Game 112: Toronto at New York

Ruiz.jpgThere’s a new big man in the Blue Jays’ clubhouse. Give a well-deserved welcome to Randy Ruiz, who has been mashing all season long with Triple-A Las Vegas and is today’s DH in the No. 6 spot for Toronto.

Ruiz — a 31-year-old career Minor Leaguer — definitely earned this promotion, which fills the spot that opened when the Jays sent Alex Rios to the White Sox on Monday. In 114 games with Vegas, Ruiz hit .320 with 25 homers and 106 RBIs.

As deserving as Ruiz is of this call-up, though, there’s still plenty of reason to wonder why Travis Snider wasn’t the one summoned. All Snider has done at Triple-A is hit 314 with a .654 slugging, belting 13 homers with 37 RBIs in 43 games.

The Blue Jays won’t come out and say it, but Snider is most likely being held in the Minors due to his service time. If Toronto — a team in fourth place and without a shot at the playoffs — were to call up Snider before around August 20, the club would risk having him becoming a Super Two player.

In short, this means that Snider would have a shot at earning an extra arbitration year, thus costing the Blue Jays more money in the long term. As a player, this is a frustrating way be kept in the Minors, knowing you’re playing well enough to be called up. As an organization not headed for the playoffs, it only makes sense.

“He’ll be up here some time in the near future,” Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston said on Monday.

In the meantime, it’s hard not to root for a guy like Ruiz. Labeled as a career Minor Leaguer, and a good one at that, he has a chance to show the Blue Jays something over the rest of the season. Over his 11-year professional career, Ruiz has been cut 12 times in stints with nine different organizations before joining the Jays.

Today’s lineups:

Thumbnail image for BlueJays.jpgTORONTO BLUE JAYS (54-57)
Fourth place AL East, 14.5 GB

1. Marco Scutaro, SS
2. Aaron Hill, 2B
3. Adam Lind, LF
4. Lyle Overbay, 1B
5. Vernon Wells, CF
6. Randy Ruiz, DH
7. Edwin Encarnacion, 3B
8. Rod Barajas, C
9. Joe Inglett, RF

Starter: RHP Scott Richmond (6-6, 3.97)

Thumbnail image for Yankees.jpgNEW YORK YANKEES (69-43)
First place AL East, — GB

1. Derek Jeter, SS
2. Johnny Damon, LF
3. Mark Teixeira, 1B
4. Alex Rodriguez, 3B
5. Hideki Matsui, DH
6. Jorge Posada, C
7. Robinson Cano, 2B
8. Eric Hinske, RF
9. Melky Cabrera, CF

Starter: RHP Joba Chamberlain (8-2, 3.73)

Don’t forget, you can follow me on Twitter: @MLBastian

~JB

6 Comments

Nice clutch hit from Overbay. Wells never changes, he continually tries to pull that outside pitch resulting in a weak ground ball out. That’s the book on him, every pitcher pitches him like that and he still doesn’t learn.
Must be brain dead-really I can’t think of any other description, since I’m sure Cito and Tennace are telling him the same thing.
He should push that ball to right or right center and he’d be one hell of a lot more successful, but he will never do that consistently. When he does he get’s hot, then he consistently goes back to yanking everything. Bat him 9th and pay the man his 107 million. Pathetic.

Lol, I can’t imagine the look on Joba’s face after Ruiz took him deep to right field. Welcome to the bigs Ruiz. Nice start.

A great year for Ruiz in AAA. Nice start indeed. The man can hit. All these years, all those different clubs. We see a lot of 1B/DH eligible players in the minors that can definately hit. The only thing that holds them back is a position where you you REALLY have to produce to make it. Juan Miranda on the Yanks, Barbaro Canizares of the Braves org., Chris Carter on the Red Sox and Jake Fox now doing well with the Cubs are players that come to mind.

When we get Snider and Dopirak up here and get EE going and we could do some damage before the end of the season.

gsjays,
Given your comments a few months ago about a MLBPA executive whose name I can’t remember, I’m interested in your take on the David Ortiz Press Conference. If you’re inclined to answer, you may contact me as below or on Bombers Beat! Thanks!!!

I was going to post that usually when a batter faces a pitcher for the first time, the advantage goes to the pitcher. Then I thought that in 11 years in the minors, Ruiz has probably faced most of the pitchers now in the bigs at one time or another. Go Randy!

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