I don't care how soft their schedule's been; how bad the various pitching staffs they've faced are: the Jays will worsening the fuck out of you and everything you hold dear. Some bullpen hiccups, some luck (some bad but mostly overwhelmingly good), games both given and taken away, it all adds up to an entertaining first week of May. Some thoughts from all over.
Brett Cecil: Heaven Sent
Soooo, Brett Cecil is pretty good, I'd say. Some strangely poor defense behind him and the ridiculous offensive strategy the Indians went with "Hey, let's see what happens if I stick my arm in front of this curveball!" Fuck them. Cecil was much bigger than I expected, wore more jewelery on the mound than Mr. T, and changed speeds better than a drunk through a radar trap. Brooks Baseball's Pitch fx tells us he brings the heat (topped out at 95!) and threw all his pitches for strikes. Very impressive. He wasn't afraid to pitch inside and generally impressed more 10 to 15 times more than I thought he would. I wonder if he's up for the duration? He'll certainly be given a chance to pitch himself out of a job.
One last thing we will note now and forever more: Vegas stats mean less than nothing.
Life Above Replacement
The always excellent Yankees Replacement Level Blog calculated the WAR (wins above replacement) for each team at each position in the American League. Unsurprisingly, the Jays are at or above replacement level at every single position around the diamond. Somewhat surprisingly, thanks to poor defense (!?), the Jays outfield has barely played above replacement level. The amazing infield play is manifested in a first place ranking for shortstops, third place for third basemen (fuck you, haters), surprising seventh for second basemen (negative defense, what gives?) and second place WAR for first basemen. Really interesting stuff, I highly recommend clicking on through.
- Make sure you check out Walkoff Walk every day, I'm posting regularly through the week for while. There is inevitably Jays content shoehorned into every post.
- Adam Lind ranks third in pitches/plate appearance in all of baseball. Guess what, he's awesome.
- Jays are on the West Coast which means I'll finally be able to liveblog a Jays game on the Score! Check it out tonight at 10pm! PS Follow me on Twitter.
- Lots of "is Toronto for real" stuff floating around. The strength of schedule? The strength of my boner will tell you all you need to know.