Toronto Blue Jays News
8-31-15: A day after Edwin Encarnacion hit three home runs, he set the new franchise record for runs batted in for a month on Sunday. He also launched his 30th home run of the season in the Blue Jays’ 7-2 victory over the visiting Detroit Tigers. Mark Buehrle pitched six innings and allowed just one earned run, as the Blue Jays swept the Tigers. Then, Toronto named Mark Shapiro its new president on Monday.
8-28-15: The Toronto Blue Jays began this week by receiving permission to talk to the Cleveland Indians president Mark Shapiro as the team continues to look for a replacement for their baseball operations job. The Cleveland executive is rumored to be Toronto’s top target for the position and it is expected that Shapiro will join the Blue Jays after the conclusion of the 2015 season. Shapiro would presumably have to find a new GM if he were to take the job in Toronto as Alex Anthopoulos may not be back in 2016 despite a complete roster overhaul that has the team in first place in the American League East Division. Anthopoulos has stated that an August revocable waivers trade is unlikely for the club after the team went all in before the July 31st trading deadline. The separate deals that brought in David Price and Troy Tulowitzki basically wiped out the Blue Jays farm system and could make any additional deals in the near future difficult.
8-24-15: It is the Blue Jays’ time to shine, as they got back to their sweeping ways. On Sunday, Edwin Encarnacion extended Major League Baseball’s fourth-longest hitting streak of 2015 to 19 games, as he went 4-for-4 with a home run and four runs batted in. Jose Bautista also homered in Toronto’s 12-5 victory over the Los Angeles Angels.
8-21-15: The Toronto Blue Jays spent much of their week looking for a replacement for their outgoing president Paul Beetson. The strongest candidate to replace Beetson is the Cleveland Indians president Mark Shapiro and the team has already contacted the 48-year old former general manager. Shapiro was the GM of the Indians for 10 seasons before earning the promotion to president of the club where he oversaw the renovations at the new Progressive Field. Shapiro may be appealing to Toronto as the team continues to renovate the Rogers Centre including the plan to dig up the artificial turf and place real grass down on the field. While Toronto continues to look for their replacement for Beetson they also had to deal with veteran left-handed starting pitcher Randy Wolf requesting his release so he can pursue a Major League deal with another team. Wolf was traded to the Detroit Tigers before the end of the week for cash considerations. Wolf will start his Tigers career in Triple-A where he had been pitching as a member of the Toronto Blue Jays and could earn his way back to the Major Leagues when rosters expand from 25 to 40 players on September 1st. With the recent injuries to Daniel Norris, who they just acquired from Toronto in the deal that sent David Price north of the border, and Anibal Sanchez the need for Wolf quickly arose. Wolf has pitched well in the minor leagues this season posting a 2.58 ERA with 6.8 K/9 and 2.8 BB/9 in 139.2 innings this season.
8-18-15: The Blue Jays closed out their homestand on a strong note, as they salvaged the final game of their three-game series against the New York Yankees. Toronto scored all three runs in the fourth inning of its 3-1 victory on Sunday, as Josh Donaldson singled in Troy Tulowitzki and Jose Bautista followed up with a two-run home run.
8-14-15: The Toronto Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos made the moves that he needed to make to keep the team in contention in 2015 and has seem immediate dividends from it. Toronto has gotten huge contributions from Troy Tulowitzki in the leadoff role, David Price in the starting rotation and the combination of Mark Lowe and LaTroy Hawkins in the bullpen and more reinforcements may be on the way for the Blue Jays. Anthopoulos announced this week that the Blue Jays could get right-handed starting pitcher Marcus Stroman back this September just in time for a potential American League East Division race and/or playoff run. The team is planning to keep Stroman down in the minor leagues until the season ends on September, 7th to build innings and work out the kinks before potentially calling him up in September to the big league club. Stroman tore his ACL muscle in Spring Training this season and was expected to miss the remainder of 2015 with that injury but the Blue Jays right-hander has worked hard and is well ahead of schedule with his rehab. If there are any setbacks in his recovery the team has announced they would shut him down for the remainder of the season but if the team could get him back for the playoff run he could be a huge addition to an already pitching starved ball club.
8-7-15: The Toronto Blue Jays began this week showing off their newest players on the roster Ben Revere, David Price, Troy Tulowitzki, Mark Lowe and LaTroy Hawkins in various trades before the deadline. To get a stable of quality players like the Blue Jays did you have to be willing to give up something in return and across the various deals last week Toronto severely weakened their farm system trading top prospect Daniel Norris, Opening Day shortstop Jose Reyes and minor league players Jeff Hoffman, Miguel Castro, Jesus Tinoco, Jairo Labourt, Matt Boyd, Rob Rasmussen, Jake Brentz and Nick Wells. It is uncertain whether the Blue Jays blowing up and selling off the farm for a run at a weakened American League East Division will pay off in 2015 but you absolutely cannot say the team didn’t try this season. Toronto is slowly making up ground in the AL East division as they continue to chase down the New York Yankees. Those same Yankees and these Blue Jays begin a huge three game series at Yankee Stadium this weekend as these two teams will play three of their remaining 13 games that the clubs have head-to-head this season.
8-7-15: On Thursday, the Blue Jays extended the American League’s best current winning streak to five games with their 9-3 victory over the visiting Minnesota Twins. Earlier in the week, Aaron Sanchez received a three-game suspension for intentionally throwing a pitch at Alcides Escobar, and John Gibbons received a one-game suspension for coming back on to the field after being ejected.
8-3-15: The Blue Jays were busy before the non-waiver trade deadline on Friday. In five trades, they acquired Troy Tulowitzki, LaTroy Hawkins, David Price, Mark Lowe, Ben Revere and cash. Although there were benches clearing and three Toronto ejections on Sunday, the Blue Jays were able to win their series against the Kansas City Royals with a 5-2 victory.
