Author Archives: jaysfromcouch

How Josh Tomlin Dominated the Blue Jays in Gm 2 of ALCS

JAYS FROM THE COUCH LOOKS AT HOW CLEVELAND STARTER, JOSH TOMLIN WAS ABLE TO DOMINATE THE TORONTO BLUE JAYS IN GAME 2 OF ALCS

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If you were like me, you were probably looking forward to watching the Toronto Blue Jays take the mound against Cleveland starter Josh Tomlin in Game 2 of the ALCS. After all, in Game 1, Corey Kluber was frustrating because he would allow some hits and chances for the Blue Jays to score, but, he managed to shut them down repeatedly. He bent, but did not break. He pitched like an ace. That’s why we were licking our chops at a chance to face a guy who was decidedly not an ace.

 

Entering the postseason, Tomlin posted a 13-9 record with 4.40 ERA, a 4.88 FIP, and most enticing of all, a HR rate of 1.86/9 innings. He looked to be the kind of guy that the Blue Jays could light up. Home runs have been a problem for Tomlin in 2016- he gave up 36 of them in the regular season. The Toronto Blue Jays live by the home run- hitting 221 of them in 2016. In the ALDS, we saw just how much they relied on it.

 

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Report: Toronto Blue Jays Look to Bring Slugging Duo Back

According to a recent report, the Toronto Blue Jays will make efforts to retain the services of Edwin Encarnacion and Jose Bautista.

 

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If the Toronto Blue Jays were not comfortable with extending Edwin Encarnacion before the season started, perhaps they would be now that he’s put up some impressive MVP type numbers. Or, perhaps his clutch postseason hitting has tipped the scales in his favor. Whichever it is, the club certainly has to be thinking long and hard about ponying up the dough for Edwin.

 

Jon Heyman says that the club plans on making qualifying offers to both Edwin and Jose Bautista (more on him in a bit), assuming the new collective bargaining agreement allows for one. That is not much of a surprise. The team would certainly offer up the one year deal in the hopes of retaining the players or them rejecting the nearly $17M in favor of free agency, which would net the club two picks in the next draft. So, the QO is not such a difficult decision.

 

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Toronto Blue Jays Do it All & Keep Rolling

Firing on all cylinders, the Toronto Blue Jays are rolling through the postseason thanks to hitting, hurling and hustle.

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The Toronto Blue Jays just swept the Texas Rangers in the ALDS. They won 3 games in a row against the team with the highest win total in the American League. They swept Rougned Odor. Revenge has been exacted and it is sweet. The high road travelers will tell you that beating the Rangers in this manner is the best kind of payback. Watching the look on Odor’s face as the Blue Jays were celebrating proves that point correct.

So, here we have a Blue Jays squad that has demonstrated everything you need to be successful in the postseason. They’ve seen their bats come to life, scoring 22 runs in 3 games. They’ve seen their starting pitching keep them in games at the bare minimum, with some dominance mixed in. They’ve also seen their club scratch and claw to manufacture a run form sheer hustle. It is this combination that has the team riding some serious momentum at exactly the right time of year.

 

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On Toronto Blue Jays & MLB Postseason Momentum

JAYS FROM THE COUCH LOOKS AT THE IMPACT MOMENTUM MIGHT HAVE ON THE POSTSEASON HOPES OF THE TORONTO BLUE JAYS

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It started when the calendar changed to October. The Toronto Blue Jays started winning. At that point, there was legitimate concern that their season would end before they could fulfill the lofty expectations heaped on them. We expected that they would again appear in the postseason, but it was starting to look like they would disappoint. September was a struggle for the boys in blue. They went 11-15 and fell in the standings. We worried, we panicked, we stressed.

But, a funny thing happened. They started October with a win against the Boston Red Sox. They won again on the final day of the season to clinch their postseason spot. They won the Wild Card game in dramatic fashion. In fact, all they’ve done in October is win. They are now 5-0 and find themselves one win away from heading to the ALCS. It has been quite the shift in fortunes. Many would call it “a roll”. Some would call it “momentum”; that the club got hot at the right time. I wanted to look into this idea of momentum.

 

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Ezequiel Carrera: Toronto Blue Jays Unlikely Hero

WHEN THE TORONTO BLUE JAYS SEASON LOOKED TO BE IN JEOPARDY, EZEQUIEL CARRERA STEPPED UP AND PERFORMED WHEN THEY NEEDED HIM.

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It came down to the wire, but the Toronto Blue Jays are headed to the postseason for the second straight year. This time, their tickets weren’t punched as early, or as easily as last. No, this team lost its footing on the division and barely hung on to a Wild Card spot. But, thanks to some solid pitching and some key contributors, they get to keep playing in October.

 

One of those key contributors is Ezequiel Carrera. In fact, he just might the guy who saved their 2016 season.

 

The first half of the season saw no reason to utilize Carrera as more than a 4th outfielder who could give some guys a day of rest. Michael Saunders was on a tear, Kevin Pillar was flying around, protecting center field from and danger and Jose Bautista was…there in right field. There just seemed no room for the 29 yr old from Venezuela. Carrera and his lifetime .255/.314/356 would be the little used bench guy.

