Baseball Toaster Bronx Banter
The Toronto Blue Jays
2007-04-25 12:18
by Cliff Corcoran
Note: The Bronx Banter blog has moved to

I wrote a little something about the Blue Jays over on Fungoes while filling in on Alex's AL East beat while he was off getting nuptualized. The crux of what I had to say was that the simultaneous injuries to B. J. Ryan and Troy Glaus are going to make it awfully hard for the Jays to compete because of the resulting thinness of their bullpen and lack of offense. Since that post went live on Monday, the Jays swept a quick two-game series in Boston by a combined score of 17-6 while the Yankees got swept by the same Devil Rays that I claimed Toronto and Baltimore had "fattened up" upon.


The injuries just keep on coming for the Jays, however. The lastest to hit the DL is catcher and on-base machine Gregg Zaun, who was hit on the throwing hand last night by a foul off the bat of ex-teammate Eric Hinske. In a fantastic bit of irony, Zaun is being replaced on the Jays' 25-man roster by ex-Yank Sal Fasano, who arrives accompanied by this gem from one-time Billy Beane disciple and current Jays GM J. P. Riccardi: "The nice thing is we've got Fasano to come up. Between him and [Jason] Phillips, we've got a veteran presence."

Things are the same all over.

Tonight the Yankees send April pitching MVP Andy Pettitte (three quality starts plus two scoreless relief innings) to the hill against Josh Towers. The 30-year-old Towers had a solid season in 2005, but pitched his way off the Jays last year only to win the fifth starters spot out of camp this spring when free agent John Thomson hit the DL. Towers dominated the Tigers two starts ago, but has been roughed up by the Royals and Orioles in his other two outings.

Toronto Blue Jays

2006 Record: 87-75 (.537)
2006 Pythagorean Record: 86-76 (.531)

Manager: John Gibbons
General Manager: J. P. Riccardi

Home Ballpark (2006 Park Factors): Rogers Centre (103/103)

Who's Replacing Whom?

Frank Thomas replaces Frank Catalanotto
Adam Lind is replacing Reed Johnson (DL)
Royce Clayton replaces Russ Adams (minors)
Jason Smith is filling in for Troy Glaus (DL)
Matt Stairs replaces Shea Hillenbrand
Ryan Roberts replaces Eric Hinske
Gregg Zaun and Jason Phillips divvy up Bengie Molina's playing time (with Sal Fasano replacing Zaun while he's on the DL)
Tomo Ohka replaces Ted Lilly
Josh Towers takes over Casey Janssen's starts
Gustavo Chacin takes back Shaun Marcum's starts
A. J. Burnett takes back Ty Taubenheim's starts (minors)
Jeremy Accardo takes over Justin Speier's innings
Victor Zambrano replaces Pete Walker and Francisco Rosario
Casey Janssen and Shaun Marcum, having been bumped from the rotation, replace Brandon League (DL), Dustin McGowan (minors), Vinnie Chulk and Davis Romero (DL) in the bullpen

25-man Roster:

1B – Lyle Overbay (L)
2B – Aaron Hill (R)
SS – Royce Clayton (R)
3B – Jason Smith (L)
C – Jason Phillips (R)
RF – Alexis Rios (R)
CF – Vernon Wells (R)
LF – Adam Lind (L)
DH – Frank Thomas (R)


R – Ryan Roberts (IF)
R – John McDonald (IF)
L – Matt Stairs (OF/1B)
R – Sal Fasano (C)


R – Roy Halladay
R – A. J. Burnett
R – Josh Towers
L – Gustavo Chacin
R – Tomokazu Ohka


R – Jason Frasor
R – Jeremy Accardo
L – Scott Downs
R – Casey Janssen
R – Shaun Marcum
R – Victor Zambrano
L – Brian Tallet

DL: R – Troy Glaus (3B), R – Reed Johnson (OF), S – Gregg Zaun (C), L – B. J. Ryan, R – John Thomson, R – Brandon League, L – Davis Romero

Typical Lineup:

R – Alexis Rios (RF)
L – Adam Lind (LF)
R – Vernon Wells (CF)
R – Frank Thomas (DH)
L – Lyle Overbay (1B)
R – Aaron Hill (2B)
R – Jason Phillips (C)
R – Royce Clayton (SS)
L – Jason Smith (3B)*

*Ryan Roberts starts at third base against lefties.

2007-04-25 13:50:52
1.   Orly Yarly NoWai
Well, at least I know that nothing I do will jinx them.
2007-04-25 14:03:44
2.   Jim Dean
Wells and Hurt - not a bad test for young Philip tomorrow night.
2007-04-25 14:05:44
3.   Jim Dean
We glimpsed perfection for all of one-half inning (well, and a against a lefty).

