BJN Radio – Ep. 71: Another series win against the Red Sox, praise for The Big Man, and more!

The Blue Jays just continue to win games!

They won the first game of the series thanks to a Bo Bichette grand slam, an epic comeback highlighted by a George Springer Dinger highlighted the second game, and then, after getting spanked in the third game, Alek Manoah came out and tossed seven scoreless en route to a 1-0 victory.
The bats might not be rolling just yet but the pitching certainly is!
We talked on this episode of BJN Radio about the excellence of The Big Man, Alek Manoah, and how he’s exceeded anybody’s wildest expectations early in his career. We also talked about Gausman’s insane start to his season, as he still hasn’t walked a guy through his first four outings.
We also talked about the struggling offence, if there’s any reason to panic, and how the ball seems to be different this year than in previous years. Finally, we looked ahead to another series with the Houston Astros this weekend, in which we avoid the possibility of a third Justin Verlander no-hitter in Toronto.
You can listen to the episode here…

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Vaccine guidelines could give Raptors huge advantage in playoffs

Vaccine guidelines could give Raptors huge advantage in playoffs

The Toronto Raptors continue to pull out some increasingly tough wins as they try to put some distance between themselves and the Cleveland Cavaliers in the play-in tournament. The Raptors have one of the best home-court advantages in the league in Toronto, and that benefit could be amplified in the playoffs. Since January 15, travelers […]
Vaccine guidelines could give Raptors huge advantage in playoffs – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Raptors take major hit as OG Anunoby suffers fractured finger

Raptors take major hit as OG Anunoby suffers fractured finger

The Toronto Raptors looked positioned to continue their push towards postseason play now that the All-Star break has come to a close, and forward OG Anunoby is expected to play a vital role in the pursuit of that lofty goal given his shooting on offense and tremendous on-ball defense. Anunoby suffered through a rough stretch […]
Raptors take major hit as OG Anunoby suffers fractured finger – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Raptors Game Tonight: Raptors vs Grizzlies Odds, Starting Lineup, Injury Report, Predictions, TV Channel for Nov. 24

Raptors Game Tonight: Raptors vs Grizzlies Odds, Starting Lineup, Injury Report, Predictions, TV Channel for Nov. 24

The Toronto Raptors continue to slide down the standings of late, as they have cooled off significantly following a hot start. After getting dismantled by the Warriors, the most recent Raptors odds suggest that they will be in for another difficult game against a young team down in Tennessee. Toronto will have to lock horns […]
Raptors Game Tonight: Raptors vs Grizzlies Odds, Starting Lineup, Injury Report, Predictions, TV Channel for Nov. 24 – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Leafs assign Gogolev and Král to the Marlies

The Leafs’ plans continue to become clearer as we pass the midway point of the preseason. They have shifted to using what most presume to be their opening night forward lines and defensive pairs and have begun to trim their training camp roster. The team announced on Monday that they have assigned winger Pavel Gogolev and defenseman Filip Kral to the Toronto Marlies of the AHL, marking their latest round of cuts. The team is expected to announce a larger group of cuts following Tuesday’s preseason matchup against Montreal.

Forward Pavel Gogolev and defenceman Filip Král have been assigned to the Toronto Marlies (AHL)
— Leafs PR (@LeafsPR) October 4, 2021

Gogolev played for the Marlies on an AHL contract last year, potting six goals and six assists in just 13 games. His play turned heads within the organization and he was rewarded with a three-year entry level contract during the offseason. He is expected to be an offensive contributor for the Marlies once again this season as he continues to refine his game and work towards pushing for NHL minutes.
The 2021 Top 20 Leafs Prospects: #15 Pavel Gogolev

Král spent last season playing in the Czech professional league and performed admirably against more mature …

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Author: Nick Richard / The Leafs Nation

The Blue Jays showed how good they are with that series win over the Rays

The Blue Jays continue winning, no matter who their opponent is.

This incredible stretch started with a three-game sweep over the Oakland A’s and continued into New York with a massive four-game sweep over the New York Yankees. Toronto then went into Baltimore and won three of four against the Orioles, scoring about a million runs in the process.
After that was a series against the American League-leading Tampa Bay Rays, an opponent that makes even the most optimistic Blue Jays fan a little nervous.
I remember coming out of the Yankees series and looking at the schedule ahead and thinking okay, if the Blue Jays take care of business and kick the shit out of Baltimore and Minnesota, they can afford to go, like 1-6 in their remaining games against Tampa. There are still four games left to play against the Rays at The Trop, which is a whole different animal, but Toronto taking two of three in that series is a huge win, one that really proved that they’re legit.
The best start of Alek Manoah’s career
Things kicked off on Monday night with rookie Alek Manoah taking the mound against a combination of Collin …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

How good are the Leafs prospects relative to other teams?