7-31-15: The Toronto Blue Jays came into this final week before the July 31st trading deadline as big time buyers in the market. The Blue Jays have been aggressive in acquiring almost every pitcher, starting pitcher or bullpen pitcher, on the market this season and have been the most aggressive team on the Chicago White Sox RHP Jeff Samardzija. Samardzija is set to finish out his deal worth $9.8 million this season before hitting free agency after the 2015 season and may do so outside of Chicago with the White Sox getting more inclined to move him. The Blue Jays continued to search for pitching as the week went on but that did not stop the team from adding to their lineup as they shocked the league when they made a trade for the Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki. In exchange for Tulowitzki and veteran relief pitcher LaTroy Hawkins the Blue Jays sent their shortstop Jose Reyes to Colorado along with three prospects, Jeff Hoffman, Miguel Castro and Jesus Tinoco. No money was exchanged in the mega-deal although Tulowitzki does gain a full no-trade clause after being dealt after that stipulation was written into the contract he signed with Colorado. All in all the Blue Jays gain another huge bat for their already powerful lineup while the Rockies gain $50 million in salary relief. Colorado is already in discussions to flip Reyes for even more salary relief and even more prospects as the team begins their rebuilding phase.
7-27-15: Josh Donaldson continued to smash the baseball, as he homered on Sunday for the second time in four games, but the Blue Jays lost the rubber match against the Seattle Mariners, 6-5. Ezequiel Carrera had two hits, including a home run, and reached three times in four plate appearances in the extra inning loss.
7-24-15: The Toronto Blue Jays and the San Diego Padres have begun the week by discussing a set of potential trades involving both starting pitchers and relief pitchers. San Diego has seemingly made anyone and everyone available including, but not limited to, Tyson Ross, Ian Kennedy, James Shields, Andrew Cashner, Joaquin Benoit and Craig Kimbrel. San Diego is falling farther and farther out of the National League West Division despite an aggressive and expensive offseason while Toronto continues to try and chase down the New York Yankees in the American League East Division. The Blue Jays need pitching and all July 31st trading deadline trade rumors seem to be centered on that for Toronto. The Cleveland Indians have discussed right-handed pitcher Carlos Carrasco with Toronto while the Blue Jays remain interested in Cole Hamels, David Price, Jeff Samardzija, and Johnny Cueto. Toronto doesn’t need just starting pitching though and the team will also look to add bullpen pitching as well and that could lead to a trade with the Philadelphia Phillies. Not many teams have been interested in the Phillies closer Jonathan Papelbon but the Blue Jays seem to be all-in for his services. Papelbon seems to be unwilling to waive his no-trade clause for a non-contender which could keep him, and many pitchers, from going to Toronto this July.
7-21-15: The Blue Jays, who have the American League’s best run differential, bounced back from their pre-All-Star break struggles to win two of three games against the Tampa Bay Rays. Although Toronto lost yet another one-run game on Saturday, Marco Estrada did not allow the team to lose two straight contests. He threw eight shutout innings in the Blue Jays’ 4-0 win over the Rays on Sunday.
7-17-15: The Toronto Blue Jays failed to sign one of their top draft picks from the 2015 MLB First Year Players Draft this week. The team learned late on July 17th, the deadline to sign draft picks from this year’s draft, that second round pick and 56th overall draft pick Brady Singer would not sign with the club and would instead continue his amateur career rather than pursuing his professional career at this time. This marks the third time in five seasons that the Blue Jays have failed to sign a first or second round pick in the MLB draft. As compensation the Blue Jays will receive the 57th overall pick in the 2016 MLB First Year Players Draft as compensation much like the Houston Astros received the #2 overall pick in the draft in 2015 after failing to sign top draft pick overall Brady Aiken from the 2014 MLB draft. Singer will not forego his commitment to the University of Florida to sign with Toronto. Toronto can now turn their attention from the draft to solidifying the team and a potential playoff run by adding important pieces at this year’s July 31st trading deadline. The deadline could see the Blue Jays add one or more of Johnny Cueto, Jonathan Papelbon or Cole Hamels for a significant price.
7-13-15: The Blue Jays played a hectic game on Sunday at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, as they allowed six runs in the first inning and scored eight runs in the sixth. However, Toronto did not homer in the rubber game of the series. The Blue Jays lost the contest, 11-10, as Major League Baseball’s only Canadian team went into the All-Star break with a 45-46 record.
7-8-15: Last Thursday, the Blue Jays signed international prospect Vladimir Guerrero Jr., the son of former player Vladimir Guerrero. The day before, Canada Day, was the only day in which Toronto won a game from June 29 to July 4. However, the Blue Jays bounced back to bookend Monday’s 4-2 loss with two important victories, including Tuesday’s 2-1 win over the Chicago White Sox behind a home run from all-star Josh Donaldson.
7-3-15: The Toronto Blue Jays learned that one of their star players Edwin Encarnacion earned ten-and-five rights with the club and will earn no-trade rights in his contract. The Blue Jays own a club option worth $10 million for Encarnacion next season before he hits free agency after the 2016 season giving the first baseman a season and a half of no-trade protection. Speaking of trades the Blue Jays expect to be extremely active in the starting pitching market at this year’s July 31st trading deadline as the team continues to look for ways to bolster their pitching staff. Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos recently promoted prospect Matt Boyd to the major leagues in another effort to improve both the starting rotation and the team’s bullpen while the club also patiently waits for Alex Sanchez to return off the disabled list. The team was also excited for the opening of the 2015-2016 international signing period and made a move with the Los Angeles Dodgers to give the team a little wiggle room for their future. Toronto acquired some additional IFA signing slot money from Los Angeles for prospects Chase De Jong and Tim Locastro. The team took that newly freed up money and immediately gave it to one of the top IFA’s on the market Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Toronto came into the signing period with $2,324,100 allocated to spend and immediately gave Guerrero $3.9 million to start his professional career with the club in Toronto.
6-30-15: After winning their series against the Tampa Bay Rays and Texas Rangers, the Blue Jays dropped the first contest of their four-game series with the Boston Red Sox. R.A. Dickey threw six innings of three-run ball in the loss. On Wednesday, Toronto hosts an afternoon game on Canada Day, also known as the country’s birthday.
6-16-15: On Monday, the Blue Jays’ winning streak ended at 11 games, as they fell to the New York Mets, 4-3. However, Toronto’s great success in June has allowed the team to get to just two games behind the top stop in the American League East. They will continue to try to improve their road record on Tuesday at Citi Field.