Damon CF
Jeter SS
Abreu RF
Rodriguez 3B
Giambi DH
Matsui LF
Posada C
Cano 2B
Mientkiewicz 1B

2007-04-25 14:12:56
4.   alsep73
Not to get in the way of game discussion, but I lucked into some decent seats for tomorrow night's Hughes debut and will have to drive. I know traffic and parking are a mess due to the new stadium construction; can anyone suggest a sane route from the GW and/or place to find parking?
2007-04-25 14:28:00
5.   Knuckles
Hopefully none of Overbay, Smith, or Lind will scare Torre enough into using Myers, thereby burning a favorable matchup between the next batter(s) and the current pitcher...
2007-04-25 15:10:10
6.   tommyl
Scrabble? Seriously? Is it not yet clear that Phelps is a much better hitter? On the plus side, at least any idiotic PR/PH moves will likely get Phelps into the game.
2007-04-25 15:23:27
7.   vockins
2007-04-25 15:25:48
8.   Jim Rice
"one-time Billy Beane disciple"

Did anyone else hear Ricciardi on WFAN yesterday? He hardly sounded like a Beane disciple-- more like the kind of guy who would tout Fasano's "veteran presence."

I don't really know what to make of Ricciardi at all.

2007-04-25 15:28:52
9.   tommyl
7 Any word on how the rotation shakes out? Is Hughes still going tomorrow?
2007-04-25 15:33:02
10.   williamnyy23
4 If I was you I'd avoid the Deagan and take the Macombs Damn Bridge over to the Bronx. For parking, the lots on River Ave. and 164th Street still seem to be a good bet.
2007-04-25 15:33:26
11.   thelarmis
7 at least we can't lose! and the 'pen gets a breather.

have a good nite all... : )

2007-04-25 15:35:48
12.   williamnyy23
8 As a GM, he does have to say something positive. You can't really say, "with Fasano and Phillips our catcher slot is now a black hole". It'd be one thing if he went into the season with that tandem. I think you have to cut him slack because the situation was caused by injury. Riccardi is just putting on a brave face.
2007-04-25 15:40:24
13.   williamnyy23
What an odd postponement. It's only been drizzling in New York. The conspiracy theorist in me wonders if the Yankees pitching mess might have influenced the decision.

I think they'll still start Hughes tomorrow and then push Pettite to Friday, skipping Karstens in the process. At least I hope that's what they'll do.

2007-04-25 16:01:25
14.   C2Coke
So even the sky can't take it anymore and decided the Yankees' bullpen need a day off.
2007-04-25 16:07:59
15.   Zack
Postponement is a good thing in the end, conspiracy aside. 13 That would seem to be the logical thing to do, but then again, logic also dictates that Phelps would be in today's lineup, and that didn't happen...sigh
2007-04-25 16:11:52
16.   Zack
And if you need some rainy day reading, make sure to check out the Yanks notebook in the Times on Phil Hughes, great fluff reading...
2007-04-25 16:12:36
17.   3rd gen yankee fan
7 Finally we catch a break.
2007-04-25 16:20:25
18.   vockins
Tomorrow's forecast is looking a little questionable, too. Hopefully the showers come very late.
2007-04-25 16:25:46
19.   Javi Javi
According to our man in the clubhouse, PeteAbe:
The rotation for through the weekend:

Tomorrow vs. Toronto: Phil Hughes
Friday vs, Boston: Andy Pettitte
Saturday vs. Boston: Jeff Karstens or Kei Igawa
Sunday vs. Boston: Chien-Ming Wang

I like it. It will be interesting to see what happens on Saturday.

2007-04-25 16:29:07
20.   yankz
Ok, phew, I'd be livid if I missed getting to watch Hughes. Although, isn't it supposed to rain tomorrow?
2007-04-25 16:30:25
21.   yankz
Scratch that, mostly cloudy but only 10% chance of rain. Dammit, Hughes missed the good weather by a couple days.
2007-04-25 16:54:47
22.   rbj
Dang, postponement. Ruined a perfectly good rant I had against Bud Selig (for not getting even the Blue Jays' feed on EI)

Ooooh, Bud Selig's an ass
he's a big fat ass, he's the biggest ass in the whole wide world, he's a stupid ass if there ever was an ass, he's an ass to all the boys and girls.

I think the pen called up Mom Nature and demanded a rain out.

