Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Brandon (Minor) League......Man or Mythological Creature Sent Here From the Pitching Underworlds to Shit All Over the Blue Jays Bull Pen?!

The legend of Brandon League lives on through the hearts and minds of misguided children everywhere, and by everywhere I actually mean the year 2006.

Drafted out of high school in 2001 by the Toronto Blue Jays, Brandon paid his dues pitching "effectively" in the Jays minor league system before making his official debut in 2004. Brandon League started off as an effective bullpen pitcher in the late running of the 2004 season showing the Toronto faithful that he had the stuff to become a regular in the Jays lineup. In 2005 he had a stint with the Jays which was pretty much worthy of a spot on a beer league roster somewhere in middle America. In an attempt to restore Jays fans faith in his pitching ability, Brandon broke out of his shell in 2006 where he had a 2.53 ERA over 42.2 innings pitched. Using a combination of the sinker, slider, and a dirty fast ball which topped out around 100mph, he was listed as one of the elite heater pitchers in the majors.

League had his breakout performance and career season in 2006, therefore 2007 has to be the year of Brandon League right? Que what many will agree to be Brandon (Minor) Leagues triumphant climb into the gutter of baseball... In 2007 League started a long haul on the DL, tearing ligaments in his shoulder he was placed on the 15 day DL then later to the 60 day DL beginning what would be a slow ride back to the bigs. In his 11 innings of the 2007 season, Brandon pitched a 6.17 ERA with a heater that most likely topped out at around 93, 94mph...... I can whip up a clubhouse sandwich with the works on it faster than that. Somehow this "hidden gem" (out of respect to his 2.18 ERA in 2008) was largely effective over his 33 innings pitched although nobody blows a lead like Brandon League. His numbers clearly overshadowed the fact that he gets a more than a little shaky with the game on the line. Shaky is an actual understatement.... Brandon League has blown more leads than a detective investigating the JFK assassination!

In his bouncy stint this year with the Blue Birds, League has been largely ineffective having been sent down to AAA Las Vegas a handful of times already. With his beautiful long flowing jet black hair, his bad ass tatt's, and his 93mph fast ball he's a force to be reckoned with.... in New Hampshire that is, playing for our AA Fisher Cats. Brandon League whom I have proudly dubbed "captain 9.00" and "Minor League" has spent more time in Las Vegas this year than your degenerate gambling uncle. This guy has more blows saves than a practice goaly in the NHL. He has given up more hits in the clutch than Steven Seagul on a cruise ship. League currently has in his possession a soft and cuddly 5.93 ERA and sits at 1 win, 3 losses and say about 22 bed shitting innings where he has either blown the lead, blown the save, or blown the game.

The fact of the matter is that Brandon Minor League is clearly detrimental to the Blue Jays roster and truly the least consistent pitcher on the staff. He's really become a fast ball pitcher without a fast ball. He's never been a strong placement pitcher and he's certainly no finesse pitcher. Brandon clearly no longer possesses the skill that ranked him among the best in 2006 and can't seem to find his grove or place his pitches at all. So why is it that we still have this bum? I know our pitching staff is presently a little worn down to say the least but why do we have to keep witnessing the painful sight of Brandon League entering the game in the 7th to blow it? We have many pitchers in our minor league system who could definitely use the experience. We have pitchers such as Hayhurst, Bullington, and Murphy... all of which can at the very least come out of an inning without giving up a no out Grand Slam in the 8th!

Not to knock on J.P.'s door too much here because for the most part I'm impressed with what he's done within the past couple years in T.O. but we should have dropped this loser at the beginning of the season.... surely by the All Star break this asshole needs to be dropped harder than I dropped grade 10 French class! I mean seriously..... hear me out! In 2006 Reed Johnson bats .319, he's among the top class in on base % and is hit by pitch more than anyone in the league. Reed herniates a disk in his back and misses half of the '07 campaign returning to the team ahead of schedule. Reed is by far the grittiest, most hardest working baseball player in the league but after having a painful and slightly unsuccessful half season in 2007 Johnson gets dropped in the spring of '08 to make room for the 72 year old Shannon Stewart who couldn't keep up that .287 career batting average if he was playing fucking tee ball! Sooo to sum this all up, we drop an amazing player (Reed Johnson) to keep a washed up Veteran (Shannon Stewart).... Brandon League is terrible but we'll keep him around so he can keep screwing us over..... what the FUCK?!?!!! Are we slowly becoming the Leafs here? I hear Lloyd Moseby and Candy Maldonado are looking to make a big come back J.P. what do you think?

I can't count how many games Brandon Minor League has blown for the Blue Jays and quite frankly I don't wish to because it makes me want to vomit! So far this year I have been in attendance for 3 blown leads by the "Lead Terminator", 2 of which came within the span of a week. He gives up 5 runs in less than an inning, a grand slam in the 8th without having even recording a single out. It has gotten to the point where Brandon League runs out to the mound and Bryan Floyd runs out the Skydome door. The age old heckle stands true in the case of old Captain 9.00.... "Get off your knees (League), you're blowing the game"!
P.s. J.P, you also need to get off your knees and for the love of God please stop asking John Ferguson Jr. for managerial advice!

Peace Out Ball Fans!