declining his 2014 Option.  That means he will have made $143 Million in his New York time.  This works out to be over $1.2 MIL per game.  If pro – rated on a 33 Start season, it equates to be about a $40 Million a year pitcher.  Santana is 46 – 34 – with a 3.14 ERA for his Met playing days.

By Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Analyst/Website Owner):

Today has to eb a frustrating day if you are a Mets fan with the news of Johan Santana being out for the year.  It is just another example of a deal gone awry from a superstar. 

Tom Glavine, Pedro Martinez, Mo Vaughn, Jason Bay and  Roberto Alomar….What do these ex – superstar players have in common with former Cy Young Winner Johan Santana??

How about all of them played at ALL – Star Caliber (even Hall of Fame Careers) before they entered a Mets uniform.   Once they arrived in the Big Apple, their careers basically fizzled out faster than a sparkler on the 4th of July.  They all made great money in their time with the New York club, yet failed to live up to expectations.

All 27 Outs of Johan Santana’s No Hitter:

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The Washington Nationals Roster for 2013: State Of The Union Updated Mar.7/2013

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Thursday March 7, 2013

The Nationals are one of 2 teams in the MLB (The Mariners is the other) that have never made a World Series Appearance.   Will this change in the Year 2013?

The Nationals are one of 2 teams in the MLB (The Mariners is the other) that have never made a World Series Appearance. Will this change in the Year 2013?

By Ryan Dana (MLB Reports Writer):  .

It’s clear that the Washington Nationals have turned the corner as a franchise on the rise. Their most recent high included a 2012 campaign that had them winning 98 games in the regular season, good for the most in the majors, but ended with heartbreak in a game 5 loss in the NLDS at the hands of the St. Louis Cardinals. Moving forward to 2013, the Nationals will certainly hope to make it deeper into the playoffs, but it will be easier said than done. The Nationals have shown patience in the past, but have made some aggressive moves this off-season.

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The New York Mets 2013 Roster: State Of The Union

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Monday December 31st, 2012

a new york mets

(There’s a still reason to come to Shea Citi this year (or why you should watch the 2013 Mets)

Stephon Johnson ( Baseball Writer and Mets Correspondent):

-You knew someone had to go:

The Mets had a few decisions to make during this current offseason regarding personnel. Stick with Cy Young Award winner (and franchise folk hero) R.A. Dickey or stick with franchise face and soon to be Mr. Met David Wright. While general manager Sandy Alderson might have tried as hard as he could to keep Dickey at Citi Field for a price that would appease the cash strapped Wilpons, the situation ended up like the plot to Highlander: there could be only one.

But where does that leave the team and the fans who make the trek out to Flushing? Playing in a NL East that features a World Series contender in the Washington Nationals, a perennial playoff team in the Atlanta Braves and the “not-as-good-but-still-better-than-you” Philadelphia Phillies, the Miami Marlins are the only team standing between the Mets and last place in 2013.

But Mets fans should still come to Citi. Read the rest of this entry

Josh Thole, Travis d’Arnaud and the Mets Catcher Situation

Sunday, December 16th, 2012

Rob+Johnson+New+York+Mets+v+Pittsburgh+Pirates+MU8cMY-7Jikl

Sam Evans (Baseball Writer): 

After Josh Thole’s promising year in 2010, it seemed almost as if Thole was a long-term solution for the New York Mets at catcher. However, over the last three years, Thole has become less and less productive at the plate. In just one day, New York made a statement proving that they no longer believe Josh Thole can be the kind of player he was when he first arrived in the majors. The Mets made a gigantic trade with Toronto yesterday, which will send out Thole and bring in Travis d’Arnaud, one of the finest catching prospects in the game. Thole’s future in New York is over, while d’Arnaud’s is just beginning.

