Friday, November 16, 2012

Pouring Baseballs

Reports are that the Jays have signed Melky Cabrera to a two-year $16-million contract. Not the Cabrera you necessarily want, but maybe not too shabby.

This feels incredibly un-Jays like though. Not the free-spending, that's happened in the past. No, the signing a performance-enhancing drug user. The Jays have generally been seen as a very clean team during their life. Hell, they've barely even had players with attitude problems, let alone cheating ones.

So why Cabrera? Sure, we needed a left fielder to go along with Bautista and Rasmus, as the consensus seems to be Davis is a late-game speed replacement, not an every-day guy (which I find kind of sad, I like him). But there had to be one with less baggage.

If Cabrera can perform with even his Kansas City numbers, then he's well worth it. A switch-hitter who can hit .300? Hell, anyone hitting .300 is a welcome addition to the Jays. If he drops back to inconsistent Atlanta and New York numbers... well, he's just another Jay, and nothing special.

That said, the team is much stronger already, so if he gets buried in the 6-8 spots, it won't exactly hurt the team as long as he can play left worth a damn.

If he puts up numbers like last season, cleanly, then it's the biggest surprise since Bautista got his swing right.

This opens up more trading possibilities. If Davis is happy being a pinch runner and strategic entry, then he stays on the roster. If not, then he's trade bait. Both Moises Sierra and Anthony Gose can stick around in Buffalo (that's just weird) and be called up as needed, although Gose is just about ready to go every day in the bigs.  If Gose achieves that, then Rasmus could be on the trading block.

Arencibia is still definitely trade bait. For a second baseman? Maybe. Talk of Bonifacio vs Maicer Izturis for the spot is there, but if someone better is available, I'm sure Anthopoulos will jump on it. Or who knows? Maybe Scutaro comes back to the Jays fold. That'd be one hell of a capper to an offseason.

Other holes are starting pitching depth, but that's more minor-league transaction-level at this point, and maybe figuring out 1st base. Encarnacion and Lind platooning 1B and DH is the most likely scenario, and that's not a bad situation really.

Oh, and I guess we still need a manager. Shouldn't be too hard to find interested parties now. I wonder how Farrell likes the view in his rear-view mirror now.

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