Jays Relievers Open-Minded As Free Agency Nears

Potential free agents sit down with MLBTR.

The numbers Kevin Gregg, Scott Downs and Jason Frasor have posted this year will look pretty good on the backs of their respective baseball cards. Gregg has a career high 35 saves with a 3.38 ERA and 9.3 K/9; Downs has a 2.73 ERA with 7.0 K/9 and 2.1 BB/9; Frasor has a 3.75 ERA with 9.5 K/9 and 4.1 BB/9. But Downs says he looks for something else when evaluating his season.

“Staying healthy,” Downs said. “That’s the main thing. Staying healthy since it’s such a grind. It’s six months out of the year and your body goes through so much, so I think if you just prepare yourself mentally the best you can, if you stay together physically, things will take care of themselves.”

Gregg also evaluates his season primarily based on health.

“Being able to go out there all the time,” Gregg said. “That’s the biggest thing – being available to help out the team. And statistics, they all work out at the end of the year, but being available for the team sometimes is more important than the other stuff.”

The other stuff has worked out fairly well for all three potential free agents, but Frasor thinks he could have pitched better.

“It’s been kind of a roller coaster year actually, and it’s definitely finishing better than it started,” he said. “Looking back, I think I’ve done some of the dumbest things I’ve done, [made] some of the worst pitches. I made some terrible decisions along the way [and] I’ve really gotten burned. But I like my stuff right now and my arm feels good, so it’s been a good year as far as that’s concerned, but it didn’t start out good by any means. It wasn’t pretty.”

Frasor walked nearly a batter per inning in April and posted an 8.38 ERA through the season’s first month, but he recovered from his turbulent start and put together a fine year. With a week remaining in the regular season, he tentatively calls 2010 a success.

“If you had asked me a month ago, no, I’d have said ‘no, it’s not a success,’ but in a lot of ways it is,” Frasor said. “I don’t want to say too much because a lot can happen in this last week, I mean I could give up two grand slams in this last week and then everything’s totally messed up, but as of right now, I’m OK.”

Good health and solid performances aren’t the only things unifying the relievers; all three could become free agents this winter. They are well-acquainted with the rumor mill, so it’s no surprise that the trio takes a laid-back stance to their upcoming free agency. Frasor, who will hit the open market for the first time, says he’s open-minded about his future.

“I’m really not that picky, as long as I’m not back in the New York Penn League or Korea or something,” Frasor said. “I love Toronto, been here for seven years, I have a lot of roots here, so I’m open to coming back.”

Frasor pitched in the New York Penn League when he was a member of the Tigers organization, but that was way back in 1999. Now, he intends to relax once the season ends instead of worrying about his next team. Like Frasor, Downs plans to wait a while before thinking much more about his future.

“Once the World Series is over, I think I’ll sit down with my family, sit down with the people who I need to talk to and hopefully we’ll figure it out from there,” Downs said. 

And the longtime Blue Jay would like to stay in Toronto if the organization wants him back.

“Hopefully there’s a team out there and I would love to come back here,” Downs said. “I’ve been here, like Frasor said, we’ve been together for six years and this is the home away from home for both of us and to say that we wouldn’t want to come back here would be lying. It’s a great city; it’s a great organization.”

Both Frasor and Downs currently project as Type A free agents, so they could see offers of arbitration from the Blue Jays. The team would stand to gain top draft picks if the pitchers turn down arbitration and sign elsewhere, so there’s reason to believe the Blue Jays will think hard about making such offers. 

When GM Alex Anthopoulos held on to Downs, Frasor, Gregg, John Buck and Lyle Overbay at the July 31st trade deadline, he maintained that the team would consider offering arbitration to departing free agents. The players could accept the offers and return to Toronto on one-year deals, but they could just as easily seek multi-year contracts, since they’re playing well and have stayed healthy so far.

Gregg currently projects to be a Type B free agent, but he won’t necessarily hit the open market. The Blue Jays have two options for the right-hander (one for 2011 and one for 2011-12), so his future depends on the Blue Jays’ decision.

“I’m assuming at some point I’ll sit down with Alex [Anthopoulos] and we’ll talk about next year and what is to come,” Gregg said. “But it’s kind of nice because I don’t have to think about it. I’ve just got to wait for him to make his decision, the organization to make their decision before I’ve got to deal with anything.”

Gregg is prepared to hit the open market again and he looks ahead to the possibility without being excited or apprehensive. At this point, he says free agency is just a part of the job.

“It is what it is,” he said. “Been through it already, so I know what to expect, which makes it easier, but it’s a process to go through. You’ve got a lot of conversations to go through and sometimes that gets pretty monotonous, but you deal with it as it comes.”

This offseason, Gregg, Downs and Frasor are likely to see their share of offers. And, fingers crossed, none of the three will end up pitching in the New York Penn League any time soon.


Leave a Reply

72 Comments on "Jays Relievers Open-Minded As Free Agency Nears"


moonraker45
4 years 11 months ago

gregg stays for 1 more year, hopefully turns himself in to a type A
frasor accepts arb because no team is going near him as a type A

Downs, as good as he’s been and as well liked as he is, he’s a type A and will get signed, the Jays have to move on and thank him for the 2 picks

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

I agree with everything except about Gregg. He’s been pretty inconsistent and even if he does decent to become a type A next season, I don’t know if any team would want him.

I would decline his option and just offer him arb, if he accepts I guess so be it and you perhaps look to trading him at the deadline. If not, he walks and we get a pick in a stacked draft.

moonraker45
4 years 11 months ago

Why would you offer him arb? if he accepts he may get more money then the 4.75 million that the option is worth.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

He is making like 2 mil or 2.75 so I don’t see how offering him arb could get him more than 4.75

moonraker45
4 years 11 months ago

2.75, and coming off a 35+ save season.. If you look around the AL there is plenty comparisons of less saves and worse save percentages making more money, things like that come in to consideration with an arbitrator. Not saying its guaranteed, but its possible, the safe selection would be to just exercise the 1 year clause .

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

Well there are stats AA can throw at him. Like his ERA, which is good but nothing spectacular. His blown saves, walk rate, inconsistent seasons.

Besides, the thing is if AA does offer him arb and he doesn’t want it because it’s not high enough then he will just become a FA. He and his 35 saves can sign somewhere else.

The_Porcupine
4 years 11 months ago

There is also the fact that he’s had 1 good year after a couple of lackluster/bad years. If he goes to arbitration, he won’t break the bank but he will get a decent raise. Can the Jays afford a 3-5 Million a year psuedo closer?

GilFisher
4 years 11 months ago

The arb award isn’t binding and the Jays could walk away from it for what amounts to a few weeks of severance pay. Then Gregg would be left with trying to find a team and a contract in March.

johnsilver
4 years 11 months ago

Yeah, it’s playing low ball, but teams have done it before and if Gregg had a good spring (if this were to happen) imagine the Player’s union would file a grievance. Boras uses this as an excuse for not accepting arbitration btw.

4 years 11 months ago

Because there is a really good chance he wouldn’t accept. He is coming off of a good year and would probably have no trouble finding a two year deal somewhere. Teams don’t have to give up a pick to sign him, so Gregg does not have that issue to deal with.

Dave_Gershman
4 years 11 months ago

I agree with everything but the question is do we pick up Gregg’s single year option or the two year one? I say one year but thats just me.

moonraker45
4 years 11 months ago

Just 1 year.. I know he gives fans plenty to worry about, he’s had his stuggles, but for the most part much of the criticisms are unfair, he’s had a good year and with so much youth an inexperience in the pen, it will be nice to have a veteran anchor.

Dave_Gershman
4 years 11 months ago

Said perfectly by the raker.

shockey12
4 years 11 months ago

Has anyone else realized that the jays could potentially have EIGHT first round picks next year?

1. Regular pick
2-3. Scott Downs
4-5. Jason Frasor
6. Kevin Gregg
7. John Buck
8. Shawn Camp

I know it’s very unlikely that if works out like this but WOW!

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

Camp is not a free agent.

Dave_Gershman
4 years 11 months ago

Assuming you mean 1st round + compensation round, then yes with the exception of Shawn Camp, who is not a free agent…But it worked for the Jays this year, hopefully i will work next draft. But in all liklehood, the Jays will probably have 2 first round picks, and then 3 or 4 compensaion picks.

moonraker45
4 years 11 months ago

Few problems with your post.
1. Shawn Camp isn’t a free agent
2. Downs and Frasor as A’ would only bring back a first round pick if a team outside of the top 15 picks signed them and if they don’t sign any other free agents. Remember when we lost burnette and got a 3rd rounder because Yanks signed CC and Tex who were ranked higher?
3. No one’s signing Frasor as a type A

jeffdg
4 years 11 months ago

Camp isnt a Free Agent.
And what about the opposite?

-They decide to keep Gregg (i hope not).
-Frasor accepts arbitration because he agents tells him no team will give up a Draft Pick for him (my guess is, a team in the bottom 15 or a team signing other Free Agents would give him a look).
-Jays sign multiple Free Agents as expected. Thanks to Cito playing his veterans, we will finish with the #17 pick, which we will lose with a Type A signing (Beltre anyone?). Could lose second round pick with another signing.

We could end up with very picks after all.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

AA is not crazy and there is no reason to go after the likes of Beltre, V-Mart, Soriana etc…

jeffdg
4 years 11 months ago

Due respect, i don’t see any reason why they don’t chase the players you mentioned and/or Crawford. If they want to fill that stadium, and truly compete, reasonable deals to Crawford, Beltre, Soriana would be a hell of a start, while weakening their direct competitors.

(or course, one could argue that they will be grossly overpaid, but i suspect that wont be the case with Beltre and Soriano and Martinez, but perhaps Crawford, depending on how you value his worth and length of any deal)

jeffdg
4 years 11 months ago

Any without getting into a discussion about what that would mean for Snider and Bautista, it is their job to create depth, something we’ve not had for almost two decades. Im sure Bautista starts in RF (where he is not nearly as good as the credit he is being given), and if maybe LInd is at 1B (where he could be scary bad) and Snider bats everyday at DH.

And if AA had to trade Snider, i trust these guys enough to trade for another young player of equal value — something that would have terrified me under JPR.

jeffdg
4 years 11 months ago

Any without getting into a discussion about what that would mean for Snider and Bautista, it is their job to create depth, something we’ve not had for almost two decades. Im sure Bautista starts in RF (where he is not nearly as good as the credit he is being given), and if maybe LInd is at 1B (where he could be scary bad) and Snider bats everyday at DH.

And if AA had to trade Snider, i trust these guys enough to trade for another young player of equal value — something that would have terrified me under JPR.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

Jays are rebuilding and they should stick to it. I see Beltre as a guy that will end up being a bad contract. He’s had great seasons… in his contract year.

Soriana is great but closer is an overrated position. I would much rather spend money and time getting good positional players than spend big money on a closer.

Do not need V-Mart. Jays have good solid depth at catcher and Arencibia deserves full-time to showcase what he can do. If not him, then there are guys like Perez, Jiminez and D’Arnaud and Martinez would not be good at all for our young starting pitching.

Crawford would really be the only one I would spend money on but realistically, he won’t sign here.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

Jays are rebuilding and they should stick to it. I see Beltre as a guy that will end up being a bad contract. He’s had great seasons… in his contract year.

Soriana is great but closer is an overrated position. I would much rather spend money and time getting good positional players than spend big money on a closer.

Do not need V-Mart. Jays have good solid depth at catcher and Arencibia deserves full-time to showcase what he can do. If not him, then there are guys like Perez, Jiminez and D’Arnaud and Martinez would not be good at all for our young starting pitching.

Crawford would really be the only one I would spend money on but realistically, he won’t sign here.

jeffdg
4 years 11 months ago

Due respect, i don’t see any reason why they don’t chase the players you mentioned and/or Crawford. If they want to fill that stadium, and truly compete, reasonable deals to Crawford, Beltre, Soriana would be a hell of a start, while weakening their direct competitors.

(or course, one could argue that they will be grossly overpaid, but i suspect that wont be the case with Beltre and Soriano and Martinez, but perhaps Crawford, depending on how you value his worth and length of any deal)

Dave_Gershman
4 years 11 months ago

Hey Ben whats so bad about the Penn League! haha. I’m actually wearing an Aberdeen Ironbirds shirt as we speak and am a Die Hard Vermont Lake Monsters fan! Bryan Morgado is the next Tim Byrdak!!