After being selected in the 13th round of the 2005 Amateur Draft, Thole spent five seasons in the minors. While moving up through the minor league ranks, Thole never dominated any level but he hit for average and played solid defense pretty much everywhere he went. Years later, Thole’s value is practically centered around his ability to hit for average and play average defense behind the plate. Read the rest of this entry

The Toronto Blue Jays Franchise 1994-2012: Part 2 of a 7 Part Series

Wednesday, Nov.28th, 2012

Note from Chuck Booth:  I am attempting to bring the history for each of the 30 MLB Franchises into a 5-7 part series that will focus on 1. The teams history.  2. The hitters 3. The pitchers. 4. The Teams Payroll going into 2013 and 5.The Ball Park that they play in. (The stadium articles will all be done next summer when I go to all of the parks in under a month again.)  Be sure to check my author page with a list of all of  my archived articles section here.

Today’s Part 2 Feature of the Blue Jays Franchise will be written by our Baseball Writer Alex Mednick.  To do this franchise series service, Alex has studied this club a lot more than I have in the last 20 years and will do this article better justice for you the reader!

Alex Mednick (Baseball Writer and Analyst):

Note from Alex Mednick:  Chuck Booth offered to me the opportunity to step in to his Franchise Series and cover the Blue Jays history from 1994-Present. I gladly accepted the honor.

In Part 1 of this series, Chuck covered the Blue Jays history from their humble beginnings at Exhibition Stadium in 1977, through the glory years in the late 80s and early 90s.  The story dropped off right after the Blue Jays won back-to-back World Championships in 1992 and 1993.  We closed the books with the walk-off winning home run by Joe Carter to win the World Series, and the parties and celebrations that were to follow across Ontario, Canada.  I will pick it back up at the beginning of the 1994 season, when the Blue Jays had high hopes to win a third consecutive world championship.

(Scroll Down Past the Links or Click the READ MORE OF THIS ENTRY ICON.)

Franchise Series Links:

Franchise History Part 1 1977-1993:  http://mlbreports.com/2012/11/09/jays1/

The Hitters:  The Toronto Blue Jays Franchise Hitters: Part 3 Of A 7 Part Article Series: 

The Pitchers:  The Toronto Blue Jays Franchise Pitchers Part 4 Of A 7 Part Series

Skydome:  An Interview with ‘Rogers Centre Expert’ and “MLB reports Founder” Jonathan Hacohen Part 5 of 7

2013 Team Payroll:  http://mlbreports.com/2012/09/10/tor/

Special Bonus Fan Blog Of 2013 Team Payroll:   http://mlbreports.com/2012/09/12/torfanalex/

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Dissecting The Blockbuster Trade Between The Blue Jays And The Marlins

Wednesday, November.14/2012

Jose Reyes is a .291 Career Hitter and has averaged 55 Steals and 110 Runs Per 162 Games Played. He should have no problem scoring runs with Encarnacion and Joey Bats hitting in the middle of the lineup for Toronto.

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer):

I think you can safely say that the off-season has truly begun!  I was writing on my computer yesterday when the big trade blew up on twitter.  I live in White Rock, British Colombia, Canada,  so you can only imagine how excited the whole country of Canada was to talk about baseball on the big media Social Website.  Within minutes, it was clear that the Marlins and Jays were talking about a huge deal.  There is a remarkable quality that I have admired about Alex Anthopoulos for a few years now.  That his organization is pretty tight-lipped about their negotiations with any MLB team, just as it was with the Marlins on Tuesday.  I waited a few minutes and then…..WHAM!  A Blockbuster trade came right down the PIKE!  Here is the trade in case you have been living under a rock for the past 24 hours.

