All Things Bubba

Because how can you not love a baseball player named "Bubba"?

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Janish to report to Colorado Springs


It's official:

INF Paul Janish, who hit over .400 in #SpringTraining but did not get a #Rockies #OpeningDay roster spot, has agreed to report to @Skysox

— Thomas Harding (@harding_at_mlb) March 31, 2014

The roster at the Colorado Spring Sky Sox web site has not yet been updated, but there's a current roster here.

The minor league season starts tomorrow. I'll be interested to see how they use Janish. In the past, he started at SS almost every day while in the minors, not least because the Reds and Braves didn't have anyone else. But the Sky Sox have a lot of infielders, and it might make sense to have Janish play multiple positions and learn to hit off the bench, since that's the role he's likely to have if called up.

As for his chances of being called up...my first reaction was probably not good. With the bizarre roster the Rockies have constructed (ESPN Insider does not approve), it seems like they want to play musical roster, swapping out players as soon as they're eligible. That doesn't bode well for a player like Janish, who is out of options.

OTOH, he's probably not going to be back with the Rockies next year, and has an opt-out date of July 1, so there's nothing to save him for. Many Rockies fans seem to expect Janish to get the call sooner rather than later.

This blogger lists Janish as a reason Rockies fan can be optimistic.

Paul Janish was a spring training beast, outhitting everyone else who had a decent number of at-bats and stealing 3 bases. When I saw him, he looked confident and polished.

Maybe this guy will have a chance to get his Janish shirsey after all.

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posted by BubbaFan, 7:00 PM | link | 0 comments |

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Scratch that...Janish is still with the Rockies


Probably.

Source: #Rockies Paul Janish went unclaimed in 48-hour promotion period following opt out, will head to AAA Colorado Springs.

— Chris Cotillo (@ChrisCotillo) March 30, 2014

This conflicts with the AP article, but Cotillo was the one who was correct about the opt-out, so I'm guessing he's correct about this, too.

Former Rockies beat writer Troy Renck says the plan all along was for Janish to provide AAA depth. He has a July 1 opt out date.

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posted by BubbaFan, 2:19 PM | link | 0 comments |

Paul Janish is no longer a Rocky


At least according to this article. It says Janish has been released.

Not sure if that means another team has claimed him, or if the Rockies just released him because they have too many infielders. Stay tuned...

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posted by BubbaFan, 7:10 AM | link | 0 comments |

Friday, March 28, 2014

Some clarity


It appears both Thomas Harding and Troy Renck are correct. Paul Janish has an out clause now, but he can only exercise it if another MLB team offers him a spot on their opening day roster.

He also has an out clause for July 1, which is a more typical opt-out.

He has 48 hours from the time he was told he wasn't making the Rockies opening day roster. I'm guessing that was Thursday morning, so he'll know his fate by tomorrow.

That explains why the Rockies have made no official announcement. Teams usually wait in situations like this until the outcome is known.

I really wish the Reds would pick him up. They've already told Ramon Santiago he made the team, but he hasn't been added to the roster yet. Janish would be a better option than Santiago.

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posted by BubbaFan, 11:34 PM | link | 0 comments |

Mystery


Well, color me baffled. Though there seems to be a widespread belief that Paul Janish has been sent down, there has been no official announcement yet. While the other players sent down are now listed on the AAA Colorado Springs Sky Sox roster, Janish is not. He's still on the Rockies non roster invite list.

Thomas Harding of MLB.com said in an earlier article that Janish's contract allows him to opt out at the start of the season if he's not on the Rockies roster on opening day. But Denver Post beat writer Troy Renck said Janish's opt-out date isn't until July 1.

Harding still seems to believe Janish can opt out now. He wrote this article yesterday:

Janish, a non-roster invitee, could end up on a Major League roster to start the regular season. Several teams are looking for a utility man who can play the middle positions, and Janish has done just that in the past three seasons with the Reds and Braves, at times starting.

Maybe Harding doesn't know what he's talking about, but the fact that there's been no official announcement about Janish's fate makes you wonder. Is Janish looking around for a better offer? Is a trade in the works? Seems like there must be something going on.

Then there's this. Not sure how reliable Chris Cotillo is:

Source: #Rockies will not be adding Paul Janish to 40-man roster. Other teams have 48-hr window to add him to their Opening Day roster.

— Chris Cotillo (@ChrisCotillo) March 27, 2014

It's pretty tough to find a roster spot this late in spring training, so even if he can opt out, he may not find a taker.

Janish is not in the lineup tonight, and not even listed as available off the bench. Which is what you would expect if he were looking around for another team.

I would love to see him back with Cincinnati. They need a backup infielder.

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posted by BubbaFan, 8:10 PM | link | 0 comments |

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Then again...