2007-04-25 17:07:42
23.   yankz
Old news, but it's still shocking:
2007-04-25 17:16:07
24.   mehmattski
22 From what I'm reading elsewhere, there won't be an Extra Innings feed for the game tomorrow, either. Can anyone confirm that? Luckily I also have, but is that affected too?
2007-04-25 17:20:55
25.   Jen
4 10 I've heard that the Macomb's has been getting nasty since the construction as well.

I've been taking Jerome Ave. to River and parking in Lot #3. Actually that's how I always went even before the construction.

Just give yourself enough time because the bridge seems to be backing up earlier this year.

2007-04-25 17:28:44
26.   rbj
24 Mehmattski, I just checked the on tv schedule for tomorrow night, no Yankee - Blue Jay game is listed, only "upcoming Red Sox at Yankees"
Just as well, I have Aikido tomorrow night, and as a bunch of folk are testing Saturday, I need to be there. Then out for Guiness afterwards.
2007-04-25 17:32:34
27.   OldYanksFan
23 "2005 - The Yankees passed on the popular local pick – Craig Hansen of Glen Cove HS – to select Henry." Ouch. Not only have we not had a player on the Yankees, but haven't produced anyone who has had any kind of impact on MLB.

Is this par for the course? Were our people who deal with the draft that bad? Mind you, as a perennial 1st place team, we haven't had many high picks, but still, that seems like an abysmal record.

On a previous thread, I had a little post about decorum. I just saw this news article, and since there is no game, figured I throw it up.

Trump said: "Rosie is a very self-destructive person. She is a loser by any standard. She's got nothing going for her. Frankly, her ratings were really the best when she was attacking me, and I was attacking her . . . That feud got her good ratings, which I knew it would, but I really had no choice but to attack her because she is a slob and she deserved to be attacked..."

Wow... does this guy need a little Bronx Banter decorum, or what?

2007-04-25 17:33:59
28.   yankz
Well, Eric Milton made an impact on MLB. If you count increasing the opposition's OPS as an impact.
2007-04-25 17:39:19
29.   JL25and3
I'm glad to see that they're keeping Hughes in place tomorrow night and pushing Petttttittttte to Friday. Better to keep everything on an even keel with the kid.
2007-04-25 17:45:31
30.   vockins
29 Hughes v. Matsuzaka would have been insane.
2007-04-25 17:46:23
31.   JL25and3
28 Buchanan and Milton - along with Guzman - got Knoblauch to the Yankees. I'd say that's a pretty big impact on the Yankees, and MLB as well.

I consider trades to be a completely appropriate use for minor league (or young) talent, provided you make the right deal. Jay Buhner for Ken Phelps, no. Sterling Hitchcock and Russ Davis for Tino Martinez and Jeff Nelson, every day of the week.

2007-04-25 18:04:06
32.   seamus
I'm glad for the rainout. We really needed it. Maybe this will be the change in luck that we needed.
2007-04-25 18:04:38
33.   mehmattski
Add Carl Everett (1990) and you have the entire list of Yankees first round picks to make the majors: Everett, Jeter, Milton, Ford-Griffin.

It does not appear the Yanks had a first round pick from 1981 until 1990.

2007-04-25 18:23:14
34.   JL25and3
33 And Buchanan.
2007-04-25 18:26:23
35.   Max Nomad
OK! At the behest of Jim Dean and a few others to appear "more human," and to make referencing my posts a little easier, I've changed my screen name from 'maximumnomad' that I hope you all know and love, to 'Max Nomad.' Just so there's no Rob Gee name-changing confusion, and so that I might remain in those oh-so-special social circles. :-P
2007-04-25 18:28:10
36.   seamus
35 i don't get what was wrong with maximumnoman?
2007-04-25 18:35:33
37.   Max Nomad
36 There was a little debate as to whether or not 'fake' names should be used, as they 'dehumanize' the blog. After being here a while, I think I prefer my new screen name anyway.
2007-04-25 18:47:18
38.   Orly Yarly NoWai
Regardless, I still like my silly little handle.
2007-04-25 18:50:57
39.   Shaun P
33 Given the Boss's penchant for signing so many free agents back then, that wouldn't be surprising.

Many first round picks from many drafts never make the big leagues. The Yanks aren't alone.

BP did an article a couple of years ago, analyzing who drafted guys, developed them some, and then traded them away. Or something like that; can't get on the site now, so I can't look it up.

Long story short (too late!), the Yanks were near the top of the list.

