Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Ranking Up the Joint

Good old Fangraphs, the fertilizer that helps little ghostrunners grow, has been running down and ranking each front office based on several subjective categories. Your Toronto Blue Jays landed in 20th place, the bottom end of the middle! The grades break down thusly:
  • Ownership: C+
  • Front Office: C
  • Major League Talent: C+
  • Minor League Talent: B
  • Overall: C+
Somewhat disappointing, but hardly unexpected. Dave Cameron credits JP with building a top tier bullpen with castaways and misfits, though he warns the continuing brain drain from Toronto is a sign people are dying to get away from JP. He summarizes the Jays chances and other things you already know in a terrifying, succinct manner:
However, from a macro perspective, the team has enough flaws to make them significant longshots to keep up with the New York/Boston/Tampa triumvirate in 2009, and another year of middling success might not save Ricciardi’s job. The Jays are in a tough division, but as the Rays have shown, a well run organization can overcome competition. The Jays don’t qualify as a well run organization right now.
Sigh. I'm not too worried about it. I will be shocked if the Red Sox aren't number 1 with the Rays in the top 5 in the this ranking. Who cares, you may ask? Scott Rolen, Roy Halladay and Travis fucking Snider sure as shit don't, they're too busy being awesome.

The Canadian Disease

My boy eyebeleaf is nothing if not determined. His straight up posi-vibe reminds me of a Time Flies show I didn't attend. But just as flagrantly ripping off Gorilla Biscuits and Chain of Strength seems like a good idea, pining for Jason Bay is not a good thing.

Jason Bay is on the wrong side of thirty (aren't we all?) staring at a contract year in a hitter's ballpark. Not one single element of that sentence excites me in the slightest. He's pretty poor defensively, and with all the young talent coming up, there isn't room for Vernon Wells's shittier, whiter brother. Sorry I-B-Leave, I love ya, but let's get together and stretch our boners for somebody young and awesome like Russ Martin or JOEY VOTTO. That I can get behind. Or in front of, I'm not to fussy on control, man.

Bob Elliot.  Doesn't like.  Pictures.

Grumble Grumble Elliot Grumble

Bob Elliot is a true solider for Canadian baseball, working hard for 30 years to bring Canadian baseball stories to the light of day. The fine gentlemen of Bluebird Banter got him to answer some questions recently and it makes for a fine read. I must comment that this conversation obviously took place over email as nobody talks like Hemingway writes. Stac-ca-to Elliot. The Bluebird Banter guys are all professional and stuff, and have been bringing the goods all spring long.

Other things

  • The Baseball Analysts have been, uh, analyzing baseball and come up with some pretty interesting pitch location information. And the graphs are really pretty. The latest examines home run rate by pitch location. Down and in to a lefty isn't a good idea. Low and away to anyone is always a good idea.
  • Yankee season ticket holder climbs atop soapbox, tells world new stadiums aren't always a parade of greatness. Is promptly raped by wallaby and mouth-breathing commenters.
  • Patton Oswalt is king of the geeks, orders his subjects to shape up.
  • Alex Rodriquez in the second round? Felix Hernandez in the fourth? Ubaldo Jimenez in the fifteenth??? My fantasy team is pretty great.


  1. ...and with all the young talent coming up, there isn't room for Vernon Wells's shittier, whiter brother.

    It's a great fucking point. I'm easily excitable, and three out of the last four seasons with 30 HRs and 100 RsBI got to me.

    And I'm not sure there's a Canadian player I want more on the Jays than Russel Martin. That guy is fucking sick.

  2. The Jays are in a tough division, but as the Rays have shown, a well run organization can overcome competition. The Jays don’t qualify as a well run organization right now.

    Projectile vomit. So do analysts just like to conveniently forget the decade of shit Tampa Bay went through when there were all too real concerns about their survivability in the major leagues, never mind their tank-tastic management styles?

  3. bkblades, you're right. If the TB Rays can maintain it for a few years, then they deserve to be called well-run.

    As for a primo-Canadian player, Joey Votto makes me pine for Otto the Swatto Velez. We need someone who can have a cool nickname as a sidekick for your friendly neighbourhood Snideyman.

  4. The Rays were run my a group of circus monkeys for years, but Andrew Friedman and his consortium of Wall Street bigwigs have completely turned the team around. They have their team competive now and figures to be that way for the forseable future.

    Sure, their high draft status is propping them up, but when found money like Carlos Pena and Eric Hinske are making serious contributions, and you have legit studs like Price and Longoria locked up long term for nothing, you have to give credit where it's due.

    That said, aside from JP Howell their bullpen has total regression written all over it. Begrudgingly, they're better set up moving forward than the Jays are.

  5. It appears that Baseball Prospectus has us as a top 15 organization (official ranking pending). I'm not sure how the criteria compare, but BP are usually Blue Jay haters.

  6. What gives with two Ownership grades? Just a typo I'm guessing, unless Fangraphs really is Jimmy Two Times...

  7. Correct you are sir, all courtesy my poor cut & paste skills. Fixed though

  8. Hinske is now a pirate. Their other players will also start to get more expensive as they move through the arbitration process, so they will have to up their payroll or start trading players. MLB really needs to do something about the divisions. Having two leagues overlapping a large country is just madness. Add in the payroll disparity just makes it depressing.

  9. I recognize Hinske isn't a Ray anymore, he's an example of a MLD making a considerable contribution. Will Jason Lane hit 20 home runs for the Jays this year? Not likely, but if he did it would be a win for JP.


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