On Farrell And Other Stuff
The Blue Jays are no further ahead with John Farrell in Boston, and no further behind.
Who knows, maybe Mike Aviles will find his mojo at the dome. He's a viable major leaguer and at worst a utility man, and that's something. What could the team realistically expect for a manager with such a lousy win-loss record? Try finding a single baseball person who will speak highly of Farrell based on his body of work in Toronto. Hard to find. The best that could be said was he was learning his craft here.
The worst thing about L'Affair Farrell from a Jays perspective is that it reinforces the perspective that Toronto is now a stop-over as a baseball city en route to something better. Clearly, Farrell had to have his eye on the Red Sox post from mid-summer on given that everyone knew Bobby Valentine was going to get canned, and perhaps at least that explains some of the oversights in his managerial efforts.
The best thing? It's a convenient re-set for GM Alex Anthopoulos. Had this not happened, the public would have had to base its outlook for the ball club solely on how Anthopoulos rebuilds the rotation. Now, he's got a little wiggle room provided by a new manager.
That said, he better get this manager right. Its fair to say that if the Anthopoulos honeymoon should have been over last season, it's definitely over now. Results, please.
Other Monday threads:
The bile directed towards Gary Bettman is ridiculous and misplaced. But I will say this. His number one priority every season should be to get the season started on time, every time. He has failed. And while working with that dysfunctional players union must be next to impossible, resorting to the lockout time after time shows a lack of creativity in problem-solving by a commish who should have other answers by now. . .Talk to people in some fragile markets down south. The lockout is having devastating results. But the players and owners seem blissfully unaware. . .Saw Connor McDavid on the weekend. The real deal, for sure. And great to watch. . .Amazing start out west by the Kamloops Blazers, 12-0-0-1 out of the gate. Nice coaching job by Guy Charron. . .Friends and famiy again to view the Argos on the weekend. At least the offence looked exciting with Ricky Ray back at quarterback. Unfortunately, the Argo defence took the night off in a dispiriting loss to Winnipeg. Forget the standings. The Argos need to show up and at least be competitive in Regina on Saturday. . .Notre Dame at Oklahoma a huge U.S. college football tussle this weekend. . .A boffo show by The Boss on Sunday night in Hamilton. Took a nasty slip at one point, but the 63-year-old was back up and rockin' in a flash. Copps Coliseum might be a better concert venue than hockey rink. . . Everyone figured Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Jordan Eberle would just rip up the AHL with Oklahoma City this season. Not so far. Nugent-Hopkins has no goals and two assists in four games, Eberle has one goal and zero assists. Best player in that league, as he was last year, is again Cory Conacher of Burlington. He led Norfolk to the Calder Cup last spring and with the roster transferred by the parent Tampa Bay Lightning to Syracuse this season, Conacher is again leading the league in scoring. Surely he gets an NHL shot if the NHL plays this season. . .Ah, Twitter. Hearing that GM Marty Hurney was canned this morning, Carolina defensive end Charles Johnson tweeted " "Marty wasn't the reason we are losing! That's bs! Unbelievable! Marty might be the realist GM that I know#InMyMind BS BS BS BS!". I think he thought the decision was BS. . .Not sure marginal NHL agent Allan Walsh realizes what a fool he's making of himself on Twitter these days. He's gone from being outspoken to idiotic. . .One thing we know for sure; if the NHL just opened it's door for business and established new working parameters, and if the NHLPA then went on strike, players around the world would cross that picket line in a flash. NHLers have proven they have no respect for anyone else's job. . .A terrific exhibition of the works of Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo at the AGO opened this weekend. Expand your horizons. Go see it. . .A name change alone hasn't changed the major junior business challenges for the former Mississauga St. Mike's Majors, now known as the Mississauga Steelheads. Three of five games this season have attracted less than 2,000 fans. . .Even as a big tennis fan and supporter of the sport, I would find it impossible to recommend buying tickets for the "Face Off" promotion between Milos Raonic and retired Andy Roddick. Tennis exhibitions have less meaning than the Grapefruit League or NHL pre-season matches. And Agnieska Radwanska as an "added" attraction? Puh-lease. . .On a more competitive note, great to see Rebecca Marino back and winning. Once as high as 38th in the world, she's fallen to No. 767 and is starting the long, slow climb back. . .Somebody really needs to tell Alex Ovechkin to stop talking. He's embarrassing himself and his union. . .Chad Owens; such an exciting player, such a chronic fumbler. . .That Craig Leipold was one of the NHL owners in the room last Thursday is nothing short of a bad joke. . . The AHL Marlies have to be elated with the tickets they've been selling early this season. Now the bad news. They don't play at the Ricoh Coliseum again until Nov. 17. They might return to a very different hockey landscape.