To visit the 2013 Updated Version of the Toronto Blue Jays 2013 Payroll Blog I did click here

To the Blue Jays 2012 Stats:

SS/2B Jose Reyes  .287  11 HRs 57 RBI, 86 Runs, 40 SB

SP Josh Johnson  8-14  3.81 ERA  191.1 IP 165 SO

C John Buck .192  12 HRs 41 RBI

2B/ss/3B/ Emilio Bonifacio  .258  1 HR 11 RBI, 30 Runs, 25 SB in 244 AB

SP Mark Buehrle  13-13  3.74 ERA  202. IP (12th straight year of 200 IP+)

4 Million Dollars Cash

To the Marlins:

SS Yunel Escobar  .253  9 HRs 51 RBI

2B/SS Adeiny Hechavarria  .254  2 HRs 10 RBI, 126 AB

C Jeff Mathis .218 8 HRs 27 RBI, 211 AB

SP Henderson Alvarez  9-14  4.85 ERA  187.2 IP

Also Prospects:

SP Justin Nicolino:

RP: Anthony DeSclafini:

OF: Jake Marisnick Read the rest of this entry

The Blue Jays Payroll 2013: A Reader’s thoughts On The Jays Part 7 of a 7 Article Series

Wednesday, September.12/2012

Note from Chuck Booth:  Sometimes at the Reports, we are fortunate to have someone take out some serious time to write a huge-detailed explanation of their thoughts on a piece we have written about.  I was blown away by the enthusiasm of one of these such readers.  Alex Mednick and I started back and forth on the piece I wrote about the 2013 Toronto Blue Jays and I suggested that we should give his analysis a full appreciation by posting it in a guest column for him,  So this is Alex’s guest column:

Alex Anthopoulos has fixed a lot of the problems that J.P. Ricciardi left him with. It will take a few more years to see the club reap the benefits of the stock-piled talent coming from the replenished Minor League System.

Alex Mednick: (Special Guest Writer):

Update after the Nov.13 Trade with Miami:

Man, I gotta say…The move with the Miami Marlins made by the Blue Jays shows that management want’s to play ball.  Signing Josh Johnson and Mark Buehrle give the Blue Jays two bonafide front-end starters to add into the mix in 2013.  With a healthy year from Johnson and Morrow, you’ve got to guys with electric stuff going 1-2, and Buehrle is about as solid of a #3 any team could wish for.  Romero in the number 4 slot, takes a lot of pressure off of him to bounce back, and even if he can simply perform at 90% of what he is capable of…it’s a pretty sight for the Blue Jays to have this kind of rotation in the AL East.  Management definitely quieted some dubious fans and put it’s money where it’s mouth is!  

The signing of 29 year old Jose Reyes gives the Blue Jays a superstar shortstop up the middle for the next 5 years.  A guy to lead off who gets on base and steals 40+ bases a year will be very nice to set up the table for Bautista, Encarnacaion and Lawrie.  And I wouldn’t be surprised if the Blue Jays still added some more pop to the lineup by trading for an offensively minded left fielder or DH.  

The Blue Jays inherited a lot of salary from the deal, but only parted with a few prospects from their deep farm system (Nicolino…one of the Big 3 pitchers, Hechevarria, and Marisnick).  They now have Bonifacio and Izturis at 2nd base who are nearly identical players and can deal from a sudden strength there in a emaciated 2nd base market…and they have a plethora of catchers in another thin market, that they can trade.  Not to mention the remainder of their extensively talented farm system which they can use as trade bait.  

I don’t think the Blue Jays are happy with expecting Adam Lind to bounce back, and I’m unsure whether they are comfortable with Gose/Rasmus in CF either so I would expect them to bring in another outfielder or DH.  They already have incredible speed on the basepaths between Gose, Lawrie, Bonifacio, Reyes and Davis.  

They may still go after ANOTHER pitcher in the mold of Edwin Jackson, but it is doubtful that they want to spend any more money on the rotation after acquiring Johnson and Buehrle.  If they did anything it would likely be via trade, but why when they have Drew Hutchinson, Kyle Drabek, JA Happ and a bunch of other great 5th starter possibilities laying in wait?  They are more likely at this point to use trading chips for offense/and or bench players.

