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Is Rushing Marcus Stroman A Good Idea? Anybody Remember A Young Roy Halladay?

Video by E. Tyler Bullock

By ‘Baseball Writer’ Steve Cheeseman 

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Is Rushing Marcus Stroman a Good Idea?

Prime pitching prospect Marcus Stroman is the pride and joy prospect of the Toronto Blue Jays.

The 22 year old out of Medford, New York is front and centre with many media outlets heading into the spring training. Consider his age, and little professional experience under his hat. Why rush him?

Stroman was drafted 22nd overall in the 2012 Major League Baseball Draft, after finishing a college career at Duke where he set the school record for strikeouts with 290 (over 222.0 innings). Read the rest of this entry

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The Toronto Blue Jays State Of The Union: 2014 Preview

The SkyDome was opened in May of 1989.  For the championship ERA, the club drew 4 Million fans each per year.  In recent years, it was tough for the club to draw 2 Million fans.  In 2013, with the promise of a new club mantra, based on Free Agent signings, the team held the best year to year attendance boost in 2013.  I doubt they will be able to do this again in 2014.

The SkyDome was opened in May of 1989. For the championship ERA, the club drew 4 Million fans each per year. In recent years, it was tough for the club to draw 2 Million fans. In 2013, with the promise of a new club mantra, based on Free Agent signings, the team held the best year to year attendance boost in 2013.  If the Jays can’t spring out of the gate fast in 2014, I think the Walkup single game tickets will be tremendously affected negatively.  Toronto has not made the playoffs since winning back to back World Series in 1992 and 1993, and only them and Kansas City hold that dubious honor since the Player Strike/Lockout ensuing seasons of 1994 – 1995.

By ‘Baseball Writer’ Steve Cheeseman 

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The Toronto Blue Jays have been a franchise in question for over 20 years.  This floundering franchise has gone through 11 manager changes since winning the World Series in 1993 vs. the Philadelphia Phillies. 

2 of those managers in Cito Gaston and John Gibbons have been hired twice! The 2013 season was supposed to be the year the Jays went all the way. 

GM Alex Anthopolous numerous moves acquiring major pieces to what was supposed to be a contending team.

R.A. Dickey, Jose Reyes, Josh Johnson, Emilio Bonifacio, Maicer Izturis, Mark Buehrle, and Melky Cabrera.  Despite these additions via trade or signing….same story, different season! Read the rest of this entry

“Hard Cheddar” With Steve Cheeseman – My BBHOF Ballot

The members of the BBWAA will vote on the BBHOF ballot in January of 2014,

The members of the BBWAA will vote on the BBHOF ballot in January of 2014,  A player that is still on the ballot, needs to receive 75% of the vote in order to make in the Hall.  A player needs receive 5% of the votes in order to remain on the list of players eligible for the next  year.

“Hard Cheddar” – with ‘Special Guest Writer’ Steve Cheeseman 

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Hello baseball fans.  I apologize for being away so long, as my career outside of sports writing has kept me busy these last few weeks.

With that being said, let’s get going.  Since the end of the 2013 season, there are many things that crossed my mind.

However, for whatever reason, one of the things that has me extremely interested if the hall of fame ballot.

New names on this year’s ballot include Tom Glavine, Greg Maddux, and Frank Thomas.  In my mind these guys deserve to be in the hall of fame.

Big Hurt Highlights

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Should MLB Have A Salary Cap? – “Hard Cheddar” With Steve Cheeseman Takes Another Crack At It

The MLB can talk about parity all they want in the new era of modern baseball, but ever since the mid 90's the Yankees have 5 WS, Red Sox 3 WS, Giants 2 WS, Cardinals Marlins 2 WS, White Sox 1 WS, Braves 1 WS, D-Backs 1 WS, Angels 1 WS, Philies - WS.  That is 10 teams in the last 20 years of action.  Out of those teams, only the 2002 Angels, 2003 Marlins and 2010 version of the Giants had Payrolls that weren't considered tops in the MLB.

The MLB can talk about parity all they want in the new era of modern baseball, but ever since the mid 90’s the Yankees have 5 WS, Red Sox 3 WS, Giants 2 WS, Cardinals, Marlins 2 WS, White Sox 1 WS, Braves 1 WS, D-Backs 1 WS, Angels 1 WS, Philies – WS. That is 10 teams in the last 20 years of action. Out of those teams, only the 2002 Angels, 2003 Marlins, 2006 version of the Cardinals and  2010 version of the Giants had Payrolls that weren’t considered tops in the MLB.  Baseball can talk about parity all they want, but with the Dodgers new rogue spending, the rich and poor difference is about to escalate.

By ‘Special Guest Writer’ Steve Cheeseman 

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“Hard Cheddar” – with Steve Cheeseman

Should MLB Have a Salary Cap?

During this years “fall classic”, a thought occurred to me.  Other than the Pittsburgh Pirates, it seems like that for the most part, the same teams compete for the title of world champions each year.  

What MLB introduced a salary cap?  Would more teams gain the ability to compete on an even playing ground?  Within all 30 teams of the NL and AL, payrolls for these clubs are drastically different.  

Boston Red Sox World Champs in 2013 (3rd WS Title in 10 Years)

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“Hard Cheddar” Weekly Segment 2: MLB Heroes And Zeroes For 2013!