How good are the Leafs prospects relative to other teams?

As we continue to countdown the Leafs prospects, and get to the players that we are increasingly optimistic about, it’s important we ask ourselves, how good are these players relative to the league and not just to other Leafs prospects?
Take yesterday’s prospect, Nick Abruzzese. We’re all pretty excited about him. I mean he was ranked 8th so we must like him a fair bit, he had a strong first year at Harvard, he compares favourably to other NCAA prospects (although the Ivy League teams rarely face the same level of competition), and despite missing last season to an injury and COVID cancelling the season, he was recently named captain, and he shows a lot of promise. Abruzzese is a Chicago Steel product, and Ryan Hardy knows him well. They use a development program created by Leafs player development guru Darryl Belfry and that should help him too, all of this sounds good, but in reality this is us just really knowing our prospects, liking them, but not playing Abruzzese relative to his prospect peers.
The reality is that Abruzzese is still a longshot. He’ll probably get a contract from the Leafs, he’s a great …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Blue Jays Continue to Deepen Bullpen with Acquisition of Trevor Richards

The Blue Jays continue to make trades to improve the bullpen. It started with Adam Cimber and continued with the acquisition of Trevor Richards (and Bowden Francis) from the Brewers in exchange for Rowdy Tellez.

Briefly, Francis looks like a depth piece for the Bisons. He’s having a nice season in AAA with a 3.49 ERA but he’s a fringe prospect ranked 25th in the Brewers system per FanGraphs. He may make it to the Majors as a back-end starter, a Jacob Waguespack type. However it may be difficult for Francis to crack the Blue Jays roster as he is not on the 40-man so the Blue Jays would have to find a way to clear a spot for him.
The main piece in the deal for the Blue Jays was Richards. Richards has already been traded once this season, going with Willy Adames from Tampa to Milwaukee. With the Rays, Richards has an inflated ERA of 4.50 with much better underlying stats (3.41 FIP, 2.72 xFIP), and with the Brewers that was flipped. His ERA was 3.20 but with a high FIP (3.97) and xFIP (4.33). Putting everything together Richards in 31.2 innings has a 3.69 ERA supported nicely with a 3.76 FIP and 3.72 xFIP
Richards provides …

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Author: Paul Berthelot / Blue Jays Nation

Travis Dermott has a price tag and upside the Leafs shouldn’t be in a rush to walk away from

As we continue our march through the Leafs roster and pending free agents it seemed inevitable that once we got to Travis Dermott we’d wind up talking about the expansion draft. There’s a good reason for that, and it’s the Leafs are likely to go with a protect four forwards and four defenseman approach and in that scenario the best Leafs defenseman available to Seattle is Derrmott.
With Rasmus Sandin very much going to be a NHL regular next season, and Timothy Liljegren at least making a strong case for platooning in and out of the lineup as a seventh defenseman to start, it seems that Dermott might be a bit more expendable and to that I say, yes, those players do make it so you don’t stress about losing Dermott as much, yes you might be excited to see what Dermott can do with more responsibility in Seattle, but no a cost controlled defenseman with upside is not someone the Leafs should be trying to lose.
To date the biggest hinderance in Dermott taking the next step is probably former Marlies teammate Justin Holl. The fact that Holl found chemistry with Muzzin has locked him …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Toronto Six add to leadership group with the re-signing of Emma Grecco

The Toronto Six continue to build their roster for next season, with the re-signing of defender Emma Grecco. In a press release, Grecco shared:
“My decision to return to the Toronto Six was an easy one,” said the left-handed shooter. “I had so much fun competing with my teammates in the bubble and wanted to continue our momentum into season 7. Even though we didn’t come out with the result we wanted, I am excited to have another chance at winning the franchise’s first championship.”
A Toronto-area native, Grecco continued to explain that she’s looking forward to playing in front of fans:
“I am excited to finally see Toronto Six fans in person. It was a tough year and I think everyone in Canada is excited to start watching hockey live again. It was an adjustment not having in person fans last season so I am very excited to experience the atmosphere and celebrate with my teammates.”
The team is hard at work getting ready for next season, where they will look to replicate and build on the success of their freshman outing. Stay tuned to TLN for more Toronto Six news.
 

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Author: Mer / The Leafs Nation