A Strategy For Deploying Baseball’s Best Backup Catcher

It wasn’t that long ago that the Pittsburgh Pirates were a laughingstock. They experienced two decades of losing seasons from 1993 to 2012, but getting that proverbial monkey off their backs in 2013 didn’t exactly free them from the pain baseball can inflict. In fact, the Pirates found a way to be simultaneously great and depressing. They’ve hosted three consecutive wild-card...
Via Fangraphs
13 days ago  |  Discuss

The winter of blah

I’m checking in here for the first time in a few weeks…and while there have been some moves along the way, the summary of the offseason is about the same. Underwhelming. Not exciting. Some possibly shrewd under the radar moves and decent value buys, sure. And don’t get me wrong – the Pirates still project to be a good team. It’s just hard to get especially excited about...
Via Raise the Jolly Roger!
20 days ago  |  Discuss

Pirates sign John Jaso (and claim Yoervis Medina, it’s Christmas Eve, you’re only getting one post)

The Pirates’ winter-long quest to find a left-handed hitting first baseman finally came to an end yesterday evening, when the team announced that they’d signed John Jaso to a two-year deal. Jaso has spent most of his career catching and DHing with the Rays and A’s to this point, but he’s had enough serious concussion issues that it’s unlikely that he ever goes behind the...
December 24, 2015  |  Discuss

Pirates sign John Jaso to two-year deal

The Pittsburgh Pirates have signed another player who might be in their platoon at first base.The team announced Wednesday that it has signed outfielder and catcher John Jaso to a two-year deal. FOX Sports MLB insider Ken Rosenthal reports that the deal is worth $8 million.Jaso has primarily played catcher during his seven-year career, only recently converting to an outfielder last...
Via Fox Sports
December 23, 2015  |  Discuss

Pirates Sign John Jaso, Obviously

As of this morning, at first base, the Pirates had the right-handed Michael Morse, and the right-handed Jason Rogers. As depth, there’s the right-handed Sean Rodriguez, and though the switch-hitting Josh Bell is on the way, he’s got his own stuff to figure out. So for the Pirates, there was an obvious need. They don’t have a lefty-heavy lineup, and last year they about tied...
Via Fangraphs
December 23, 2015  |  Discuss

John Jaso agrees to $8 million, 2-year deal with Pirates

PITTSBURGH (AP) Free agent John Jaso and the Pittsburgh Pirates have agreed to an $8 million, two-year contract. The 32-year-old has played mostly in the outfield and at catcher in the past, but the Pirates plan on using him at first base, a position he has played in just two big league games. Pedro Alvarez, who shifted from third base to first for the 2015 season, became a free...
Via AP on Fox
December 23, 2015  |  Discuss

How the six-player trade with the Mariners impacts the Rays

This past Thursday, the first trade of the baseball offseason went down. The Tampa Bay Rays acquired RHP Danny Farquhar, SS Brad Miller, and 1B Logan Morrison from the Seattle Mariners in exchange for RHP Nathan Karns, CF Boog Powell, and LHP C.J. Riefenhauser. While the trade is not a blockbuster and does not feature a major superstar, it will still impact the teams. The Rays are...
November 07, 2015  |  Discuss

Wanted – Backup Catcher, Must Have Glove

Now that the World Series is behind us, we’re nearing the beginning of free agency. Seattle Mariners GM Jerry Dipoto will be looking to improve a ball club that went 76-86 in 2015. With the middle of the order signed through the next several years, the team is not likely to be getting into a bidding war for any of the bigger names on the free agent market. They should look to get...
Via Oregon Sports News
November 03, 2015  |  Discuss

Contract Crowdsourcing 2015-16: Day 9 of 15

Free agency begins five days after the end of the World Series. As in other recent offseasons, FanGraphs is once again facilitating this offseason a contract-crowdsourcing project, the idea being to harness the wisdom of the crowds to the end of better understanding the giant and large 2015-16 free-agent market. Below are links to ballots for five of this year’s free agents, the...
Via Fangraphs
October 22, 2015  |  Discuss

Josh Fields and the value of faith and positive thinking

Over the last calendar year, Houston righty Josh Fields has been a top-30 reliever. That may not be the type of lede that grabs you by your collar and shakes a click out of you, but the “how” might intrigue you. Because Fields has changed one thing — a new pitch has helped — but it’s something that he changed mentally that really made the difference. And his faith had everything...
Via Fangraphs
September 18, 2015  |  Discuss

Tell the grandkids: Rays' Jaso hits home run that never comes down

"High fly ball, towering and deep to right, Alvarezzzzzzzzz ... lost it?" That won't go down as one of the all-time great home run calls, but it described a surreal moment in Thursday night's Orioles-Rays game at Tampa. Tampa Bay's John Jaso homered in the third inning, a drive that landed on the C-ring catwalk above right field and never came down. Baltimore right fielder Daniel...
Via Fox Sports
September 18, 2015  |  Discuss

John Jaso hits home run that gets stuck on catwalk

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Via Fox Sports Florida
September 17, 2015  |  Discuss

John Jaso: Five At Bats vs the Red Sox

On Saturday, Tampa Bay’s John Jaso went 3 for 5 in an 11-7 loss to the Red Sox at Fenway Park. The left-handed-hitting Rays DH – a former catcher – faced right-hander Joe Kelly in his first three plate appearances. Righty Justin Masterson and lefty Craig Breslow were on the mound in his subsequent at bats. Jaso — hitting .344/.414/.508 since returning from a long stint the...
Via Fangraphs
August 04, 2015  |  Discuss

