The Jays are apparently close to signing Don Mattingly, could be as soon as Wednesday morning

Long-time big league manager Don Mattingly is “very close” to signing with the Toronto Blue Jays

Per Joel Sherman, the 61-year-old legend Mattingly signing with the Jays could be announced as soon as Wednesday morning!

The announcement of Mattingly’s hiring is now expected as early as Wednesday morning. https://t.co/5lMxR4zyPG
— Joel Sherman (@Joelsherman1) November 30, 2022

News continued to pour in, but Mattingly noted on Jon Heyman and Sherman’s podcast that he’s in talks with a mystery team (the Jays per this NYPost article.) 

Don Mattingly was on The Show podcast @nypostsports with @Joelsherman1 & @JonHeyman today.
Mattingly says there is a team he is talking to that is very interesting to him.
Who is the mystery team that may end up hiring the Yankees legend and ex-Marlins manager? pic.twitter.com/BiC1oM3QxX
— Jake Brown (@JakeBrownRadio) November 29, 2022

 
Let’s look at what the veteran manager could offer.
The 61-year-old spent the last seven seasons managing the eternally rebuilding Miami Marlins, amassing a 443-587 record, which isn’t that bad when you factor in the team considers itself a small market.
Miami only had a winning record once in the seven years, coming in the plague season. However, early in his tenure (when they had good players), they sat around .500. Mattingly also spent five seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers, where they went 446-363 in that span. Overall, he has an 889-950 record for a 48.3 win percentage.
However, the Jays re-sign John Schneider earlier in the off-season, so this begs the question, what role would he fill as a bench coach? As far as my research goes, there are no vacancies for the coaching staff, so I’m not too sure. Prior to becoming a manager, Mattingly’s job was that of a hitting coach.
Now, there are also questions about his leadership style, which is why I don’t see a fit. Unlike Charlie Montoyo and even Jon Schneider, Mattingly has never really allowed his players to be expressive. The most recent example of this came early in the 2022 season, when he sat Miami Marlins star Jazz Chisholm the day after hitting a home run.
As you may know, the Bahamian-born Chisholm is a rather expressive player, which is great for the game. However, Mattingly spent his 14-year career with the New York Yankees, even becoming their captain. So that begs the question if his hardass policies would affect the Jays, who enjoy having fun. Perhaps his policies would take a back seat as a bench coach? Perhaps it’s to help mentor John Schneider as he moves into his first full-season? What will happen to the home run jacket?
So many questions, but first he has to be announced. Expect updates to this article once he officially signs!
As always, y …

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Author: Brennan Delaney / Blue Jays Nation

Ten Blue Jays minor league players elect free agency, including Elvis Luciano

On Thursday, Blue Jays minor league players elected free agency.

Updated on the transaction page on Friday evening, there are 10 minor leaguers whose contracts weren’t extended/decided against signing with the Jays:
C Ryan Gold
RHP Jake Elliottt
RHP Elvis Luciano
RHP Brady Lail
LHP Trey Cumbie
RHP José De León
OF Yoshi Tsutsugo
RHP Eric Yardley
RHP Casey Lawrence
SS Eric Stamets
The most noticeable name is Elvis Luciano, who was a Rule 5 draft pick in 2019. The right-handed pitcher was the first player born in the 2000s to play in Major League Baseball. With the 2019 Jays, he had a 5.35 ERA and 5.56 FIP in 33.2 innings pitched, along with a 17 K% and 15.1 BB%, pitching in relief. 

At just 19 years old, Elvis Luciano has a scoreless @MLB debut in the books! #LetsGoBlueJays pic.twitter.com/N3zTPsFAtv
— Toronto Blue Jays (@BlueJays) April 1, 2019

This looks bad, but Luciano was only 19 years old and wasn’t ready for the big leagues, but had to remain on the Jays’ 26-man roster.
Luciano spent most of the 2022 season on the minor league injured list, as he had a stress fracture in his pitching arm. Last season in New Hampshire, he had a 3.16 ERA and a 4.54 FIP in 37 innings.
Other former major leaguers that elected free agency/weren’t signed are Casey Lawrence, Eric Yardley, Yoshi Tsutsugo, José De León, and Brady Lail.
In the mid-10s, De León was regarded as a top prospect, but injuries have hampered his career. He has an 8.44 ERA and 5.98 FIP in 48 innings pitched with the Los Angeles Dodgers, Tampa Bay Rays, and Cinncinati Reds. This season, the 30-year-old had a 4.35 ERA and 5.15 FIP, along with a 31.3 K% and 14.6 BB% in 10.1 innings with the Bisons.
Casey Lawrence is another name of note, as he was the only pitcher on the list that pitched for the Toronto Blue Jays in 2022. While his 7.50 ERA and 6.34 FIP weren’t great, Lawrence was a guy who could eat innings in a pinch. He had a 2.79 ERA and 4.16 FIP in 126 innings pitched with the Buffalo Bisons.
We here at Blue Jays Nation wish nothing but the best for …

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Author: Brennan Delaney / Blue Jays Nation

Blue Jays’ Matt Chapman provided exceptional defense, but it wasn’t enough to win the American League third base gold glove

Matt Chapman didn’t win the American League Gold Glove for third base, but should he have?