$1519287
4 years 11 months ago

Hey SPAN… nothing bad about the NYPL, but if you’re an established big leaguer, it’s a step down, haha.

– BNS

Dave_Gershman
4 years 11 months ago

Haha fair enough Ben!

Dave_Gershman
4 years 11 months ago

Haha fair enough Ben!

4 years 11 months ago

I think what happens with these BP arms decides on whether or not they go after a Type A free agent themselves.
yep, Camp is an FA after the 2011 season, so he should project to be a Type A after next year is done. If he pitches well, should earn him a multi-year deal with another club.
But Jays could definitely could see a lot of 1st round + supplemental + 2nd round picks next June.

I definitely think they all get offered arbitration. If they accept, so be it.
The Jays have a bunch of young arms coming up that can easily fill the void that probably won’t be in their starting rotation plans. Even with those guys gone, you still have others like:

Bobby Ray, Purcey, Janssen, Camp, Roenicke, Mills, Rzepcynski (assuming Drabek cracks the rotation), Stewart, Alvarez, Magnusson, Farina, etc.

I wouldn’t be surprised if we see Zach Stewart closing next season.

moonraker45
4 years 11 months ago

No way Zach Stewart’s closing, everything else is bang on though..They need to stretch out stewart’s arm, the guy was a stud in the rotation in new hampshire pretty much was as good as drabek down the stretch. . To me my future closer is Roenicke and my set up man is rzepcysnki and purcey. having rzep come in the 8th throwing some filthy slider changes, then roenicke in the 9th with some heat.. He added the changeup, it will start to develop and be more comfortable in due time My Pen next year..Litsch (the new tallet/longman) Janssen, Camp, Roenicke, Rzep, Purcey, Gregg

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

I don’t know how much Roenicke can develop. He is already what, 27, 28 years old? And I don’t even think he deserves to be with the club right now. He’s got good stuff but he cannot control it at all and time is running out for him.

moonraker45
4 years 11 months ago

He has a great arm, and his change up is coming along.. Players in the pen can develop later in their careers, all he has to do is put together 1 good season to be taken serious, look at frasor, camp, downs, all weren’t considered big pieces for anyone.

Camp had era’s over 5 with the rays, and we got him in a minor league deal when he was 33. How good has he been since

Downs was a starter and released by the expos in 2004 as a 28 year old, came to the jays started a few games but found his eventual home in the pen.

Just look at a guy like Purcey, whos was 27 now, been a disapointed in the starting rotation, but could be a guy we depend on moving in to next year…

So you’re argument thats Roenicke already 28 and time is running out is really unfounded. In the bullpen, when you’re not making much money all you need is to produce, no one will care about your past stats if you come in and get the job done.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

All very valid points.

I haven’t actually been watching baseball for that long haha so yeah, I didn’t realize bullpen guys develop so late or find it so late. Interesting list, I’ll keep it mind, thanks.

If Roenicke can find it and considering that list, he could turn out well, at least I hope.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

All very valid points.

I haven’t actually been watching baseball for that long haha so yeah, I didn’t realize bullpen guys develop so late or find it so late. Interesting list, I’ll keep it mind, thanks.

If Roenicke can find it and considering that list, he could turn out well, at least I hope.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

Alvarez pitched in high A and did really well early on but struggled a lot as the season went along. The kid is at least 2 years away before even getting a taste at the bigs. And realistically, he projects to be a bottom-end starter who has great control so right now, it’s hard to say he will be in the bullpen even if we are loaded with SP. It would just be better to trade him since he would have tons more value as a starter and finding relievers are easy.

Has Stewart even pitched at all in the bigs? Handing him a closer job would be pretty crazy especially when he’s shown so far he can handle being a starter. Despite Las Vegas, I think Stewart starts in Triple A. Sure it’s a hitters park but Cecil did quite fine there and is turning out to be a pretty good big leaguer.

Who is Bobby Ray? Unless you mean Robert Ray?