Think of all the decent-to-star talent the Yanks traded away over the last 20+ years: McGriff, Buhner, Rijo, Jim Deshaies, Bob Tewksbury, Doug Drabek, Al Leiter, Hal Morris, Danny Pasqua, JT Snow, Milton (he did pitch well for the Twins for a while), Hitchcock, Lowell, Nick Johnson. Then second-tier guys like Eric Plunk, Pat Tabler (Yanks 1st round pick in '76 BTW), Rex Hudler (1st round pick in '78), Neon Deion, D'Angelo Jiminez, Ricky Ledee, Russ Davis, Andy Fox, Zach Day, and Russ Springer (who ever thought he'd have a 15 year career?!), who all at least played in the bigs for a couple of years (or more) and contributed something.

The Yanks have drafted all sorts of good players, bit players, in-between guys, etc. The problem is they traded so many away over the years.

2007-04-25 18:55:42
40.   seamus
37 so, since seamus isn't really my name...

Seriously, I'll have to go back and dig out this conversation. Was it that other threat where folks started to talk about the degrading discourse here? I glanced at it quickly but was busy at work today (busy having them install a door only to decide I didn't like it - oops).

2007-04-25 20:27:26
41.   Shaun P
40 Yes.
2007-04-25 20:35:35
42.   Chyll Will
37 Heck, I call you what I feel like anyway; Nomad or Max. Who cares? I've got little nicknames for most of you anyway.

38 Even though you explained your name the other day, I always look at it and think "Rolie Polie Olie" and with wsporter I want to say "Wainsporter" and Williamny23 it's "Wall Street" >;)

2007-04-25 20:41:20
43.   Shaun P
42 Chyll "Chris Berman" Will?

You did say you had little nicknames for most of us. ;)

If anyone cares, Jake Peavy has 16 Ks through 7 innings, and so has a chance at 20 (or more). That is, if Bud Black lets him go back out there; Peavy is already at 117 pitches.

2007-04-25 21:54:41
44.   Zack
Sean you ttoally just beat me to it. i was just goign to ask if anyone caught my man Peavey's game tonight. Nasty, no other words for it. Man, wouldn't HE look good in pinstripes?
2007-04-25 22:37:23
45.   Peter
Hoffman blew the save, Padres lose 3-2. What a waste.
2007-04-25 23:01:02
46.   Zack
The thought of ever using anything but my name never occured to me. I'm not smart enough to think up a cool enough nickname I guess. Waht was the explanation for Orly Yarly NoWai?
2007-04-26 03:16:36
47.   OldYanksFan
39 Well, it might be interesting to see who we got in return for these guys. Also, some were hidden gems (did we know what McGriff and Lowell would do?) and some we knew what we were trading (Leedee, Nick,etc).

I do think we have a trading history of 'desparation'... meaning we usually targeted a sepecific player (a Name), as opposed to a certain level of talent at a certain position, and often gave up too much to get him.

That's why I'm so pleased with Cashman's 'new' style. He passed on Zito and a number of other 'Names', and seems to be as concerned with what he is giving up as much as what he is getting.

Truth is, while we have had a string of winning years, we have traded and developed poorly, considering the huge financial edge we have... like a spoiled kid on a spending spree (that kid's name being George).

I have no problem and even encourage overpaying a bit to retain core players, and having guys spend their whole career as a Yankee is really great. Bernie, Posada and Mo (I hope) and Jetes. How many teams in the last 20 years have been able to retain so many players? This is really the gift of our wealth.

Frankly, if we follow Cashman's plan of building from the ground up, put our resources into player development, and still have some cash for the occasional 'stud mercenary', I don't know how the league can keep up.

This is why, although we have holes this year with our BUC, 1st base and bench, the general direction we are going in will produce many stars and another dynasty.

I only hope ARod is around at the time.

2007-04-26 06:04:47
48.   Zuma Jay
During the game with Kei Igawa I kept hearing Joe Girardi and Michael Kay talking about how Igawa pitches up in the zone and how he needs to adjust to pitching more down in the U.S.. My question is, did anyone in the Yankees organization scout this guy in Japan? Is this news to them? Why wasn't the adjustment made is Spring Training?
2007-04-26 07:04:15
49.   Raf
47 Even so, both McGriff & Lowell were blocked in the Yankee system. IIRC the Yanks were pretty high on Balboni, and Mattingly was in the system then too. Didn't help that they kept signing a bunch of 1b-DH types back then. As for Lowell, I thought he would be taking over 3b, but after the year Brosius had, he wasn't going to play 3b in the Bronx anytime soon.

A lot of those names mentioned in 39 were sent packing in deals that made sense at the time.

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