Saturday, February 23, 2008

Back to the Future

It's getting more than a little bizarre. Actually it passed bizarre a couple years ago. Once again J.P. Ricciardi has gone and tried to piggy-back on a Billy Beane good idea. The Jays are on the verge of signing former Jay and 75 year-old grandfather of six Shannon Stewart to a minor-league deal to ostensibly compete with Reed Johnson for the right-side of the left-field platoon.

Stewart had a bit of a return to form last season with the A's after being injured for significant portions of just about every season prior to it since 2001. He was a successful reclamation project just a year after Frank Thomas was a successful reclamation project with the A's before cashing in with the Jays last year. While Stewart is hardly cashing in, in fact it sounds like he had little interest elshewhere, it should at the very least be a good spot for him to showcase himself if he doesn't beat out Johnson.

What's this say about Reed though? Is his back really that screwed up? Is he on the block? If there's a problem with Johnson, and Matt Stairs comes back to earth after his solid year last year, then left-field could be a weak spot this season. We'll see. Sometimes it seems like Japes signs guys who are coming off injuries or who have question marks just to see if they pan out so he'll be called a genius. He was 0-3 with a walk last season(the three-headed pitching signings were bombs, while Thomas was good, but probably not worth the pay raise he got) so let's see how this one goes.

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