John Jaso homers but Rays drop second game of doubleheader to Royals

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Alcides Escobar hit a bases-loaded double, Alex Gordon matched a career high with four RBIs and the Kansas City Royals cruised to a 7-1 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday and a sweep of their day-night doubleheader. Escobar fell behind 0-2 against Brandon Gomes (1-4) in the sixth inning before battling back to a full count. On the 11th pitch of the...
Via Fox Sports Florida
July 07, 2015  |  Discuss

John Jaso glad to be back from DL

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Via Fox Sports Florida
July 07, 2015  |  Discuss

Tampa Bay Rays: Jaso activated, Souza to the DL

DH John Jaso will look to bolster the Rays lineup for the remainder of the 2015 season. It is no secret that the Tampa Bay Rays are at the forefront of injury news. Today was no exception for the club as they activated designated hitter John Jaso. Jaso suffered a contusion in his left wrist as he was sliding into second base against the Baltimore Orioles in the first inning on Opening...
July 07, 2015  |  Discuss

Rays put OF Steven Souza Jr. on DL, reinstate John Jaso

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- The Rays placed outfielder Steven Souza Jr. on the disabled list with a lacerated finger and reinstated utility man John Jaso before Tuesday's doubleheader in Kansas City. Souza, who is hitting .210 with 15 homers and 33 RBIs, is the 18th player from Tampa Bay to land on the DL this season. In all, the Rays have made 20 moves to the disabled list, second...
Via AP on Fox
July 07, 2015  |  Discuss

Stephen Vogt Picking Up Where He Left Off

Last season, Derek Norris and John Jaso took the bulk of the catching starts for Oakland, starting 140 of Oakland’s games at behind the plate. The duo performed well for the A’s and the 126 wRC+ by Oakland catchers ranked third in Major League Baseball behind only the Pittsburgh Pirates and Milwaukee Brewers. As the […]
Via Fangraphs
April 24, 2015  |  Discuss

Fantasy Roundup: One Down, 161 to Go

Man, is there a lot of stuff to talk about! The first day of the 2015 MLB season was jam-packed with surprises, so let’s run down the list of the day’s most notable outcomes and performances and try to decipher what it means. The Rule of Three Ryan Braun (side soreness), Yordano Ventura (thumb cramp), and John Jaso (wrist contusion) all left their respective games early. Ventura’s...
Via Baseball Professor
April 07, 2015  |  Discuss

MMO 2015 Season Preview: American League West

Texas Rangers – 5th Place Key additions: Yovani Gallardo Key subtractions: Alex Rios, Jason Frasor and sort of Yu Darvish In what I expect to be the best division in the American League, I can’t find a reason to give Texas anything higher than 4th place. Since I think Houston will be young and fun enough to watch, I’ll peg Texas here. Texas won’t be as bad as they were...
Via Mets Merized Online
April 03, 2015  |  Discuss

5 Catcher Sleepers for 2015 Fantasy Baseball

We’ve added new features to our 2015 Draft Pack, including the ability to remove keepers and drafted players to recalculate dollar values! Get access to all product updates, plus our best-in-class customer service, and we offer a 100% money back guarantee! Our Top 200 Countdown is winding down, and every year at this time I feel like giving one of those graduation speeches...
Via Baseball Professor
March 09, 2015  |  Discuss

O’Connor could be the Tampa Bay Rays future

Justin O’Connor could call Tropicana Field home one day if he lives up to his potential. Late January is usually a dead period in the baseball world. From what it looks like, the Tampa Bay Rays are done with all of their major offseason acquisitions as pitchers and catchers will report to spring training in a couple of weeks. One of the catchers that will be reporting to Port...
January 28, 2015  |  Discuss

Rays newcomer spotlight: Catcher/DH John Jaso

Soon, winter will give way to spring. Soon, the Tampa Bay Rays will begin again as something new. Their offseason has been full of change. There have been the departures of Andrew Friedman and Joe Maddon. There has been Matt Silverman's move from team president to president of baseball operations. There has been Kevin Cash's hire as manager. There have been transactions that sent...
Via Fox Sports Florida
January 27, 2015  |  Discuss

Rays reach deals with eight arbitration-eligible players

The Tampa Bay Rays settled contracts for the upcoming season with all eight of their arbitration-eligible players Friday. Right-hander Alex Cobb will receive $4 million, reliever Jake McGee $3.55 million plus incentives, catcher/designated hitter John Jaso $3.175 million, outfielder Desmond Jennings $3.1 million plus incentives, reliever Kevin Jepsen $3.025 million, catcher Rene...
Via Fox Sports Florida
January 16, 2015  |  Discuss

Phillies should be able to find a taker for Ryan Howard

The start of spring training is a little more than a month away. The clock is ticking for the Phillies to trade first baseman Ryan Howard, a task that should not be as difficult as it has proven to be. Yet another potential destination for Howard vanished Saturday when the Rays acquired John Jaso from the A’s. Jaso likely will get significant at-bats as a left-handed DH, the role...
Via Fox Sports
January 11, 2015  |  Discuss
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