Posted by: Asher Roth | April 22, 2010

Addition through Subtraction?

It’s not very often that you hear that your team has sent the #2 man of its starting rotation and its starting third baseman on the disabled list, and rejoice.

However, that is very much the case here for the Blue Jays, who sent Brian Tallet and Edwin Encarnacion to the disabled list yesterday.

It’s no secret that the Blue Jays universe has not been the biggest fan of EE since he was acquired last season for five-time all-star and seven-time gold glover, Scott Rolen. While his bat shows the occasional pop, he’s hit .219 this year with a single home run, five RBI and 3 errors in 9 games. While I’m by no means saying that I’d PREFER Jose Bautista as my starting third baseman, EE’s absence moves Bautista to a spot where he has only 4 errors in 264 innings of work in his 1+ years as a Blue Jay.

In addition, there’s the added bonus that the Cito is now all but forced to put the newly-acquired Fred Lewis in the lead-off spot. While Lewis has only hit .188 as a Jay so far, two of his three hits have been doubles, and he’s already got two stolen bases. Finally, this is the left-handed lead-off bat that the Jays were looking for when they signed Joey Gathright in the off-season, and he was acquired for mere future considerations. And that’s not to mention that Lewis was very excited to come here, promptly informing the Twitterverse and Facebook about the trade before the teams even announced it. If there’s one thing that I’ve come to appreciate as a life-long Torontonian, it’s a guy who actually wants to play here.

The only bad news here is that EE is on the DL retroactive to last Thursday, which means he can return as early as next Friday. Maybe the Jays will realize that a guy whose injury is a sore throwing arm – when a pretty imperative element in a third baseman’s game is his arm – that it’s time for EE to ride the bench a little longer. Cito says he misses his bat, though, and since I don’t see him grabbing the DH spot from Lind any time soon, looks like we’re stuck with him.

The good news here is that Aaron Hill returns tomorrow night, and grabs EE’s spot on the roster.

The loss of Tallet is also addition by subtraction, if you ask me. Tomorrow night, Brett Cecil makes his first start of the season in Tampa Bay. Once again, it’s no secret that plenty of Jays fans were upset with Tallet having a spot in the starting five, let along holding the #2 spot (oh how far we’ve fallen from the days of A.J. Burnett setting up Doc…).

Injuries to guys like Tallet, who are taking valuable spots away from Jays’ up and coming prospects, will arguably be considered God-sents for Jays fans who realize that this season is a throwaway, and would much rather see them go to the likes of Cecil, R-Zep, Robert Ray, Brad Mills, Rey Gonzalez or, dare I even say, Kyle Drabek.

The bottom line is, Jays fans, that if Cecil indeed steps his game up and performs well in the next couple of weeks, maybe we’ll never have to see Brian Tallet make another start for a long time.

But this is, of course, Cito’s team, so I wouldn’t bet on it.



  1. […] a convincing argument that the players the Jays have sent to the DL so far this season has led to addition by subtraction. Tallet just straight up is not a quality MLB starting pitcher, but his replacement, Brett Cecil, […]

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