Michael Taylor has gone from top-30 prospect to footnote. The Athletics announced this afternoon that they have traded Taylor to the White Sox in exchange for minor league right-hander Jake Sanchez.
Taylor posted impressive numbers as a farmhand with the Phillies before being shipped to the Blue Jays in the Roy Halladay deal in December of 2009. He was quickly traded to the Athletics for Brett Wallace in a high-profile deal of top prospects, but both of them have proven to be flops. Taylor’s power never developed as hoped and he has hit just .135/.210/.189 with a 26/7 K/BB ratio over 81 plate appearances in the majors. Now 28 years old, he’ll likely function as outfield depth with Chicago’s Triple-A affiliate in Charlotte.
Sanchez owns a 2.80 ERA over 38 starts and seven relief appearances in the minors. The 24-year-old has yet to pitch above A-ball.
Because of course he did.
It wasn’t just his first at bat, but it was his first pitch. It came off of John Kilichowski, an 11th round draft pick of the St. Louis Cardinals out of Vanderbilt. The ball went out to left center, off the bat of the lefty Tebow.
Next time, meat, throw him a breaking ball.
The other night, Blue Jays reliever Joaquin Benoit needed help getting off the field after the second benches-clearing incident with the Yankees. It was later revealed that Benoit tore a calf muscle during the fracas, ending his season.
Yesterday he pointed the finger at just about everyone else for the incidents like the one that led to his injury. Hitters specifically. From The Star:
“I believe as pitchers we’re entitled to use the whole plate and pitch in if that’s the way we’re going to succeed,” Benoit said. “I believe that right now baseball is taking things so far that in some situations most hitters believe that they can’t be brushed out. Some teams take it personally.”
That “take it personally” line is interesting coming from Benoit as, in this instance, it seemed pretty clear that the whole plunking exchange which led to his injury started because Josh Donaldson took an inside pitch that did not seem to be a purpose pitch at all, too personally.
Did Benoit take a veiled swipe at his teammate here? If so, that’s pretty notable. If not it’s notable in another way, right? As it suggests that Benoit believes it’s OK for his teammates to take issue with inside pitches but anyone else who does is part of the problem?
Which is it, Joaquin?