Tag Archives: Ryan Goins

The Quest for the Jays’ 25th Man

With the major acquisitions of the offseason seemingly complete, the Blue Jays must now figure out where everything fits for the upcoming 2013 season. With the rotation locked in and the bullpen’s pieces likely already in place, the Jays must decide upon another player to round out its bench which currently consists of Rajai Davis, Emilio Bonifacio and Josh Thole.

Starting Pitchers
RA Dickey
Josh Johnson
Brandon Morrow
Mark Buehrle
Ricky Romero

J.A. Happ
Brad Lincoln
Brett Cecil
Darren Oliver
Steve Delabar
Sergio Santos
Casey Janssen

Position Players
J.P. Arencibia
Edwin Encarnacion
Maicer Izturis
Brett Lawrie
Jose Reyes
Melky Cabrera
Colby Rasmus
Jose Bautista
Adam Lind
Rajai Davis
Emilio Bonifacio
Josh Thole

40-Man Depth (Starters)
Chad Jenkins

40-Man Depth (Relievers)
Aaron Loup
Jeremy Jeffress
Esmil Rogers
Evan Crawford
Sam Dyson

Injured Pitchers

Dustin McGowan
Drew Hutchison
Luis Perez
Kyle Drabek

40-Man Depth
Anthony Gose
Moises Sierra
A.J. Jimenez
David Cooper
Ryan Goins

Here is an updated 25/40-Man Roster for the Toronto Blue Jays: Google Drive

At times, the 2012 Blue Jays resorted to the use of the 8-man pen, but presumably those days are over with the improvements made to the rotation. Still, there are a number of interesting options in Esmil Rogers and Jeremy Jeffress who are both out of options and would need to clear waivers in order to be assigned to AAA Buffalo. If AA truly believes that one of the two will be an effective MLB reliever, then he may decide with the flexibility that the Jays have in their lineup to carry them as the 8th man in the pen. Though one of them may already be line for a job in the bullpen if Darren Oliver retires, the team might be more inclined to replace him with another LHP, specifically Aaron Loup.

The Candidates:

Position Players:

Considering his removal from the 40-man roster and the vast improvements made to the team, Mike McCoy no longer seems like a remotely reasonable option and fellow AAAA super-sub Yan Gomes is no longer with the organization. Considering the flexibility in the team having Maicer Izturis who is capable of playing 2B, 3B and SS and Emilio Bonifacio capable of playing all the outfield positions plus 2B, there is a lot of flexibility in the lineup that should allow John Gibbons to adjust easily to injuries.Having Bonifacio/Izturis available allows Gibbons to give anyone on the infield the day off including Izturis who could give way to Bonifacio.

Similarly, Rajai Davis and Bonifacio could give anyone in the outfield the day off, though they’d likely be more hesitant to use either in CF. The next options in line for the OF are Anthony Gose and Moises Sierra who would likely benefit more from full-time at bats in Buffalo than sitting on the Jays’ bench. However, if an opportunity opened up because of injury or under performance, then Gose would certainly be given strong consideration to take over in CF for the Jays full time.

Adam Lind could definitely use a platoon partner to remove him from the lineup vs. LHP, but the team has already that it could use Rajai Davis in that role who hit them for a .285/.345/.437 line in 2012. When you consider his speed on the basepaths, Davis is more than adequate in a platoon role. If he falters in 2013, it would not be too difficult for AA to find another right-handed platoon partner.


With the rotation now solidified barring injury, only the bullpen remains in flux based mostly on the indecision of Darren “Black Magic” Oliver. This article presupposes that he will choose to return for one more season and he’s just being dramatic. Casey Janssen, Sergio Santos, Darren Oliver and Steve Delabar seem like locks for mid-to-late inning relief work, though the latter may not have put together a sufficient track record to warrant ‘lock status’ yet. Sergio Santos must also return from his shoulder issues the same pitcher that possessed the best out pitch in baseball in 2011.

Beyond the core, there is a number of intriguing options. Brett Cecil is out-of-options and seems an almost certainty to be with the team as a reliever. He had an uptick in velocity and performance after returning to the Jays as a reliever and he may find himself filling the role that Aaron Loup did in 2012 as a lefty specialist who got more work against right-handed batters as he proved himself capable. Brad Lincoln has an option remaining but seems well-positioned for a role as a middle reliever with the possibility of moving later in the game as roster changes dictate.

With the acquisition of R.A. Dickey, the Blue Jays also drastically improved their bullpen by pushing J.A. Happ into the swingman role. Considering he was a more than serviceable starter as recently as last year, Happ may win the title of Best Swingman in the Biz in 2013. It seems very unlikely that the Jays would choose to keep Happ stretched out in AAA rather than utilize him in the swingman position but perhaps with the quality of the rotation, they don’t believe he’d get enough work to keep him fresh and efficient.

