In response to a recent Ken Rosenthal article I’ve been reflecting on a few issues.
Despite the recent hirings in Toronto, including Gillick era manager Cito Gaston and president and CEO Paul Beeston the Blue Jays will now add a second year to their 1993 World Series Champion opponent Phillies’ 14 year playoff drought. Sure, the Phillies play in the weaker National League, but I have been hard pressed to find reasons why the Blue Jays have been so long without a playoff birth in an era when the Rays, Twins and A’s have all had significant playoff runs despite low payrolls and poor attendance.
I have, after much thought, settled on three hypothesis:
Middling: The Jays, after thoughts in the American League East, have done just enough to place in the middle of their division for a number of years. Accordingly they have done just enough to blow their chances at excellent draft picks and have kept just enough high caliber players to stop us from entering total rebuilding phases. Yes, I will at some point argue for why even fellows like Halladay and Wells are tradeable.
Front Office Hirings: Gord Ash was a bust. Riccardi and the eight year plan are intolerable. I can’t wait to see what Godfrey’s replacement can do.
Post-Gillick drought: When a GM wagers so much on building a championship team in a small/middle market the aftermath can be troublesome. After his stints in Toronto, Baltimore and Seattle Gillick left his teams with a lot of hope, a diminished farm system and a slew of soon-to-be unaffordable big name players. I am not upset with Gillick, but he understands the cost of a champion, whether or not he sticks around for the residual effects.
Kudos if you picked up the song reference – I’ve got a special place in my heart for the Talking Heads.