Joey Anderson is the Leafs 7th ranked prospect

When the Leafs made the trade that sent Andreas Johnsson to the New Jersey Devils, it was safe to assume at first that the deal was meant to be a cash dump for Toronto. After all, Johnsson was making over $3 million against the cap and the Leafs were looking to make some upgrades elsewhere so it’s understandable that he would be one of the casualties as a result of this.
While it is true that the Leafs wanted to shed salary, they weren’t going to just deal away Johnsson for nothing. They wanted to get back a player who could provide a different element to the forward unit and potentially find his way onto the roster in the near future. That’s why they got Joey Anderson in return; Toronto saw something in the Roseville native that compelled them enough to acquire his services.

Rank
Grade
NHL Readiness

7th
B
0-1 Years

Position: Right Wing
Age: 22
Height: 5’11
Weight: 190 lbs
Drafted: 2016 3rd round, 73rd overall (NJD)
What kind of player is he?
Anderson isn’t a big player but he makes up for it by playing a high level of energy. This allows him to win races to pucks …

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Author: Michael Mazzei / The Leafs Nation

The Blue Jays have re-signed Robbie Ray

The Blue Jays have made their first signing of the off-season.

According to Jeff Passan, the team has re-signed lefty pitcher Robbie Ray to a one-year deal worth $8,000,000.

First free agent deal of the offseason is done. Left-hander Robbie Ray and the Toronto Blue Jays are in agreement on a one-year, $8 million deal, a source familiar with the contract tells ESPN. Good start to the hot stove for Toronto, which will use Ray as a starter, and for Ray.
— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) November 7, 2020

Ray, of course, was acquired by the Blue Jays ahead of the trade deadline from the Arizona Diamondbacks in exchange for Travis Bergen.
His 2020 season had been a complete disaster but Ray’s performance improved after joining the Blue Jays. In 31 innings with the Diamondbacks, Ray had a 7.84 ERA but he improved to a respectable 4.79 ERA over 20 2/3 innings with the Blue Jays. He also had an impressive three-inning showing in relief against Tampa Bay in Game 1 of the wild-card round.
It wasn’t that long ago that Ray was an ace starter in Arizona. Back in 2017, he posted a 2.89 ERA and had the most strikeouts per nine in baseball at 12.1. He finished seventh in Cy Young voting …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Unqualified RFAs could provide an upgrade on depth for the Leafs

A lot has been made about how the Restricted Free Agents that weren’t qualified by their teams were going to create a secondary free agent market worth exploring. While to some extent that’s true, it’s equally worth noting that the players it produced are a couple of sheltered scorers and primarily bottom six forwards, or bottom pairing defensemen. There may be some role players and a couple of guys who could use a change of scenery, but not a list that should alter any plans of attack for first thing Friday.
When looking at the list of unqualified RFAs on PuckPedia and filtering by players who played at least 10 games in the NHL last season, there were 24 players left (excluding those recently let go from the Leafs)

Player
Cap Hit
Age
Pos
Shoots
GP
G
A
P
DFF%
CF%
P60

Andreas Athanasiou
$3,000,000
26
LW
L
55
11
15
26
44.81
45.08
0.34

Troy Stecher
$2,325,000
26
D
R
69
5
12
17
47.3
48.1
1.01

Devin Shore
$2,300,000
26
LW
L
45
5
7
12
45.32
46.55
2.13

Matt Benning
$1,900,000
26
D
R
43
1
7
8
49.5
48.2
0.89

Mark Jankowski
$1,675,000
26
C
L
56
5
2
7
50.4
49.4
0.87

Anthony Duclair
$1,650,000
25
LW
L
66
23
17
40
48.7
47.4
2.05

Vinnie Hinostroza
$1,500,000
26
RW
R
68
5
17
22
46.8
49.6
1.48

Mirco Mueller
$1,400,000
25
D
L
50
2
5
7
43.5
43.7
0.4

Nick Cousins
$1,000,000
27
C
L
65
10
15
25
55.98
54.75
2.58

Brett Ritchie
$1,000,000
27
RW
R
27
2
4
6
47.3
51
0.92

Madison Bowey
$1,000,000
25
D
R
53
3
14
17
43.6
44.4
1.11

Dominik Kahun
$925,000
25
LW
L
56
12
19
31
49.45
50.15
3.61

Jayce Hawryluk
$874,125
24
RW
R
26
3
7
10
53.14
53.43
3.05

Brendan Perlini
$874,125
24
LW
L
40
1
3
4
36.98
41.74
1.42

Travis …

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Author: Jon Steitzer / The Leafs Nation

Jake Allen got traded to Montreal — How Does This Affect The Leafs?

