The excitement over the start of Spring Training is still lingering but we really need some games to start. Pitchers and Catchers have reported, and now the position players are in camp. There are nice stories coming out on new contracts (Bautista), top prospects experiencing their first spring training (Hechevarria) or with the Blue Jays (Lawrie, Gose), John Farrell at the helm for his first Spring Training and players adapting to new roles and fighting for roster spots.
However the writers having skimmed the cream off the top with those early stories, are starting to dig for stories. Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star who was starting to actually write some positive stories about the Blue Jays instead of ranting about the previous G.M., the ownership and shifting t.v. broadcasts to other channels, ticket prices etc. etc. However, he’s back today complaining about how John Farrell handled the communication about the Travis Snider injury. Farrell noted that Snider had been held back from workouts due to tightness in his core area and denied it was anything serious. When questioned, Snider admitted he had a core-muscle strain from golfing last week and that was it. Griffin maintains that Farrell deflected the question about the injury. Now I think that’s digging a little deep here given a “tightness in the core area” and “strained core-muscle” are awfully similar in my opinion. If we were in a court of law then maybe we could break down the semantics of each statement and convict Farrell of being ‘secretive’ but we’re not here. You have two people speaking to the media and used slightly different language to describe what, is in effect, a minor nagging type of injury that should not affect Snider being ready for opening day. It’s not 2007 where the then GM for the Blue Jays admitted he lied to the media about a major elbow injury to B.J. Ryan. This is just a minor injury that doesn’t need much attention!!! However Richard Griffin basically has the attitude that if the Blue Jays don’t act in a manner consistent with the way the Montreal Expos acted when he was employed by them, then it’s completely wrong. Sorry, I’m ranting so much on Mr. Griffin but I find his “holier than thou” attitude and his need to look for problems/issues when there aren’t any very irritating.
Now onto a real injury story that may actually have an impact on the Blue Jays roster on Opening Day. Scott Posednik has re-aggravated the injury to his foot that kept him out of the last 20 or so games in 2010. He has plantar-fasciitis and that tends to be a nagging injury that is hard to treat and can be very painful. This is not good news given that Posednik is there to bring speed to the line-up. However, it’s not the end of the world given that Posednik was not slated at an opening day starter but rather as a fourth or fifth outfielder. They still have Corey Patterson in camp as well as Rajai Davis as their starting centre fielder so they can afford to wait on Posednik getting healthy. Perhaps they decide to not even take the risk and release Posednik before the start of the season (he’s only inked to a minor-league deal).
The Blue Jays signed Scott Posednik to a minor-league contract today. It was interesting that the Toronto Star article by the misinformed Mark Zwolinski mentioned Posednik yesterday as being a free agent but a possible lead-off hitter for the Jays.
I don’t see Posednik as being a starter for the Blue Jays. I see him as, at best, a fourth outfielder and speed off the bench. Similar to the Joey Gathright signing last year, I see this as Anthopolous seeing of Posednik can fit into the mix and see if he’s a better fit than say a Corey Patterson to make the squad. He provides another option if say Travis Snider or Rajai Davis struggles. At the end of the day, the Jays could just be giving Posednik an invite to Spring Training so that he can market his skills to other teams in hopes of catching on somewhere else. Either way, no harm in giving Posednik deal.
Since posting this yesterday, I’ve been able to do some reading and more thinking around this signing. One glaring oversight on my part was to not note that Posednik bats from the left side. Also with four bench spots the Jays could conceivably keep Posednik and Patterson but would need to open up two spots on their 40-man roster. Ideally, the Blue Jays will be able to find a taker for Juan Rivera, and work with Snider, Patterson, Davis and Posednik in the outfield.