It’s possible, but certainly unlikely, that the Jays would choose to option Happ and keep one of their acquisitions in Esmil Rogers (who cost the Jays Mike Aviles and Yan Gomes in trade) or Jeremy Jeffress (who was acquired for cash considerations). They could also re-sign one of Jason Frasor or Brandon Lyon if they prefer to have more experienced arms relieving the vastly improved rotation. This is after all a frontrunning team and not a Wild Card pretender anymore.

Another candidate for the bullpen is sidewinder Aaron Loup who pitched quite effectively in 2012 for the Blue Jays after his surprise call-up. Because of his available options, Loup is most likely to find himself in the minors at least to start 2013. If Oliver were to retire, the Jays would likely give more consideration to bringing Loup back in order to retain a late-inning left-handed reliever.

Personally, I think the Jays will find that a strong bullpen will not be such a glaring need as it has been in years past because of the upgrades made to the rotation. I can’t foresee the need for an 8-man pen anytime soon barring some short-term exceptional need. As for position players, Anthony Gose is the closest to making a contribution at the MLB-level but could have his development hurt by irregular playing time. If the Jays were to carry a position player already in the system as their 25th man, then I would lean towards Moises Sierra who lacks the ceiling to make irregular playing time too much of a concern. He possesses a strong arm from the outfield, is quick (but, at times,stupid) on the bases, and has some of the best raw power in the system. Perhaps MLB-coaching could unlock that potential which has not been fully converted to game play.

Who do you have penciled in as your 25th Blue Jay?


AJ Jimenez, Ryan Goins Added to 40-Man Roster

The November 20th deadline to set 40-man rosters came with a few decisions for Blue Jays management on some first-time eligible players. Catching prospect AJ Jimenez who spent most of the year recovering from Tommy John surgery and shortstop Ryan Goins who just finished a rough stint in the Arizona Fall League were added to the 40-man roster. Management must be higher on Goins than the rest of the world because he would be difficult for a team to carry on their roster for a full season.

Somewhat surprisingly, Mike McDade was removed from the 40-man and will be exposed to the Rule 5 draft. Though he had never put up the kind of offensive numbers expected from a 1B/DH, McDade had provided some hope in his time in the system with his strong defense and at least average offensive production. He would be difficult for a team to carry for a full season, but a rebuilding team like the Houston Astros may take a chance on him at the league minimum.

Also DFA’d were frequently flying supersub Mike McCoy and recently claimed former Yankee Cory Wade. McCoy had filled the organization’s needs all over the diamond including the mound in the last few seasons. He provided good value with his ability to play multiple positions, but he contributed very little on offense despite having above-average speed. Even if he is not claimed by another team, he was unlikely to see action for the Toronto Blue Jays in 2013 barring another season filled with injuries because of the signing of Maicer Izturis and the arrival of Anthony Gose and Moises Sierra in the outfield.

Javier Avendano, a pitcher who relieved for the Lansing Lugnuts before earning some starts with the Vancouver Canadians, is a pitcher picked up in last year’s minor league portion of the Rule 5 draft. He remains far enough away from the Majors that teams should be hesitant to draft him, but again, could be a tempting pickup for a rebuilding team. He projects as reliever anyways and would not be a devastating loss if he was lost.

Another name that will have to be exposed is Kevin Nolan, a SS who OPS’ed .855 at A+ Dunedin in his age 24 season, who is likely too far away from the Majors to be picked for a Major League roster spot.

Batter’s Box: An Interview with Doug Davis – September 2012

Batter’s Box Interactive Magazine: An Interview with Doug Davis – the Minor League Field Coordinator for the Toronto Blue Jays – September 2012

Davis answers Gerry McDonald’s questions on a wide range of topics including a pair of middle infielders eligible for the Rule 5 draft in 2012 in shortstops Ryan Goins and Kevin Nolan. Christopher Hawkins who stumbled in 2012 after moving to full-season ball at Lansing and Kellen Sweeney who struggled all year before heating up near the end are discussed as well. Davis also discussed the development of SS Christian Lopes (who he called a “natural hitter”), OF Dwight Smith (like Lopes, Davis also described Smith as a “natural hitter” who just did not get results in 2012), DJ Davis (very athletic but raw with the potential to be an impact player), OF Jacob Anderson (who should improve with physical maturity), C Santiago Nessy, (who could contribute on both sides of the plate) and LHP Daniel Norris (who struggled in 2012 but because of the experience should be well-positioned in 2013).

Davis also quickly updates the status of a pair of injured players: Travis d’Arnaud (who Davis says was just starting baseball activities which involved him keeping up with his throwing without involving his injured knee) and AJ Jimenez (who’s recovery from Tommy John is going well though he has not begun throwing again).