6-8-15: The Blue Jays finished their three-game series with the Houston Astros in hectic fashion. Toronto extended its winning streak to five games on Sunday, as Chris Colabello extended his 17-game hitting streak with a walkoff single. Edwin Encarnacion, who missed three of those five wins due to a shoulder injury, expects to return to the lineup on Monday against the Miami Marlins.
6-5-15: The Toronto Blue Jays added maybe an important piece to their bullpen this week when the team added LHP reliever Phil Coke to the team on a minor league deal. Coke was formerly with the Chicago Cubs but was released last week after posting a 6.30 ERA in 10 IP this season out of the bullpen. Another addition to the Blue Jays team this week was catcher Dioner Navarro who was activated off the 15 day disabled list. In a corresponding roster move the team sent fellow catcher Josh Thole down to Triple-A to make room on the active roster for Navarro. This is great news for both Toronto and Navarro as the catcher has not made it a secret that he would prefer a trade for an everyday starting job while the Blue Jays could use the offensive boost in the lineup from the addition of Navarro. Navarro will join two unlikely major league players with great stories to go with it in Bo Schultz and Chris Colabello. Colabello is a longtime Independent League player while Schultz went from a journalism major to a walk on outfielder to a college baseball quitter. Schultz then returned to school in his junior year before going undrafted in the MLB Draft. After failed attempts in the Oakland Athletics and the Arizona Diamondbacks organizations he is once again trying to make his name in the show for the Blue Jays.
6-1-15: Monday’s game in Washington, D.C. was postponed due to rain, so the Blue Jays and the Nationals are playing three games in two days, including a doubleheader on Tuesday. Toronto will look to get back to its winning ways after losing three of its last four games. On the bright side, American League Player of the Week Josh Donaldson has six home run in his last six games.
5-30-15: The Toronto Blue Jays may be getting their catcher Dioner Navarro back sooner rather than later as the right handed catcher started a rehab assignment this week in Triple-A. Navarro was a trade candidate for Toronto before the season started and may be the best catcher available on the market sincethe Seattle Mariners acquired Wellington Castillo to play backup catcher leaving the team with a tough roster decision. The roster decision is especially tough since Jose Bautista is battling a nagging shoulder injury that is limiting the outfielder to DH duties only in the Blue Jays lineup. Bautista has been fighting some shoulder inflammation that has forced the team to issue him a cortisone shot with interleague games coming up in the schedule for the Blue Jays.
5-25-15: With Jose Bautista resting on Sunday after being given a cortisone shot for his right
shoulder, Edwin Encarnacion continued with his power stroke. He homered for the third
time in his last four games, as the Toronto Blue Jays won, 8-2, and salvaged the final game of their three-game series with the Seattle Mariners.
5-18-15: The Blue Jays’ struggles on the road continued, as they dropped their fifth straight game with Sunday’s 4-2 loss to the Houston Astros at Minute Maid Park. Although Toronto
had four doubles on Sunday, the team did not get a hit in its 12 at-bats with runners in
5-11-15: Although the Blue Jays fell to the visiting Boston Red Sox, 6-3, on Sunday, Toronto
finished its homestand with a 4-2 record. The Blue Jays held their divisional opponents to
fewer than two runs in each of their last four wins, but R.A. Dickey gave up six runs,
including two home runs, in the series finale loss.
5-4-15: The Blue Jays kept up with their high offensive production on Sunday, but dropped the game, 10-7, and split their series with the Indians in Cleveland. Last week, Toronto put Brett Cecil back into the closer role, replacing Miguel Castro. His first save of the season came in last Tuesday’s 11-8 victory over the Boston Red Sox.
4-28-15: The Blue Jays scored three runs in the first inning at Fenway Park on Monday, but they dropped the game, extending their losing streak to a season-long four games. On the bright side, Jose Bautista, who has been dealing with a sore right shoulder, returned to the lineup after missing the team’s last five games, but only produced a walk in four plate appearances. While Bautista avoided the disabled list, Jose Reyes landed on it on Monday with a cracked rib.
4-21-15: The Blue Jays lost each of their last two series, the first of which was a four-game one against the Tampa Bay Rays and the second was three contests against the Atlanta Braves. The bright spot of the weekend series was Josh Donaldson, who hit three home runs. Saturday’s home run was in walk-off fashion in the Blue Jays’ 6-5 victory.
4-14-15: On Monday night, the Blue Jays had their home opener, as they faced the Tampa Bay Rays at the Rogers Centre. Unfortunately, Toronto could only muster one run, as the team fell, 2-1. However, last Friday, Mark Buehrle threw six innings of two-run ball and
got his 200th career win.
3-31-15: Last Thursday, projected closer Brett Cecil made his 2015 spring training debut, and he threw a perfect inning against the Philadelphia Phillies. The next day, 24-year-old Drew Hutchison allowed just one run in five innings against the Detroit Tigers. Also on Friday, the Chicago White Sox claimed right-handed pitcher Kyle Drabek off waivers from the Blue Jays.
3-18-15: On Monday, the Blue Jays signed left-handed pitcher Randy Wolf to a minor league contract. Outfielder Kevin Pillar is dealing with a recently short-term injury to his oblique, but starting pitcher Marcus Stroman is out for all of 2015 after tearing the ACL in his left knee and infielder Ramon Santiago broke his collarbone.
3-3-15: Last Wednesday was not a good day for the Blue Jays, as they saw their left fielder go down. Michael Saunders stepped on an underground sprinkler and tore the meniscus in his left knee. He underwent successful surgery on Friday and should be out until mid-April. Then, Toronto signed outfielder Dayan Viciedo and starting pitcher Johan Santana to minor league deals with invitations to spring training.
2-24-15: On Saturday, Toronto signed journeyman outfielder Chris Dickerson to a minor league contract with an invitation to spring training. Then on Monday, the Blue Jays decided that they plan to play Edwin Encarnacion at first base this season. Also that day, Dioner Navarro said that he asked to be traded right after the team signed Russell Martin to a lucrative contract last November.
2-17-15: Last week, Blue Jays third baseman Josh Donaldson, who was acquired by Toronto earlier this offseason, was awarded only $4.3 million through arbitration after the former Oakland Athletic asked for $5.75 million. Meanwhile, Blue Jays pitching prospect Jeff Hoffman, who was the ninth overall pick in the 2014 draft, has begun throwing off a mound after undergoing Tommy John surgery nine months ago.
