Tagged: Roy Halladay

Zippy Gives Jays a Decent Start

In times like these, it is important to stay positive.  Some wise person said that … probably Yoda, or the Lord of the Rings Wizard guy.  The Jays were definately outmatched in this past series versus the Yankees.  They were close and hard-fought games, where theZippy.jpg Jays could take away a number of ‘small victories,’ if not victories that actually show up in the standings. 

Marc Rzepcynski, pronounced (Zip-Chin-Ski) if you were wondering, gave the Jays a decent start against a very potent lineup that did the same amount of damage against elite Jays pitcher Roy Halladay.  Impressed with Rzepcynski’s mound presence, 3 quality pitches from the left side and command, Rzepcynski earned himself a nickmane in my long list of MLB nicknames (idea for a future post!),  Zippy.  Zippy might be the most clever thing I’ve thought of in while. lol. Not Really.  For one thing, it is easier to say than his full last name, and for another, it can help other casual fans avoid the mental aggrevation of trying to concoct a word out of those oddly sequenced letters.

So, positive start for Zippy, I’m very impressed with what I’ve seen from the young pitcher so far.  Jays lose two games to the Yanks.  Bummer, but they were hard-fought games and I like our chances in our next series coming up against the Orioles of Baltimore. 

Joe Carter Called Me!  Me!

Friday night kicks off the ’92-’93 World Series Champion reunion series against the O’s.  I will be in attendance for the Friday game, I believe?  Today, I got an odd phone call from acarter copy.jpg (416) Toronto number during my Timmie Hortons coffee and a donut break at work.  Who was it?  None other than Joe Carter on a pre-recorded message personally inviting me to game on Friday!  I said to the electronic device “Joe!  Your callin me?  I lov .. think you were a good player 🙂 … you can count me in!”  I also thought since Carter invited me to an event, maybe I can invite him to dinner or something one day?  We could have some great ‘Jays talk’ over a steak or something?  Carter looks like the kind of guy that enjoys a good steak.  To me at least.  We will see if I can get a little ‘bromance‘ with Joe Carter after this?  I still can’t believe he called me, even if that wasn’t really him.                     

Scott the Red, Holding Firm on Doc

Scott Rolen was having a fantastic season as a Jay in 2009.  As mentioned in previous posts, he made some necessary adjustments to his approach at the plate and became more of a contact hitter.  The result was a steady .320 average, and a 28 game hitting streakRock copy copy.jpg mid-season.

Rolen was a true professional, and he will be missed in Toronto.  Especially the hilarious commerical during Jays games where Rolen is at a drive through window ordering a burger.

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Well, you always have to give value, to get value and I believe the Jays were able to do that this trade deadline.  In the deal the Jays were able to acquire third baseman Edwin Encarnacion, relief pitcher Josh Roenicke, and relief/starting pitching prospect Zach Stewart

Aquiring Edwin Encarnacion in the deal is a little bit of a risk.  We don’t know what we are going to get from this guy??  He had very good year at the plate last season, but 2009 has seen Edwin hampered by injury and struggling at the dish.  Defensively the Jays will definately take a hit, as Encarnacion cannot ‘hold a candle’ to perennial Gold-Glove candidate Scott Rolen.  With this deal, the Jays make third base possibly a problem area in the future.  I don’t think anyone is envisioning Encarnacion in our long-term future … right now at least. 

Roenicke is a young hard throwing reliever that could be inserted into the Jays pen ASAP.  With closing issues, set-up issues and overall wear and tear on the pen this season, Roenicke will provide some needed depth to the pen.  Who knows?  He could even step up to the closer role at some point???

Zach Stewart is another hard throwing youngster.  It is always nice to see the Jays aquire a young player that has succeeded everywhere he has played in the minors!  Stewart sports a 1.67 ERA at three minor league levels this year.  He relieved 9 games in AAA, and managed to pitch at a 0.79 ERA clip, getting a couple of 2 inning saves.  Stewart also started 14 games at the between class A and AA this season, doing very well in those starts.  Sources say the Jays may be primarily looking at him as a starter.  Starter or reliever, Stewart looks to be a valuable asset for the Jays moving forward.

Quite frankly, I can’t wait to see the young, hard-chucking Texas boy pitch!!  Yee-Haw!  Sorry, I sometimes spontaneously combust over new New Blue Jay talent.

I will miss Scott ‘the rock,’ but I’m glad the Jays made this deal.  At least it is something! 

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Come 2010, we will see where we are in terms of the standings, and replay this Halladay thing all over again.  Blah!  I know you all can’t wait. 