The Leafs made a big trade last week, effectively stealing the spotlight from the playoffs by dealing Kasperi Kapanen to the Penguins. The Canadiens then decided they should do the same thing.

The Habs and Blues hooked up on a deal that sends goaltender Jake Allen to Montreal in exchange for a couple of draft picks.

Canadiens acquire Jake Allen and a 7th-round pick in 2022 from the Blues in return for a 3rd- and 7th-round pick in 2020.
https://t.co/eREQ5RDOI0
— Canadiens Montréal (@CanadiensMTL) September 2, 2020

At a glance, this is kind of a hilarious move for the Habs because they now have roughly $15 million tied into their goaltending duo.
If Allen is as good as he was in 2019-20 — he posted a .927 save percentage over 24 regular-season games and a .935 save percentage over five appearances in the playoffs — then this certainly gives Montreal a very, very good goaltending tandem. But, still, it’s pretty wild to see a team acquire a backup with a $4,350,000 cap hit when they already have $10,500,000 tied into their starting goalie.
Anyways, enough about the Habs. The real interesting part of this deal is the aforementioned cap hit.
In making …

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Author: Cam Lewis / The Leafs Nation

The Blue Jays have acquired Robbie Ray

The Blue Jays have made another addition to their pitching staff.

A few days after acquiring Taijuan Walker from the Seattle Mariners, the Jays have added lefty Robert Ray from the Arizona Diamondbacks. Heading back to Arizona will be Travis Bergen.

#BlueJays acquiring righty Robbie Ray from #Diamondbacks per source. @longleysunsport first
— Shi Davidi (@ShiDavidi) August 31, 2020

Ray has had, uh, a rough season to say the least. Through seven starts, he’s posted a 7.84 ERA due largely to totally losing control of his pitches. Ray is walking 9.0 batters per nine, though his 12.5 strikeouts per nine is something positive.
Back in 2017, Ray enjoyed a breakout season and earned himself a nod to the National League All-Star team. His 2018 and 2019 seasons were somewhat injury-riddled, but Ray still managed to produce a solid 4.17 ERA across 298 innings those two seasons.
This obviously isn’t the top-of-the-rotation Mike Clevenger or Lance Lynn addition we might have been looking for, but Ray has great stuff and is worth a risk as a bounce-back candidate. They didn’t give up much in return, either, so that’s a plus.
Basically, the difference between Ray and Bergen is that the former is stretched …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Why the Leafs should consider a trade for Blake Coleman

After the Leafs made the move to ship Kasperi Kapanen back to the Pittsburgh Penguins, their forward depth took a bit of a hit. There are plenty of options on the fringe that have a legitimate shot to crack the lineup next season (ex: Nick Robertson, Evan Rodrigues), but the team could certainly benefit from acquiring a player outside the organization that has the speed to burn.
If any of you have been following my Twitter page for a while, you likely already know who I am referring to. This player could not only be a good replacement for the departed Kapanen in terms of his on-ice agility but he would provide a sandpaper play style that the Leafs could definitely benefit from. Given that it has now been four straight seasons of stagnation, the time is ripe for a new presence offensively.
Toronto should look into acquiring Blake Coleman as he would be the kind of guy the Leafs could really use.

Blake Coleman is Kasperi Kapanen if Kasperi Kapanen consistenly gave a fuck.
— Samuel Tirpak (@SammyT_51) August 29, 2020

Back in January, I wrote about why acquiring Coleman would be a wise move for the Leafs to make. Roughly …

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Author: Michael Mazzei / The Leafs Nation

How does Daniel Vogelbach fit into the Blue Jays’ plans?

The Blue Jays made a trade yesterday, though it wasn’t the one anybody expected.