2-9-15: In the Blue Jays’ first arbitration case that went to a hearing since 1997, the club did not have a favorable result. On Friday, 30-year-old third baseman Danny Valencia was
awarded $1.675 million. He will be backing up Josh Donaldson, who is the last Toronto player in arbitration this offseason. Also last week, the Blue Jays acquired left-handed pitcher Jayson Aquino from the Colorado Rockies in exchange for another lefty, Tyler Ybarra.
2-5-15: The Toronto Blue Jays had a disappointing end to their 2014 season finishing with a record of 83-79 and missed the playoffs for what is now the longest active postseason drought of 21 years. The Blue Jays, this offseason, made some minor moves by signing a new hitting coach in Brook Jacoby, acquiring pitcher Scott Barnes off waivers, signed a few minor league players, and acquiring third baseman Josh Donaldson through a trade with Oakland. Blue Jays tickets for the 2015 season have an average price of $144.84 on the secondary market, as the home opener at the Rogers Centre on April 13 against the Rays have tickets at a current secondary average price of $165.32, with a get in price of $27.
10-1-14: A 9-17 record in August doomed the Blue Jays' chances of snagging a wild-card spot, but there are some positives to take away from the season. On the mound, there's a lot to like about Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez. Stroman posted an 11-6 record with a 3.65 ERA. Sanchez produced a 1.09 ERA in 24 outings out of the bullpen. The Blue Jays will need to add an ace this offseason if they want to return to the playoffs for the first time since 1993 when they won it all.
9-30-14: The Toronto Blue Jays have announced that they will retain their manager John Gibbons for the 2015 season after speculation that he would be replaced after the season. Toronto and their GM have made their highest priorities this offseason re-signing outfielder Melky Cabrera, acquiring a second or third baseman with Brett Lawrie playing the other position, and finally cementing the back end of the bullpen. With a weak third base market this season and Toronto’s team policy to not give out free agent deals longer than five seasons it looks like Lawie will be the team’s third baseman in 2015. Toronto has already announced that they would offer Cabrera a qualifying offer after the season and the team also thinks they will lose one of their best relievers in Casey Janssen to free agency. Toronto looks like they will exercise the team option for JA Happ and will stretch out prospect Aaron Sanchez this spring and will likely at least field offers for veterans RA Dickey and Mark Buehrle. Toronto finished the 2014 season with a 83-79 record and will not be in the 2014 postseason.
9-25-14: Series losses to the Orioles and Yankees all but eliminated the Blue Jays from the playoff hunt, as they are now six games back in the wild-card standings. The team is intending to extend a qualifying offer to outfielder Melky Cabrera. Cabrera hit .301 with 54 extra-base hits and.808 OPS this year before getting hurt. Toronto finishes up with Orioles this week as they look to lock down a winning record this season.
9-23-14: The Toronto Blue Jays have two of their outfielders hitting free agency after this season in Colby Rasmus and Melky Cabrera. The Blue Jays remain quiet about their intentions with Rasmus but the team announced this week that they would extend a one year $15 million qualifying offer to Cabrera. Cabrera can either accept the one year deal with a raise for the 2015 season or he can test the market and try to get a more lucrative deal elsewhere. If Melky were to leave Toronto his new team would have to surrender a first round pick to the Blue Jays to retain his services. Toronto also released pitcher P.J. Walters this week after being acquired from the Kansas City Royals earlier in the season.
9-18-14: The Blue Jays shot themselves in the foot with a 9-17 month of August, but they have done their best with an 8-5 start to this month. That leaves them five games back in the AL wild-card with two teams to pass. Toronto still has five games left with the AL East champion Orioles, as well as a four game set with the Mariners. It won’t be easy over the final two weeks, but the Blue Jays have a shot.
9-16-14: The Toronto Blue Jays granted free agency to left handed relief pitcher Mike Zagurski this week after signing the veteran southpaw to a minor league deal in May. Zagurski has a career 7.05 ERA in the major leagues but posted an impressive 2.08 ERA in Triple-A this season with a 12.3 K/9. The Blue Jays did not feel like they needed Zagurski in the bullpen after the emergence of Brandon Morrow in the pen. Morrow has a team option for 2015 worth $10 million which is unlikely to be exercised, especially if his future is as a relief pitcher, but both parties could benefit from Morrow being moved to the pen full time going forward. The Blue Jays ended the week by outrighting outfielder Darin Mastroianni and infielder Matt Hague to Triple-A after both 29 year olds were designated for assignment to make room for September call ups.
9-12-14: A sweep of the Rays was a nice start to last week for the Blue Jays, but they followed that up by dropping a series to the Red Sox this past weekend. They have beaten the Cubs twice this week and wrap up the week hosting Tampa. That leaves them 4.5 games out of the AL wild-card race to date. A broken finger put an end to what has been a great season for Melky Cabrera. He will close out 2014 hitting .301 to go along with 35 doubles, 16 home runs and 73 RBI.
9-9-14: The Toronto Blue Jays have called up one of their top prospects this week in 21 year old pitcher Daniel Norris. Norris started the 2014 season in A-Ball but has worked his way all the way up to Triple-A before the promotion. Norris has posted a 2.53 ERA combined in the minors this season while throwing 124.2 innings across three stops in the minor leagues in 2014. Another top prospect in the Blue Jays camp to get a call up this September was outfielder Dalton Pompey. Pompey is 21 years old and spent much of the season in Triple-A for Toronto after starting out all the way in A-Ball. Pompey has slashed .313/.388/.462 combined at his three minor league stops for the Blue Jays. If Toronto had any plans on making the postseason in 2014 their chances took a hit as they lost their left fielder Melky Cabrera for the remainder of the season with an injury. Melky told reporters that he hoped to come back to Toronto in 2015 as the lefty becomes a free agent after this season.
9-4-14: Despite a 9-17 showing in the month of August, the Blue Jays are still just 5.5 games back for
the second AL wild-card spot, but they will need their starting rotation to get back on track
quickly if they hope to make a push down the stretch. R.A. Dickey turned in a strong start in
Tuesday’s win against the Rays. Dickey gave up just two runs on two hits over seven innings of
work. He struck out six and walked three.
