A Sad Day At Mop Up Duty

Because…. this is likely the last time we will be able to use this image:

However, it is a small price to pay. Good riddance JP.

Kman Edit:

The national media’s perspective on JP. A quote from the AP’s newswire article on the firing:

…missteps included allowing A.J. Burnett an opt-out clause in his contract, giving Frank Thomas an $18 million, two-year deal with a vesting option, and signing B.J. Ryan to a $47 million, five-year deal.

Burnett left to become a free agent last fall, Thomas had to be cut in the second season at a cost of around $8 million, and Ryan was released in July with $15 million left on his contract.

Other bad contracts he signed included a $17 million, three-year deal for Canadian Corey Koskie and the monster deals for Vernon Wells and Alex Rios.

 

Callum double edit: 

He will be remembered as the most quoteable Jays GM, spewing detritus out of his mouth on a regular basis.  Such examples include:

“It’s not a lie if we know the truth,” he said about the back injury story concocted for B.J. Ryan when the left-hander was actually having elbow issues in 2007.

Ricciardi infamously trashed slugger Adam Dunn, now with the Washington Nationals, on the same radio show in 2008, telling a caller, “Do you know the guy doesn’t really like baseball that much? Do you know the guy doesn’t have a passion to play the game that much? … I don’t think you’d be very happy if we brought Adam Dunn here.”

Ricciardi attacked other players, too.

“When a guy talks about coming to our place where he has a chance to win and compete against the Yankees and the Red Sox, and then he goes to a place like Kansas City, that’s an eye-opener,” he said of Gil Meche after the right-hander spurned Toronto to sign with Kansas City in the winter of 2006.

Royals manager Buddy Bell defended his player by saying Ricciardi was, “a little guy with a big mouth and all he does is whine. … Every time I hear this guy talk, all he’s doing is whining.”

Ricciardi also twice caused spats by publicly wondering if former pitcher A.J. Burnett’s injuries were simply in his head.

 

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has written for Mopupduty.com since 2006. Follow Callum on Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram (@callumhughson)

  • Continue using it. I insist. It should be JP’s legacy.

  • About friggin time!!! Maybe we’ll have a meaningful September in a few years.

  • Joanna’s comments have disappointed me in so many ways. Ridiculous.

    And it’s sad that you guys use a quote like the one above from the AP. For the last time: A.J. BURNETT DOESN’T SIGN WITH TORONTO WITHOUT THE OPT-OUT. FRANK THOMAS DOESN’T SIGN WITH TORONTO WITHOUT THE VESTED OPTION. AND B.J. RYAN ISN’T A BLUE JAY UNLESS RICCIARDI AND CO. BLOW EVERYONE OUT THE FRAME WITH THE OFFER.

    You guys are smart. You guys know this. So, where is it? The off-season of Ryan and Burnett was a message to Doc that the Jays were going to do what they could to compete. Clearly, CLEARLY, two years later, things changed, the purse strings tightened, and here we are.

    Just another sample of a conveniently written J.P. Ricciardi post.

  • @eyebleaf

    So what you’re saying is these guys wouldn’t sign without the keys to city hall? At that point maybe they’re not worth signing.

  • It’s not sad we use them eyebleaf, they are the facts. And if the facts are sad then so be it. The defense of JP is indefensible.

  • You’re stating the facts without the proper context. That’s what irks me boys, and you guys know that.

    @ Kman: I’m saying that the Jays are, from the get-go, behind the 8-ball when it comes to signing free agents, whether they’re on the market, or they’re their own guys (Wells). I’ve written about it extensively. We have to go over-market, and throw in perks (like an opt-out, or a vested option) in order to bring guys to Toronto. They were worth signing at the time because the Jays were sending a message to Doc, and trying to compete as best they could before Wells’ contract exploded (in 2010).

    Context is key.

    And the defense of JP is not indefensible. Look at the state of the franchise, in terms of players and prospects, as he leaves it behind. The Jays are in much better shape than they were in when J.P. took over. Now, if only ownership could help out the new guy…

    I’m not saying J.P. is a saint. I’m saying he isn’t the devil posts like this, and posts like Joanna’s, paint him out to be. And I know you guys know that, because you are knowledgeable baseball folk.

    It’s all love, boys.

  • I agree that without the opt out clause Burnett would not have signed. Not all JP’s fault. But, just like the Ricciardi excuse/myth that to compete in the AL East requires a large payroll, the excuse to overpay for free agents was dispelled by the Tampa Bay Rays. To attract a free agent to Tampa is going to require just as much of an overpay as Toronto but you didn’t see them doling out 5 year contracts to relievers or backloaded albatrosses to streaky centre fielders. Context is key.

    Now I know what you are about to say: “It was ownership’s fault Vernon was signed to that deal! Ownership pressured JP!” Well, ownership also pressured him to resign the face of the franchise Carlos Delgado and he insulted Carlos with an offer half of his market value. JP is a sentient being. Context is key.

    Lets look at the state of the franchise when JP took over. A .500 team with an albatross in Carlos Delgado and a fully stocked farm system that included the likes of Ryan Freel, Alex Rios, Vernon Wells, Brandon Lyon, Felipe Lopez, Orlando Hudson (who JP banished to the minors for having O-Dog call him a pimp), Reed Johnson, Gabe Gross, Gustavo Chacin, Brandon League etc. JP leaves this team below .500 with an albatross in Vernon Wells and a bare farm system. Who is a legitimate Jays prospect right now? Zach Stewart? Moises Sierra? I’d love to know how you think JP left the franchise in a better state than when he found it, not to mention tying Anthopolous’ hands from the get-go.

  • Don’t forget my favourite Gord Ash draft pick, Dustin McGowan!

  • daperman

    Damned if you do and damned if you dont. Let DelGado and was critized all over the place. AFter Wells stellar years if he hadnt been signed JP would have been strung up. So he gets the big bucks and it is now looking like a big blunder.

    Was it a blunder at the time. None of the signing appeared to be except for the Frank Thomas deal. Few could quite get over that one. He rolled the dice and it never quite came all together.

    Whatever the reason, be it injury, free agency, opt outs or poor performace sooner or later except for Doc they all seemed to let him down.

    But saying all this for JP it was time to go.

  • The system was stocked in 2001? I’m not even going to justify that with a response.

    Keep on hating, boys.

  • You should respond (if you want your defense of JP to be taken seriously) because you obviously don’t seem to agree with it and it begs the question why? The old “I am not going to justify that with a response” trick doesn’t do you any favours. At the very least tell us how the state of the franchise – in terms of players and most importantly prospects – is better off than it is now. I don’t have any personal or emotional connection to JP – I am just doing what the enigmatic Horatio Caine does, which is to ~follow the evidence~. I don’t know what your attachment to JP is, but please disassociate yourself from him and look at his track record objectively. We are not “hating”, just looking at his tenure in an unbiased manner.