While all the talk had been about how the team needed to acquire some starting pitching depth, the Jays went out and acquired slugger Daniel Vogelbach from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for cash considerations.
Vogelbach, a lefty hitter who spends his time as a first baseman and designated hitter, had what appeared to be a breakout season in Seattle last year. He slashed a .208/.341/.439 line with 30 homers, earning him a nod to the American League All-Star team.
It was a tale of two seasons for Vogelbach last year, though. He carried a .883 OPS into the All-Star game and then went completely cold. From the beginning of August until the end of the season, Vogelbach slashed a paltry .143/.283/.278 line with just five homers over 159 plate appearances.
And then we have this season, which has been a complete disaster for the big slugger. Vogelbach reportedly showed up to Summer Camp 20 pounds heavier than he was in spring training. Over 18 games in 2020, he slashed a .094/.250/.226 line, ultimately resulting in him getting designated for assignment.
The one thing Vogelbach does have going for him is a good …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Is adding Gabriel Moreno to the 60-man player pool the sign of something bigger?

The Blue Jays have made an addition to their 60-man player pool, calling up 20-year-old catching prospect Gabriel Moreno to join the club at the Alternate Training Site in Rochester.

Catcher Gabriel Moreno, a consensus top 10 prospect in #BlueJays system, has been added to the club’s 60-man player pool.
— Scott Mitchell (@ScottyMitchTSN) August 15, 2020

Moreno is currently ranked as the Blue Jays’ No. 8 prospect by MLB.com. Signed as a shortstop during the international free agent signing period in 2016, the Blue Jays shifted Moreno behind the plate and he’s broken out as one of the organization’s top catching prospects.
Last season in Low-A Lansing, Moreno slashed an impressive .280/.337/.485 line. He also made contact on an eye-popping 88 percent of his swings and threw out 33 percent of stolen base attempts. Moreno is a bat-first prospect, but his incredible athleticism means he has the potential to be an all-around elite catcher.
So, why now? Is there anything behind the Blue Jays adding Moreno to the 60-man pool a month into the season?
The thing that jumps out to me is that only players who are a part of the 60-man pool can be traded …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation

Should the Leafs Ditch Marner?

It felt like a match made in heaven.
The Leafs then-Assistant GM Mark Hunter walked up to the podium at the 2015 NHL Entry Draft and clumsily said “I’m proud to announce, from the London Knights, Mitch Marner.”
To many the pick was no surprise, both due to Hunter’s familiarity with Marner from his time with the Knights, and also due to Marner being a kid from the Toronto area who grew up a Leafs fan. Marner had just finished toying with the Ontario Hockey League to the tune of 126 points in 63 games in the regular season, followed up by 16 points in 7 games in the playoffs. Those who watched the highlights from Marner’s draft and draft+1 year in the OHL saw a player with hockey IQ pouring out of his ears, who was clearly playing at a level far ahead of anyone else at his age.
Marner made the NHL as a 19-year-old, the same year 18-year-old Auston Matthews and 20-year-old William Nylander became full-time Leafs. That first year was magical: powered in huge part by their young stars, the Leafs went from last place overall the prior season to making the playoffs …

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Author: Mark Norman / The Leafs Nation

Roster Moves Galore: Giles to the 10-day Injured List, Wilmer Font activated, and more!

The Blue Jays made a whole bunch of roster moves today, so let’s go through all of them.

First, Ken Giles was placed on the 10-day Injured List with a right forearm strain. Giles, of course, suffered an injury in the ninth inning of Sunday’s game in Tampa Bay. He had an MRI on his elbow on Monday but we still don’t know the severity of the injury. Hopefully, it isn’t too major.
Also leaving the roster will be Travis Shaw, who has been placed on Family Medical Leave. This means that Shaw will leave the club for a temporary amount of time as somebody in his family is dealing with a medical issue.
In their places, pitchers Wilmer Font and Ryan Borucki have been added to the 30-man roster. Font had been placed on the 10-day IL with an undisclosed issue back before the Blue Jays travelled from their spring training complex in Dunedin to Toronto. Borucki broke camp on the Taxi Squad.
Getting Font back will be a much-needed boost to the Blue Jays’ bullpen. Without Giles, the team is in need of a closer, so there’s …

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Author: Cam Lewis / Blue Jays Nation