Sports Blue Jays’ off-season work now extends well beyond on-field issues

09:55  12 december  2017
09:55  12 december  2017 Source:   sportsnet.ca

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– A new piece of off - season business was added to the Toronto Blue Jays ’ to-do list last week when head trainer George Poulis left to join former Manager John Gibbons is expected to work with Ross Atkins on that decision. • Jack Morris is the ninth person tied to the Blue Jays selected to Hall of Fame.

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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. – A new piece of off-season business was added to the Toronto Blue Jays’ to-do list last week when head trainer George Poulis left to join former general manager Alex Anthopoulos with the Atlanta Braves.

His departure is a significant one, taking 15 years of experience as the club’s head trainer plus three years as an assistant along with him. Also amplifying the void is that assistant trainer Mike Frostad and major-league strength and conditioning coach Chris Joyner were fired earlier in the off-season, leaving multiple holes to fill.

“That’s a big hit for us, losing George Poulis and that level of expertise and experience, we have to factor that in,” general manager Ross Atkins said last week. “The timing is also very difficult – it’s not as clear-cut to just to cast the largest net. We’re not going to be asking permission from other teams at this point of the year – we may, but we’re likely to be denied – so we have to do what we can to off-set that experience, but the timing is difficult. We’re constantly evolving and thinking about the best resources and skill-sets to complement the entire baseball operations department, not just the medical staff.”

Blue Jays’ Aaron Sanchez to resume throwing this week

  Blue Jays’ Aaron Sanchez to resume throwing this week Blue Jays right-hander Aaron Sanchez is scheduled to resume throwing this week, almost three months after his 2017 season ended prematurely because of a sprained tendon and nagging blister on his middle finger. General manager Ross Atkins made the announcement Wednesday at a luncheon with Toronto baseball reporters.Sanchez went 15-2 with an AL-best 3.00 ERA and was a first-time All-Star in 2016. The blister issue limited him to eight starts in 2017 and led to four stints on the disabled list. Sanchez didn’t pitch after July 19, and his final comeback effort was halted when he was shut down in early September.

The Jays are doing what few teams manage – continue their losing streak beyond 162 games. The Jays were wrong-footed on that one as well . They issued a boilerplate statement. Right now , the Jays are having trouble figuring out where those values fit on the corporate org chart.

Grichuk hit a two-run homer and made a huge defensive play, helping the Blue Jays beat the Houston Astros 6-3 on Monday. His soaring 471-foot home run, which clanged off the light pole above the train tracks on the left- field wall, came against Will Harris and made it 6-3 with two out in the eighth.

Angus Mugford, director of the Blue Jays’ high performance department, is heading the search process. As things stand, they have athletic trainer and transaction co-ordinator Jeff Stevenson, head physical therapist Nikki Huffman and minor-league athletic training co-ordinator Jose Ministral in place.

The Blue Jays lost 1,408 games through 31 disabled list stints spread across 25 different players. Atkins said after the season that “some of the inefficiency of our communication” on the medical side had been a source of frustration and added he felt like had let down Aaron Sanchez and Devon Travis.

Over the past two years, the Blue Jays have created and expanded a high-performance department to help care for players, with the team “shifting toward integrating more physical therapists,” said Atkins.

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  Free Agent Fit: Does Tony Watson make sense for Blue Jays? During the off-season we’ll be taking a closer look at some potential free agent targets for the Toronto Blue Jays. Today it’s Tony Watson.Player: Tony Watson | Age: 32 | Position: RP | Throws: Left

“He’s on fire right now ,” said Tepera. “I actually work out with him in the off - season (in Houston) so I know him well (and) I’m sure I’ll hear about that one in the off - season . Toronto shortstop Aledmys Diaz and centre fielder Kevin Pillar both had three hits. ‘Low point’: gibbons takes loss hard.

The 2015 Toronto Blue Jays season was the 39th season for the franchise, and the 26th full season of play (27th overall) at Rogers Centre. The Blue Jays clinched a playoff berth on September 25, their first since 1993

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“That was the biggest difference, there was not really a philosophical disconnect, it was more the addition of resources,” he said. “We were hoping not to subtract and we will add where we lost. But it was more skill-set differences and marrying those two set of experiences and less philosophical.”

• Also on the Blue Jays agenda will be working on finding a new quality control coach to replace Derek Shelton, who left to become bench coach for the Minnesota Twins. Manager John Gibbons is expected to work with Ross Atkins on that decision.

• Jack Morris is the ninth person tied to the Blue Jays selected to Hall of Fame. The first 20-game winner in franchise history joins Pat Gillick, Roberto Alomar, Frank Thomas, Paul Molitor, Dave Winfield, Rickey Henderson, Bobby Cox and Phil Niekro. Morris and his long-time Tigers teammate Alan Trammell were chosen by the Hall’s Modern Era committee Sunday night.

“This is a very humbling point of my life,” said Morris, his voice cracking. “I’m very proud and honoured to join some of my heroes that are here.”

Report: Cardinals pursuing Donaldson stronger than Machado .
The St. Louis Cardinals are making a stronger push for Blue Jays third baseman Josh Donaldson than for the Orioles’ Manny Machado, according to a report from USA Today’s Bob Nightengale. St.

Source: http://ca.pressfrom.com/news/sports/-56708-blue-jays-off-season-work-now-extends-well-beyond-on-field-issues/

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