TORONTO - On Wednesday, Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos went over who is "entrenched" on the team, and who isn't.
Among the "entrenched" are shortstop Yunel Escobar, catcher J.P. Arencibia, third baseman Brett Lawrie, right fielder Jose Bautista, centre fielder Colby Rasmus, and first baseman/DH Edwin Encarnacion.
The open spots are left field, second base (Kelly Johnson is a free agent) and "obviously the rotation is open too" the GM said.
No surprises there.
CENTRE OF ATTENTION
Rasmus has had a decidedly up-and-down season, but Anthopoulos is convinced that the 26-year-old remains a diamond in the rough
"Inconsistent," Anthopoulos said of Rasmus' season. "He's shown flashes of being great. He's had hot streaks. I think every player will go through streaks and slumps. He's been a little banged up, too, with his groin.
"If you look at what he's produced overall, I think he's had a good year. He has so much talent, he's capable of so many things."
"Can he do better? Absolutely, like a lot of our players can. But we've seen how great he can be when he does get hot."
Rasmus entered play Wednesday hitting .230 with 22 home runs and 72 RBIs.
OUT ON A LIMB
Adam Lind is on the endangered list. When asked about the Jays DH/1B, Anthopoulos didn't even bother to shower him with faint praise.
"Right now he's under contract for next year ($5 million) but I'd say at this point he certainly hasn't had the year that he's capable of and we were hoping to have," Anthopoulos said. "He had the half-season last year where he was outstanding (first half). The latter half of the season he didn't play well, and this season he's been hurt, he's been inconsistent. In terms of going forward, the off-season, starting jobs, things like that, I'm not prepared to make any determinations right now."
Does Lind need to win a job next year?
"I think it's fair to say that if we feel there's someone else that can do the job, we're not going to be afraid to do that if it's what makes the team better," Anthopoulos said. "We all know he has the ability. It hasn't come out the last few years.
"But I don't know if we can sit here and say this guy is going to be our cleanup hitter the following year. I just can't.
"The fact that he's been sent down once, it certainly points to the fact that if players don't produce, we'll make changes."