Thursday, December 2, 2010

John Farrell

Hello again friends...as you know by now my name is Craig Ballard and I am a Jays fan...from time to time we hold our version of AA meetings around here...our AA of course is short for Alex Anthopoulos...AA is the GM of YOUR TORONTO BLUE JAYS and in his 1+ year in that role we have seen much to be excited about...the latest is the hiring of 48 year old John Farrell to a 3 year deal to be the teams new Manager replacing the moving-on Cito Gaston (Cito will still be gainfully employed by the Jays as part of his new 4-year Consulting Contract with the club)...

AA led a search for a new Manager and looked through dozens of good candidates before finalizing on Farrell...let's take a look together at what we have coming here in the T-Dot and take a look at John Farrell

John Farrell was a pitcher with the Cleveland Indians twice ('87-'90 and then again in '95) plus stints in Cali with the then-named California Angels, and his career ended early in 1996 with Detroit...Farrell won 36 while losing 46...

A big part of why we should be excited about the hiring of Farrell is his experience after his pedestrian MLB career is really good...Farrell served as the Director of Player Development for Cleveland from the 2002 season through the 2006 season...in the middle of that the Indians were named Organization of the Year by USA Todays Sports Weekly back to back years...the renowned Baseball America named the Indians as having the top farm system in professional baseball during his tenure too...player development and accolades = a great start to the management career of John Farrell

In 1997 Farrell took a new challenge at Oklahoma State University - his Alma Mater - as Assistant Coach and Pitching Coach; Recruiting Coordinator...he was there for 4 years...

John Farrell in coach-mode
In 2006 Farell made his return to MLB as the Pitching Coach of the Boston Red Sox...Boston Manager Terry Francona knew Farrell from their days together as Indians players...Farrell was the Pitching Coach for the 2007 World Series winning Red Sox

When you are the Toronto Blue Jays, in particular AA, you see an organization being flooded by young, high upside, arms that will be used at the MLB level by the Jays as they develop and/or some will be used as trade pieces to bring in position-player assets...further to that there will also be young arms used as back-fill when the Marcum's/Cecil's/Morrow's etc get too expensive and are better as trade chips...with all that said we see the coach of this young team needs to have player development experience - experience with young talent - experience as a big-time and successful pitching coach at the MLB level to bring along this young and talented pitching staff...Farrell gets a check mark in all those areas

John Farrell is a baseball man...he has 3 children...all male...all baseball stars...Luke pitches for Northwestern...Shane is a pitcher at Marshall (Marshall Thundering Herd where Randy Moss and Chad Pennington went)...Jeremy is an infielder in the Pittsburgh organization

AA introducing new Manager John Farrell
 On October 25, 2010 Farrel was named as the 10th Manager in the history of this franchise...he is the 8th to make his MLB managing debut with the Jays...only Bobby Cox (1978-1981 Atlanta) and Jim Fregosi (1,800 previous games with Philly/White Sox/Angels) joined the Jays as Manager with previous Manager experience...

The fact that Paul Beeston and AA like Farrell enough to put him in charge of the on-field product is certainly good enough for me, but I was also extremely excited to hear the praise Manny Ramirez has for Farrell...including the fact that he believes that John Farrell "trains ballplayers"...music to my ears as there is a ton of high-upside talent in this organization and Farrell looks like the guy to lead us going forward