Tag: Kyle Drabek

Yoenis Cespedes

Video: Yoenis Cespedes enjoys a two-homer, six-RBI afternoon


Tigers outfielder Yoenis Cespedes had White Sox starter Jose Quintana’s number on Sunday afternoon. Cespedes stepped to the plate with the bases loaded and two out in the first inning and worked the count full before hammering a 92 MPH Quintana fastball over the fence in left field for a grand slam.

Cespedes made it two when he faced Quintana again in the third inning, this time with a runner on first base and two outs. Cespedes demolished a 90 MPH fastball so much that left fielder Melky Cabrera barely moved as he watched it sail over the bullpen.

Once Quintana was out of the game, the White Sox were able to handle Cespedes. Reliever Matt Albers got him to line out to center in the fifth and Kyle Drabek struck him out in the seventh. The Tigers still cruised to a 9-1 win.

Cespedes, acquired from the Red Sox during the winter, is batting .300/.314/.600 with three home runs and 10 RBI in 51 plate appearances.

Blue Jays said to be “leading candidates” for either Ervin Santana or Ubaldo Jimenez

blue jays logo

The great Ken Rosenthal of FOXSports.com shares this scoop:

The Blue Jays, quiet for much of the offseason, still figure to acquire one and possibly two starting pitchers once the logjam caused by [Masahiro] Tanaka starts to resolve.

The Jays are a leading candidate to sign either [Ervin] Santana or [Ubaldo] Jimenez; they have two protected first-round picks, Nos. 9 and 11, and would sacrifice only a second-rounder and the accompanying pool money for one of those free-agent right-handers.

Toronto had a 4.25 staff ERA in 2013, which ranked 25th in MLB. There has been very little talk of a run at Tanaka, who could get over $100 million guaranteed, but the Jays are poised to chase the next best thing once that chip falls into place.

Santana, 31, posted a 3.24 ERA and 1.14 WHIP in 32 starts last year for the Royals, fanning 161 batters in 211 innings. Jimenez, 29, had a 3.30 ERA, 1.33 WHIP and 194 strikeouts in 182 2/3 frames for Cleveland.

The Blue Jays’ three locked-in starters for 2014 are R.A. Dickey, Mark Buehrle and Brandon Morrow.

J.A. Happ could win a spot and there’s still some shred of hope for 26-year-old righty Kyle Drabek.

Breaking down the huge Toronto-Miami trade

Jose Reyes

It’s not official yet, but here are some early thoughts on the trade as it’s currently being presented:

Blue Jays acquire SS Jose Reyes, RHP Josh Johnson, LHP Mark Buehrle, INF-OF Emilio Bonifacio, C John Buck and $4 million from the Marlins for SS Yunel Escobar, RHP Henderson Alvarez, SS Adeiny Hechvarria, LHP Justin Nicolino, OF Jake Marisnick, RHP Anthony DeSclafani and C Jeff Mathis.

– Of course, there’s the obvious thought: the Marlins are a joke and owner Jeffrey Loria needs to be forced out of baseball. That still applies.

That said, strictly as a baseball trade, this seems like a pretty good value for them. Reyes and Buehrle really shouldn’t have any trade value at all; the Marlins were the high bidders for both last year and signed them to backloaded contracts. Any time you can sign a free agent to a long-term deal and then trade him a year later, without eating any salary (though the Marlins did eat $4 million here), you’re coming out ahead. The back half of free agent deals are almost always worse than the front half.

Working under that theory, the only two guys in the deal for the Marlins with significant trade value were Johnson, who is one year away from free agency, and Bonifacio, an arbitration-eligible speedster who is an adequate regular at a few positions but not really exceptional anywhere.

In return, the Marlins are getting a cheap No. 3 or 4 starter in Alvarez, a possible long-term shortstop in Hechevarria, two very good prospects who will both probably crack the bottom half of top 100 lists next spring in Nicolino and Marisnick, a possible bullpen arm in DeSclafani and whatever Escobar brings back in trade. That’s pretty good. Better still if catcher Travis d’Arnaud was in there, but that probably would have required eating more salary than the Marlins were willing to do.

