Results tagged ‘ JP Riccardi ’
In this week’s look “Around the Farm” we take a look at Travis Snider of the Lansing Lugnuts.
The 5’11” outfielder has spent all of the season with the Single-A Lansing Lugnuts in the Midwest League. Entering play today he is hitting .305 with 23 doubles, 7 HR and 56 RBI in 75 games. He is tied for 3rd in the Midwest League with 35 extra-base hits and ranks 5th in the league with a .495 Slugging Percentage.
A left-handed batter, Snider is hitting an impressive .337 with 4 HR and 23 RBI against south-paws. On July 7th he went 5-5 with 3 RBI and became the first Lugnut since Chip Cannon in 2005 to hit for the cycle.
Snider was the Blue Jays first round pick in last year’s draft, selected with the 14th overall pick. He was the first high school player drafted in the first round by the Blue Jays under J.P Riccardi’s tenure, in fact the previously highest selected high school player by J.P. was Brain Grant with the 206th overall pick in 2002.
The 5’11” outfielder hit .325 with 11 HR and 41 RBI over 54 games in his first professional season for Pulaski. He was named the Appalachian League Player of the Year, a Baseball America Rookie All-Star and Topps Short-Season Rookie All-Star.
The Mill Creek, Washington resident led Jackson High School to a 27-0 record his senior year and were ranked the #2 team in the country by Baseball America. Snider was named the Class 4A player of the year by the Washington State Coaches Association and Gatorade State Baseball Player of the Year
He is known throughout the State of Washington for a HR he hit his Junior year in the District Playoffs known as the “Broadway Shot”, where he launched a 500 feet HR out of Everett Memorial Stadium.
If Travis continues to progress as he has in his first two professional seasons his legacy is certain to grow far beyond the State of Washington.
With the Baseball Winter Meetings from Orlando, FL concluded it’s time to analyze moves made and not made by the parent Toronto Blue Jays General Manager JP Riccardi. By striking out on Ted Lilly and Gil Meche the Jays saved between 30-40 million on payroll over the next four years. Lilly ended up receiving 10-million per year and Meche 11-million. The often injury prone Lilly was not worth the gamble over four years, while Meche was inconsistent in Seattle over the past three years. With Roy Halladay, A.J. Burnett as solid number one and two starters, the Jays need only to add a number three or four guy to their rotation. Gustavio Chacin who has won 24 games the past two seasons could be a number three. That leaves Josh Towers, Shawn Marcum or Dustin McGowan to battle for the fifth spot that with off-days makes between 24-26 starts a year….Lost in all the non-pitching moves was the players Toronto picked up this off-season. Frank Thomas as a full-time Designated Hiitter was huge. Matt Stairs who hit 14 home runs and drove in 51 runs last season will replace Frank Cattalanatto and provide more power off the bench. By deciding on Greg Zaun over Bengie Molina and Rod Barajas, the Jays pitching staff, who liked Zaun better will be more comfortable on the mound and the addition of Royce Clayton gives the Jays and up-grade on offense up the middle….NAME DROPPING at the Dolphin Hotel: seen talking in the lobby were Chiefs Executive Vice President Tex Simone with former Chiefs manager and Atlanta Braves skipper Bobby Cox and his infield teamate on the 1970 Championship team Matt Galante now working with Houston. Phillies GM Pat Gillick looks forward to visiting Syracuse this season to see his AAA-club that has moved to Ottawa from Scranton. Brewers Assistant GM Gord Ash reports that his son Aaron, a frequent visitor to Syracuse when Gord was the boss in Toronto, has made the travel team of his area hockey club in Milwaukee. Longtime Blue Jays trainer and Director of Florida Operations Ken Carson will step down this year after 30-years of service to the Blue Jays. Ken will remain on as a consultant for the Florida based operation in Dunedin. Longtime Los Angeles Angeles Scout Moose Stubing has left that team to work for the Washington Nationals. Moose has been a frequent visitor to Syracuse over the years. RULE 5 HELP: The Blue Jays selected infielder Jason Smith from the Cubs in the rule 5 major league draft. Smith, 28, will be placed on the 40-man roster of Toronto. If he fails to make the club out of spring training, Smith can be sent to Syracuse or offered back to the Cubs for half the waiver price of $25,000. At 28 years old Smith would likely clear and give the Chiefs additional infield potection. At the present time, infielders include Chip Cannon and Kevin Barker at first base, Russ Adams and Ryan Roberts at second base, Sergio Santos and possibly Jason Smith at shortstop and John Hattig and Rob Cosby at third. It’s more than likely that only six of the eight players begin the year in Syracuse. The Jays also signed another big-time minor league free agent that will be added to the roster soon. Look for an announcement on our website next week.
In the end Blue Jays catcher Greg Zaun, who represented himself in contract talks with Jays GM J.P. Ricchardi couldn’t leave the only team that has provided him the opportunity to play on an everyday basis. Zaun decided Tuesday to resign with Toronto for two years at 7.5 million with an option for 2009. With only Jason Phillips on the roster and Curtis Thigpen at least a year away, the Zaun signing was a must for the catching strapped organization. At 36 years old it’s not a given that Zaun can catch 120 games and a quality back-up still needs to be found. Look for Toronto to continue to shop for catching help that will tutor Thigpen in Syracuse and provide an emergency back-up at the major league level.