9-2-14: The Toronto Blue Jays made one last ditch effort to make roster moves during the August revocable waivers trade deadline and placed R.A. Dickey and Mark Buehrle on waivers before the deadline passed. Toronto also designated closer Sergio Santos for assignment for the second time this season and clears a 40 man roster spot for right hander Chad Jenkins. Santos has struggled on the mound and to stay healthy since coming over to the Blue Jays and has missed considerable time this season due to a forearm strain. Toronto also lost outfielder Nolan Reimold this week after designating him for assignment. Reimold was claimed by the Arizona Diamondbacks and let go by Toronto even though the team has one more year of team control on the 30 year old outfielder and former Baltimore Orioles player.
8-27-14: After dropping a series to the Tampa Bay Rays at home over the weekend, and dropping the first two games of a three game series against the Red Sox this week, the Toronto Blue Jays are now 6.5 games back for the second AL wild-card spot. It's the pitching that has been the issue in the second half for Toronto. The Blue Jays rank 27th in MLB with a 4.43 ERA since the break. J.A. Happ is the only starter with an ERA under 4.00.
8-26-14: The Toronto Blue Jays started the week by promoting top outfield prospect Dalton Pompey to Triple-A making him one step away from the major leagues. This is especially important with Melky Cabrera and Colby Rasmus up for free agency at the end of the season. Speaking of Blue Jays prospects Toronto turned down a trade deadline deal with the Tampa Bay Rays for David Price after Tampa asked for top pitching prospects Drew Hutchison and Marcus Stroman in the same deal. The asking price was seen as too rich for Toronto and Price ultimately went to Detroit before the deadline came and passed. Toronto is losing ground in the American League East division race and the wild card race as the team sits at 66-64 and two games behind the New York Yankees and trail four teams for the last wild card spot in the American League.
8-20-14: Remember when the Blue Jays entered the month of August on a 9-1 hot streak? Yeah, that has quickly gone by the wayside as they have gone an MLB-worst 4-12 this month, dropping to third in the AL East standings in the process. They have dropped two straight to Milwaukee and their hopes of making the playoffs could be in jeopardy as they are 4.5 back of the second wildcard spot in the AL.
8-19-14: The Toronto Blue Jays once again designated pitcher Brad Mills for assignment which makes the second time this season for Mills in a Toronto uniform. Mills has already been outrighted to Triple-A once and is likely to be assigned to the minor leagues once again if he clears waivers. Mills made one appearance for Toronto this season and was hit pretty hard once again on the mound. Toronto lost another pitcher this week as well when the team announced that Neil Wagner went down and will require Tommy John surgery. Wagner has been hit around in 10 starts this season and has not been able to build on his breakout season in 2013.
8-13-14: The Blue Jays rattled off an 11-2 stretch to close out the month of July, pulling within just 1.5 games of the Orioles. The month of August has not been as kind to them, as they again find themselves 6.5 games back in the AL East and 2 games back for the second wildcard spot. Toronto has dropped two straight games to the Mariners and are just 3-7 in their last 10 games played.
8-12-14: The Toronto Blue Jays finally made a move this season when they signed George Kottaras to a minor league deal after he was designated for assignment by the St. Louis Cardinals. That move alone will not be enough to replace the lost offense in Edwin Encarnacion, Adam Lind, and now Brett Lawrie. Lawrie was added to the 15 day DL this week shortly after coming off the disabled list. The Blue Jays plan seems to be to beat everyone with pitching and they called up one of their top pitching prospects this week in Brad Mills. Mills comes to Toronto after posting a 1.81 ERA in Triple-A with a 9.0 K/9 ratio and a miniscule 1.9 BB/9 ratio. Toronto and the Yankees keep swapping places in the division race and the race for the second wild card and Toronto leads New York by one game in both races.
8-6-14: In the first game of a huge series with the Orioles, the Blue Jays came up rather small giving up three homeruns en route to a 9-3 loss. Toronto has now lost four straight games and has fallen five games back of Baltimore in AL East play. Toronto is holding down the second wildcard spot in the AL. Starter Mark Buehrle, who fell to 11-8 on the year, lost for the seventh time in 11 starts, allowing four runs and 10 hits in four innings of work.
8-5-14: The Toronto Blue Jays started the week by losing relief pitcher Esmil Rogers to the New York Yankees in a roster claim. Rogers was designated for assignment by Toronto after less than stellar results in the bullpen this season. The Blue Jays are slipping in the AL East division and in the second Wild Card race and have not added a single piece in any sort of deadline moves this season. Toronto has been linked to almost every notable trade target but has been unable to pull the trigger on any moves. The Blue Jays have kicked the tires on Asdrubal Cabrera, Jonathan Papelbon, and AJ Burnett to name a few. Toronto currently sits at 60-53 which is good for second place in the AL East and 3.5 games behind the Baltimore Orioles. Toronto has a 2.5 game lead for the second Wild Card spot as well while they wait on Edwin Encarnacion and Adam Lind to return from injury.
7-30-14: The Toronto Blue Jays former closer Sergio Santos has fallen out of grace quickly in Toronto. Santos was designated for assignment this week and ultimately cleared waivers. Toronto assigned him to Triple-A and instead of electing free agency Santos will look to sort out his control and command issues in the minors for Toronto. Speaking of the minor leagues the Blue Jays have called up their top prospect Aaron Sanchez to help out in the bullpen and take Santos’ roster spot. Sanchez’s name has been mentioned in every trade rumor so far this month and Toronto may be looking to showcase their lefty to other teams this week.
7-28-14: Although the Blue Jays did not perform well heading into the All-Star break, they have won five of their last seven games. After taking their series against the Texas Rangers and going 3-1 against the Boston Red Sox, they moved back to five games above .500. However, Jose Bautista’s two home runs were not enough for Toronto to beat the New York Yankees in the opening game of their series.
7-24-14: J.A. Happ pitched six shutout innings for his first victory in three starts, Dioner Navarro and Jose Reyes homered as the Toronto Blue Jays beat the Boston Red Sox 7-3 on Tuesday night. Reyes and Navarro both homered in the sixth inning as the Blue Jays rebounded from Monday's 14-1 beatdown to snap Boston's winning streak at five games. The Jays are tied with the Yankees for second place in the AL East, just four games back of Baltimore for the division lead.
