So I was sitting out on the patio of a restaurant in Tampa this afternoon, finishing up my lunch, when none other than Jays general manager J.P. Ricciardi walks by. His greeting was a little more than the usual "Hello."
"Hey Jordan, we traded Schoeneweis to the Reds," he says to me.
Well, at least he waited until I was DONE eating to fill me in on the news. Lord knows it would’ve made for a quick lunch otherwise. So it was back to my hotel to write up short news story and then off to the ballpark to follow it up.
I’ve got to tell you that I have mixed feelings about the deal. Not from a baseball standpoint so much, though. Schoeneweis was one of those good guys to talk to in the clubhouse and — no matter how rough an outing he might’ve had that night — he was always willing to talk. As a reporter, you couldn’t ask for anything more. He’s a guy that’ll definitely be missed in that respect.
As far as his production this year, well, it’s not hard to see that Schoeneweis was having a down year. He was the first to admit that and no one was more frustrated with that than he was. As if his numbers weren’t getting him down enough, then he suffered that fluke running injury in Oakland — an issue that I don’t think he’s entirely over, yet.
You can’t fault Toronto for dealing him, though. They weren’t going to re-sign him next season and there are a number of young pitchers in the bullpen who have done a good job this year against left-handed batters — Schoeneweis’ specialty. Jeremy Accardo has been especially tough on lefties this year.
The Blue Jays haven’t officially announced who will get called up to replace Schoeneweis in the bullpen, but the rumblings have been tabbing Minor League left-hander Davis Romero as a potential call up. He moved up from Double-A to Triple-A this year and has had good numbers at both levels. The Jays will probably announce the move after the game tonight.
So after all my speculation about the 13-pitcher staff getting reduced to 12, it doesn’t look like that’s going to happen. Toronto is giving Gustavo Chacin a fifth rehab start and Scott Downs will start on Friday, with Shaun Marcum going on Saturday. Ricciardi said a pitcher definitely would be added with Schoeneweis out. When I asked him if the Jays would return to a 12-man staff when Chacin returned a week from now, Ricciardi didn’t have an answer, saying only, "I don’t know. I don’t know."
CONGRATS TO: Reed Johnson. He’s finally on the American League batting chart — ranked third behind Joe Mauer and Derek Jeter. Entering Wednesday, Johnson needed 368.9 plate appearances and he finally gathered 370. Now, we’ll see if he can keep up the pace and contend for the batting title.
PROPS TO: All you readers. I was happy to see the discussion board working a little more after my last post. The comment total was only at eight the last time I checked, but it was good to see a lively discussion going. Let’s keep it up. I’ll try to interject comments in the posts from time to time, but that’s more of a place for all you fans to interact. Keep getting the word out that this is the place for Jays fans to chat it up, stir it up, and voice their opinions.