The Toronto Blue Jays still had some lingering bad feelings toward the Tampa Bay Rays over what has been dubbed “cardgate.”
The issue started Monday, when Rays outfielder Kevin Kiermaier picked up a card that included all the scouting reports for Tampa Bay’s hitters. Keirmaier kept the card, which had been dropped by Jays catcher Alejandro Kirk, and the team refused to return it. Kiermaier claimed he had initially picked up the card believing it was his, but refused to give it back once the team had it.
The Blue Jays were angered by the whole situation, and they took matters into their own hands on Wednesday. Reliever Ryan Borucki hit Kiermaier in the back with a pitch, leading both benches to clear.
It’s pretty silly that Walker is upset about this. If a pitcher throws at a batter, they run the risk of being ejected. It’s hard to imagine anyone would dispute that Borucki’s pitch was intentional given the circumstances.
The Blue Jays will probably consider the issue settled at this point, but don’t be surprised if this just makes the Rays angrier. The two teams do not meet again during the regular season. Intriguingly, however, there is a real chance these two teams could meet in the ALDS. The Rays currently hold the best record in the AL, while the Blue Jays are in line for a wild card spot. If Toronto can get that and win the Wild Card playoff while the Rays clinch the best record, they’d be in line to play again.
The Toronto Blue Jays are upset with Kevin Kiermaier for taking one of their cards.
During the sixth inning of Monday’s game between the Jays and Tampa Bay Rays, Kiermaier was trying to score after an error and was thrown out at home to end the inning. After being tagged out, Kiermaier noticed a piece of paper near the plate and grabbed it.
It turns out the piece of paper contained the Blue Jays’ scouting report for every Tampa Bay hitter. The notes sheet fell out of Alejandro Kirk’s wristband.
The Jays apparently sent a batboy over to ask for the paper back but were turned down.
On Tuesday, Kiermaier addressed the matter. He said that it happened quickly and he thought the paper was his scouting report, so he took it. He also said that he wasn’t about to give it back to Toronto once he had it.
Spoke w/ Kiermaier. These are his comments.
Around 5:20 pm, Kevin Cash came out to speak with Charlie Montoyo about it.
The Jays are pissed. As a team source told me, "if there’s one card we wouldn’t want any opponent to have, it’s that one"
There are a few things. First off, if the Jays are going to make a scouting report notes card and carry it around on the field, then they need to take good care of it. Kirk dropped it on the field and left it behind. That’s his problem.
Secondly, couldn’t Kiermaier have just taken photos of the notes sheet and then given it back? That might have been the best of both worlds. But he definitely did not have any obligation to give that paper back.
Things got a bit heated between the Toronto Blue Jays and the Boston Red Sox on Friday, but the Blue Jays certainly seemed to come out of it better than Boston did.
Things veered out of control in the bottom of the 5th, as the Blue Jays put up nine runs to turn a 2-0 deficit into a 9-2 lead. A key point in the inning came when Red Sox reliever Hansel Robles hit Toronto outfielder Randal Grichuk with a pitch. Grichuk had doubled earlier in the inning, and Toronto’s players seemed to believe there was intent behind the hit batter.
Robles heard the chirping and tried to stare down the Toronto dugout after hitting Grichuk. The problem for him was the players, especially Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Lourdes Gurriel, were not having it.
The Toronto Blue Jays made a major move to beef up their starting rotation on Friday, as they have acquired right-hander Jose Berrios in a trade with the Minnesota Twins.
The Blue Jays have agreed to send multiple prospects to Minnesota for Berrios, Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic first reported. Toronto has one of the deepest farm systems in baseball, and two of their top-five prospects are involved in the deal.
The Twins will receive SS/OF Austin Martin (Blue Jays No. 2 prospect per @MLBPipeline) and RHP Simeon Woods-Richardson (No. 4) in exchange for Berríos, per source.
The Blue Jays have confirmed their return to Toronto for a homestand starting July 30, and we’re starting to get more details regarding how that will look.
Blue Jays CEO Mark Shapiro revealed that 15,000 fans will be admitted to Rogers Centre for the July 30 game against the Kansas City Royals. Shapiro added that the roof will be kept open as much as possible.
#BlueJays have been approved up to 15,000 fans at Rogers Centre this summer per team president and CEO Mark Shapiro
Jays will have the roof open “for every opportunity we possibly can,” Shapiro said.
The Toronto Blue Jays are finally headed home, and they announced the news with a pretty awesome video.
The Blue Jays officially received an exemption from the Canadian government allowing the team to return to Rogers Centre for games starting July 30. It remains to be seen if there will be any sort of rules for visiting players, or how many fans will initially be allowed to attend — if any.