All sources indicated that we could only get ‘one’ solid prospect out of a Halladay trade.  J.P. Ricciardi was looking for much more than that, and Halladay deserved much more that in my opinion.

With the offers that were apparently presented to us, I don’t see why we couldn’t get similar offers next season?  The Jays were only getting presented with one legitimate guy, and a couple of low-to-mid level prospects.  No doubt, we would get the same next season in Halladay’s contract year.  We will see in 2010, barring any Blue Jay playoff run.  What Doc will command in 2010?  He will at least be worth ‘one’ good prospect next season.  Mark my words!  Mark’em.   

I’m on J.P.’s side with this Rolen deal, and holding firm on Halladay … On the Record.        
         

Deadline … Exactly Dead!

Apparently Roy Halladay trade talks have died down.  It is looking less, and less, likely that Halladay will be traded this season.  You could have fooled me weeks ago?  I ask how and why did things unfolded like this?  I have never seen so much hype over the possibility of a player being traded than what we saw this year with Halladay this July. 

There was a different story about it everyday in local papers, it got other contending markets buzzing and the All-Star Game was consumed with ‘talk about the Doc.’  Don’t get me wrong, I liked all the attention placed on my favorite player – a player who I consider the best pitcher in the game.  However, don’t you feel fooled and cheated now that nothing is likely to happen in terms of a trade?  All that talk, speculation, hype, talk etc… for possibly nothing!

Feeling cheated yet?  I certainly do.  Halladay sure got us all talking though.  Didn’t it?  Maybe that was the purpose of the whole thing?  J.P. might just have fed the media a plate without any dinner, so to speak?

There is always the offseason for a deal to be done.  I personally would like to see Doc play out his contract in 2010 and see if the Jays can do something that year.  I realize that he will likely leave to play for winner.  The Jays are backed up with so much contractual problems in the future that acquiring prospects might not yield any reward until those players are able to play out their terms. 

I find it hard to believe though, that the Jays will not make any noise at the dealine at all!  We have to do a little tweeking, I believe.  Right now, I’m just enjoying the fact that Halladay will be with the Jays for a while longer .. at least.  I want to see him notch another 20 win season as a Jay, while leading the league in complete games once again!  He is the simply best! 

I don’t see how any team would not give their teeth to get him??????

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MATT HOLLIDAY!!!!! Man, Halladay is a different story

In case you were wondering about the over use of CAPS and the exclaimation marks, Matt Holliday was traded to the St. Louis Cardinals today for promising thrid base prospect Brett Wallace.  What relevance does this have to a Toronto Blue Jay fan?? 

None whatsoever, but it stop some ill informed people from calling in to a Toronto sports radio station and asking, “Who did we get for him?”  Obviously confusing Holliday with Halladay.

There you have the Toronto baseball fan.  Always great comedy.  

I’m suddenly growing a very bleak outlook on the Jays future.  With or without Halladay that is.  Recanting on what I posted earlier, trading Halladay is not as BIG MISTAKE of a mistake as I put it earlier considering Halladay will likely leave in 2010 if he Jays aren’t competing.  I personally don’t see them competing in 2010, so we pretty much have to pull the trigger on this deal.  Extremely sad to say, but true.  A bitter, bitter truth that is.  I would have liked them to hold onto the Doctor for that year, but now that all this has started in the media – there in no turning back.  It is obvious that these trade rumours will not stop until a deal is done.   

Oh well, I missed my chance to see the Jays in the playoffs when I was 12 years old.  What I didn’t know is that I’d still be waiting till I was 27 to see it happen!  With Halladay being traded, no doubt that I’ll be waiting past my 30th birthday to see October baseball again in Toronto.

Wasn’t it untill last year that the Yankees lost the A.L. East for the first time in 13 years???  Awwwww … poor babies!!!  

Should have played this whole thing cooler J.P.  That is all I have to say to him.  

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Time to Tone it Down a Bit on Halladay

Yes, the Jays are listening to trade offers for Roy Halladay.  We established that weeks ago.  How does Halladay feel about the whole situation?  He eventually wants to play for a winner, but it is out of his hands.  Leave the guy alone!  If a trade happens, then it happens.  If it doesn’t, we get to keep an under-appreciated future Hall of Fame canitidate.  I’d be fine with that.  I know that this story is huge all around baseball, and the media is just doing their job being overly annoying about the whole situation, but I ask myself this question:  Is this the way we want Halladay to leave Toronto?   Being bombarded by roomers, speculation, and pointless questions about the Jays parting with him???  We have to celebrate him for the pitcher that he is a little more, and not get SO giddy about the prospects of him leaving!     

