Jeff Pearlman wrote something reasonable and reflective over at his personal blog in the wake of this morning’s nonsense. Go read it.
Jeff: you have no need to apologize to me, though I do appreciate the gesture. You believe what you believe and I believe what I believe and the last thing I think anyone should do is to hold back if they feel passionate about something. I don’t think you crossed any lines in what you wrote.
That said, I agree with a lot of the sentiment of Pearlman’s post. I get into a lot of little scrapes like this because that’s just how I’m wired. I think Jeff does too, because that’s how he’s wired. It happens. And it’s just sports, so it’s worth taking a moment for perspective once in a while.
I think Jeff and I still disagree pretty vehemently about a lot of issues, but it’s nice when people can disagree and be polite about it. I don’t always succeed at that, and I’m not happy with myself when I don’t live up to the standards to which I aspire. I think Jeff probably feels the same way.
(psst! Minions: please leave a number where you can be reached if I need you, OK?)
*And no, I have no idea if I’m Nixon or Mao in that pic. I just wanted a picture of a couple of people who could be civil with one another when necessary despite the worst parts of their nature and stuff. Please don’t read anything into it.
Blue Jays closer Ken Giles hasn’t exactly turned things around since joining the Blue Jays on July 31, when the club sent embattled closer Roberto Osuna to the Astros. Giles posted a 4.99 ERA in 30 2/3 innings with the Astros, then put up a slightly less miserable 4.58 ERA in 17 2/3 innings with the Jays. Still, he’s much happier with the Jays than he was with the Astros, even after winning the World Series with them last year. He said to Rosie DiManno of the Toronto Star, “I’m actually enjoying the game more than I did for my entire tenure in Houston. It’s kind of weird to say that because I won a World Series with that team. But it’s like, I just felt trapped there. I didn’t feel like myself there. Overall, I felt out of place.”
Giles also said “the communication was lost” with the Astros and it was something that came easy with the Jays. He said, “When I came here, they stayed patient with me. I said hey, I want to work on this thing till I’m comfortable. All right. OK, I’m comfortable, let’s move on to this next thing. Pitching, you can’t just try to fix everything at once. For me, I had to take baby steps to get my groove back. The Jays allowed me to do that. Yeah, the team was out of contention, but it doesn’t matter. It’s still my career. I still have to prove myself. Them being so patient with me, understanding what I want to do, was very, very big.”
Giles, 28, has two more years of arbitration eligibility remaining. He has shown promise despite his overall mediocre numbers. In non-save situations this season (with both the Astros and Jays), he has a 9.12 ERA. But in save situations, his ERA is a pristine 0.38. Giles could be a closer the Jays find themselves leaning on as they attempt to get back into competitive shape. Since it sounds like Giles is quite enamored with Toronto and with the Blue Jays, a discussion about a contract extension certainly could be had.