Arizona Fall League Watch – Oct 16, 2012

Phoenix 3 – Salt River 3 (12 inn.) – Oct 16, 2012

Deck McGuire pitched and was lucky to escape his inning having given up just one earned run on 3 hits and a walk. He had one strikeout. Sam Dyson would make an appearance in the top of the 11th striking out Marlins’ prospect Christian Yelich (pre-2012 BA’s #41 prospect) swinging on 4 pitches and Max Stassi looking to end the game (tied) in the middle of the 12th.

Ryan Goins and Sean Ochinko were the lone Blue Jays position players in Tuesday’s game. Ochinko hit an RBI single in the 2nd after Goins moved the runner to second on a groundout. Goins would cash in a run in the 6th on a groundball single to the right side. Goins would finish the game 1 for 5 with a strikeout; Ochinko went 2 for 4 with 2 singles.

Ochinko has been cast as a spare part minor leaguer because he served as the replacement to AJ Jimenez in New Hampshire (AA) after the more notable prospect underwent Tommy John surgery and recently received the assignment to the Arizona Fall League ending speculation that Travis d’Arnaud would be the Jays’ representative at catcher. Ochinko actually demonstrated some Yan Gomes-ian power as the backup catcher hit 9 HRs in 87 games in 2012 and OPS’ed a respectable .765 between Dunedin (A+) and New Hampshire. Considering the catching depth ahead of him, Ochinko will be hard-pressed to earn protection from the upcoming Rule 5 draft. However, it would take a team with very few options at catcher to swallow having him on their active Major League roster for a full season.

If Ochinko remains in the Jays’ system in 2013, it’s unclear where he will spend the season. AJ Jimenez is ahead of him on the depth chart and the team may want him to repeat AA considering his year was cut short by injury.  The Jays’ only other catching prospect who’s playing time warrants concern is in the lower minors and Santiago Nessy will likely rise no higher than Lansing (Lo-A) in 2013 considering his age. Therefore, Ochinko could find himself anywhere between A+ and AAA in 2013.

Arizona Fall League Watch Oct 10-11

Salt River 11 – Mesa 3 – Oct. 10, 2012

Ryan Goins played shortstop and went 0 for 5 with a walk and a run scored while Kevin Pillar went 2 for 4 with a walk and a home run. He played left field. Owner of best stuff in the system, Sam Dyson, pitched 2 innings and was torched for two runs yielding a HR and collecting 2 Ks.

Salt River 6 – Scottsdale 5 – Oct. 11, 2012

Jake Marisnick continued his struggles at the plate going hitless again with 1 strikeout but collected a walk and a run scored. Sean Ochinko was 1 for 4 with a strikeout.

John Stilson Removed from AFL Roster:

In other news, John Stilson has been removed from the AFL roster per Keith Law:


There was no immediate word about Stilson’s removal from the AFL roster. Perhaps his injury troubles from the regular season have flared up. He is one of the next generation of starting pitchers that should make the Majors in the next year or so ahead of the higher-ceilinged arms in the low minors. Apart from Deck McGuire and Chad Jenkins, he may be at the top of the list of pitching prospects on the organizational depth chart. If he is seriously hurt, then it is bad news indeed. His shoulder has been a concern in the past when Stilson declined to have surgery in favour of rehab.


Blue Jays’ First-Time Rule 5-Eligible Players in 2012

Update: Check out MjwW’s look at all things Rule 5 at Bluebirdbanter.com

These are all of the players who will be eligible for the first time for the Rule 5 draft held in December at the Winter Meetings. Michael Crouse is a name that was quite promising a year ago but who dropped off in 2012. Ryan Goins performed well in the Eastern League in 2012 for a SS and has been sent to the Arizona Fall League with the Salt River Rafters. He is joined by fellow first-time eligible players Ryan Tepera and Sean Ochinko. AJ Jimenez will need to be protected this year as he recovers from Tommy John surgery that ended his 2012 season. SS Kevin Nolan is another interesting name that the Jays might consider protecting. All of the above except Nolan and Ochinko will make their case for protection in the Arizona Fall League.

Currently, there are 37 players on the Jays’ 40-man roster including Omar Vizquel and all of the pending free agents. The pitchers expected to vacate spots on the 40-man roster include Kelly Johnson, Brandon Lyon, Carlos Villanueva, and long-time reliever Jason Frasor. This would drop the Jays down to 32 with pitchers JA Happ, Sergio Santos, Kyle Drabek, Drew Hutchison and Dustin McGowan all needing protection from the Rule 5 draft. Barring an unexpected move, these 5 will will return to the 40-man. This bumps the Jays back up to 37.

The replacements for departing relievers/second basemen may come from the AFL where they will likely be competing for a spot on the 40-man. AJ Jimenez will likely be protected as he was a Top 20 prospect in the Jays system and should recover fully from his mid-season Tommy John surgery. John Stilson was a name that could have competed for the 40-man and possibly on the active roster in the Spring of 2013. He was recently removed from the AFL roster by the Jays and its unclear whether it was because he was injured, tired or something else. Perhaps the team have decided against pushing up his timeline and will give him another full season in the Minors to develop as a starter. Sean Ochinko and Ryan Tepera have failed to turn heads in the AFL so far and must be considered long-shots for the 40-man at this point. Ryan Goins could be protected because there is a distinct lack of depth to the Jays’ system in the middle infield where Goins has performed as high as New Hampshire (AA).

Name Pos DOB Acquired
Dustin Antolin RHP 8/9/1989 2008 (11)
Markus Brisker RF 8/21/1990 2008 (6)
Michael Crouse RF 11/22/1990 2008 (16)
Brad Glenn RF 4/2/1987 2009 (23)
Ryan Goins SS 2/13/1988 2009 (4)
Yan Gomes C 7/19/1987 2009 (10)
Anthony Gose CF 8/10/1990 2010 Trade
Shawn Griffith RHP 5/24/1987 2009 (37)
Chad Jenkins RHP 12/22/1987 2009 (1)
A.J. Jimenez C 5/1/1990 2008 (9)
Brandon Kaye RHP 8/16/1988 2011 NDFA
Aaron Loup LHP 12/19/1987 2009 (9)
Jack Murphy C 4/6/1988 2009 (31)
Kevin Nolan SS 12/13/1987 2009 (20)
Sean Ochinko DH 10/21/1987 2009 (11)
Gustavo Pierre SS 12/28/1991 2008 NDFA
Carlos Ramirez RF 4/24/1991 2008 NDFA
Ryan Schimpf 2B 3/11/1988 2009 (5)
Egan Smith LHP 3/16/1989 2009 (7)
Ryan Tepera RHP 11/3/1987 2009 (19)
Denny Valdez RHP 5/8/1990 2008 NDFA
Kenny Wilson CF 1/30/1990 2008 (2)
Tyler Ybarra LHP 12/11/1989 2008 (43)

Source: MjwW of BluebirdBanter.com

And now the current 40-man:

Pitchers B/T DOB
Henderson Alvarez R-R Apr 18, 1990
Chad Beck R-R Jan 17, 1985
David Carpenter R-R Jul 15, 1985
Joel Carreno R-R Mar 7, 1987
Brett Cecil R-L Jul 2, 1986
Evan Crawford R-L Sep 2, 1986
Steve Delabar R-R Jul 17, 1983
Kyle Drabek  60-day DL ** R-R Dec 8, 1987
Sam Dyson R-R May 7, 1988
Jason Frasor R-R Aug 9, 1977
J.A. Happ  60-day DL ** L-L Oct 19, 1982
Drew Hutchison  60-day DL ** L-R Aug 22, 1990
Casey Janssen R-R Sep 17, 1981
Chad Jenkins R-R Dec 22, 1987
Brad Lincoln L-R May 25, 1985
Aaron Loup L-L Dec 19, 1987
Brandon Lyon R-R Aug 10, 1979
Dustin McGowan  60-day DL ** R-R Mar 24, 1982
Brandon Morrow R-R Jul 26, 1984
Darren Oliver R-L Oct 6, 1970
Luis Perez  60-day DL ** L-L Jan 20, 1985
Ricky Romero R-L Nov 6, 1984
Sergio Santos  60-day DL ** R-R Jul 4, 1983
Carlos Villanueva R-R Nov 28, 1983
Catchers B/T DOB
J.P. Arencibia R-R Jan 5, 1986
Travis d’Arnaud R-R Feb 10, 1989
Jeff Mathis R-R Mar 31, 1983
Infielders B/T DOB
David Cooper L-L Feb 12, 1987
Yunel Escobar R-R Nov 2, 1982
Yan Gomes R-R Jul 19, 1987
Adeiny Hechavarria R-R Apr 15, 1989
Kelly Johnson L-R Feb 22, 1982
Brett Lawrie R-R Jan 18, 1990
Adam Lind L-L Jul 17, 1983
Mike McCoy R-R Apr 2, 1981
Mike McDade S-R May 8, 1989
Omar Vizquel S-R Apr 24, 1967
Outfielders B/T DOB
Jose Bautista R-R Oct 19, 1980
Rajai Davis R-R Oct 19, 1980
Anthony Gose L-L Aug 10, 1990
Colby Rasmus L-L Aug 11, 1986
Moises Sierra R-R Sep 24, 1988
Designated Hitter B/T DOB
Edwin Encarnacion R-R Jan 7, 1983