2012 Blue Jays: Jose Bautista, Colby Rasmus, Anthony Gose

17 02 2013

The obvious question about Jose Bautista going into 2013 is whether his wrist is completely healed. In my gloomier moments, I can’t help but think that the clock has struck midnight, the beautiful carriage has turned back into mice and a pumpkin, and Jose Cinderella has turned back into a fringe player again, struggling with inside fastballs and with trying to keep his average above .200. Stories sometimes have happy endings, and sometimes they don’t.

Colby Rasmus is the baseball equivalent of Winston Churchill’s Russia: he’s a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma. His numbers in a Jays uniform are mostly bad, but he has shown flashes of possibly becoming a center fielder with power, kind of like the young Vernon Wells. This leaves the Jays with a difficult decision. If he were always bad, the Jays could go and find somebody else, or unleash Anthony Gose. But they can’t give up on Rasmus until they know for sure that he is never going to achieve his considerable potential. So all they can do is wait and hope.

Anthony Gose is just one step away from being a truly great player. Unfortunately, that step is the hardest one: learning to hit consistently for average. The worrisome possibility is that Gose is never going to learn how to do that. He’s got everything else: he runs faster than almost anyone who has worn a Jays uniform, he has a tremendous throwing arm, he can hit for power every now and again, and he covers an enormous amount of ground in center field. But I can’t help thinking that a baseball player who can do everything except hit is like a swimmer who can do everything except stay afloat in the water.

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