Around the All-Star break, Halladay said it was a ’50-50′ percentage of him being a traded or not. It then moved to 60-40, depending on who you read.  The percentages have gone crazy now!  This is not poker.

This is a big story that will not go away.  The Jays winning this year
was supposed to be the story – after an amazing early start to the
season.  It seems that to show their disappointment in ’09 not working
out for the Jays – the media has attacked this Halladay story
like a raging ‘pitbull.’  Now Halladay has to be traded, or it will just be a
gigantic waste of writing, talking, broadcasting etc … you name it!  
 

I am not fully against trading Halladay, although I believe it will be a mistake – I realize that the Jays are in a tough situation with a player of his value, and we are a team in shambles trying to compete.  However, it will really pain me to see him go, and it will a lot of Blue Jay fans.  The sheer joy I get out of watching him pitch, in a Blue Jay uniform, has kept me a ‘diehard’ fan in throughout my young adulthood.    

Halladay has been nothing but a class act, a hard-working pitcher, an intense leader and role model for not only young players on the Blue Jays club, but young baseball fans in Canada.  To me, he is the greatest Blue Jay that EVER put on the uniform!  The intensity with which he pitches, and the constant inner desire to master his craft shows shades of Ted Williams.  His humble generousity reminds me Lou Gerhig.  When all is said and done, it is my strong opinion that Halladay will be displayed in a Hall among the greatest to play the game.  It is overwhelmingly apparent – watching him play – that Halladay has the presence of a baseball ledgend.  I know that I will talk about him fondly, and frequently, to my future kids … grandkids, lol (might be getting a bit ahead of myself). 

If this is truly it for Roy Halladay in Toronto?  All I will be thinking about is the way he played in a Jays uniform, the player he was and the lifelong impression he made on me as lifetime Blue Jay fan.  Everthing else seems pointless.

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A Buc, a Broken Jay and a Grad

For obvious reasons, this site has quickly swung into a weekly (sometimes bi-weekly) talk strictly about Roy Halladay.  Those obvious reasons being that Roy Halladay is the greatest alive! 

To my dismay, however, on Friday night I was in attendance for the start where the Jays ‘star pitcher’ came out early with a groin injury.  The extent of this injury is stilll unknown.  Being in attendance, at the moment I saw Halladay come out of the game, I did freak out a little probably scaring some of the people around me in attendance.  I hope this injury is not severe, as the whole Jays season flashed before my eyes, along with Halladay’s hopeful Cy Young season. 

Other than the Halladay injury, the whole night did not go as planned.  The Jays were supposed to win and I was supposed to be in a jubulant mood celebrating a Friday night in the streets of Toronto.  Didn’t happen, funny how the Jays losing puts a bummer on things.  Cody Ross hits a grand slam off Brandon ‘wild thing’ League in the 8th inning. 

Oh well, hopefully Halladay will ‘live to play another day’ … being listed as day-to-day.  Zing!!  Sorry, I’m mad.  Not actually mad.  I mean it in the way British people mean it.

Here is an action shot from my seats with Ricky Nolasco battling Aaron Hill.

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In other news ….

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I finally graduated from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ont!  That was a long 6 years … with some breaks inbetween.  To personally honour the occasion, I made love to a Cuban cigar in a non-habit forming ritual.  Special thanks to all of you on the MLBlogs site that helped me take a break from 9-hour essay sessions at my computer.  Part of my degree is yours, but don’t hold me to that.

Photoshop design became one of the many things I picked up in school, and today I have another MLBlog to card to showcase. 

Arrrrrrrrr!  We go to another University student that currently goes WVU.  His name is Matthew Peaslee and he runs a very fun Pittsburgh Pirates blog.  You can currently visit his site, The Pittsburgh Peas, and read about the parties in Pitt following the Stanley Cup that the Pittsburgh Penguins have just brought to his town.

Although Matthew’s team has been struggling since the early 90’s, and much of the 80’s, he can always reflect on the ‘We are Family‘ years with Willie Stargell and for a time Roberto Clemente (the man that was ‘bigger than baseball’).  Similar to the way I reflect on the Jays of the early 90’s.  Anyway, Matthew I hope you like the card.  Contact me if you would like me to make prints?  I’m still working on getting them.

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Roy Halladay = Cy Young divided by Zach Greinke and Cliff Lee

A couple days after the Blue Jays shelacked Roy Halladay‘s early Cy Young competition, Kansas City Royals ace Zach Greinke, Halladay showed a struggling Kansas City team what a Cy Young is really made of.  Halladay lead the Jays to a 4-0 win in a complete game shutout. More impressive is the fact that we are barely past two months into the 2009 season, and Halladay already has 10 wins.

