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Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Retire A Blue Jay? I don't think so.

Roy Halladay was a great pitcher for the Toronto Blue Jays and a model citizen. Nobody would ever take that away from him. We all understood why he wanted to leave. He wanted to win the World Series and with the team the Blue Jays had constructed, that wasn't going to happen in the 4 or 5 years he had left to be what Roy Halladay was.

What was he? He was the most dominant pitcher of his era. At his best, he was unhittable. At less than his best he was as good as anybody. He had all the pitches. The better than average fastball and an assorted mix of other pitches which he could literally put where he wanted when he wanted.
But more than anything, he wanted to win. He burned to win. He prepared and trained for every day like few we have seen before him. When A J Burnett came to the Blue Jays, he said he learned what it took to be as good as he could be by watching Roy. Shaun Marcum became what he became because he copied Roy.
It wasn't about the money with Roy. He would have gotten his money from the Jays if he wanted it. No, he wanted out. 
So, he got his wish. They traded him for a bunch of prospects that seem to not be turning out that well. It happens. Potential is a crap shoot at best most days.
Halladay went to the Phillies and he delivered exactly what they expected for 3 or 4 years. He carried that staff. 
But like any player, a time comes when you don't have it anymore. Last year it was clear that Halladay was done. He was getting beaten up just about every start. Even his wily veteran experience couldn't carry his dead arm. 
And now comes the time that every player must face. The end. Time to retire. Roy isn't lingering. Good for him. He knows he is done. He could never really be competitive on the level he wants to be at this point. 
So, he is retiring.

But, instead of just hanging it up, he is signing a one day contract so he can retire a Blue Jay.
I love Roy, as I said. But frankly, that is total bullshit. If he wanted to retire a Blue Jay, he should have stuck it out. Like Ernie Banks did with a Cubs team that was never going to win.
Nope. Roy wanted to win and went elsewhere. I will never hold that against him. He made his choice and it is one I might have made as well. But now that he is done, he is done. He doesn't get to retire as a Blue Jay. He is a Phillie. That is the choice he made. 

When someone abandons your sinking ship, he doesn't get to come back and sail on it when you fix it up. That isn't how it works. Not in my world.
Roy made his choice. He should retire a Phillie. Or just retire. But he is not a Blue Jay. He was a Blue Jay. He abandoned ship long ago.

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