My weekly opinions, observations and rants about some Canadian baseball stories:
I understand the Jays’ decision to shut down Brandon Morrow, but boy baseball has changed over the last 20 years. Making an announcement that you’re shutting down your most dominant pitcher after his first start in September equates to Blue Jays management waving the white flag, which is disappointing for a franchise enjoying its most exciting season in 17 years.
Speaking of disappointing, where has Jays president Paul Beeston been during this whole Rogers Sportsnet One fiasco? True, he doesn’t run Rogers Sportsnet, but he is accountable to the tens of thousands of peeved off Jays fans who suddenly have to pay more or switch service providers to watch most of the team’s remaining games on TV. It’s time for Beeston to make a statement about this.
Another reason the Jays should consider hiring Canadian Rob Thomson as their new manager in 2011: he knows the strengths and weaknesses of New York Yankees players better than anyone else on the planet. And that’s extremely valuable information if the Jays want to overcome the Bronx Bombers in the standings.
Let’s change Johnny Mac’s nickname to “Johnny Vac.” This guy has been unbelievable at third base this year.
Tampa Bay bench coach Dave Martinez should also be high on the Jays’ list of 2011 managerial candidates. Martinez is familiar with Toronto (he played there in 2000), has learned from one of baseball’s best managers (Joe Maddon), has worked extensively with young players on a club with a modest payroll and knows the American League East teams.
Is ex-Jay Scott Rolen the Brooks Robinson of our generation? Perhaps Robinson was a little better fielder, but Rolen is the better hitter. And does this make Rolen a serious Hall of Fame candidate when his career is over? Discuss.
Canadians Justin Morneau and Jason Bay are both sidelined indefinitely with concussions. When I think about how a concussion ended Anola, Manitoba native Corey Koskie’s career, I can’t help but worry about the futures of Morneau and Bay.
For those of you who have submitted the names of former players you would like to see featured in my “Ex-Expos: Whatever Happened To . . . ” series, thank you. I’m exhausting my sources trying to find John Boccabella. I believe he’s in California, but I’m still looking. Don’t worry though, I’m very persistent. In the meantime, I’ll be working on finding some of the other former Expos you have asked for. I’ll have my next article in this series up within a couple of weeks.