Posted tagged ‘pitching’

Can we PLEASE stop dissecting Roberto Osuna’s struggles?

September 7, 2017

Trying to figure out why Roberto Osuna has struggled carries no benefit whatsoever. 

Barring a biblical comeback, the Blue Jays are not making the playoffs. Therefore, everything from now until the end of the regular season is a moot point. So why bother making a big deal about the blown saves? 

I am not an expert, nor do I have access to the clubhouse. Maybe he’s tired and that would be completely understandable. He’s done more the past three seasons then some players have done in an entire career. He warrants a chance to figure things out and clearly deserves a break once the season finishes. Don’t forget that the Jays have played an additional month in back-to-back seasons. That’s a lot of extra baseball. 

That doesn’t necessarily mean to ignore the issue. But to worry about it now when everything is fait accompli is pointless. If the struggles continue into the 2018 season, than we can start having discussions. 

So until then, kindly cool it. You’re only wasting oxygen. Shit happens and we all go through slumps. 

Seriously, just leave the poor guy alone.

ER

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A short note about Roberto Osuna

June 27, 2017

It was a tough weekend, n’est-ce pas?

When I found out Roberto Osuna was dealing with anxiety, it was like getting hit by a sack of bricks. Afterall, he’s only 22-years-old.

I enthusiastically applaud Osuna for speaking out. That took an incredible amount of strength and could not have been an easy decision to make. 

It was great to see him pitch the final frame of Sunday’s victory; and like you, I wish him only the very best. His health is far more important than wins/losses and whether he’s available out of the bullpen or not.

ER


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

Short, scribbled thoughts about the fugly start to the regular season

April 17, 2017

Wish I could tell you it will get better. But the truth is I can’t. There are few guarantees in baseball, so I can only hope for the best and be positive.

The Blue Jays will either figure it out or they won’t.

You can push as many panic buttons as possible. You can demand they fire Gibby. You can beg for Rowdy Tellez to be called up. You can curse Mark Shapiro and Russ Atkins for all entirety. You can refuse to purchase tickets. Just understand one thing: We have no control over the fate of the team. Like it or not, we have to let the process work itself out and show some – here’s a word you might not like – patience.

Gregg Zaun sometimes criticizes certain fans for wanting instant gratification. It’s a theory I subscribe to as well. We live in a society that values anything quick and aggressive, while discarding items that are slow and can’t instantly capture attention. Baseball clashes with this kind of society; in the game itself and with the length of the season. The adage of the regular season being a marathon and not a sprint certainly applies to the Jays’ situation.

The consensus couldn’t be clearer: There’s nothing fun about how this season has gone so far, especially after Sunday’s 11-4 dumpster fire loss to Baltimore. Greater concern is Aaron Sanchez’s blister problem and J.A. Happ’s elbow; issues that are incredibly alarming. Can’t forget the nightmarish offensive production either. So as much as it sucks – and it really does suck – there is nothing we can do, but to simply let things breathe. It might be painful, but it’s the right course of action.

If that won’t work for you, consider this: If the worst thing in your life is a 2-10 baseball team, then you have a pretty good life.

ER


MVP at the WBC

March 26, 2017

It mattered the most
so Stroman answered the call
with flare and style

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



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