7-21-14: The Toronto Blue Jays started the week by acquiring first baseman Brett Wallace from the Baltimore Orioles. This is Wallace’s second stint with the Blue Jays and serves as first base depth for Dan Johnson after Johnson was called up to replace the injured Adam Lind and Edwin Encarnacion. The Blue Jays are still working towards a deal for the Padres Chase Headley to man third base in Toronto. The Padres are more likely to move Headley now that they received Tyler Lindsey in a deal with the Angels for Huston Street and Headley seems most likely to go above the border to Toronto.
7-19-14: Heading into the All-Star break, the Blue Jays lost three consecutive series. Their frustration continued on Friday when they fell to the visiting Texas Rangers, 5-1. The only offense they could manage against Yu Darvish was a solo home run by Colby Rasmus. Toronto is in search of a bat to help the lineup, so the organization may sign former Yankees outfielder Alfonso Soriano.
7-17-14: On June 6, the Blue Jays sat six games up in the AL East and looked like the best team in baseball. Since then, they have struggled to an 11-23 record and are currently 2 ½ games back for a wild-card spot. They lost series on the road to the Angels and Rays last week, and if there's any AL team that needs the All-Star break to hit the reset button, it's the Blue Jays. Slugger Edwin Encarnacion is expected to be sidelined until at least early August after suffering a strained quad. Toronto could still use another veteran starter pitcher.
7-15-14: The Toronto Blue Jays continue to scout the San Diego Padres third baseman Chase Headley while the team looks for upgrades to an already strong offensive club. The offensive need was compounded with the loss of Edwin Encarnacion late last week and the club may be more aggressive on the trade market because of it. The Jays offense didn’t get much better news when the team learned that Adam Lind was going to be out for six to eight weeks with a fracture in his foot. Later reports came out that Lind could possibly miss as little as three weeks with the injury but this injury still came at the worst possible time for Toronto. The Jays led the American League East for much of the season but find themselves at 49-47 and 3.5 games behind the Baltimore Orioles at the All Star Break.
7-14-14: Although Adam Lind fractured his foot and will be out for at least a few weeks, the Blue Jays offense has been playing much better recently. During their season-long five-game losing streak, they did not score more than two runs. However, in their last three games, they own a 2-1 record and have scored more than six runs per game.
7-10-14: R.A. Dickey gave up just four hits over seven innings of work for his first victory in over a month. Jose Reyes homered and drove in three runs as the Toronto Blue Jays ended a season-worst five-game losing streak Tuesday night with a 4-0 victory over the Los Angeles Angels. Dickey struck out five and walked one after losing his previous four starts. The 2012 NL CY Young Award winner got back in the win column for the first time since June 4. The Blue Jays are within 2½ games of AL East-leading Baltimore.
7-6-14: After sweeping their two-game series with the Milwaukee Brewers, the Blue Jays began a 10-game road trip. Toronto’s time in Oakland has not been very successful. The league-leading Athletics held the Blue Jays to just one run in the first two games of the series. If Toronto wants to stay near the top of the American League East, it cannot keep stranding runners.
7-3-14: Jose Bautista’s and Colby Rasmus’ solo home runs, coupled with Drew Hutchison’s career-high 10 strikeouts helped the AL East leading Blue Jays beat the Brewers 4-1 on Canada Day. Hutchison retired the first 14 batters he saw before Milwaukee outfielder Khris Davis reached on an infield single to shortstop in the fifth. Hutchinson improved to 6-6 on the year. He came into the game 1-4 with an 8.13 ERA in six home starts but delivered his best performance of the season at Rogers Centre. The righty allowed just one run, three hits and two walks in seven innings of work. The win ended Toronto’s three-game losing streak.
7-2-14: The Toronto Blue Jays are in first place in the American League East and are looking to improve the team with a trade for the Rays David Price or the Cubs Jason Hammel. The Jays have the most wins out of any team with their pitching staff so a trade for a starting pitcher seems less likely than a trade for Chase Headley at third base, another player the Jays have been linked to recently. The Blue Jays are said to be in the third base and second base market as Brett Lawrie can fill the other position that is not acquired when he comes off the disabled list.
6-30-14: For more than a month, the Blue Jays have remained on top of the American League East. However, after taking the first two games of their series with the New York Yankees, they have lost two of their last three contests and have dropped to 12-13 in June. With Jose Bautista still out and Brett Lawrie on the disabled list, the team will need to find offense from other parts of the lineup.
6-26-14: Jose Reyes redeemed himself for a pair of errors by hitting a leadoff double in the ninth inning and scoring when Yankees third baseman Yangervis Solarte threw away a bunt, lifting the AL East-leading Blue Jays over the Yankees 7-6 Tuesday night. It was a sloppy game for both sides as the Yankees had one error, while the Blue Jays committed three. Mark Buehrle came in 1-11 with a 5.84 ERA in 17 career starts against the Yankees. He was 0-9 with a 7.07 ERA in 13 games against New York since getting a lone victory while pitching for the White Sox. The lefty looked like his streak was going to end as the Blue Jays built a six-run lead through five innings. However, Derek Jeter homered in the sixth and New York tied it with a five-run seventh.
6-24-14: The Toronto Blue Jays are still clinging to first place in the American League East division but the New York Yankees are making it tough on the Jays. The Jays were swept by the Yankees in the Bronx this week and struggled against the Cincinnati Reds in Cincinnati, although Edwin Encarnacion continues to stay hot with the bat. The Blue Jays are trying to stay atop the AL East and their outfield Jose Bautista looks to stay atop the American League All Star voting. Joey Bats leads all AL players with just a week to go and looks to be a lock to start the game in Minnesota in July. Bautista will also be the American League captain for the Home Run Derby.
6-18-14: Blue Jays rookie pitcher Marcus Stroman threw 98 pitches in only 3 2/3 innings on a sticky Tuesday night in the Bronx. Stroman took the loss to fall to 3-2 on the year, but Tuesday night’s game was a homecoming of sort for Stroman who grew up 50 miles from NYC on Long Island. The Blue Jays' struggles at Yankee Stadium started in August 2012, and they've now dropped 23 of their last 25 in the Bronx. Despite their struggles, the Blue Jays still have a 3 ½ game lead on New York in the AL East.