Greinke, on the other hand, has 8 wins.  The 5 earned runs he allowed off Toronto bats put Halladay right with Greinke, I’d argue, in terms of ‘Cy Young consideration.’  Greinke still maintains a ridiculously low ERA, at 1.55, but Halladay is now inching a bit closer with a very respectable 2.52 ERA. 

It is commonly known that everyone looks at ERA and Win/Loss record in consideration for the Cy Young, above anything else.  This was evident in the Roy Halladay/Cliff Lee Cy Young vote last year.  Halladay was far superior to Lee in strikeouts, innings pitched, complete games and WHIP, but none of that was taken into consideration, as Lee won the vote by a considerable margin based on his 22-3 record and 2.54 ERA.  Great numbers yes!  However, if you look at what Halladay did last year in those other catergories, you might think twice about the selection of Lee, not to mention the lack of run support Halladay got from a weak hitting Jays team last year.   

This year Halladay is off a roaring start in terms of maintaining a great ERA and Win/Loss record.  He really should have 12 wins, being let down by the Blue Jays bats twice during a 9-game-losing streak the Jays suffered coninciding with Halladay starts in Baltimore and Atlanta, but I digress.

Considering how Halladay can pile up wins – often completing the games he pitches – I don’t see any reason why he couldn’t win 25 games this season?  In 1892, Cy Young won 36 games in a season, and completed 48 of his starts, so Young obviously likes pitchers that win a lot of games and complete them.

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He is my Favorite Player

Roy Halladay I am falling in love with you.  Wait!  I mean you are really good baseball player.  I mean I’m in love with you as a baseball player.  Alright, alright … I just needed something to get your attention.

I know Roy Halladay.  Although I’ve never actually met him, I know that Halladay is not really a premier strikeout pitcher.  However, Monday night Roy Halladay struckout 14 en route to a 6-4 Blue Jay win over the Angels at Rogers Centre.

The way that ‘Doc’ usually cuts and sinks the ball, he often gets the more majority of his outs pitching contact.  Tonight was different.  Halladay had his stuff working impecably, catching a great number of Angels looking at strike three.

If you don’t get to watch Halladay pitch on consistant basis, you are really missing something!  Let me tell you … it is something special to watch him pitch!  If Halladay comes to your town?  BUY THOSE TICKETS!  You don’t even have to be a Jays fan, just a baseball fan.  Is Halladay a ‘surefire’ Hall of Famer yet?  Probably not, but if he keeps this up throughRoy copy.jpg his prime?  He definately will be – and wouldn’t you rather see him at this point in his career than after he has aged a little???     

The man simply ‘brings it’ every night he pitches!   He goes right after hitters with moving fastballs that he knows are difficult to hit, he wants to complete every game until he is sure the Jays have won and the intensity he displays on the mound is unmatched by any PLAYER I ever seen play the game – or any player I’ve seen play any ANY GAME for that matter!  Halladay controls and (baseball term) commands his pitches, like he controls and (not a baseball term) commands the game.  More often than not, you will see a masterpiece on the mound.  Tonight ‘Doc’ achieved a career high in strikeouts with 14.  It makes me proud to be a fan of him everytime someone enquires about “how good he is, and how much they would want him on their team!”   

What else can you say about Halladay??  A leader … Yes!  A winner … Yes (best winning percentage in baseball for a pitcher over the past 5 years or so).  Other than that, it has been an honour and a privledge to him pitch for the last 11 years.  I didn’t see his very first start, but I remember second one.  Most Blue Jay fans don’t forget the near no-hitter that was broken up Bobby Higginson of Tigers on the last game of the season.           

‘The Cito Effect’ in Full Effect

The Blue Jays have gotten out to an amazing start this season on the backs of a strong and surprising offensive output.  Adam Lind leads the league in RBI’s at this point, and the Jays have hit the most homeruns in the majors to this point.  Who would have thunked it???  Go Blue Jays!  I’m a homer, I’ll admit it! 

The pitching has, for most part, been solid behind a stellar bullpen.  With the exception of Brandon League and B.J. Ryan, the other notables in the pen (i.e. Scott Downs, Jesse Carleson, Brian Tallet and Jason Frasor) have picked up where they left off last season as one of the best pen’s in the league.  The starting pitching has surprising held their own despite some very high doubts coming into the season.  Newcomers Ricky Romero and Scott Richmond both got wins in their starts, and Roy Halladay has started the season 2-0, with a win over 2008 questionable Cy Young choice Cliff Lee in Cleveland the other night. 