Still, the mere fact that the Blue Jays can finally play in Toronto again was a cause for celebration. The team confirmed the news with a video paying tribute to Blue Jays fans who have not seen their team play in Canada in over a year and a half.
Nelson Cruz is once again having an incredibly productive season, and the Minnesota Twins are widely expected to trade him since they are out of playoff contention. At least two teams are interested in the seven-time All-Star, and there will likely be more.
The Blue Jays are 44-40 and eight games behind the Boston Red Sox in the AL East. They already have one of the best offenses in baseball and lead the league with 128 home runs, so Cruz would make their already potent lineup even more dangerous.
Oakland is 49-39 and 5.5 games behind the Houston Astros in the AL West. They rank near the middle of MLB in most offensive categories.
Cruz turned 41 earlier this month, but he is having one of the best seasons of his career. He’s batting .304 with 18 home runs, 45 RBI and an OPS of .939. He signed a one-year, $13 million deal with the Twins prior to the season.
The Blue Jays haven’t played a game in Toronto since 2019, but that could finally be changing soon.
The Blue Jays are awaiting a response from the Canadian government to a plan that would allow them to play home games at Rogers Centre in Toronto starting on July 30, according to Shi Davidi of Sportsnet. The plan has already been approved by the necessary local and provincial authorities, and comes as Canada is set to ease some border restrictions for returning travelers starting Monday.
Details would need to be fleshed out about certain aspects of the plan, as MLB still has unvaccinated players that would need to travel from the United States to Canada for games. One possibility is that unvaccinated players could be subjected to quarantine restrictions that fully vaccinated players are not.
The Blue Jays have been playing home games at Sahlen Field in Buffalo after playing the first two months of the regular season at their spring training ballpark in Dunedin, Florida. The team is scheduled to open a ten-game homestand against Kansas City, Cleveland, and Boston starting on the 30th. If that homestand doesn’t work out, the team would likely target a seven-game homestand starting August 20 for a possible return to Toronto.
Blue Jays players will be very excited to return to Toronto. They’ve spent the last year and a half playing at minor league stadiums without the high-end facilities and amenities they’re used to. That was a key issue in one aspect last offseason, and it’s not something they’ll want to have to deal with any longer.
The Toronto Blue Jays are about to open their second season outside of their home city, but there is some optimism that this will not last through 2021.
Blue Jays president Mark Shapiro revealed that the team hopes to seek formal permission within the next few months to begin playing games at Rogers Centre.
“I do think that we have significant positive and objective momentum that would lead us to make a more formal ask sometime in the next month,” Shapiro told Kaitlyn McGrath of The Athletic. “Not to come back in a month, but make that ask for later in the summer, sometime in the next month.
“We’ve got fairly good information that the vaccine will be accessible to our players and other major-league teams in the next two to three weeks or month. So that if by the end of April or early May all of our players or the bulk of our players and staff are vaccinated and other teams are as well and Toronto is a safe place, it starts to feel like the reasons for us not to be there, the risks start to be mitigated. I would say that when we start to have that material progress that we see the vaccinations actually happening, we will start to formalize an ask.”
The Blue Jays spent the 2020 season in Buffalo due to travel restrictions with Canada. This season, they are poised to play at their spring training facility in Dunedin, Fl. until further notice. That’s fairly close to where the Toronto Raptors are playing their own home games.
The uncertainty over Toronto’s home has been a problem for the team in doing business with players. The good news is this looks likely to be squared away in the months to come.
The Toronto Blue Jays are being sharply criticized by one MLB broadcaster for the decision the team made about its radio broadcasts for 2021.
The Blue Jays announced Friday that they will not create a specialized radio broadcast of the team’s games this season. Instead, a simulcast of the television broadcast will air on the radio instead. The team cited COVID-19 restrictions as the key reason for the decision, but did not specify if the simulcast would remain in place beyond 2021.
Whatever the explanation, it did not sit well with many. New York Mets radio announcer Howie Rose called the decision “reprehensible” and a “total disgrace” on Twitter.
My goodness, that is nothing short of an absolute, total disgrace. They should be embarrassed. Either you’re major league or you’re not. Utterly reprehensible. Baseball on the radio is art and is the last sport that should ever simulcast. Serves no one. https://t.co/5ijGPWrD4h
Even if one doesn’t care about the romanticism of baseball on the radio, there are good reasons to keep a specialized radio broadcast in place. Radio broadcasts are typically more descriptive, as they have to describe events for people who cannot see the game for whatever reason.
The Blue Jays are facing some logistical issues this season. That’s understandable. Even in light of that, it’s tough to disagree with Rose’s assessment of their decision.