Wednesday, June 13, 2012
Step off the ledge (but in which direction?)
Unless your club is a damn juggernaut, there is going to come a point in every baseball team's season where a decision has to be made by all parties involved... are you in, or are you out?
After losing two-fifths of the starting rotation and getting swept by the Washington Nationals (ed note: this is a bro/clown joke free zone) - on home field, no less - it looks like now is that time of the season for fans and management of the Toronto Blue Jays.
Yo fans - are you in or are you out?
Do you have what it takes to endure a lengthy slide and accept that this might not be the breakthrough season we all pined for? Did the burden of expectation placed on the Jays as the uber trendy super sexy preseason "sleeper" pick ruin anything less than a wildcard playoff spot for you?
Are we going to start calling for John Farrell's head? Walton's? Murph's? Oh wait, that call has already been placed. What about Alex Anthopoulos - honeymoon over yet? "WHAT HAS HE DONE?" Oh nothing, besides turn over the roster and build a foundation of young talent set to feed the big club for years. But don't ask me, I'm not a damn scout. I'll leave that confirmation for the pros (not bros).
How long before the "Trade Bautista! Trade Romero!" calls come out? When does the countdown to "I'm done with this shitty team!" start? How many more losses, guys?
But what if the club turns it around and puts together a serious second half charge. Statement not a question. Will you be back then? Claim you never left? Because fuck it, friends. I'm in. It sucks to lose but I'm in regardless. What other choice do I have? Abandon the belief I have in the club? Disregard the potential coming up through the ranks? And even if there was none, pretend I haven't been a Jays nerd for the last 30 years? No, I'm in. Streaks and frustrating play and bouts of bad baseball and all.
But that's only half the issue...
Yo front office - are you in or are you out?
This club you're fielding every day - is this the core? Are the only roster shuffles in the foreseeable future going to come from within? Will the collection of highly coveted prospects be hoarded and developed, with the best of the best forming the next wave? Or will the old Anthopoulos adage of "they aren't all gonna play up here" hold true with some of those tantalizing youngsters packaged off for proven major league talent?
Time will tell. I've long maintained that I think AA still has that signature deal in him (if we haven't seen it already) - that Fernandez-McGriff for Alomar-Carter trade - and maybe this is the season Anthopoulos pulls the trigger. But maybe he sees a roster with more holes than plugs, more potential than results, and lets the soup simmer for another season. It's tough to argue against either direction, quite frankly.
Either way... it feels like we're at that point of the season where the twitter talk and call-in shows are about to turn nasty.
So I guess we all have to make that decision... and I know what mine is.