Going into the opening week series against Detroit I got to opportunity to meet one of the better bloggers on MLB.  The famous ‘Happy Youngster,’ a guy that has made somewhat of a name for himself catching balls in Milwaukee.  He got 5 balls in Toronto, as the empty batting practice crowd gave him many opporitunities. 

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I wore my Paul Molitor Brewers jersey to honour a great Brewer/Blue Jay that spent so many years in Milwaukee and had a couple very valuable years in Toronto for a Blue Jay World Championship team in 1993. 

After the game, me, Happy and my friend Charles took to Alice Fazooli’s (a nice restaurant near the Rogers Centre) on Adelaide Street in Toronto.  (Bam!  I want money!)  We had a good time talking baseball, among other things.  The highlights of the conversation included: border security, Teddy Higuera, the future fantasy value of Alicdes Escobar, Molitor and baseball’s caught during games.  Charles showed his amazing baseball knowledge, and shared his story about the only time he got a ball at game.  It was such a big moment for him; however, he unfortunately was obligated to give the ball he caught to a young man sitting near him.  That is just one of those moments where you have to ‘suck it up.’  I’m sure he will get another one.  My first ball was a foul ball hit off catcher Joe Oliver’s (then a Brewer) bat, pitched by Cleveland Indian Denis ‘El Presidente’ Martinez on a trip me and my dad took to Cleveland.  I’ll never forget it, as there was a man next to me resentful that I caught it because he said he’d been going to Indian games for years and never a had a shot at catching a ball.

Other than that, the Blue Jays played absolutely amazing in the first two games of the season.  Both games I was in attendence.  Here are some photo highlights of those games.

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Although Halladay didn’t pitch particularly well on Opening Day, he did get himself a win.  Thus, here I am pointing to my Halladay jersey indicating that indeed – he is the man!!

 

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I find it amusing that between pitching changes out three outfielders Vernon Wells, Travis Snider and Alex Rios observe the crowd.  They try to get some amusment over a long and somewhat boring pitching change I guess. 

 
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You’ll notice in the corner of the outfield a bunch of paper airplanes.  Opening day saw a lot those thrown on the field as usual, but a new one came out that I’ve never seen before: BASEBALLS!  Some very disrespectful dummies through baseballs onto the field and almost caused the Jays to forfeit the game.  They almost ruined my entire trip in the process.  Sometimes those Toronto fans, if you can even call them fans, get on my nerves.  Jim Leyland took his team off the field.  You can’t blame him at all for doing it.  You also can’t blame team President Paul Beeston for banning beer sales at the last game.  It is just a very bad situation if you are a Jays fan.  I hope this kind of thing stops, it makes me embarrassed.               

2008 ‘We’re Talkin’ Season Design Gallery

Recaping the season that past on my blog, here is the design gallery that I posted in the previous year.  As the 2009 season approaches, hopefully some design ideas will approach as well.  Hope you enjoy the gallery.  I will start with my favorite piece of 2008. 

 

Mechanics in Motion

 

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WMDr.

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A Rough MLB Morning


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I started my Halladay by heading straight to the Escobar to get a Carmona.  The Kapler was not a twist HoffmanEthier I use my teeth, or the Leiter in my back pocket.

One Carmona, two Carmona, three Carmona four.  Youkilus, Youkilus!  I Doumit on the floor.  No Mora!  No Mora!   Soon, I was Gagne all night.  I woke up on Huston, Street in Rios de Janernos.  Hunter Byrds were circling my body.  Ahh, Inge!!!  How did I get that Saltalamacchia’d off only four Carmonas?  What a J.J. Putz, I am!

 

Tribute To Blue Jay Dominicana

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That Bird Could Catch

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Brought His Playoff Timber to Philly

 

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That Gold Moment

 

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Billboard Ad Supposing My Dream of the Jays Making the Playoffs Again

 

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Have You Seen the Ghost of Scutaro

 

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Don’t Remember Me

 

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King Kelly Did This In a Game

 

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He Has That Effect on People

 

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The Blue Jay Warriors of Lake Ontario

 

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The Fire … The Peach

 

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My Blue Jay Cards

 

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My Blue Jay Cards Gone Crazy

 

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The A.L. East 2008

 

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We’re Talkin My Blog Ad

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As I continue grow with my designs, these should get better.  I’ve learn a lot over this past year.  It has been a great year, and now I’m ready for a new one!  Thank you everyone for the support.  Bring on April!  Go Jays!  Had to get that in there.