3 Raptors who could be first-time All-Stars in 2022-23 season

3 Raptors who could be first-time All-Stars in 2022-23 season

The Toronto Raptors sent Fred VanVleet to the All-Star game last year after a breakout season that put him among the league’s top point guards. Between VanVleet and the dynamic frontcourt duo of Pascal Siakam and Scottie Barnes, it’s no wonder Toronto won 48 games last season. Even if you remove VanVleet from the picture, […]
3 Raptors who could be first-time All-Stars in 2022-23 season – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Fortnight on the Farm, Vol. 7

At the All-star break (throughout the full season leagues) is not really “halfway home” – we did that two weeks ago – but because it’s unusually late in the month, you can look at performance in July as a decent sample and maybe jumping off to a larger one, but of course, in a few cases observations are sullied by having changed teams or been injured.

Buffalo Bisons
There’s hardly anything worth reporting about the Bisons pitching staff except that the guys you’ve seen in the majors – Thornton, Gage, Saucedo, Lawrence – are generally doing fine here if they are healthy. Even Thomas Hatch has had a couple of perfectly fine starts since that disaster against Tampa which, to be honest, doesn’t reflect his abilities.
Offensively the big story now, with due respect to more highly ranked prospects, is 1B Spencer Horwitz. In 11 games since his promotion, he has a .869 OPS. Gabby Moreno just got back, no sample to speak of. Samad Taylor came off the IL for one game this month and went right back on it. Otto Lopez and Jordan Groshans remain deeply unproductive.
New Hampshire  Fisher Cats
The rotation is where the names will catch your eye on this team. Yosver Zulueta, whom you’ll recall stumbled in his first AA outing, bounced back in an impressive outing this month, throwing 4 innings of 2 hit, 1 run ball, and striking out 8. He might well …

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Author: Tammy Rainey / Blue Jays Nation

The Blue Jays wrap up the first half with late heroics against the Royals

Well, the movie has now reached the All-Star break scene. The Blue Jays finished the first half of the season with a 3-1 series win over the Kansas City Royals, with the final two wins coming in dramatic fashion.

Max Castillo got the nod on Saturday. He gave up three runs in three innings, but with the break approaching, John Schneider was able to unload the bullpen. Vinnie Pasquantino’s home run off of newly-named All-Star Jordan Romano in the 10th inning gave the Royals a 5-3 lead, but the Jays had answers. A double by Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and a single by Raimel Tapia tied the game, allowing Teoscar Hernandez to single in the winning run.
The Jays bullpen went seven innings and only allowed one earned run (nice!). Whether Castillo earned another start or not becomes the question (or they could simply ~acquire another arm by trade~), but he still owns a 3.38 ERA during his time in the majors, which isn’t terrible.
Jays fans who also happened to be Peacock subscribers were in luck on Sunday as the Jays completed the series win. Alejandro Kirk hit a two-run home run in the 8th inning off of Wyatt Mills to give Toronto a 4-2 lead, allowing Romano to come in and slam the door …

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Author: Evan Stack / Blue Jays Nation

Toronto Blue Jays CF George Springer opts out of all-star game

It turns out George Springer won’t be going to the all-star game.

The Athletic’s Kaitlyn McGrath reported Thursday that Springer has opted out of the midsummer classic in order to rest his elbow.

George Springer has decided to not play in the All-Star game. He’s going to use the time to rest his elbow. MLB will announce his replacement a little later this afternoon #BlueJays
— Kaitlyn McGrath (@kaitlyncmcgrath) July 14, 2022

Springer has been dealing with some elbow issues all year long, and for the most part it’s been manageable. While he did get some imaging done after leaving a game against the White Sox in late June, Springer has been okay. He mentioned at the time the big issue was on swing and misses.
His numbers have slowly been dipping through the season, too. In April, he slashed .300/.360/.588 in 80 at-bats, but that line has fallen to .190/.261/.405 through 42 AB’s in July. There is some sample size issues there, but the numbers aren’t overly promising.
Springer’s played in all-star games in the past, so it makes sense he is opting out of this one in order to give himself a chance to really get some rest.
The Jays kick off a four-game set against the Kansas Royals minor league team Thursday and then Springer will have a chance at four days of rest. Toronto’s schedule picks back up next Friday with a three-game road trip to Boston.
Zach Laing is the Nation Network’s news director and senior columnist. He can be followed on Twitter at @zjlaing, or reached by email at zach@oilersnation.com.
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Author: Zach Laing / Blue Jays Nation

BJN Radio – Ep. 94: Winless in Seattle

The All-Star break can’t come soon enough.

The Blue Jays rolled into Seattle after a disappointing series in Oakland and things got even worse, as the Mariners pulled off a four-game sweep. Toronto is now tied with Seattle for the final Wild Card spot in the American League while the Baltimore Orioles are suddenly right on the heels thanks to an eight-game winning streak.
We talked about the mess that was the Seattle series, how the Blue Jays can pull themselves out of this funk, and whether or not firing Charlie Montoyo is the solution.
You can listen to the episode here…
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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation