Shaun Marcum signs, fan club rejoices

OK, so maybe the second part of the post title is a little bit of an exaggeration. The Shaun Marcum Fan Club is kind of quiet. But what can you expect when the dude’s missed an entire year?

Anyway, if there’s anybody left kicking around that group, you can bet they’re happy today. Shaun Marcum has signed! While it may be a little early to crown him as the Blue Jays’ new No. 1 pitcher, the move is one that fans should be happy with.

During his last full(ish) season with the Jays, North of Steeles was good for north of six innings per start and held opponents to a WHIP of 1.163 during those 25 starts.

While there seems to be a small movement to hand Marcum the opening day start, I don’t think he needs that kind of pressure this year. If I’m running the team, I slot Marcum into the middle of the rotation and let him work his back up to the top. He’s got the talent to do it.

About these ads

Web design 101 (or why didn’t Janssen pitch last night?)

I’m certainly no expert on web design. If it wasn’t for WYSIWYG sites like wordpress, I wouldn’t have a website to call my own. But I can tell you what not to do if you’re designing a website: Don’t make it look like the site of the New Hampshire Union Leader.

It’s an incredibly ugly and difficult to navigate site, which is why I’m at a loss to explain why Casey Janssen didn’t pitch last night for the Fisher Cats, despite the Union Leader reporting yesterday that he was scheduled to.

As for Shaun Marcum — and the Tao really beat me to the punch on this — his line from last night (3 IP, 5 hits, 4 K, 1 ER) is a good one to remember if you ever feel like discussing why ERA isn’t the best stat on which to judge a pitcher.

Marcum gave up 5 runs on the night, 4 obviously unearned, but the only reason they were unearned is because there was an error committed by shortstop Luis Sanchez with two outs. In a ridiculous quirk of score keeping, any runs scored after a two-out error are considered unearned. So Marcum following the error by allowing an RBI single and then a three-run homer doesn’t add anything to his ERA.

I don’t bring this up to slag Marcum at all. The guy’s coming back from Tommy John surgery and I really, really want to see him succeed, but, as the Tao says, “Let’s not rest our hopes on Shaun Marcum just yet.”

Marcum sighting!

Marcum Blue Jays Baseball

Shaun Marcum’s finished the Dunedin portion of his rehab! The surprisingly low-quality AP photo above is proof he’s back in action! Apparently he gave up two runs over six innings in two appearances and next will help get Jays fans through the end of the All-Star break because he’s headed to Double-A New Hampshire and is scheduled to pitch on Thursday.

One man’s trash…

The Cubs are allegedly interested in B.J. Ryan. I’m conflicted. I want him to fail because I don’t want the Jays to be paying for another team’s awesome (or even passable), but he’s still B.J. and, well…

Nah. Screw him. If he turned down a minor league assignment from the Jays, even after saying he wanted to reinvent himself as a pitcher, he deserves to fail. Have fun, Cubs fans.

Super-secret weapons

Another voice has joined the ever-growing chorus of naysayers who seem to think it’s fun to write off the 2009 Jays before spring training games have even begun. This time, it’s CTV’s Josh Visser.

Visser boils his criticism down to two main points: Who’s gonna pitch? and Who’s gonna hit?

Matt Clements?

Matt Clements?

These are pretty fair questions to ask, but Visser’s answers basically amount to Halladay and no one. Never mind the idiotic pessimism, the guy doesn’t even know the names of the players he’s saying can’t do the job:

former all-star Matt Clements (who hasn’t pitched regularly in the Bigs since 2006)

Canadian Scott Redmond

Scott Redmond?

Scott Redmond?

Dude, it ain’t hard to look at a roster before posting. Or do you have some insider info that only you are privileged to?

But ignoring the mediocre answers he tries to provide for the first two questions, it’s the third question that really gets under my skin: Who’s gonna watch?

Who’s gonna watch? Baseball fans, that’s who. Jays fans, that’s who. A big chunk of the article talks about how JP Ricciardi couldn’t make any major signings because the team’s financial situation is not the best, then it talks about how there’s always “next, next year.” Well, there won’t be a “next, next year” if nobody goes to the games. The financial situation will just keep on getting worse and the Jays of “next, next year” will be sellers, not buyers.

So don’t go to the games. Maybe then the naysayers will get their wish and Halladay will be shipped off for a draft pick. (Yes, I know you can’t do that in baseball, but maybe the mythical figures known as Matt Clements and Scott Redmond can make it happen.)

UPDATE: Holy cripes! Being president of the Shaun Marcum Fan Club, I really should have caught this earlier:

Shawn Marcum, who was the Jays’ best pitcher for a good chunk of the 2008 season, will miss all of this year after undergoing Tommy John surgery.

Shaun Marcum is fine! Some guy named Shawn is out for the season, so the Jays’ rotation shouldn’t be a problem!

Thanks to squizz for pointing out my omission.