If this were a computer simulation, one could make a great argument that the Marlins came out ahead here. Figuring that they weren’t going to contend in 2013 anyway, they might as well start over, tank next year and then try to load up again come 2014 or ’15.

However, this is no computer simulation. The Marlins just took a big ol’ crap on everyone who has supported them in recent years and ticked off their lone remaining star in Giancarlo Stanton. Also, it’s hard to imagine free agents will line up to sign with them, even if they do offer to overpay, after what happened to Reyes, Buehrle and Heath Bell. It’s going to take more than a year or two to recover from this.

– As for the Blue Jays, well, they obviously got a whole lot better. The rotation now lines up as Johnson, Buehrle, Brandon Morrow, Ricky Romero and probably J.A. Happ. Kyle Drabek will return from Tommy John sometime next year, and the team still has some quality pitching prospects behind them.

The lineup could look like:

SS Reyes
2B Bonifacio
RF Jose Bautista
DH/1B Edwin Encarnacion
1B/DH Adam Lind/free agent
3B Brett Lawrie
CF Colby Rasmus
C J.P. Arencibia
LF Free agent/Rajai Davis

With the newly signed Maicer Izturis leading the bench. The Jays could also trade Arencibia for a Lind replacement or a left fielder and then let top prospect Travis d’Arnaud compete with Buck and Bobby Wilson for catching chores in spring training.

The Jays also have plenty of live arms in relief and Sergio Santos making his way back. There’s no doubt that this team should be a contender. Whether it will be will hinge on keeping the arms healthy, especially Johnson’s. That’s an area in which the Blue Jays have had a lot of difficulties.

As is, the Blue Jays look like pretty good bets to claim one of the AL’s five playoff berths next year and those improved odds come at the expense of the Orioles, Rays and Red Sox.

J.A. Happ done for season with foot injury

J.A. Happ Getty

The Blue Jays haven’t been able to catch a break with their pitching staff this season, so it makes perfect sense that J.A. Happ is done for the year with an injury to his right foot.

According to Ken Fidlin of the Toronto Sun, Blue Jays manager John Farrell said a fracture was found in the foot after he felt lingering discomfort in his ankle following a play at first base on August 29 against the Yankees.

“We’re not quite sure where it started,” manager John Farrell said. “The play at first base irritated his ankle where he was feeling discomfort at the time. When the discomfort lingered, we had an MRI done and it showed a fracture in the foot. The recommendation is to have surgery and his season is over.”

Happ, who was acquired from the Astros in July in a 10-player trade, posted a 4.69 ERA and 46/17 K/BB ratio in 40 1/3 innings over six starts and four relief appearances with Toronto. The 29-year-old southpaw is the eighth Blue Jays pitcher to go down with a season-ending injury this year, joining Robert Coello, Kyle Drabek, Drew Hutchison, Jesse Litsch, Dustin McGowan, Luis Perez and Sergio Santos.

Oft-injured Dustin McGowan to undergo shoulder surgery

Dustin McGowan

Blue Jays right-hander Dustin McGowan is going back under the knife, this time for arthroscopic shoulder surgery.

McGowan previously underwent shoulder surgeries in 2008 and 2010, and basically hasn’t been healthy in four years, throwing a grand total of 21 innings since 2008. All of which is why it was so odd when the Blue Jays decided to sign McGowan to a three-year, $4.1 million contract extension in March.

He hasn’t pitched since then in the minors or majors, and the Blue Jays won’t know how long he’ll be sidelined this time around until Dr. James Andrews takes a look inside his shoulder.

Toronto rookie Drew Hutchison is undergoing Tommy John elbow surgery later this week and the Blue Jays already lost Kyle Drabek to his second Tommy John surgery earlier this season.