4 years 11 months ago

Wow. I’d thought I’d never see another person named Giancarlo. That’s Mike Stanton’s(Marlins rookie)real name.

moonraker45
4 years 11 months ago

I know like 94 people name giancarlo, its not that uncommon of a name.. don’t you live in new york? lol

basemonkey
4 years 11 months ago

Is this meant to mean that there’s a lot of Italians in NYC?

Keith Y
4 years 11 months ago

bobby ray is robert ray

baseballz
4 years 11 months ago

I really hope at the very least the Jays get draft picks for Buck and Downs. Yah, Frasor will prob be the set up man for Kevin Gregg, but Im ok with that. Those extra three picks though will go a long way in next years draft / it really is to bad though Buck couldn’t get himself to be a type A because i have a feeling he will really be in demand during this offseason.

Now, if only the Jays could get sweeped in their last eight or so games we could get ourselves a half decent first round pick! jk

baseballz
4 years 11 months ago

For the Pen next year I could see Gregg, Frasor, Purcey (I don’t know why he can’t learn how to throw a half decent slider), Camp, Jansen, Zep, and honestly i would love it if we signed Chad Qualls.

johnsmith4
4 years 11 months ago

What about Bucholz and Hill?

moonraker45
4 years 11 months ago

Bucholz will have to earn a spot in spring. I really feel as if only 1 or 2 guys will have guaranteed bullpen jobs going in to next season.

Hill would probably be worth more in a trade then being moved in a bullpen. The jays gave him a chance to come back, his arm looks great, they may try to move him to a team who needs rotation help

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

While I do agree with a part of that, I think Hill will need to prove more and with our starting rotation, I don’t know if he can find a full time spot there. It may be better to convert him to long man and it should prevent him from getting future injuries.

However so far, he’s pitched fairly well as a starter.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

While I do agree with a part of that, I think Hill will need to prove more and with our starting rotation, I don’t know if he can find a full time spot there. It may be better to convert him to long man and it should prevent him from getting future injuries.

However so far, he’s pitched fairly well as a starter.

baseballz
4 years 11 months ago

I agree about Bucholz, I don’t think anyone really knows what we have in Bucholz. If he returns to form he could take Jansens spot in the pen or even Frasor’s setup role. But he did get released for a reason, and if those reasons are to persuasive he could become a nontender candidate once again.

Shawn Hill, call me crazy I wouldn’t mind seeing him in the rotation / he’s a feel good story and if he can add a changeup, something which all our rotation guys have, then he could become very good asset. Im of the camp that Drabek prob wont start the year in the rotation.

baseballz
4 years 11 months ago

I agree about Bucholz, I don’t think anyone really knows what we have in Bucholz. If he returns to form he could take Jansens spot in the pen or even Frasor’s setup role. But he did get released for a reason, and if those reasons are to persuasive he could become a nontender candidate once again.

Shawn Hill, call me crazy I wouldn’t mind seeing him in the rotation / he’s a feel good story and if he can add a changeup, something which all our rotation guys have, then he could become very good asset. Im of the camp that Drabek prob wont start the year in the rotation.

O971
4 years 11 months ago

I know it’s cliche but the Jays would be at least challenging for a playoff berth in any other division. They’ve been well run for a while now but don’t have a lot to show for it.

gs01
4 years 11 months ago

I think the Jays should hold on to Downs, you don’t come across those guys like Downs everyday, he’s been their best option out of the pen for years now.

4 years 11 months ago

Downs is a valuable player, but the thing is if the Jays aren’t competing than he’s not a good investment. He’s 34 now, so even signing him to a 3 year deal covers his age 35-37 seasons. If the Jays aren’t winning next year, it means they’ve effectively signed him to produce like he is now through his decline phase.

If the Jays were planning on competing next year I’d be the first guy to say re-sign him. But as a team that’s close, but still not ready to compete for the playoffs, the Jays get more value from a first rounder than Downs. The Jays need players who will help them when they’re competing for the playoffs, not guys who’ll be helping them get close but just miss it.

