He’s never been good at P.R., and there’s a sense that he’s already toast anyway, but the Blue Jays’ GM now seems to be begging for unemployment:
“Let me make this clear: It doesn’t matter if J.P. Ricciardi is the GM,
or Joe Blow is the GM. Two years from now, five years from now, seven
years from now, the reality that we face in Toronto is the division is
not going to change,” Ricciardi said in an interview this week. “The
Red Sox and Yankees are not going away. If the Yankees want to, they
can take their payroll to $300 million . . .I get this feeling that people are dying for me to lose my job, they
think my world is going to come crashing down. I’m not built like that.”
All of that may be true. But when you’re the GM of a baseball team, it’s not good business to (a) provide quotes which basically give the entire fan base permission to stop hoping and caring; and (b) tell your bosses that being fired wouldn’t bother you a bit.
Ricciardi should have been let go a couple of years ago. I have little doubt that he’ll be let go a couple of weeks from now.
For a few days, it looked like Aaron Judge was finally hitting his stride in the postseason. He was still striking out at a regular clip, piling more and more strikeouts atop the 16 he racked up in the Division Series, but he was mashing, too. He engineered a three-run homer during Game 3 of the Championship Series, followed by another blast and game-tying double in Game 4. His one-out double helped pad a five-run lead in Game 5, while his 425-footer off of Brad Peacock barely made a dent during a 7-1 loss in Game 6. And then Lance McCullers‘ curveball found and fooled him, as it did five of the 14 batters it met in Game 7:
The strikeout was Judge’s first of the evening and 27th since the start of the playoffs. No other major league batter has racked up that many strikeouts in a single postseason, though Alfonso Soriano’s 26-strikeout record in 2003 comes the closest. Within that record, Judge also collected three golden sombreros (four strikeouts in a single game), narrowly avoiding the dreaded platinum sombrero (five strikeouts in a single game).
It’s an unfortunate footnote to a spectacular year for the rookie outfielder, who decimated the competition with 52 home runs and 8.2 fWAR during the regular season and was a pivotal part of the Yankees’ playoff run. Thankfully, the image of McCullers’ curveball darting just under Judge’s bat won’t be the image that sticks with us for years to come. Instead, it’ll look something like this: