Results tagged ‘ Ted Lilly ’
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.
It’s been a busy day already in Orlando today. The Rule 5 Draft took place this morning and the Blue Jays took SS Jason Smith in the Major League portion of the draft. Below is a copy of the Blue Jays press release on Smith.
SMITH, 28, spent the 2006 season in the Colorado organization playing for both the Colorado Rockies and Colorado Springs Sky Sox (AAA) of the Pacific Coast League. He was signed this past off-season (Nov 12) by the Chicago Cubs as a minor league free agent. The 6’3″, 200 lb., left handed hitting infielder batted .263 (26-99) with five home runs and 13 RBI in 49 games for the Rockies, while also posting a .291 average (41-141) with nine doubles, five triples, four home runs, and 23 RBI in 41 games at the AAA level in Colorado Springs. The native of Meridian, Mississippi has appeared in 166 Major League games covering the past six seasons (Cubs 2001, Tampa Bay 2002-03, Detroit 2004-05, Colorado 2006), and has played at all four infield positions over that span.
The Blue Jays did not lose any players in the Rule 5 and did not make any selections in the Minor League phase of the draft.
Also in the Major League portion of the Rule 5 former SkyChiefs catcher Josh Phelps was selected by the New York Yankees. Phelps who spent all of the 2006 season with the Governor’s Cup Champion Toledo Mud Hens had already signed a Minor League Deal with the Baltimore Orioles for 2007 but now will be added to the Yankees 40-man roster.
One would think that the Yankees, who did not resign Craig Wilson, are bringing in Phelps to compete with Andy Phillips for playing time at first-base and DH. With Damon, Abreu, Giambi, Matsui and Cano all hitting from the left side, Phelps could provide the power from the right side the Bronx Bombers are looking for.
After losing out on Ted Lilly yesterday it appears the Blue Jays have also lost out on the Gil Meche sweepstakes. ESPN’s Steve Phillips is reporting that Meche will be signing a 5-year deal with the Royals pending a physical.
The Blue Jays are now expected to target Jeff Suppan and Mark Redman for their starting rotation. If the team is unable to sign one of those guys the team would look to Shaun Marcum, Casey Janssen, Francisco Rosario, Dustin McGowan and Josh Towers as possible 4th and 5th starters. Rosario and McGowan are both out of options while Marcum and Janssen have options remaining and could return to Syracuse with out having to be designated for assignment. The Blue Jays however may look to get another option year for McGowan (similar to a redshirt) because he missed a year due to an arm injury. The Jays did the very same thing last year with Rosario.
New SkyChiefs president Ron Gersbacher and team mascot Scooch appeared on Bridge Street this morning with Rick Geary and Julie Abbott. Gersbacher donated two 2007 season tickets for Bridge Street’s efforts in raising funds for the Children’s Miracle Network. Also while on the show it was announced that the SkyChiefs are holding a special gathering next Monday, December 11th for a major announcement.
The team has been teasing media members this week with clues to what the press conference is about and while on the air handed out today’s clue a conductor’s hat.
With the 2006 baseball season complete, both major league and minor league free agents can now begin talks for the 2007 campaign. The Blue Jays who have lost five players to the free agency since Saturday (Frank Cattalanotto, Justin Speier, Ted Lilly and catchers Greg Zaun and Benjie Molina) hope to resign Zaun and Lilly, with Cattalanotto and Speier longshots. Already, the Jays signed their first minor league free agent, righthander Jean Machi (Ma-Kee) and added him to their 40-man major league roster. A minor league free agent is normally assigned to the Syracuse roster, but the Blue Jays may believe the Machi would be a possible rule 5 draft selection and lost to another organization in December. Last season with Montgomery (AA) in the Devil Rays organization, Machi was 6-1 with a 2.64 ERA and 16 saves. In 71-innings pitched the righty closer struck out 68 batters. He currently is pitching in his native country Venezuela and has not allowed a run in 8-innings pitched…..This week on INSIDE PITCH, the Chiefs new weekly radio show broadcast live on ESPN Radio 1260 AM Bob McElligott and John Simone will talk to player agent Ivan Schwartz on what a six year free agent looks for when he becomes eligable and who might be available amoung the 2007 crop.