Well, Rockies beat writer Troy Renck says he's heard from a Rockies source that Janish has been sent down.

This seems insane. The Rockies appear to be setting up a roster that has six outfielders and only one backup infielder: Charlie Culberson, called "Cluberson" by some for his ineptness on defense.

If they are doing this, it has to be a short-term situation. Perhaps just for the first series. Someone suggested they might want to carry an extra lefty bat, since the Marlins have a lot of good right handed pitching.

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posted by BubbaFan, 1:51 PM | link | 0 comments |

Looking good


Still no official announcement, but the Rockies transaction page say Josh Rutledge, Ryan Wheeler, and Mike McKenry have been optioned to AAA. I would guess that's good news for Jordan Pacheco and Paul Janish.

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posted by BubbaFan, 12:50 PM | link | 0 comments |

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Still no decision


The Rockies have not made their final roster decisions yet. Beat writer Troy Renck says Janish is still in the running:

Several combinations possible as #Rockies decide bench, pen. Paul Janish still has chance ot make bench as strong veteran defender

— Troy Renck (@TroyRenck) March 26, 2014

They're supposed to have a meeting after today's game to settle the roster.

Janish is starting at 2B today, and is 1 for 2 with a double so far.

If he doesn't make the cut today, there's nothing he could have done to do so. He's done everything anyone could have asked of him, from leading the Cactus League in hitting to coaching young Josh Rutledge in fielding. However it ends, it's been a terrific spring for Janish.

posted by BubbaFan, 5:31 PM | link | 2 comments |

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Update


Though Thomas Harding of MLB.com wrote as recently as today that Janish can opt out of his minor league deal if he's not on the 25 man roster by opening day, Troy Renck says Janish's opt-out doesn't kick in until July 1.

If true, that makes me a little less optimistic about his chances of making the opening day roster. I think he'd be the best fit, as the only true SS, but who knows if the Rockies see it the same way.

I have noticed that Janish has gotten a lot less playing time over the last few days. He's getting into every game, but not for long. He got only one at-bat yesterday, and today he didn't get any (though he did play a couple of innings at 3B).

Makes me think that the Rockies made up their minds about Janish last weekend, one way or another, and don't feel they need to see more of him. Not sure if it's good news or bad, though.

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posted by BubbaFan, 8:50 PM | link | 0 comments |

Tomorrow is D-Day


According to Rockies beat writer Troy Renck, the Rockies are expected to make most if not all of their final roster decisions on Wednesday. So tomorrow's probably the day Paul Janish discovers his fate. Unless they've told him already, confidentially.

This article mentions that Janish might get picked up by another team. There's also the possibility the Rockies might trade him. Some have suggested the Yankees would be a good fit.

I laughed my butt off at the idea of Janish in pinstripes. He doesn't seem like their type. They prefer power hitting players with no glove. Preferably lefties.

But then...they did sign Brendan Ryan. To a two-year deal. And Ryan can now barely move, due to a bad back. So who knows. Stranger things have happened.

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posted by BubbaFan, 8:02 PM | link | 0 comments |

Sunday, March 23, 2014

No announcement yet


The Rockies beat writers said today not to expect any big roster decisions to be announced until mid-week, possibly until the end of the week. So I guess Paul Janish's opt-out date is not until the end of the week.

He got only one plate appearance today. It was a pretty good at-bat, though it didn't end well (oppo fly out). Not sure what to make of the abbreviated playing time. I'd guess the Rockies are genuinely undecided about the utility infielder situation, and wanted give the other candidates a look.

It would be a bummer for Janish if he's cut at the deadline, when rosters are already set.

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posted by BubbaFan, 11:32 PM | link | 0 comments |

Rosters taking shape


Today is the day specified in many veterans' contracts as the deadline for when they must be told if they made the roster or not. Many players are being told they made the roster...or didn't.

Yesterday, it was reported that Juan Francisco, Paul Janish's former teammate in both Cincinnati and Atlanta, was cut by the Brewers. There was no official announcement, but his locker was cleaned out and he was no longer in camp. Another former teammate, Elliot Johnson, got good news. He was told by the Indians that he'd made the team, though he wasn't allowed to tell anyone until that evening. And many Reds fans are intrigued by the news that Aaron Harang, the Reds' one-time ace, has been told that he won't make the Indians' 25-man roster, despite the 2.00 ERA he put up this spring. He can opt out tomorrow, and the Reds have need of a starting pitcher right now.

Still no news on Janish's fate. He's been the best Rockies hitter in spring training, but they're expecting he'll have the weakest bat of the utility infielder candidates. In his favor: he's got the best glove of the lot, and is the only true shortstop. Plus, the others have options and he doesn't, so they may pick him to preserve minor league depth.

