Thursday, January 6, 2011

My Thoughts On Dotel . . .

Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos has been dangling this piece of news for the past week, and the rumour mill was probably stirring this up two weeks before that. As expected, to shore up the relief corps after losing Kevin Gregg and Scott Downs to free agency, AA signed Octavio Dotel to a 1-year $3 Million deal with an option for '12.

Although Dotel has been a journeyman pitcher as of late, he sounds like a front runner for the closer's job, left vacant by Gregg. Years post-Tommy John, Dotel looks like he's slowly regaining his form when he saved a career high 36 games.

I remember sitting at the bleachers in 2005, against Oakland. Our team had nothing for bats. We were going into the 9th losing 2-1 (I don't even know how we scored the one run. We were pathetic that year!), I was hearing this pop coming from the Oakland bullpen. It was violent, loud and scary. It was Dotel warming up.

I guess I was optimistic back then. I always pegged Dotel as a 100-mph flame thrower, and I thought that the 2005 edition of the Jays ate flame throwers for breakfast. So here we are, going into the bottom of the ninth, last bats:

Dotel strikes the first batter out.
Dotel strikes the second batter out.
Dotel strikes the third batter out. Game over. Dotel shuts me up.

He closed that game like he was on autopilot. If you can recall how Gregg used to put us into fits last year, trying to find the strike zone, I'm sure you think Dotel would be a welcome pick-up.

It's quite the value as well. $3 Million buys you some competitive fire in the bullpen, with Jason Frasor and David Purcey competing for the closer position. Dotel's signing elevates everybody's stature. And if he does pan out as the guy you put on the mound in the 9th inning, you might be guaranteed 20 saves, which is not glaringly ugly from a value standpoint considering the dollars involved with closer money.

With all that said, welcome aboard, Dotel! I'll keep the 'YOU SUCK,' comments to myself for now.


- To buy some more relief insurance, Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos took a flyer on former NL Cy Young winner Chad Cordero. Cordero is one of the last links to the famed Montreal Expos. The Blue Jays are known to pick from the Expos scrap heap (see Tomo Ohka, Brad Wilkerson), so this isn't anything new. Expect Zach Day to be next year's bat boy.

If AA is feeling charitable, he should sign this guy:

He's multi-talented!

- Congratulations to Roberto Alomar for getting his due at the Baseball Hall Of Fame, who was elected yesterday.

For those attending his induction ceremony, please wear a raincoat. He's a bit of a spitter!

Say it, don't spray it, Roberto!


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