The_Porcupine
4 years 11 months ago

In an ideal world, the Jays keep Downs. He’s a quality set up man. But a team like the Jays can’t spend 4-5 million on setup men. Offer him arbitration and take the draft picks when he declines and signs with the Yanks or Sox. I would not offer Frasor arbitration for fear of him accepting it (he’d probably get more in arb. than on the open market). Again, can’t afford a 3-4 million dollar set up man. I’d probably exercise Gregg’s option as long as it’s reasonable. He’s not the best, but he’s better than what the Jays have left at the moment. And the Jays should not go after a big money closer unless they think they are contending next year.

Which brings me to my second point: the Jays could actually contend next year! They’ve had a solid, good rotation this year and a capable offense. That and they are 5 games over .500. In another division, they might be able to challenge for a division title next year (and the wild card in the NL). IF AA is ballsy enough to think they could contend, I’d keep Frasor and Downs and try to pick up a better closer in free agency. The closer market should allow them to get one at reasonable price.

moonraker45
4 years 11 months ago

“He’s a quality set up man. But a team like the Jays can’t spend 4-5 million on setup men.”Wrong. It has nothing to do with money, please read Twitchy’s post of why it makes sense to let downs go. It’s about the picks, not the money.

The_Porcupine
4 years 11 months ago

I disagree. It does have SOMETHING (maybe not all) to do with money otherwise they would resigned Halladay.

That said, I understand your points about getting draft picks. But the build your team through the draft approach works best for financially limited teams or for teams in full rebuild mode. I don’t feel the Jays are either. They’ve got alot of talent in the majors already, they just need to develop it (and hope the Yanks and Sox fall off a cliff). The Jays need to make good choices in free agency and trade to compliment the talent they already have. Yes they can keep building their farm system and organizational depth, but I personally wouldn’t make all decisions based that way at the cost of being competitive.

Look, my point isn’t saying that they SHOULD keep Downs. Personally, think their resources are better served elsewhere before paying for set up men. But he is a valuable bullpen arm for a contender (something the Jays may be fairly close to being).

rzepczynski
4 years 11 months ago

this is classic way to get your post not read… state something in factual form when it is incorrect… they would of signed halladay? no… halladay said he would not resign cuz he wanted to play for a contender … so thats why they traded him… the jays got nuff money they just know they need to develope superstars to contend, so they invest the money in the draft, through international free agency, and taking on money in trades for better prospects… they could have payroll of 100 million plus if it made sense to do that but it doesnt

Encarnacion's Parrot
4 years 11 months ago

But the build your team through the draft approach works best for financially limited teams or for teams in full rebuild mode. I don’t feel the Jays are either.

The Jays aren’t financially limited, but the farm is greatly depleted in the A- and A ranks, especially in position players. Anthopolous has already stated that he wants to build a great team from the bottom up, so you have to invest your patience into that. I’m tired of watching blunder after blunder seasons too, but blame that on Ricciardi, not the organization.

moonraker45
4 years 11 months ago

You couldnt be more wrong about pretty much all your points

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

Yeah Twitchy pretty much covered everything which is the post above you.

And it would shock me if Jays can contend next year. Even with Tampa losing some guys, they will still likely be a 90 win team while Yankees and Red Sox could potential be 100 win teams so I doubt Jays will contend next year. There are still tons of spots this team needs to upgrade and there is still much re-building to be done. I think Jays could contend in 2012 though.

The_Porcupine
4 years 11 months ago

Are the Jays really that far from being a 90 win team? Yes they have needs that need upgrading (leadoff, bullpen), but they’ve also got a fairly strong rotation and offense that can lead to a quick improvement. Getting draft picks for Downs will not help them contend in 2011 or 2012 either. Again, I’m not saying they should keep Downs. I just think it is a bit short sighted to base decisions on draft choices when a team is close to contending. As a fan I want to see a team play well. Toronto had a lot of good things in place before they started haphazardly spending money a few years back. Now that they have mostly recovered, they need to make better decisions with free agents and trades to compliment the talent they have. That may mean letting Downs go. But if management feels they are close to contending, they should consider keeping him.