Janish helped his cause yesterday, starting at SS and going 3 for 5 with a double. Though he did get caught stealing.

He's starting at third base today. Here's the lineup card. Looks like Tom Runnells found his purple ink:

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posted by BubbaFan, 2:18 PM | link | 0 comments |

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Crunch Time


The first game of the season was today (rain delayed to start at about 5 am Eastern Time). Though there are still more spring training games left to play, teams are rapidly trimming their rosters, preparing for the March 30 deadline when the active roster must be cut to 25 players.

Bleacher Report named Paul Janish as the biggest surprise of the Rockies' spring:

Signed to a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training, veteran infielder Paul Janish has always been highly regarded for his versatility and above-average defense at multiple positions. A career .214 hitter over parts of six major league seasons, though, nobody expects much from him at the plate.

Except he's been one of the Colorado Rockies' most consistent offensive contributors this spring, hitting .455 with a 1.061 OPS over 33 at-bats, reaching base safely in 12 of the 16 games in which he's appeared.

While the Rockies would have to create a roster spot for him to break camp with the club, which could give the nod for the utility role to the underwhelming Josh Rutledge, Janish is making a strong case for Colorado to figure out a way to keep him with the big club.

I think Janish has a good chance of making the Rockies' roster, and if he doesn't, he reportedly has an opt-out clause that allows him to look for a big league job elsewhere. I wonder if the Reds might be interested in his services. They have been decimated by injuries.

And it got worse yesterday. Skip Schumaker dislocated his left shoulder diving for a ball. It reminded me of Janish's shoulder dislocation in 2012, though Schumaker will not need surgery. He will start the season on the DL; he hopes to be back in a month or so.

The Reds have only one shortstop on the 40-man roster: the starter, Zack Cozart. They said they wanted a switch-hitting backup shortstop, so many assumed Ramon Santiago would make the team. But he hasn't been added to the roster yet, and he might not be. He's not really a shortstop, he's not a spring chicken, and his bat seems to have gotten awfully slow. Reds beat writer John Fay suggested that Kristopher Negron may get the roster spot instead.

There have been rumors that the Reds are trying to get Didi Gregorius back - the shortstop they traded for Shin-Soo Choo. With Chris Owings' emergence, the D-backs may be willing to trade Didi.

But I think the idea of using Didi as a backup SS/AAA insurance is crazy. He's already a better hitter than Zack Cozart. While UZR doesn't like his defense as much, one year is too small a sample size for UZR to be reliable. To my eye, his defense looks great. He should be starting, and will be priced accordingly.

If Janish doesn't make the Rockies roster, he'd be a good fit in Cincinnati. He left on good terms, from all accounts. He's not a switch-hitter, but neither is Negron. He'd be better than Negron on both offense and defense, IMO.

Of course, it's all moot if Janish makes the Rockies roster, which is quite possible. He's starting today at shortstop, in a split-squad game.

(Colorado bench coach Tom Runnells fills out the lineup card with pretty calligraphy every day. Usually he uses purple ink. Today, for some reason, it's blue.)

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posted by BubbaFan, 4:03 PM | link | 2 comments |

Friday, March 21, 2014

Reading the tea leaves, update


Well, the Rockies have announced a move, and it's the one the beat writers predicted: catcher Mike McKenry has been added to the roster.

Not sure what this means for Paul Janish. Adding McKenry means the Rockies have three catchers on the roster. They need another infielder, not three catchers.

Catcher Jordan Pacheco has been used as a backup corner infielder the past couple of years, but he hasn't been very effective. This move might mean the Rockies are sticking with him in that role anyway. Or it could mean Pacheco is on his way out of the organization. He's out of options, so a trade may be in the works.

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posted by BubbaFan, 9:13 AM | link | 0 comments |

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Reading the tea leaves


Paul Janish on Photo Day

The Colorado Rockies lost Kent Matthes to the Oakland A's on a waiver claim today. They put Matthes on waivers, likely because they needed his roster spot. They're planning to put one of the non-roster invites on the roster.

The Rockies beat writers seem to think that player is likely catcher Michael McKenry. However, Greg Stanwood of RockiesRoster.com thinks it might be Paul Janish who has won himself a roster spot.

There are two non-roster players in the mix for 40-man roster spots right now: infielder Paul Janish, who could easily be described as the Spring MVP, who has surprised no one with his defensive success, definitely has surprised everyone with his offensive production. Now that it seems certain that the Rockies intend to use the 25th roster spot for another infielder, this could be a move to make room for Janish if the team has chosen him over Ryan Wheeler or another possible infielder.

Janish started at SS today, and did not hurt his chances. Made a nice play on defense, and was 1 for 2 with a bunt single.

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posted by BubbaFan, 7:03 PM | link | 0 comments |