Gaston on Halladay: "I doubt we keep him"

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For the past month or so, the Blue Jays’ chain of command has been in apparent disarray. Cito Gaston told the media that the team wasn’t interested in retaining Rod Barajas. J.P. Ricciardi basically told the fans that they have no reason to root for Toronto. Now Gaston is once again out there, acting as the team’s defacto spokesman and playing hot stove pundit:

Halladay was on a spinning table, like the second item up for
display on The Price is Right, for 26 days in July before the Jays
ruled everyone had underbid. Whether it is this off-season or next
July’s deadline, they’ll receive less.

“If we don’t add anybody this winter, or go get somebody that
can help, I doubt we keep him,” manager Cito Gaston said. “That’s my
opinion. I don’t know that. Would it make any sense to keep him?
Probably not.”

We can argue about whether keeping Halladay is a good idea, but is it really the manager’s place to be speculating, hypothesizing and pontificating about the team’s personnel moves like this?  Better question: is there anyone in charge in Toronto?

Mike Rizzo and Shawn Kelley almost got into a physical confrontation

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A few weeks back the Washington Nationals designated reliever Shawn Kelley for assignment the morning after he threw his glove into the ground and glared at the Nats dugout in frustration after giving up a homer in a blowout win against the Mets. He was later traded to the Athletics. Nats GM Mike Rizzo said at that time that he thought Kelley was trying to show up his manager and that there was no room for that sort of thing on the team, offering an “either you’re with us or you’re working against us” sentiment in the process.

Today the Washington Post talks about all of the Nationals’ bullpen woes of late, and touches on the departure of Kelley as being part of the problem. In so doing, we learn that, on the night of Kelley’s mound tantrum, he and Rizzo almost got into a physical confrontation:

Rizzo headed down to the clubhouse and confronted Kelley, according to people familiar with the situation. The argument became heated, including raised voices, and eventually it almost became physical, according to people familiar with the exchange. Adam Eaton got between the two of them and separated them before things could advance further . . .

Might I point out that, the fact of this emerging now helps to vindicate Brandon Kintzler who, the day before, was traded away, some say, for being the source for negative reports from inside the Nats’ clubhouse?

That aside, the article does not make anyone look good, really. Rizzo had the backing of his team with the Kelley incident, but the overall story — how did the Nats’ bullpen, which was once a strength — get so bad? — does no favors for Rizzo. Mostly because he seems to have thought that they had so much extra bullpen depth that they could afford to deal away Kintzler, which he says was a financial move, not a punitive trade for being a media source.

Question: when was the last time you heard a baseball man say he had too much relief pitching? Especially today, in which the bullpen has assumed such a prominent role? Seems rather unreasonable to cut relievers when you’re trying mightily to come back from a sizable deficit in the standings, yes?