Toronto Baseball Guys
Sunday, June 27, 2010
  Shot of Brandy?...No Shot at Brandy!
Wouldn’t it have been neat if…the third game of the Phillies-Jays series got rained out, leading to a make up date on a mutual off day. And wouldn’t it have been nice if Bud Selig and MLB decided that the game could take place in Toronto since G20 protesters wouldn’t still be in the process of being scraped off the asphalt, Gay Pride revelers wouldn’t threaten to keep players up all night, the pollution index would be low enough, and the SkyCentre wouldn’t be too bland. This way we could have caught a glimpse of Roy…but that’s just wishful thinking. I know that Halladay is a phenomenal pitcher and was a great company man during his time here, but I’m still allowed to feel as stung as Arthur did, when Yick left him for the cool kids on the basketball team in the early episodes of Degrassi Junior High.

Speaking of Roy, I was reading Richard Griffin’s interview with Roy’s wife Brandy in the Star this weekend. In the accompanying article Griffin spoke very positively of the interaction and described how much the Halladay’s loved Toronto. The comments section in Griffin’s blog echoed the same sentiment as him, and suggested that Roy and Brandy were perfect and right and victims in the whole trade scenario. Call me a cynic but I’m not so sure that I agree. Obviously Mr. Griffin was appreciative of the fact that someone with the surname Halladay was willing to speak with him, so he needed to be respectful. Since no Halladay, or significant member of the MLB will ever speak to me, I’ll try to be a little more candid. If only I could have participated in the interview…

Brandy Halladay: “…When J.P. was still with them, he had come to us and said what about this extension, blah, blah, blah. He was under a lot of pressure to get us to sign this extension. And they offered us money. They offered us a lot of money. Like we said, it's not about the money, it's about putting ourselves in the position to attain the goals we set for ourselves…”

TBG Mark: Wow you guys are real heroes for accepting the meager sum of $60 million over four years to play a child’s game. That would probably have you living at the poverty line if you needed to commute to The Moon to get to work.

BH: “We never went to them and said we want a trade. They came to us every time.”

TBGM: That’s interesting, I suppose that your refusal to sign a contract extension with the team and indication that you would not return after becoming a free agent didn’t force the Jays to make a move to get something out of their most valuable asset.

BH: “For us, that first trade deadline, there were so many times that we did reminisce, that whole month because we thought for sure this was getting done. We thought we were gone and that was hard for us. We were thinking this might be my last food drive. This might be the last this or the last that. It was really hard. When I left before that All-Star Game, knowing I wasn't coming back. It was really hard. At that time people knew that the Blue Jays were shopping us around. J.P. had told us that they were going to do it quietly.”

TBGM: Oh, I see, you worked on the Food Drive, that’s interesting I wouldn’t have known that. Perhaps it would have occurred to me after you mentioned it seven times during the interview.

BH: “In July it seemed to me to be a repetition of the way that Carlos Delgado was handled and Kelvim Escobar and a few guys where the Jays said 'We have an offer out there. If said player gives us a home team discount we'd love to have him back.' But to me it was unfair with Carlos, it was unfair with Roy.”

TBGM: I’m confused, I thought money didn’t matter, what would be the problem with the home team discount?

Richard Griffin: “Was there a noticeable change when Alex took over in terms of getting it behind closed doors again and just having it private?”

BH: “I don't think that there was a change. I think J.P. took a lot of heat for things he shouldn't have taken heat for. That's just my opinion from behind the doors. I think his hands were tied a lot. I think he did the best for us that he could. There wasn't a noticeable change in the way things were handled. It was just another change. You look back. How many GMs have we gone through. We've gone through owners. We've gone through so many managers. I've seen that office change over and over and over. So it was just kind of here we go again. We're starting over again. Alex is smart. He's a smart guy. My fear was that this was the only shot we had to do this right and I was scared that with him being new that maybe it wasn't going to get done or maybe the right deals weren't going to come forward because he was new. Just that fear of starting over again.”

TBGM: First off, I’m not sure that I can trust anyone who actually supports JP. Secondly, why was there a fear that “This was the only shot we had to do this right…”? If you loved Toronto so much, what would have been the problem with playing out the final year of the legally binding contract you signed?

BH: “Yeah, this is it. It's not fair to anybody and we didn't want it to happen that way. But at the same time what are your options, you know. We don't run the show. We just try to comply with it.”

TBGM: Actually Brandy, you do run the show. If you’d been willing to sign a contract extension, then there never would have been any trade talk. Besides, didn’t you have a no trade clause?

What was with the constant use of “we” in this interview. Did you both have the nasty repertoire of pitches, pinpoint control and insatiable appetite to win? If so, maybe we should have had both of you in the rotation.

Here’s the deal. Roy Halladay was not going to resign with the Jays because they weren’t going to compete in the immediate future. It’s perfectly reasonable for him to want a chance to play in the playoffs. I do not fault him for that desire, but I certainly hold him responsible for it. He absolutely left our team and our city and it is undeniable that he was partially responsible for the move. This doesn’t take away from his performance on the mound and doesn’t mean that he’s not a good guy. But he chose to leave and for that I feel scorned.

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