Cough, cough, choke…


You know what’s fun? Watching the Jays strand six, count ’em SIX, runners in the final two innings last night and coming away without a single run. Any old team can just fail to hit, but the Jays are unparalleled at generating just enough offense to seem perennially dangerous, without ever actually doing any damage. All bark, no bite. How thrilling!

Last night, with the Angels closer sweating so profusely in the climate-controlled comfort of Skydome that he looked like eight St. Bernards had just given him a tongue bath, they still couldn’t get so much as a flyball. Rodriguez could not throw a breaking ball for a strike if his life depended on it, and still the Jays looked jittery and confused.   Sit on a heater, for the love of God!!! Rodriguez can’t throw strike, his pitch count is soaring, but Aaron Hill pops up the second pitch he sees.  Lord give me strength!  Both matt Stairs and Alex Rios strike out looking on low fastballs?  C’mon!

But, true Jays fan that I am, I see the silver lining in all this.  The Jays, despite being one of the worst hitting teams in baseball so far, are just one game below .500. They remain in the thick of the divisional and wildcard races, despite losing Wells, Eckstein, McDonald, Janssen, Wolfe and Accardo to significant injuries.

We’re almost 1/3 of the way through the season, and despite the troubles, there is no hints of trouble in the clubhouse (yet).  All things considered, the situation could be a lot worse. But this team has GOT to start hitting, or the infighting and resentment will start, and that delicate chemistry that has always, throughout the club’s history, been a weak spot for the Blue Jays.

To me, the big question upon which the entire season hinges is this:  Can the bats wake up before somebody pulls a Shae Hillenbrand and writes “This ship is sinking” on the clubhouse whiteboard?


Cough, cough, choke…

  1. The problem with the Jays is Ted Rogers. He is not a serious baseball fan, although he is a rich one. If he were, he would have cancelled the JP/Gibby show long time ago.

    There is a reason the Jays don’t hit with runners on — it’s because the manager doesn’t know which signs to give and he is constantly being outfoxed.

    JP won’t fire Gibby, because then Jays fans would have nobody to blame. So, someone should fire JP.

  2. Whoa, whoa whoa!! No knocking Uncle Ted on Balls cb!
    All kidding aside, I have trouble laying the blame in the executive suite on this one. I think if you look at Ricciardi’s moves over the past few years, he’s done an admirable job. He’s assembled a fine young pitching staff, which is the key to winning in the majors. The line-up is solid, if not spectacular, and the biggest offseason move – the Glaus for Rolen trade – was brilliant in my humble opinion.
    I share your lack of confidence in Gibby however. This team’s got to hit now…this month we have 4 more against the Angels, 4 against the Royals and 3 against the A’s. If we’re not at least a couple games over .500 by the end of May, Gibby’s gotta go.

  3. No disrespect intended to — as you call him — Uncle Ted.

    Gibby’s gotta go now, because if the Jays win 2/3 from KC, he will ask for an extension. The Jays have to decide: do we keep Gibby for 1, 2 more years? If the answer is no, set him free now, and move on.

    You’re much too generous with JP. Think the Leaning Towers of Josh, DH Thomas, Koskie, AJ Burnett (yes, him too – probably lose him to free agency at the end of this year), &c. The credit for the pitching staff goes to Brad Arnsberg, not JP. Besides, Dustin, Doc, and Marcum were from Gord Ash’s time, aren’t they?

  4. You make a good point about the question of an extension for Gibby. There’s no way I’d give it to him mid-season, no matter what happens. If the choice comes down to: extend him or fire him, then I’d lean toward the latter and turn the team over to Whitt on an interim basis, and see how the rest of the season plays out.
    (The Jays have had decent luck with interim managers in the past…Cito Gaston was originally an interim replacement for Jimy Williams.)

    JP’s legacy probably deserves a post of its own. Arnsberg definitely deserves credit. Marcum was a Ricciardi pick in 2003. Mcgowan was the final pick of the Gord Ash era, and Roy Halladay was really the last pick of the Pat Gillick era (Gillick’s staff and scouting, although Ash was the boss by the time they actually made the pick).

  5. Where is Cito Gaston anyway? All the guy did was win two World Series rings, and he hasn’t had a decent job since (other than the appearance fee he earns for showing up in every conversation about the game’s most over-rated managers).
    Enjoy the anonymity, Cito. You deserve nothing less. Or more.

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