12 January 2016

2013 SEGA Card-Gen Extravaganza 15: Toronto Blue Jays

It's been months and months since I added a team to this series. I started this series of posts way back in May 2014 after I found a complete 2013 SEGA Card-Gen set on eBay. I still love these cards, but they might not be as fresh and exciting to my readers as they were way back then. Let's close out the AL portion of the set with the Toronto Blue Jays. After today it will be all NL teams. At my current pace I will finish the series on 06 September 2017. The Blue Jays get 15 cards in their team set, which is 2 more than the 13 per team average across the entire 390-card set.

The team set starts out with catcher J.P. Arencibia. He had a rough 2013, both on and off the field. He had such a rough time that he closed his Twitter account. After the Jays released him he spent 2014 and 2015 bouncing around a bit. Most recently he signed on with the Phillies' minor league system.

Emilio Bonifacio came to the Blue Jays in the big trade with the Marlins, which is why it seems like half the guys in this team set are wearing Miami uniforms. He got traded to the Royals partway through the 2013 season and subsequently has been with the Cubs, Braves, White Sox, Cubs, and Braves in a series of trades, releases, and signings. Not a lot of job security, but Baseball Reference says he's made $11.545 million so far in his career. I'm sure that makes up for some of the inconvenience.

Lawrie got traded to the Athletics in the Josh Donaldson deal. Donaldson went on to an MVP season in 2015. Lawrie was serviceable and then got traded last month to the White Sox in exchange for prospects.

Jose Reyes was traded to the Rockies in the Troy Tulowitzki deal in 2015, a move he was publicly unhappy with, then he got arrested in the off-season for a domestic dispute with his wife. I used to kind of like pulling his cards, but now I just consider him a lousy wife-beater.

Melky Cabrera signed with the Blue Jays for 2013 after coming off his 50-game suspension for PED usage. A friend of his tried to help him talk his way out of the charges by building a fake website and proclaiming that Cabrera had unknowingly purchased supplements from the site. The site was traced back to Cabrera and he admitted guilt. He played two years with the Blue Jays and then got paid by the White Sox.

Colby Rasmus played a decent role in the Astros big run in 2015. Then he made history by becoming the first player ever to accept a qualifying offer in the 2015 off-season. He's had a bit of a roller-coaster career, but overall has played well. I think the knock on him has often been chemistry in the locker room, something he seems to have fixed with Houston. His hair always seems more wet than it should be. I should probably look into starting a Rasmus PC, but I've probably got too much other stuff going on right now. He's also not a guy who makes it onto a lot of checklists, because he's not really a hot prospect or a star. Those days passed a while back, probably while he was still with the Cardinals.

Now we're getting into the real meat of this team set, with star bat-flipper and home run hitter Jose Bautista. I would PC his cards, but I can't afford them. He's sporting a nice blue glove in the photo, and a nice 8-star rating on his card.

Edwin Encarnacion is another elite hitter to round out the batters in the team set. Four of the top fifteen AL MVP finalists were Blue Jays in 2015, with Encarnacion (12th) coming in behind Donaldson (1st), Bautista (8th), and David Price (9th).

R.A. Dickey is my favorite player, although his star has fallen quite a bit since his 2012 Cy Young season with the Mets. He still goes through periods when his knuckleball is dancing and his numbers are elite, but he also is prone to getting shelled from time to time.

Josh Johnson didn't really work out with the Blue Jays. He has spent the 2014 and 2015 seasons in the Padres organization, mostly working on recovering from his 2nd and 3rd Tommy John surgeries. He's already been ruled out for the 2016 season. I guess he's still in his early 30's and could still come back, but after a certain number of arm injuries I would think you'd just call it a career and be done with it.

Mark Buehrle has had a pretty good career to this point, with a couple of no-hitters (one of them a perfect game) and many years as a consistent innings-eater. He was left off the Blue Jays' 2015 postseason roster and to my knowledge hasn't decided if he'll come back in 2016.

Romero pitched 7.1 innings in 2013 and hasn't been able to put anything together since, struggling through minor league stints in the Blue Jays' and Giants' minor league systems.

Morrow followed up a pretty good 2012 with some mediocre pitching in 2013 and 2014 for Toronto. After signing with the Padres he had a good start to 2015 but wound up on the DL after 5 starts and needed surgery on his shoulder. He got a minor league deal with an invitation to spring training for 2016.

Luis Perez pitched 5 innings in 2013 after coming back from an injury. He has battled injuries on various minor league deals since then, most recently signing a deal with the Blue Jays again with a 2016 spring training invitation.

Casey Janssen was the Blue Jays closer for most of 2013 and 2014, although he had plenty of struggles in the role. He signed with the Washington Nationals for 2015 and pitched in their bullpen for most of the season with mixed results. He doesn't currently have a contract in place for 2016.

It's amazing to me how much the league changes in just a couple of years. This set is still only a couple of years old and it seems like nearly every player has had some kind of significant career change, whether it is a move to another team (or three), a change in career trajectory, legal trouble, or injury. This wraps up the AL portion of the set. I am hoping that it won't take me until mid-2017 to get through the NL teams. I think my current average in this series is about one post every 40 days. I should be able to beat that. I already have the next several teams scanned, but I need to separate and crop all the photos. I don't really need to do the write-ups on the players, either, but I feel like I need to put something in between the pictures and I have a little bit of fun looking up each player and getting a snapshot of their career.

1 comment:

  1. The really cool thing about that Melky is that he's wearing a throwback uni of the New York Giants in the picture.

    Joey Bats and Mark Buehrle represent some of the better photographs in this team set and the Edwin Encarnacion is one of the few that I can remember where he's in his parrot on my arm pose.