Posted tagged ‘bullpen’

The Awful Performance

June 8, 2017

The cruelest expressions in baseball
involve only three words:
Cut him loose
Low levage situations
Designated for assignment

Horrors of an awful performance
swim freely in the mind
Poisoning your confidence
Drowning the best moments
of a long career
to a point where you even wonder if they actually happened

Personal venom that doesn’t even leave room
for columnists who declare your time is up
and fans with the uncanny ability of kicking you when you’re already hurt

It’s already out there;
so why bother searching for it?

Reporters want to showcase your pain because it will make their jobs eaiser
Your pain writes itself, they think to themselves
They have the headline all set:
40-year-old washed up reliever embarresses himself

But today
you are not opening that window for them
Today
you choose to disconnect from the present
Today
your pain shall remain internal

Players continue to mingle
while post-game meals are consumed
To you, it is just meaningless noise
The body might be in the clubhouse
but the soul is not there

Somewhere
amongst the drakness and silence
is the reason why you still put on a uniform

It still exists

Somewhere

Understanding the Blue Jays’ poor April performance with a little helping of fake news and alternative facts

May 1, 2017

Things ended nicely with two wins and a series victory over Tampa Bay. However, nothing can eclipse the ugly performance the Blue Jays gave in April. So pardon me as I take a page out of the Trump administration’s playbook:

The offence did not struggle. They simply conserved thier power and talent, allowing the confidence of the opposing pitchers to remain intact. 

The bullpen did not have moments of implosion. They simply wanted to remind the world about the importance of being charitable. That deserves a Nobel Peace Prize. 

Yes, several players are currently on the DL. But this allows the Jays’ training staff to find groundbreaking ways of aiding the recovery process. 

Of course, here’s what really happened: 

Here’s hoping for a better result in May. 

ER

Five haikus to celebrate the start of Spring Training

February 13, 2017

To those playing in
the World Baseball Classic:
Please do not get hurt

Joe Biagini
will be considered for a
future starting job

Are we taking bets
on who will start in leftfield
and two relief spots?

Angry Bautista
handled appropriately
can lead to great things

Salty is my pick
to backup Russell Martin.
He’s experienced

ER

Short, scribbled thoughts about Brett Cecil

November 21, 2016

I guess my earliest memory of Brett Cecil would have been around 2007-2008. All the bloggers were writing about two specific “prospects” in the Jays’ system: Cecil and Travis Snider.

He debuted in 2009 with a shaved head and wearing fancy sports goggles. There were some teachable moments.

There was a match against the Yankees where he threw a ball out of play, but forgot to call ‘time out.’ New York, being such savy veterans, took advantage.

Another time, he entered the dugout after a bad performance. It prompted Cito Gaston to walk over to the young hurler and have a heart-to-heart. Cito was calm and father-like with his message. It was critical, but also encouraging. It was something Cecil needed to hear.

Surley lost amongst the discussion of Cecil’s departure would be his strong 2010 performance. He started 28 games, posting a 15-7 record, with a 4.22 ERA and 1.326 WHIP. Had it not been for Jose Bautista’s incredible offensive outburst that season, Cecil would’ve been the best part of 2010.

However, things fell apart in 2011-2012. Cecil pitched poorly and it clearly affected him. Countless times he left a poor performance and threw a tantrum. Things were smashed and tossed, with plenty of profanity. I attended one of his starts in 2011 that didn’t go well. I followed him back to the dugout on the jumbotron. As soon as he started venting his frustrations, the screen quickly cut away to a video. It was as if the Skydome control room wasn’t familiar with Cecil’s tantrums, which had unfortunately became his calling card.

Ultimately, he was sent down to AA New Hampshire. It wasn’t as bad of a demotion as one would think. At the time, the Jays’ AAA affiliate was in the offence-friendly Pacific Coast League. It only made sense for Cecil to pitch with the Fishercats, where the results wouldn’t be skewed.

But things turned around in 2013 when Cecil successfully reinvented himself as a reliever. He had a sparkling 2.83 ERA and 1.104 WHIP. It was a performance that earned an appearance at the All-Star game. In a season that was ripe with unfulfilled promise and disappointment, Cecil and fellow reliever Steve Delabar were the lone bright stars.

While Delabar was unable to match his 2013 performance, Cecil has maintained his course. Yes, he had moments of imperfection. However, when things mattered the most, Cecil got the job done. Never forget the strong finishes he posted in 2015 and this past season.

Now he’s off to pitch for the St. Louis Cardinals. I’m sad and disappointed to see him leave, but I certainly wish him the very best. I’m grateful not only  for what he did wearing a Blue Jay uniform, but to also witness him go from a young man full of emotion and blossom into a mature and professional veteran. His development happened right in front of us.

My lasting memory of Brett Cecil was after game three of the 2016 ALDS. Amongst the incredible euphoria, Cecil was on the field with his three little children and wife, Jennifer. As the celebration went on, Cecil lined up his children for a family photo. It was a wonderful moment and he couldn’t have picked a better setting.

ER


Short, scribbled thoughts on the non-waiver trade deadline deals 

August 2, 2016

Honestly, I have no time to post an in-depth analysis of the three trades. If you want something thoroughly researched and presented, go somewhere else. Seriously, I won’t hold it against you. 

Anyway…

Hutch: Sorry to see Drew go. The potential is still there, but he has struggled with his consistently. We have seen him at his best and also witnessed him at his worst. Hopefully, a change of scenery and the chance to work with Pittsburgh pitching coach Ray Searage  will set him on the right path. 

Jesse Chavez: Started well, but has struggled of late. It’s funny. There were some who suggested back in April/May that Chavez get a chance to start. Seems those same people were now begging the Blue Jays to get rid of him. 

Scott Feldman: Good numbers this season. According to Baseball-Reference, he has a 2.90 ERA in 26 games thus far. As long as he holds the fort, I’m happy. 

Mike Bolsinger: Good 2015 numbers. From all the hot takes out there, looks like he’s the “sixth starter” if needed. 

Francisco Liriano: I certainly like this acquisition, but also concerned. He has not pitched well this season. Baseball-Reference shows a current ERA of 5.46, as well as a 4.40 ERA in seven American League seasons. But as BP Toronto’s Matt Gwin pointed out, Liriano has put up some productive results when pitching to Russell Martin. Here’s hoping that will continue. Of course, this also means Aaron Sanchez is about to move to the bullpen. Personally, I prefer/want Sanchez in the rotation. However, it feels like the Jays had never intended to change their original plan for Sanchez. 

ER


Episode 69: At the half…

July 7, 2016

Despite a rough start and a few bumps, the Blue Jays have performed well after 81-plus games.

A few days before Marco Estrada was placed on the 15-day DL, Jenn Smith of BP Toronto looked back at the first half of the regular season.

Episode 69 Direct MP3 Download

or…

And remember: #VoteCaptainCanada

Episode 68: The Great Sanchez Debate

June 23, 2016

Gibby says it’s “gonna happen;” but is moving Aaron Sanchez to the bullpen the right thing to do?

Joanna Cornish of HumandChuck.com shares her thoughts on this hot-button topic.

Episode 68 Direct MP3 Download

…or try the embedded SoundCloud player.

 

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