The Blue Jays finally made a bold move that shows they recognize that with their current players/contracts/core and the current health of the AL East…the time to strike was now…we couldn’t continue to wait for a rich farm to develop and then harvest.  Who would have ever guessed that the two front end starters we required this offseason would come in a single trade? Out of nowhere! And we knew that Yunel Escobar was on the trading block, but we never would have expected to have a Super Star like Jose Reyes at SS for the next 5 years?  I know the Blue Jays inquired on Reyes last year during the offseason, but wow…All we can say is “Thank you Mr. Loria”.

I really enjoyed your analysis of the Blue Jays future (for that blog click here ) along with your digest of the various possibilities and directions that may chose going forward.

Furthermore, you hit the nail on the head: When Alex Anthopoulos  inherited this team from J.P. Ricciardi, he was merely a protégé of a failed, and over-hyped GM (Ricciardi), who was the protégé of Billy Beane…possibly also “over-hyped”. If Anthopoulos learned anything from his time working under J.P. Ricciardi, and his time sweeping floors in Montreal it may have been this: “While some people may quantify your value based on perceived potential, it is best to quantify yourself on what you have actually done”. Therefore, Anthoploulos wasted no time making moves and proving to all of Canada (along with most of baseball) that he truly is a Ninja. Somehow, someway…he was able to convince the Angels brass, and the ChiSox to fill in the holes that Ricciardi had dug with contract extensions to Vernon Wells and Alex Rios (respectively).

For Part 1 of a 7 Part Article Series:  The Toronto Blue Jays Franchise 1977-1993, click here

For Part 6 of the 7 Part Series:  Blue Jays 2013 Team Payroll Click here:

Read the rest of this entry

The Toronto Blue Jays Payroll 2013 and Contracts (Updated For MIA Trade Nov.13/2012)

Monday, September.10/2012

Note from Chuck Booth:  I am attempting to bring the history for each of the 30 MLB Franchises into a 5 part series that will focus on 1. The teams history.  2. The hitters 3. The pitchers. 4. The Teams Payroll going into 2013 and 5.The Ball Park that they play in. (The stadium articles will all be done next summer when I go to all of the parks in under a month again.)  Be sure to check my author page with a list of all of  my archived articles section here.

The Blue Jays have not qualified for the Playoffs since they won Back to Back World Series in 1992 and 1993. At that time, they were around the top of the MLB Payroll for all teams. How much will they spend in 2013?

Chuck Booth (Lead Baseball Writer):

It has been a disastrous season for the Toronto Blue Jays in 2012.  Only the Boston Red Sox can usurp them in the AL East for being more disappointing.  It is not entirely anyone’s fault, injuries to many key pitchers-plus the loss of Jose Bautista just after the All-Break, crippled the team’s ability to compete.  Just chalk up the season to unlucky.  Fortunately for the Blue Jays, Alex Anthopoulos has kept the team flexible with the payroll going forward.  I still think that getting out of the Vernon Wells and Alex Rios contracts was the biggest ‘Houdini Act’ of the New Millennium.  Since he got out from under those contracts, only Joey Bats makes more than 10 Million Dollars now on the club.  To contend in the AL East, the Jays will need to spend at least 100-110 Million Dollars.  The core of the team is intact for a couple of more years.  From 2013-2016 is the clubs best window to make a charge at the playoffs and have some success.

Perhaps the best move that the Blue Jays GM did this year was to lock up Edwin Encarnacion to a 3 YR/27 Million Dollar contract before he hit the Free Agency Market.  In a downtrodden year, EE could have requested an arm and leg for his services and been obliged.  He left between 8-10 Million Dollars on the Table in my opinion.  The keys will be to lock up a couple of their young player to long-term contracts.  The catching looks solid (Arencibia and Mathis) for years to come with some more prospects filtering through the Minor Leagues (Travis D’arnaurd.)  Trading away Eric Thames and Travis Snider paved the way for the club to lock-up Colby Rasmus long-term-and maybe take a run at a power hitting Outfielder.  The team’s starting pitching must heal up from multiple Tommy John Surgeries and come back to be relevant.  The team should definitely be players for free agent pitchers.  

