Toronto Baseball Guys
Friday, September 03, 2010
  Some Questions
Oh Great, the Jays are in New York and Labour Day Weekend is upon us. Maybe I'll eat that week old tuna sandwich on the counter as things can't get much for a teacher and a Jays fan.

As the Jays are headed into New York for a series against the Yankees allow me to pose the following questions.

1.) Will the Jays win games 1 and 2, 1 and 3 or 2 and 3 of the series so that they can end up taking the series two to one?

2.) With Encarnacion DL’d and Fred Lewis* having been removed from Wednesday night’s game with an elbow injury, will I get the call to play left field over Travis Snider? Oops, I just noticed it’s an afternoon game that I’ve missed the start of, and Snider is in the lineup and has already gone deep.

*After recording the first out of the game on Wednesday night you could see Fred Lewis flexing his arm like something was wrong with it. Was he injured on that play, or was it from something that occurred before the game? If Lewis was hurt coming into the game, how long ago did it happen? Has he been playing through injury for a while, but kept it quiet so that he could get more playing time? It wouldn't be too odd, since it's seemed like his ankle hasn't really healed since that July series in KC. Maybe that's why he's been motoring like a Molina brother lately.


3.) Will the late charging Mark Texeira club more homers from the left side or right side of the plate?

4.) During which inning will Arod head into the clubhouse so that he can get a syringe of “…just some cortisone that I’m using to help repair my ankle injury”?

5.) Where will the Yankees’ pitchers throw at Jose Bautista? Buttocks, square of the back or head.

Speaking of throwing at batters, we’ve seen some nice responses with varying degrees of effectiveness over the years:

Great Charges: George Bell charged the mound and lunged at Bruce Kison with a karate kick that would have made Ralph Macchio…err…Will Smith’s son proud. After having seen that as pitcher, I’m pretty sure I would have thrown the next pitches to Bell as lob balls, or directly into centre field.

Self Defense: Todd Sottlemyre refused to play the helpless pitcher suplexing an attacking batter.

Defend Your Teammate: It was pretty much a guarantee that Roy Halladay would respond to one of his teammates being hit by a pitch with a plunking of his own. Unfortunately, Roy would tend to do this with no outs in the inning of a close game. Anecodotally it seemed to me like it was a regular occurrence that the hit batsman would end up scoring. Giving the opposition a small bruise and free run is not the most effective payback.

But Bautista has discovered a pretty effective retaliation. In the past two weeks we’ve seen two bean balls that the Jays slugger has taken specific exception to. First he got out of the way of an Ivan Nova pitch up around the eyes, and a little over a week later he was plunked by the Rays’ Jeff Niemann. In both cases he responded by going deep in his next at bat, while rubbing it in with a sweet slow trot against the Yankees and some muscle posing against the Rays.

The Message: We are not doormats. See you next year AL East!

I’m looking forward to heading into a spring training finally excited about building on some past success from a number of different sources rather than counting solely on future potential, and glimpses of talent shown by guys taking advantage of September call ups.
 
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