Two years ago, Russ Adams was ending what looked like the first of many seasons as our starting SS and leadoff man. It wasn’t a great season, but our team wasn’t so hot that year either. And compared to the black hole that we’ve had there for years, a guy who could hit .260 with a little pop, a lot of walks and a few stolen bases was positively intoxicating.
His defence was lacking, but the team was so sure he would continue to improve that they took the other SS we drafted in the first round and stashed him at second, even though Aaron Hill has a much better arm. Now that’s confidence!
Then he pulled a Knoblauch on us.
And couldn’t even hit any more.
Three months into last season the Jays had seen enough and he lost not only his spot with the club, but his position. This was no short term demotion to iron out some kinks, or to “find himself”. He was knocking the cover off the ball in AAA, but they didn’t even treat him like a prospect any more, and just kept him on the bench for most of the season gathering rust.
Then they signed Ray Olmedo, John McDonald, Jason Smith and Royce Clayton to make sure they had shored up the middle infield with mediocre players just to remove any chance that he could get another shot due to injuries. There were a few positive articles on him and Jerry Howarth shot his mouth off about him coming back in 2008, but all that J.P. would concede was that he could earn his way back to the club (i.e. BE BETTER).
At the all-star break this year, reported when Hill was(n’t really) injured that Russ would be recalled, but now that Royce has been given the axe, it’s Olmedo who is going to fill in around the infield and maybe play some SS as well.
Anyway, now that I’ve got you all hyped about the walking epic tragedy that is the career of Mr. Adams, go on over to Flying Through the Farm/The Jays Nest and read an absolutely superb, in depth analysis of his stats in AAA this year. God, they do good work over there.