For Part 1 of a 7 Part Article Series:  The Toronto Blue Jays Franchise 1977-1993, click here

For Part 7 of the 7 Part Series:  Blue Jays 2013 Team Payroll:  A Readers Thoughts, Click Here:

Josh Johnson brings a career record of 56-37 (.602) to the Blue Jays lineup in 2013. With one year and 13.75 Million Dollars left on this current deal. will Toronto try and extend him or wait to see if he can stay healthy all year.

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Top 5 Catching Prospects in Baseball

Friday August 17th, 2012

Codey Harrison (Lead MiLB Prospect Analyst) – The second installment of a 3-part series featuring the top 5 prospects from middle of the field positions. This week we are focusing on one of the hardest positions in all of baseball to find superstars at. One of the biggest reasons is that catchers take a lot longer to progress defensively than any other position in baseball. Bryce Harper who was known for being a catcher in high school was drafted as an outfielder by the Nationals so he could make it to the Major Leagues much faster. Being able to call a game behind the plate, and knowing the angles that are needed to block pitches in the dirt can take several years to master. The wear and tear on a catcher can be a vigorous one, as most catchers only catch 140 games an entire season even if they are healthy the entire season. With current catchers in MLB who are stars like Joe Mauer, Matt Wieters, Buster Posey, Brian McCann, Yadier Molina, and Miguel Montero, it’s time to take a look at the potential future catching stars who replace the current MLB All-Star catchers. Plus teams look to move star catchers from their primary position to save their bats and extend their careers in the process.


Travis d’Arnaud (Toronto Blue Jays AAA) - Travis d’Arnaud was the prize prospect along with RHP Kyle Drabek the Blue Jays acquired in the Roy Halladay trade. d’Arnaud was named the 2011 Eastern League best catcher by the leagues managers. For the position, d’Arnaud has plenty of future plus tools (Hit, Power, Arm, and Fielding), and is on pace to supplant current Blue Jays catcher J.P. Arencibia by the start of the 2013 season. d’Arnaud is currently on the disabled list, but for the season with AAA Las Vegas he’s batting .333, .380 OBP, .595 SLG, with 16 home runs, and 52 RBIs. One of the very few things scouts are drawn away from d’Arnaud is his approach at the plate, as he is very aggressive having walked on 19 times, while striking out 59 times on the season. Read the rest of this entry

Ask the Reports: Your Baseball Questions Answered – Sunday January 15th, 2012

Sunday January 15th, 2012

Jonathan Hacohen:  Posted every Weekend: Your top baseball questions from the past week are answered. E-mail all questions to mlbreports@gmail.com, message us on Twitter and post on our Facebook Wall!

Let’s get to your top questions of the week:

Q:  Any news on moves for Derrek Lee & Casey Kotchman? With Yanks recent pitching acquisitions, does Boston pursue Roy Oswalt more aggressively?  Rick

MLB reports:  Great questions Rick.  No and no are the answers.  Sorry!  To answer your first question: Lee and Kotchman are plans “c” and “d”, if that, for contending teams.  Teams on the rise would prefer to use younger players at first base. So the market for both is limited at best.  Both Lee and Kotchman will need to fight to get full-time jobs.  Kotchman will find something based on his solid 2011 campaign.  Perhaps a return to the Rays is in order.  Lee on the other hand, is getting on in years.  I could see him retiring at this point, or in a year from now.  It just depends on how desperate some teams are to get a veteran presence on their team and if trust is there for either player.  With regards to Oswalt, I see him signing very soon.  Boston could use him, yes, but I am not sensing a fit.  The top teams for his services appear to be the Rangers and Jays.  At 1-year and $8 million, he will likely have 20+ teams pursuing him.  Boston does need Roy Oswalt in the worst way at this point. He would help stabilize a rotation that needs his presence. But this decision will come down to geography and fit for the player.

