Monday, January 31, 2011

Laughing at Toronto Blue Jays fans...

I get a kick out of reading the comments on the sport site. The Jays fans there are about as clueless as it comes. Most of them think that AA (Alexei Anthropologist? Arnie Aardvark? Abercrombie Asseltine? I don't care) is some kind of genius.

Now, I give the guy credit for unloading Vernon Wells. However, I really didn't like the turnaround deal of sending Napoli to Texas for fat Frank freaking Francisco. That's a bad deal. Napoli would have been a very useful guy to have on the team.

These Jays fans love to go on about how much they hated Kevin Gregg last year, because his saves were nerve wracking. And they seem thrilled that they Jays have signed 3 injury prone 30+ year old relievers to battle it out for the closer role.

They clearly just don't get it.

(saves converted/opportunities %)

Francisco (career) 32/49 65%

Dotel (career) 105/150 70%

Rauch (career) 47/69 68%

Gregg (career) 122/150 81%

With Toronto 2010:

Gregg 37/43 86%

The Jays have $11 million tied up in these 3 guys for 2011. Gregg signed a 2 year deal for $10 million. And these Jays fans think they're better off? They think AA is some kind of wonderful? Oh man, they're going to hate the 9th inning this year. And the 8th. And the 7th.

When Brandon Morrow breaks down (not if, when), and when Kyle Drabek isn't the second coming of Doug (1990 version, he may well be the second coming of the 1998 version), and when Romero, Cecil and Rzepczynski fall apart from pitching too much too soon, they're going to see just how bad a team can be.

Oh, and let's not forget that they just gave 33 year old reliever Jason Frason $3.5 million for 2011. That'll help. And Carlos Villanueva at $1.4 million. More crap.

I predict the Jays will finish dead last this season. And that's just based on the pitching nightmare.

Take a look at the hitting. Wells is gone, sure that saves money but he was a 127 OPS+. Lyle Overbay's 107 OPS+ and good defense is also gone. John Buck's 115 OPS+ is gone. Fred Lewis' 103 OPS+ is gone.

Their replacements?

Rajai Davis 90 OPS+
Juan Rivera 97 OPS+

JP Arencibia 42 OPS+ (and don't be fooled by his AAA numbers. Las Vegas is a hitter's park bar none. Think 2000 Colorado)
Travis Snider 106 OPS+ (he should play full time this year, but a lot of people question his desire to succeed)

And they re-signed Edwin Encarnacion, who I like a lot, especially as he's apparently not going to be playing 3B.  Yet most of the Jays fans hate that signing.

So, the Jays are going to be relying on Jose Bautista to do something similar to 2010, which won't happen. They're also threatening to play him at 3B, although he wants to play RF. So good luck signing him to an extension.

They're going to be hoping that Aaron Hill and Adam Lind can turn their careers back around, and they're hoping beyond hope that Lind can learn to play a position. He's got one of the worst gloves in the business.

And, there's a lot of expectation on Brett Lawrie who they got in the Marcum deal, either to play 3B or take 2B and shift Hill to 3B. Most reasonably sane minds think he'll need another year in the minors.

So can anyone tell me why this AA guy is being touted as the best GM in the business? I don't see it. All I see when I look at the Jays 40 man roster is a minor league team.

It'll be a long time before the Jays add to these.

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