Yesterday wasn’t a holiday in Canada, and MLB.com’s Blue Jays guy Jordan Bastian used his working day to get some dish from Toronto. Among the items he learned:
- Catcher Rod Barajas is not likely coming back. The Jays won’t offer him a multi-year deal, and other teams may, so the team will go in another direction. Add the Jays to the list of teams interested in Yorvit Torrealba. OK, that list is only two teams long right now, but two makes a list, right?
- Slugging outfield prospect Travis Snider has no guaranteed job next spring. He was a little underwhelming in 276 plate appearances last season, but the dude is only 21 years old. A team that looks to basically be tearing down and rebuilding probably shouldn’t be in the business of blocking young guys like Snider.
The upshot of these two items is that the Jays now will be looking for an outfielder and a catcher. This is problematic, as they are already apparently preoccupied with signing another half dozen or so shortstops, and the winter is only so long.
Oh, and they may be preoccupied with other things too. Such as their parent corporation laying off nearly a thousand employees. Blue Jays fever: Catch it!
The story of the Indians postseason cannot be told without talking about injuries to starting pitchers Carlos Carrasco and Danny Salazar. They have forced Terry Francona to lean even harder on his bullpen than he otherwise may have and have cause the Indians to press rookie Ryan Merritt into service.
But Cleveland will be getting at least one of their starters back: Indians pitching coach Mickey Callaway that Danny Salazar will be part of the World Series roster.
Salazar has not pitched since early September due to a strained right flexor muscle, but according to Callaway, Salazar is ready to throw 65-70 pitches in a game. That could mean a start, probably in Game 4 after Corey Kluber, Trevor Bauer and Josh Tomlin. Merritt was a possible Game 4 starter, but he could either pair up with Salazar in a tandem start or serve in long relief.
Cubs’ left fielder Kyle Schwarber missed virtually the entire 2016 season due to torn knee ligaments, but he has been working his way back to health more quickly than initially expected. Indeed, he has been playing for the Cubs in the Arizona Fall League, serving as a DH. Many have speculated that the Cubs will activate him for the World Series.
Today, at his World Series media session, Cubs manager Joe Maddon said that reports from Arizona are good on Schwarber and that the he will fly to Cleveland to join the team after tonight’s game in Arizona. Maddon says the team will make a decision on activating him once he arrives. The Cubs have until tomorrow morning to set their World Series roster.
Our guess is that Schwarber will get the call and will serve as the DH for the Cubs in Games 1, 2 and, if necessary, 6 and 7 in Cleveland. If so, a lost season could very quickly turn into a storybook season for the Cubs’ young slugger.