 

Q:  Is Jesus Montero- Victor Martinez good?  How far is J.P. Arencibia or Travis d’Arnaud from Montero?  Derek

MLB reports:  The Montero questions begin!  I made the comparison on the trade of the trade that Montero was comparable to V-Mart and I stand behind that one.  Carlos Santana is another good comparison.  Extremely strong bat, will hit for high average with good pop.  Glove is questionable.  Montero will be good, I am just on the fence on whether it will happen in Seattle.  The  hope is that with a young team, he will blossom into a superstar. It will depend on whether he feels any pressure to live up to replacing Michael Pineda and ends up putting too much pressure on himself. He seems like a confident young man, so he should do well.  The V-Mart threshold is a high one to reach.  But we are definitely talking in the same category.  Now d’Arnaud and Arencibia are a different story.  Being based in Toronto, I get asked on these guys often. Here is my take put simply.  Arencibia is a good guy, with good power in his bat.  He is popular in the clubhouse and seen as a developing defensive catcher. His liabilities are his low average, high strikeouts and inability to take a walk.  A .219 AVG and .282 OBP don’t cut it in my book.  If JP doesn’t develop, he will become the Rob Deer of catchers.  Travis d’Arnaud, on the other hand, may not have JP’s power (debatable), but he will definitely hit for a much higher average.  He also will need to learn to take walks and cut down on strikeouts, but he should be more consistent offensively than Arencibia.  Defensively, I have heard mixed things- but both will stick at catcher.  So defensively, both Arencibia and d’Arnaud are above Montero.  But Montero’s bat is far superior to either of the other guys.  He is major league ready now to hit, while JP and Travis are still learning to hit consistently.  If I had to rate each, I would give Montero an 8/10, d’Arnaud a 6/10 and Arencibia a 5/10.  Montero is far ahead, with only d’Arnaud having the best chance to close the gap.

 

 Q:  Do the Phillies really expect Ryan Howard to be fully “baseball ready” before June 1st?  Old Man Mack

MLB reports:  LOL.  That is the hope sir.  If I had to be a fly on the wall, I bet the Phillies are hoping that he will be ready before that.  But if the Kendrys Morales injury has taught us anything, is that you never know how some of these freak accidents will heal.  My crystal ball sees Howard back after the All-Star break.  Unless he is 110% healed, why risk it?  His long-term health and productivity are at risk.  I would not be shocked if Howard took longer to heal and had to miss all of 2012.  But chances are that he will be back, just not till sometime in July or August of 2012. If he is back sooner, he better be ready…or a setback could be around the corner.  I would say the bigger question is how long he stays in the lineup, rather than when he is back.

 

Q:  What are the Tigers chances on Yoenis Cespedes?  Michael

MLB reports:  The Cespedes rumors are flying fast and furious. The teams that have been most linked to him are the Marlins and the Tigers.  There have been stories of 5 teams, 10, 20…all sorts of numbers thrown around about this guy.  Now, people are questioning why he is playing winter ball and in fact hurting his stock.  My gut feel is that there isn’t as high of a demand for him as people suspect and that teams are cautious at throwing big money at an unknown quantity. But even if he doesn’t put up the best numbers this offseason, it has to be considered that he is rusty and been away from the game for some time. People should not expect Babe Ruth immediately, just to view his tools and to see if the mechanics are there. I like the Marlins chances best at signing Cespedes.  Team Latino gets a 50% chance of landing Cespedes, with the Tigers at roughly 20%.  

 

Q:  Does Vance Worley come back to earth in his sophomore season?  Justin

MLB reports:  Nah man, Vance never left!  Just kidding, but I know what you mean. Vance Worley was unbelievable in 2011, with an 11-3 record, 3.01 ERA and 1.230 WHIP.  His won/loss record will depend largely on his offensive support and bullpen, so that we will leave to fate somewhat. I see Vance throwing quality strikes and keeping his walks low. He will not be an ace, but he will be very steady. He has the minor league track record and has already proven himself at the highest stage (in one of the most pressure filled environments, Philadelphia).  Expect some regression, but not too much. Vance Worley is the real deal. A sophomore jinx should be avoided, but he will still take time to develop.  Remember he is only 24-years of age.  By year 3 or 4, expect a stud 20 game winner to emerge. 

 

Q:  With the new players eligible for the 2013 Hall of Fame class (Bonds, Clemens, Sosa etc.): will any be inducted?  Ken

MLB reports:  Ken. Ken. Ken. Mr. I say that Tim Raines MUST be inducted. :) He is back for more… Just playing with you Ken, you know we love ya.  48.7% of the vote Ken, I guess the voters aren’t all sold…yet.  Here is my knock on Raines- get ready.  Played 23 seasons. Not a bad thing in its own right. But definitely inflated some of his numbers. 980 RBIs.  So he averaged less than 50 a year. 1571 runs scored. For 23 years played, not fantastic. A hall of fame leadoff man should easily be scoring 100+ per year, even on poor teams. Raines only did it 6 times. .294 AVG and .385 OBP.  Very good. Like those numbers. The man did not hit many doubles or triples. He was basically a singles and stolen base machine.  Now go check out our man Vince Coleman. Both in their primes, they were one of the top stolen base threats. Raines got more hits and got caught less stealing. But then Coleman appears to have attempted more stolen bases. Raines played longer and ultimately had the stronger career. But in the prime years, I can’t say that Raines was that much more spectacular than Coleman. Raines is very good and will get into the hall of fame the Jim Rice route. But it is not the Hall of Very Good. It is the Hall of Fame. 

Now with your true question: Will any of the new eligible players be inducted into Cooperstown in 2013?  The candidates are Bonds, Clemens, Piazza, Sosa, Schilling, Biggio and Lofton.  I can tell you right now, based on Palmeiro and McGwire’s poor standings, that there is no chance in heck that Bonds, Clemens or Sosa are getting in.  No way.  No how.  The ones I see getting in are Biggio and Piazza. Secretly, I have fantasized at night about Biggio and Bagwell getting in together. It was just meant to be. If Bagwell does not get in next year, then he will have to wait for some time. I feel next year will be his year. Piazza has to get in as a 1st ballot hall of famer. The numbers he put up as a catcher demand it. Next year is the year that hall of fame voters get their true test. If Piazza is out, then the hall of fame will really have to sit down and work out a better set of criteria for voting. The writers are going to feel like they are on a raft without paddles…it is time to fix the voting mess once and for all. Are these guys hall of famers or not? Let’s lay down the law and be done with it.  No more fence-sitting. 2013 will be a big year for sure.

 

Q:   Over/under 13.5 psychotic episodes in Miami?  Sam

MLB reports:  Under.  Way under!  I think you will see maybe 5-6 big blow ups. Carlos Zambrano will get into 1-2 confrontations. Hanley will explode about the position change once.  LoMo will have one twitter incident.  Ozzie will have a couple of issues likely develop. Apparently the Miami Marlins are being considered for the baseball reality show this year. If that happens, watch out. That will be Grade A television!!!

 

Final Q:  Will the Brewers be able to win the central despite losing Prince and no Braun for first 50 games?  Eric

MLB reports: My brain says no and my heart says maybe. The reality is that the Brewers are in tough. Very tough. The loss of Prince will be huge (when it happens) and same with Braun if the suspension is upheld. But even with those guys, the Brewers would still be in tough. The Cardinals, even with the loss of the Pujols and La Russa and absence of Duncan would still be a strong team.  The Reds though are the team to beat, as they are frontrunners to take the NL Central this year. The Brewers still have Greinke and Gallardo, so they have a chance. But I just see the Reds as the class of the division this year. The Cardinals are going to regress and will have a tough time defending their title. But without their main offensive stars, the Brewers go from stars to ordinary. The window appears to be closing on the Brewers… and opening for the Reds in 2012.

 

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Jonathan Hacohen is the Lead Baseball Columnist & Editor for MLB reports:  You can follow Jonathan on Twitter (@JHacohen)

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