 

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Blue Jays Fans Shouldn’t Hold Their Breath for Joey Votto

DESPITE FANS CLAMORING FOR THE BLUE JAYS TO TRADE FOR JOEY VOTTO, THE CANADIAN SLUGGER IS NOT LIKELY TO COME TO TORONTO.

 

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Joey Votto is Canadian. Joey Votto is a lefty bat. Joey Votto would be amazing in a Blue Jays uniform. But, Joey Votto is not coming to Toronto. 

 

For months now, fans of the Toronto Blue Jays have been begging and pleading to anyone who will listen that a trade for Joey Votto needs to be done. It has been talked about so much that some people are actually starting to believe that it will happen.  And, you can’t really blame them. The deal would make sense. The Blue Jays need a left handed batter. They could use a solid first baseman. And, the fact that he is Canadian makes everything that much sweeter.

 

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Examining the Night & Day Performances of Blue Jays’ Francisco Liriano

JAYS FROM THE COUCH COMPARES THE LAST TWO STARTS BY FRANCISCO LIRIANO WHO HAS BEEN UP AND DOWN THUS FAR FOR THE BLUE JAYS.

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Obtaining the services of Francisco Liriano at this year’s MLB Trade Deadline, took us all by surprise. Not only was he a guy who was not in the rumor mill, but he wasn’t necessarily a guy who fans dreamed of. In fact, after the trade broke, we sat down with Jason Rollison of Pirates Breakdown to hear what we could expect from Liriano. During Episode 85 of the Jays Nest Podcast, Jason didn’t really have a lot of positive things to get us excited about the 32 yr old Dominican lefty.

 

Basically, the scoop was that Liriano will be hot and cold. One night, he’ll show flashes of brilliance, the next he’ll have seemingly forgotten where the strike zone is. I bring this up because his tenure in Toronto has been exactly as advertised. Most recently, he was great against the Cleveland Indians, which came as a surprise after he was not so great in his start before that against the Houston Astros. I wanted to look into the difference(s) between the two starts to see if there was a rhyme or reason.

 

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Interview with Blue Jays INF, Ryan Goins

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JAYS FROM THE COUCH CAUGHT UP WITH TORONTO BLUE JAYS’ INF, RYAN GOINS, TO CHAT ABOUT PITCHING AND RETURNING FROM INJURY.

It is a beautiful day at Coca-Cola Field on a hot steamy Monday in July where the Blue Jays’ Ryan Goins, bat in hand, takes BP. There is little evidence left of the arm injury that had him placed on the 15-day DL after the very long 19-inning Canada Day game against the Cleveland Indians. The game, a heartbreaking loss after such a long battle, had Goins turn in his bat for a ball to pitch relief in the 18th inning. He didn’t do so bad, pitching himself into a ground out double play.

 

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BLUE JAYS DEADLINE FIXES: STARTING PITCHING ON THE CHEAP

BLUE JAYS DEADLINE FIXES TAKES A LOOK AT STARTING PITCHERS WHO COULD BE AVAILABLE AT A KNOCK DOWN PRICE THAT CAN HELP TORONTO MAKE THAT PUSH BACK TO THE POST-SEASON.

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Welcome to “Blue Jays Deadline Fixes”, where we take a look at players the Blue Jays can target to fix what ails them on the diamond and improve the chances of another playoff run.

 

This installment looks at some starting pitchers that might be available for relatively cheap. Pitchers that cost less than a Jeff Hoffman, but a little more than a Sean Ratcliffe. They aren’t going to put up David Price numbers, but might be able to match what Johnny Cueto did for the Royals at a fraction of the price.

 

Given that the Blue Jays seem committed to dragging Aaron Sanchez kicking and screaming back to the bullpen while Marco Estrada has a small injury concern and Marcus Stroman has been showing too much to batters, some more starting pitching help would be appreciated. For a team that’s already proving to be very shrewd on the trade front with the Jason Grilli pickup, here are six starting pitchers who could reap similar dividends.

 

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What the Blue Jays need at MLB Trade Deadline Pt1

AS THE TORONTO BLUE JAYS APPROACH THE JULY 31ST MLB TRADE DEADLINE, THERE ARE CLEAR AREAS OF NEED. THEY MUST ADDRESS THEIR STARTING PITCHING DEPTH.

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It might seem odd to be talking about the July 31st Trade Deadline a couple of weeks beforehand. Or, it might not. Many of the major outlets, and those who represent them, have already begun their assessment of the market and sharing at will. By now, teams will have been identified as ‘buyers’ or ‘sellers’ and storylines will evolve accordingly. Assessing a club two weeks ahead of the deadline can be difficult given that so much can change. Losing a key player shifts priorities in an unexpected way. A sudden hot (or cold) streak changes which label you enter the dance with.

With that said, the Toronto Blue Jays can be expected to be looking to make deals to bolster their already strong roster in an attempt at repeating their playoff appearance from a year ago. At the All Star break, the club is 2 games out of the division lead and hold a Wild Card spot. We can expect that they will not be content with keeping status quo while the Orioles and Red Sox look to make improvements. So, they’ll seek out opportunities. They will not repeat last season’s flurry of deals, but they will try and add.

There are several areas teams look to improve at this time of year. For the Blue Jays, pitching depth has to be at the top of the list. That is not to say that the pitching they have is not good enough. Nope. But, if they are going to compete, they are going to need some help.

 

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