To put it simply, I don’t think he was snubbed, and here’s why.
In 2022, Chapman finished with a 2 Defensive Runs Saved and a 1 Outs Above Average in 1344.1 innings fielded. While defensive metrics aren’t the sole factor in determining a good defender (the eye test should also be used), they are very important in deciding the Gold Glove winner, and Chapman’s decline in defense is interesting.
In 2021, Chapman had a 10 DRS and 17 OAA, with the latter being a career high, which led to him winning the 2021 Gold Glove for the position. What’s with the decline? I have a litany of theories, such as the lack of foul ground and the turf playing a factor, but the eye test tells me and everyone else that Chapman had a good year.
Let’s compare that to the winner, Baltimore’s Ramon Urias won the award. He finished with a 14 DRS and a 7 OAA in 769.1 innings fielded at the position. While he had a smaller sample size, both DRS and OAA are accumulating stats, meaning that with more innings, it’s likely that Urias’ numbers would be even better. As for the eye test, I couldn’t tell you. I don’t go out of my way to watch Baltimore Oriole games.
What happened with the other Blue Jays nominees? 
As y …

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Author: Brennan Delaney / Blue Jays Nation

If the Blue Jays qualify Ross Stripling and he accepts, he’ll earn $19.65 million in 2023

Major League Baseball’s qualifying offer will be set at $19.65 million for the 2023 season, according to Joel Sherman of the New York Post.

The qualifying offer is just the average of the top 125 highest salaries in baseball, so it generally goes up from year to year. That wasn’t the case last year, though, as the qualifying offer dropped from $18.9 million for the 2021 season to $18.4 million for the 2022 season.
Teams can issue a player a qualifying offer if they’re headed to free agency for the first time. If the player accepts the offer, they’ll be paid that $19.65 million figure on a one-year deal and they can’t be qualified again. If they decline, they’ll head to free agency and their team will receive a compensatory draft pick if they sign elsewhere.
Last year, the Blue Jays issued qualifying offers to Robbie Ray and Marcus Semien, who left to sign multi-year contracts with the Seattle Mariners and Texas Rangers respectively. With their two compensatory draft picks at No. 77 and No. 78 overall, the Blue Jays selected Tucker Toman and Cade Doughty.
This year, the Blue Jays will need to decide whether or not to issue Ross Stripling a qualifying offer. The 32-year-old is eligible to hit free agency for the first time after a season in which he went 10-4 with a 3.01 ERA over 134 1/3 innings as a relie …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

3 reasons Raptors are still better than Cavs after Mitchell trade

3 reasons Raptors are still better than Cavs after Mitchell trade

The Toronto Raptors, like many around the league, were knocked to the floor in disbelief after the Utah Jazz traded Donovan Mitchell to the Cleveland Cavaliers for a package headlined by Collin Sexton and multiple unprotected first-round draft selections. The East just got even more challenging. Already boasting one of the best frontcourts in the […]
3 reasons Raptors are still better than Cavs after Mitchell trade – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Raptors signing Jeff Dowtin to two-way deal is fantastic news

Raptors signing Jeff Dowtin to two-way deal is fantastic news

The Toronto Raptors saw plenty of Summer League standouts make a name for themselves on the Las Vegas circuit, but none of them were more impressive than Jeff Dowtin. Even alongside much hyped big man Christian Koloko, Dowtin frequently stole the show. Dowtin, who received a few cups of coffee with the Bucks, Warriors, and […]
Raptors signing Jeff Dowtin to two-way deal is fantastic news – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

Stock Up/Down as Dalano Banton, Raptors get crushed by Bulls

Stock Up/Down as Dalano Banton, Raptors get crushed by Bulls

The Toronto Raptors left their Summer League debut against the rival 76ers feeling good, as Dalano Banton helped pulverize Philadelphia on the back of a dominant second half. The same cheer was not found after their second game, as Toronto was thoroughly taken to school. The Raptors were beaten 93-83 by the Chicago Bulls in […]
Stock Up/Down as Dalano Banton, Raptors get crushed by Bulls – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ

3 Raptors Summer League position battles to keep an eye on

3 Raptors Summer League position battles to keep an eye on

The Toronto Raptors got Summer League off to a flying start, as they dominated the Philadelphia 76ers on the back of a fourth-quarter in which Philly managed just seven points. Even without a first-round pick, Toronto announced that they are without question must-see Summer League TV. The Raptors have most of their rotation (if not […]
3 Raptors Summer League position battles to keep an eye on – Raptors Rapture – Raptors Rapture – A Toronto Raptors Fan Site – News, Blogs, Opinion and More

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Author: Mike Luciano / Raptors HQ