RC wrote:MWier's generally on the money with a lot of the Blue Jays situation, but as another homer that follows the team pretty closely, I have to completely disagree.
Riccardi is an egomaniac. This is as close as he's come to admitting he's made a mistake and he managed to blame it on AJ.
They over worked AJ and had him brainwashed into coming back too soon and pitching with pain. AJ has a nerve impingement, which is an overuse injury which would get much worse without a DL stint. So he's not faking it.
The BJ Ryan situation was by no means blown out of proportion. He lied. Nevermind respecting BJ and his agent. BJ's signed for 4 more years, so it's not like a Tommy John would hurt his next contract value. He'll be long but recovered by then. The only reason he lied was to save face. If it served him better to tell the truth, he would have.
There's a good amount of J.P. Kool-Aid in Toronto because Rogers owns the Jays, the major sports talk radio station and one of the major all sports networks. So there's a lot of spin out there, but bottom line is he couldn't make the 5 year plan work.
What's completely infuriating is that this team is sooooo close to being a WS contender (go figure with the payroll) but due to some unprecedented bad luck (at least Toronto sports-wise) he's starting to take shots at his players.
J.P. should be reigned in, plain and simple. If only Godfrey had the balls.
Oh, I don't doubt that JP is an egomaniac, or that he's trying to misplace the blame for signing AJ Burnett. It's pretty clear that he's trying to turn both the media/fans agaisnt Burnett, and he's attempted to do it before through a few Jeff Blair columns. However, I do feel that he gets blamed for a lot of things when he really isn't doing that bad of a job. Witholding information (and yes, even lying) about injuries is a fairly common practice in pro sports, and it was very unlucky for him that BJ's particular injury unexpectedly blew up the way it did agaisnt him. I also thought he built a very good team this year, and it was unfortunate that they had to deal with this massive bout with injuries.
As for this particular Burnett situation, I don't think JP would be saying things like this if he didn't have access to information or doctors telling him that AJ, for all intents and purposes, is basically fine. That's where the frustration comes from. Of course, that doesn't make it right for him to go public with stuff like this. JP has always had a problem keeping his mouth shut about stuff like this.
If I were Godfrey, I'd give him another year to see if this team he's built this year will work, and if it doesn't, I would get rid of him. Of course that's not about to happen though. Ricciardi is here through 2010, and he has the full confidence of the higher-ups still.