6-17-14: The Toronto Blue Jays are one game off the pace of the Oakland Athletics for the best record in the American League behind the reemergence of Mark Buerhle and the emergence of top prospect Marcus Stroman in the starting rotation. Melky Cabrera is having a very productive season in his contract year as well as Jose Bautista who seems to finally be back from his wrist injury that cost him a big chunk of his 2012 season. The Blue Jays are showcasing their top prospects in the minors, namely A-Ball pitcher Daniel Norris and outfielder Dalton Pompey in a trade to improve an already solid team by acquiring the likes of David Price from the Tampa Bay Rays or Jeff Samardzija from the Chicago Cubs.
6-10-14: The Toronto Blue Jays had a historic and productive month of May from Edwin Encarnacion that earned him Player of the Month for the American League. Encarnacion hit a historic and franchise record 16 home runs in the month and also led the league in slugging percentage (.763) and extra base hits (22). Encarnacion passed the former team record for home runs in a month by passing Jose Bautista’s 14 in June of 2012. Encarnacion also was the first Toronto Blue Jay to win the award since Bautista won the award that same June of 2012. The Blue Jays selected Jeff Hoffman with their first pick in the 2014 MLB First Year Players Draft on Thursday and may have gotten the steal of the draft with their second pick, 11th overall, when they took catcher Max Pentecost out of Kennesaw State University.
6-3-14: The Toronto Blue Jays are bulking up their Triple- A bullpen by signing left handed relief pitcher Mike Zagurski. Zagurski was most recently with the Cleveland Indians before opting out of his deal hoping for a major league deal. The Blue Jays Jose Bautista is the second highest vote getter in the American League thus far for the All Star Game and would be a starter in the outfield for the AL if voting ended today. The Blue Jays are said to be more interested in short term commitments at this year’s trading deadline, for example James Shields, rather than players that will command bigger packages due to more team control, like Jeff Samardzija who is under team control for the 2015 season as well.
5-28-14: The Toronto Blue Jays has designated right handed starting pitcher Esmil Rogers for assignment to clear a roster spot for Liam Hendricks. The Blue Jays gave up a ton to acquire Rogers. Toronto traded Mike Aviles, who they acquired along with David Carpenter as compensation for letting manager John Farrell return to Boston, and current Indians catcher Yan Gomes for Rogers from Cleveland. The Blue Jays are still at the top of the American League East after Memorial Day weekend with a sweep of the Oakland Athletics. The Blue Jays also ended the week by trading for outfielder Melky Mesa and pitcher P.J. Walters from the Kansas City Royals for cash considerations. It looks like the Blue Jays are going for it this season in the AL East.
5-21-14: The Toronto Blue Jays have the third worst bullpen in the league this season with a combined 5.26 ERA and have the fifth most innings pitched by a bullpen but added veteran Raul Valdes to try and stop the bleeding. The deal brought Valdes to Toronto from the Houston Astros for a player to be named later or cash considerations. Valdes has been strong since coming over, albeit in Triple-A, posting a 3.48 ERA with 13 strikeouts and zero walks in 10.1 innings pitched in Toronto. The Blue Jays are in third place in the American League East division, an unfamiliar place for them over recent years, with a 23-22 record and five wins in their last ten games.
5-15-14: The Toronto Blue Jays are the only team in the American League East with a positive run differential and somehow find themselves in fourth place after two weeks of May baseball. The Brewers loss has been the Blue Jays win with the signing of Juan Francisco and it can all be chalked up to the recruiting from Edwin Encarnacion. When the Brewers cut Francisco Encarnacion immediately started to pitch Toronto to his fellow countryman. Francisco has made Encarnacion looks like a genius now that Francisco is batting .268/.403/.623 through two months of May and is forcing the Toronto manager to make at bats for him.
5-7-14: The Toronto Blue Jays got a bit of good news recently regarding starting pitcher Brandon Morrow who will avoid surgery and may be back as soon as the All Star break. Originally it though that Morrow would join the ever growing list of players that required season ending surgery,and in this case likely the Blue Jay career for Morrow, after an MRI showed a torn sheath tendon in his wrist. Morrow has been placed on the 60 day DL after the injury. The Jays also are faced with quite the predicament since Juan Francisco is playing himself into the Toronto lineup and with Adam Lind coming back from injury soon the Jays will have more players than they have spots to fill.
4-28-14: The Toronto Blue Jays were in the news for some off the field news for much of the start of the 2014 season after missing out on signing free agent pitcher Ervin Santana. The Blue Jays seem tapped out financially and had star players, such as R.A. Dickey and Jose Bautista for example, willing to defer money to make the deal work. This got many around the league talking about the new collective bargaining agreement and whether that would be allowed. Unfortunately the Blue Jays have done little on the field to give the media much to talk about outside of a monster start by outfielder Melky Cabrera to the year. The Blue Jays are right in the thick of things in the American League East division after the first month of the 2014 season and look to not finish at the bottom of the division this year. Vote for Joey Bats, Melky, and all the Blue Jays for the MLB All Star Game as voting opened up this week for the game.
4-14-14: The Toronto Blue Jays have enjoyed a solid beginning to the 2014 MLB season, as they’ve put up a solid 52 runs en route to a 7-6 start and a three-way first place tie in the competitive AL East. Toronto got the week off to a nice start by topping the Houston Astros in two out of three games for a solid series win, and then capped the week with a 11-3 thrashing of the Baltimore Orioles in another 2-1 series win.
4-7-14: The Toronto Blue Jays got off to a rough start in 2014, dropping their opening day game to the Tampa Bay Rays 9-2, but were able to bounce back enough to split a four game series, 2-2. Things got a little more difficult against the New York Yankees in their next series, however, as they dropped two of their next three games in Toronto. The Blue Jays displayed some pitching dominance in their only win over the Yanks in game two of their series as R.A. Dickey struck out six en route to his only win of the year thus far.Melky Cabrera and Jose Bautista haven’t been short on offense through the first week of action, as the two have combined for six home runs.
