Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Springer and Yates to Toronto? So much for thinking a diminished AL East would be easy pickings

Last year, the Blue Jays' regular CF was a lad named Randall Grichuk. 

Today, it is George Springer.

Last year, the Jays' closer was somebody called Anthony Bass. 

Now, it's Kirby Yates. 

Woah, holy crap, what was that? Did you feel it? A cold, shuddering breeze, coursing through my parka. I'm still shivering. WTF was THAT..?

Well, it was Toronto, whooshing past us, en route to Alpha Dog status in the AL East. Yesterday, the grounds shifted in a division the Yankees not long ago were proclaiming themselves Team To Beat. 

And unless Brian Cashman can coax a few extra doubloons from Hal Steinbrenner's chastity belt/fanny-pack, the Death Barge will enter 2021 as contenders for a Wild Card berth. Yes, another bronze medal could soon be hanging in the stadium's historically insignificant rafters. It's the new Yankee Stadium: Where nothing has ever happened!

Could 2021 be the year Buffalo wins the Super Bowl and World Series?

Here's something even crazier: Toronto's centerfielder last year - the unheralded, 28 year-old Grichuk - was not only younger but far more productive than our superstar, the famous Aaron Hicks. Mr. Nobody Grichuk hit 12 HR and batted .273 - doubling Hicks' HR total (6) and surpassing his anemic .225 average. Now, with Springer aboard, Toronto could move him to a corner slot or trade him - for pitching, or whatever they need. 

We talk about the Yankee OF glut? The Jays also have Lourdes Gurriel, 26, who hit .308, and Teoscar Hernandez, 27, who hit .289. Both topped anything from our OF last year, aside from - say - jersey sales. O, and did I mention that the Yanks might coax back Brett Gardner? Everybody loves Gardy. He'll be 37.

Last year, in hated Houston, Springer hit 14 HR and batted .265. That outproduced the great and mighty Aaron Judge, (9 HR and .257.) The Yankees boast truly big names... just not big numbers. 

But wait, there's more. Unto the Jays' bullpen now comes Yates, who in 2019 led the majors with 41 saves. Here's a jolly note: Their closer, Bass - with 7 saves - outdid our own Aroldis Chapman, who supplied three. 

Last week, when we signed DJ LeMahieu and Corey Kluber, the Yankees briefly reigned as favorites in the AL East. Let us cherish that halcyon moment. Float it into amber. Take its picture. Because unless Hal goes to his checkbook - and we know how he loves paying luxury taxes - it might just be the peak of 2021. 

The year of Buffalo. (Go Bills!)


JM said...

Realmundo, not Sanchez.

Sometimes it's so obvious, meaning the brass will never do it.

I'm so hung up on this one. It's frying my insides.

Anonymous said...

That's what you get when you think you can rise to the top by having everyone around you sink. "The Rays lost pitchers. The Red Sox are tanking. The Orioles are the Orioles. The Blue Jays did nothing..."

Until now.

So we are the same/worse than last year. Our big signings were getting DJ back (Yay!) and taking a flyer on an aging, injured, formerly great pitcher (Uh... Yay?).

We also lost Tanaka (Boo) Paxton (Who really knows?) and Happ (That one sounds OK).

Last season The Rays won the division and we couldn't get past them. This season it will be the Jays. Even if we win the division, we were not good enough to make the series much less win it.

And next season... The Dodgers improved, The Padres improved A LOT, The White Sox improved, who ever ends up with Bauer improved, Realmuto... Oh, wait THE BLUE JAYS IMPROVED!!!!

And, in the apparently all important jersey sales stat... The Mets are going to clean our clocks!

Oh, yeah, as an aside... They have a better chance of making the series than us because they, what's the word for it? IMPROVED (A lot).

Doug K.

Kevin said...

So now the Jays ALSO added Michael Brantley. That endless pipeline of talent that some of the big mouths who buzz around this blog pine for, had Damn well have their act together. Alternatively, Hal is compelled by the Jays to whip it out. Uhh, the checkbook, the checkbook. Yeah.........

Alphonso said...

In your cursory review, I believe you forgot to mention that it is the Yankees who have Giancarlo Stanton for the next seven years.

That has to count. For something. Anything.

"Lucky Seven," at least.

Kevin said...

Gooooooood gawwwwwwwd, thankfully Brantley is not going to Toronto after all.

Kevin said...

Jose Quintana signed with the Angels today for one year at eight million dollars. So, for roughly twenty million, we could have had Tanaka and Quintana, our huge rotation concerns behind us. I pray that Cashman is weighing a trade that would turn talent into results, I'm getting too old to become a foolish Cub type fan.