Yasiel Puig was signed as an International Free Agent in 2012.   The 22 Year old phenom exploded onto scene in the National League - 3 Slashing .319/.381/.925 - with 19 HRs, 42 RBI and 66 Runs Scored in his 104 Games Played.  He was a big part of the team winning the Division - and he will be a mainstay for years - being signed until 2018.  Puig's electrified the city of Los Angeles, and Dodger Stadium with his all out hustle, flamboyant play, and their flair for the dramatic.  Once fellow teammate Hanley Ramirez joined him, the club went on a historic 42 - 8 run, which hadn't happened in nearly 60 years for a 50 game stretch.

Yasiel Puig was signed as an International Free Agent in 2012. The 22 Year old phenom exploded onto scene in the National League – 3 Slashing .319/.381/.925 – with 19 HRs, 42 RBI and 66 Runs Scored in his 104 Games Played. He was a big part of the team winning the Division – and he will be a mainstay for years – being signed until 2018. Puig’s electrified the city of Los Angeles, and Dodger Stadium with his all out hustle, flamboyant play, and their flair for the dramatic. Once fellow teammate Hanley Ramirez joined him, the club went on a historic 42 – 8 run, which hadn’t happened in nearly 60 years for a 50 game stretch.

By ‘Special Guest Writer’ Steve Cheeseman 

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“Hard Cheddar” – with Steve Cheeseman

2013 Hero’s and Zero’s of MLB

Throughout the 2013 Major League Baseball season, there had been plenty to talk about. Lots of surprise players, as well as surprise teams.

This season in my opinion was as good as any.  However, like any sport, there was also plenty to forget, but not necessarily forgive, as you’ll see.  

Here are my hero’s and zero’s for the 2013 MLB season.

Yasiel Puig Highlights 2013 – Mature Content – Parental Guidance is Advised

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“Hard Cheddar” Weekly Segment 1: The Toronto Blue Jays Of The NL East?

The Blue have pretty much been a mediocre franchise in the league for the last 20 years.  After winning back to back World Series in 1992 and 1993, the club has some expensive and talented pieces, however like so many of the 'god awful' teams have shown us recently, maybe the club should tanked it for 7 - 10 years in order to stockpile Grade A level talent through the MLB Amateur Draft?

The Blue Jays have pretty much been a mediocre franchise in the league for the last 20 years. After winning back to back World Series in 1992 and 1993, the club has had some expensive and talented pieces, yet like so many of the ‘god awful’ teams have shown us recently, maybe the club should have tanked it for 7 – 10 years in order to stockpile Grade A level talent through the MLB Amateur Draft?  Toronto has been caught in the middle of a building a team through the Draft, but never seem to be bad enough to receive high enough picks to select ultimate fortune changers for the organization.  Maybe they should try another way..  Lets talk about that today.

By ‘Special Guest  Blue Jays Writer’ Steve Cheeseman 

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“Hard Cheddar” – with Steve Cheeseman

Regardless if you’re a casual fan, or die hard Toronto Blue Jay fan, many things come into mind with regard to what should happen next after a terrible 2013 season.  

Do Media/Cable giant Roger’s need to spend more money?  Should they rebuild from the draft?  Should they rent older, experienced players on short term deals?  

How about a shift from the American League to the National League?

For the start of the 2013 season, the Houston Astros made the move from the NL to the west division of the AL.  This was to equally balance the two leagues to contain 15 teams in each.

In terms of performance, it didn’t help.  The 2012 NL Astros finished the season with a 55-107 record, which was good for last in all of Major League Baseball.  

Montreal’s OIympic Stadium will host a Blue Jays Exhibition Game in 2014

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The Disaster That Was The Blue Jays 2013 Season: State Of The Union

Following the 2012 Major League Baseball season, Toronto Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopolous made some noticeable moves, to seemingly re-invent Canada’s team.  Jay’s fans everywhere were ecstatic and pumped for the upcoming season, thinking that playoff baseball would finally return to Canada after 20 long seasons.

Following the 2012 Major League Baseball season, Toronto Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos made some noticeable moves, to seemingly re-invent Canada’s team. Jay’s fans everywhere were ecstatic and pumped for the upcoming season, thinking that playoff baseball would finally return to Canada after 20 long seasons.

By ‘Special Guest  Blue Jays Writer’ Steve Cheeseman 

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Another Season, Another Disaster.

The off-season started with a boom, with the signings of Maicer Izturis (3 yr-$9 million), and Melky Cabrera (2 yr-$16million).  This was followed by acquiring hard throwing Esmil Rogers from Cleveland.  

They weren’t done yet.

On November 14th, Anthopoulos completed a blockbuster trade with the Miami Marlins, receiving pitchers  Josh Johnson  (2-time All-Star)and Mark Buehrle (4-time All-Star), short-stop Jose Reyes (4-time All-Star, 2011 NL Batting Champion),   catcher John Buck,  utility man Emilio Bonifacio, and $8 million in cash in exchange for pitcher Henderson Alvarez, short-stop Yunel Escobar, catcher Jeff Mathis, and prospects.  

It was a steal.  Toronto then sent John Buck and prospects to the New York Mets, for reigning NL Cy Young winner R.A. Dickey, catcher Josh Thole and a prospect.   

Odd makers out of Las Vegas named the Toronto Blue Jays as the favorites to win the 2013 World Series.  Too good to be true right? Pretty much.

Munenori Kawasaki – See You Tomorrow

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