You are right though, it is hard to envision a team challenging the Yanks and Red Sox in any year. But the Rays have done it (and no, I’m not comparing the Rays and Jays). When you have a chance to win now, sometimes you have to go for it. Otherwise, it may be a long wait until you have another chance. Toronto has to be careful not to rush things like Seattle did this past off season, but I have faith in the GM to make the right decisions.

If we were talking about the Royals, Pirates or someother perenial losing/rebuilding team, I would automatically go with the draft picks. But this is a team already with good talent.

My last point about possibly keeping the bullpen arms- having a stronger bullpen may very well help develop a young rotation. And the rotation is definitely the strength that the Jays should build around.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

You make all valid points but realistically, even if Jays are a 90 win team, they will not make the playoffs and there are still questions marks beside Scott Downs. Let’s not forget some of the career years some have had with the Jays like Buck, Gonzalez had a great season before getting traded, Bautista is having a monster year. Overbay has had a fairly good year but then again, Hill and Lind have been awful. And with Buck and Overbay leaving, unless you find bigger upgrades than them, I’m not sure Jays can contend. 3rd base is also a position they need to upgrade.

As for the bullpen, even with Downs back, it’s still a pretty bad bullpen. And yeah Rays did contend and are still contending for the division but you also have to remember it took a while. They were a rebuilding team for a while which is the route we are at right now and we shouldn’t rush things. Do not make stupid overpaid signings to desperately trying to contend when i’m not sure if they can.

Also, Baltimore will be better as well, actually they are better now so playing teams within our division, will be tough, very tough and Jays usually don’t play well against Yankees, Rays and Boston.

The_Porcupine
4 years 11 months ago

I agree with many of your points, I think we are just coming at it from opposite directions. I’m a touch more optimistic, you’re a touch more pessimistic. The problem for the Jays lies in their division. They have to think they can win 95 games a year before being a contender, whereas all other divisions need 85 wins to contend (not that 85 wins you the division, but it means you’ve got a chance come September). At no point have I said I think the Jays can beat the Yanks or Sox for the division. Realistically, it would take a couple major injuries to keep either of them from winning. But every fan wants to see a contender, a team that plays meaningful games in September. The Rays happened to be at a place where they could capitalize when both the Yanks (2 year ago) and Sox (this year) faltered. Othewise they would still be considered a “rebuilding team” because they would otherwise have no shot at winning against those 2. If the Jays can maintain a position to capitalize on Yank or Sox mistakes, they should try. They shouldn’t be irresponsible, but shouldn’t assume the “we’re not ready yet” position.

As a fan, I hate watching teams that are always rebuilding or constantly treading water. They’re boring and have become nothing more than feeder fish for other teams. I don’t want to see the Jays do that.

That’s my opinion. I’d advise other teams to proceed differently. And really, I doubt that the Jays future hangs in the balance of whether or not they resign Downs.

By the way, they have a good catcher (Arrenciba I think is the name/spelling). The only other holes in the lineup are whereever Batista doesn’t play between 3b/of and whereever Lind doesn’t play between 1b/DH. I think they need a classic leadoff hitter (onbase and steals) and to re-vamp their bullpen.

moonraker45
4 years 11 months ago

What your failing to acknowledge is sustained sucess. Sure keeping downs now would be the best move for a competitive team moving in to 2011, 2012.

to Sign Downs it will probably take a 3 year deal. Is having a 37, 38 year old the best thing for a competitive team in 2013, 2014? or is it best to not only get younger, but to also bring back 2 high end draft picks that could turn in to our future closer and future 3b.

moonraker45
4 years 11 months ago

What your failing to acknowledge is sustained sucess. Sure keeping downs now would be the best move for a competitive team moving in to 2011, 2012.

to Sign Downs it will probably take a 3 year deal. Is having a 37, 38 year old the best thing for a competitive team in 2013, 2014? or is it best to not only get younger, but to also bring back 2 high end draft picks that could turn in to our future closer and future 3b.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

You make all valid points but realistically, even if Jays are a 90 win team, they will not make the playoffs and there are still questions marks beside Scott Downs. Let’s not forget some of the career years some have had with the Jays like Buck, Gonzalez had a great season before getting traded, Bautista is having a monster year. Overbay has had a fairly good year but then again, Hill and Lind have been awful. And with Buck and Overbay leaving, unless you find bigger upgrades than them, I’m not sure Jays can contend. 3rd base is also a position they need to upgrade.