4-1-14: The Blue Jays didn’t bring their A game for their season opener, as their offense sputtered until the final two innings in a rough 9-2 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays. Toronto struggled through a shutout until the eighth inning, where Erik Kratz was responsible for their two runs thanks to a two-run homer. Toronto starting pitchers R.A. Dickey gave up 11 hits on the day as the Blue Jays kicked off 2014 at 0-1.
3-27-14: The Toronto Blue Jays got some bad news on one of their best players and leaders in the clubhouse in Jose Reyes as he has a mild hamstring strain, which is never good for a guy who relies on his legs so much. This news is especially disappointing this close to Opening Day 2014 but Reyes is listed as day to day and is questionable to break spring training camp with the Jays. Speaking of Opening Day rookie second basemen Ryan Goins has been named the starter after a fierce spring training competition in camp this year. The Blue Jays also signed pitcher Shawn Hill out of the York Revolution of the Atlantic League. Hill has not been in the Major Leagues since 2012 but did pitch in the Detroit Tigers organization in 2013, albeit not too well, and is a great depth signing for the Jays.
3-20-14: The Toronto Blue Jays made a serious run at free agent starting pitcher Ervin Santana before losing out to the right hander to the Atlanta Braves. This leaves Toronto with a few question marks in the rotation and rumors have it that the Jays may turn to prospect Drew Hutchinson to take the vacant rotation spot. The Jays started spring camp with pitcher Ricky Romero as an afterthought but Romero pitched well and was competing for a rotation spot this year before being sent down to the minor leagues with Marcus Stroman ending the speculation, how far the mighty have fallen. The Jays may not be World Series favorites again this season or coming off a huge spending spree offseason but Jose Bautista looks like his power is finally returning after his wrist surgery in 2012 and Edwin Encarnacion continues to impress, mix that in with contract years for Colby Rasmus and Melky Cabrera and an expected bounce back from R.A. Dickey and the Jays may be right there in the thick of things for one of the Wild Card spots this season. The expectations have not translated into many wins in the Grapefruit League, as evident by their losing record in the last two weeks, but that is what spring training is all about.
3-13-14: The Toronto Blue Jays play in the toughest league in the game in the American League East and a tough Grapefruit League in spring training camp. The Jays have been a .500 team this spring after being awfully quiet this offseason. This year we did not see a Jose Reyes signed or a R.A. Dickey traded for, although Toronto was said to be involved in the Ervin Santana sweepstakes, but we have seen the club rely on their young guys in camp. Colby Rasmus is in a walk year as well as Melky Cabrera, among others, so they may be worth purchasing a ticket and going to see sometime this coming season.
3-5-14: The Toronto Blue Jays have tabbed R.a. Dickey as their opening day starter. The Blue Jays also announced that relief pitcher Casey Janssen will resume throwing this week after being shut down when he complained from soreness is throwing shoulder. The Blue Jays are not very active this off-season in terms of adding players especially in contrary to the prior season.
1-24-14: This season the Toronto Blue Jays are hoping that their heavy hitting outfielder Jose Bautista can return to form after a down year in which he missed some significant time due to injury. The Blue Jays will also be without Rajai Davis who signed away to the Detroit Tigers but will look to JP Arencibia to take the next step and replace the departed Davis’ production.
1-7-14: The Toronto Blue Jays are bidding heavily after starting pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez. The Blue Jays have an all-star roster but were unable to stay healthy last season, which led to a poor record. Dioner Navarro signed a two-year deal with the Blue Jays worth $8 million to be there catcher. Pitcher Roy Halliday also retired from baseball and if you go into the Hall of Fame it will likely be as a member of the Blue Jays.
12-9-13: The Toronto Blue Jays had a disappointing season last year played with injuries many of surprised off-season acquisitions. Particularly that of Jose raise when they acquired from the Miami Marlins and agreed to pay majority of his large contract. There rightfield slugger José Batista also missed a significant amount of time during the season last year he was a big loss. The X factor in the trade that the Blue Jays made with the Miami Marlins was picture Josh Johnson injury never panned out or contributed to the team at all last year. Johnson has since plead from the Toronto situation and signed a one-year deal with the San Diego Padres worth $8 million.
8-20-13: The Toronto Blue Jays are in last place at 10 games under .500. This week they will travel to the Bronx to face the New York Yankees in a four-game series. Tuesday will mark a doubleheader as they play the make up game from the May 19th rainout. This off-season the Blue Jays revamped their starting rotation with brand names hoping to compete for the division title. Unfortunately many of their starting pitchers struggled switching from the National League to the American League. The Blue Jays are a longshot for this year's postseason but definitely have the talent to compete in the near future.
8-6-13 - Losers of three in a row the Toronto Blue Jays continue to struggle and are still in last place. The return of Jose Reyes did not change their winning luck very much. This week the Blue Jays will travel to Seattle for a three game series against the Mariners.
7-18-13 - Newly acquired José Reyes has been injured for most of the first half of the season and it has hurt the Toronto Blue Jays. The Blue Jays are currently 11.5 games out of 1st Place and are in last in the American League East division. Coming out of the All-Star break the Blue Jays will face their division foes the Tampa Bay rays. As far as power numbers are concerned first baseman Edwin Encarnacion leads the team with 25 home runs and 72 RBIs. The also newly acquired Melky Cabrera is also on the 15 day DL. The Blue Jays suffer from playing in one of the toughest divisions in baseball and have the best record of any last-place team throughout the major leagues.
7-7-13 - Three Toronto Blue Jays are 2013 American League all-stars. Outfielder Jose Bautista was voted in and will start. This will be his 4th ASG appearance. LHP Brett Cecil and 1B/DH Edwin Encarnacion will both be making their 1st ASG appearances. RHP Steve Delabar can also make the team as part of MLB's Final Vote.
6-12-13 - The Toronto Blue Jays have been a huge disappointment. With a key injury to shortstop José Reyes the team has not been able to pick up the slack during his absence. The Jay's spent a lot of money this off-season with hopes to contend for the division title. Unfortunately that has not come to fruition and the Jays have won just 27 games and are currently 12 games out of first place. It would take almost a miracle for the Jays to climb out of this large deficit and contend for pennant race.