As for the bullpen, even with Downs back, it’s still a pretty bad bullpen. And yeah Rays did contend and are still contending for the division but you also have to remember it took a while. They were a rebuilding team for a while which is the route we are at right now and we shouldn’t rush things. Do not make stupid overpaid signings to desperately trying to contend when i’m not sure if they can.

Also, Baltimore will be better as well, actually they are better now so playing teams within our division, will be tough, very tough and Jays usually don’t play well against Yankees, Rays and Boston.

The_Porcupine
4 years 11 months ago

Are the Jays really that far from being a 90 win team? Yes they have needs that need upgrading (leadoff, bullpen), but they’ve also got a fairly strong rotation and offense that can lead to a quick improvement. Getting draft picks for Downs will not help them contend in 2011 or 2012 either. Again, I’m not saying they should keep Downs. I just think it is a bit short sighted to base decisions on draft choices when a team is close to contending. As a fan I want to see a team play well. Toronto had a lot of good things in place before they started haphazardly spending money a few years back. Now that they have mostly recovered, they need to make better decisions with free agents and trades to compliment the talent they have. That may mean letting Downs go. But if management feels they are close to contending, they should consider keeping him.

You are right though, it is hard to envision a team challenging the Yanks and Red Sox in any year. But the Rays have done it (and no, I’m not comparing the Rays and Jays). When you have a chance to win now, sometimes you have to go for it. Otherwise, it may be a long wait until you have another chance. Toronto has to be careful not to rush things like Seattle did this past off season, but I have faith in the GM to make the right decisions.

If we were talking about the Royals, Pirates or someother perenial losing/rebuilding team, I would automatically go with the draft picks. But this is a team already with good talent.

My last point about possibly keeping the bullpen arms- having a stronger bullpen may very well help develop a young rotation. And the rotation is definitely the strength that the Jays should build around.

Encarnacion's Parrot
4 years 11 months ago

I truely believe that if they lose Crawford, Pena and Soriano, they’ll be an 85-win team. They’ll be back in 2012 though.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

Yeah Twitchy pretty much covered everything which is the post above you.

And it would shock me if Jays can contend next year. Even with Tampa losing some guys, they will still likely be a 90 win team while Yankees and Red Sox could potential be 100 win teams so I doubt Jays will contend next year. There are still tons of spots this team needs to upgrade and there is still much re-building to be done. I think Jays could contend in 2012 though.

baseballz
4 years 11 months ago

If we don’t get those picks for Downs ill be upset to be honest. Next years draft is huge and those picks will be more important then ever. I agree with the above poster, Downs makes sense for a contender, but a contender the Jays are not and two high draft picks are very valuable.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

There are always high ranked players that always fall to further rounds such as 3, 4, 5 and with the way Jays spent on the draft this year, it wouldn’t surprise me if they took very huge upside guys and signed most of them. Would it help if we have an extra pick or so? Sure, but it wouldn’t kill this organization.

And to be honest, I wouldn’t be sad at all if Downs came back. I like his attitude around the club, he’s a good guy and has been our most consistent player over the years.

Sniderlover
4 years 11 months ago

There are always high ranked players that always fall to further rounds such as 3, 4, 5 and with the way Jays spent on the draft this year, it wouldn’t surprise me if they took very huge upside guys and signed most of them. Would it help if we have an extra pick or so? Sure, but it wouldn’t kill this organization.

And to be honest, I wouldn’t be sad at all if Downs came back. I like his attitude around the club, he’s a good guy and has been our most consistent player over the years.

SneakyLongBalls
4 years 11 months ago

Downs and Frasor will be gone. Gregg will be back
Purcey could fill the Downs void.

The success is not measured right now in the Win Loss category, but the development of players. Romero, Marcum, Morrow and Cecil ALL made huge strides and have proven they can compete and win in this division. 2011 will be a huge season for Hill, Lind and to a lesser extent Snider. Should they struggle, I feel the Jays will look outside our organization to make trades.

slider32
4 years 10 months ago

Yanks will sign LEE and DOWNS next year.