April 1, 2013; Oakland, CA, USA; Oakland Athletics starting pitcher Brett Anderson (49) pitches the ball against the Seattle Mariners during the first inning at O.co Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports

Are Blue Jays Looking At A Trade For A's Brett Anderson?

The Toronto Blue Jays will not leave any stone unturned this winter in their search to add quality starting pitching to their 2014 rotation. If there is a name on either the free agent or trade market, you can bet that Alex Anthopoulos will undoubtedly check in on it.

According to Susan Slusser of the San Francisco Chronicle, that includes kicking the tires on a possible trade for Oakland Athletics starter Brett Anderson.

The 25-year-old left-hander enters the 2014 offseason with a certain degree of uncertainty. The Athletics hold a $8 million option on the talented pitcher for 2014 and a $12 million option in 2015. However, what Oakland might not have is an opening in their rotation next season. With Jarrod Parker, A.J. Griffin, Dan Straily, and Sonny Gray all guaranteed roster spots next season, and impending free agent Bartolo Colon would like to return next season as well. That would leave Anderson as the odd man out, hence the trade talk.

Per Slusser, the Blue Jays had a scout monitoring Anderson at the end of the 2013 season and the team has long held interest in the left-hander. With that in mind, Oakland could feasibly pick up Anderson’s option and then deal the pitcher. Billy Beane, the A’s general manager, even indicated that he “thinks very highly of Brett”, which could be construed as code for, “the price will be high”.

That price may in the end be too high for the Blue Jays. Anderson has a reputation of being a very tough pitcher on the mound, as his stats below insinuate.

2009 11 11 4.06 30 175.1 180 94 79 20 45 150 108 1.283 2.3 7.7 3.33
2010 7 6 2.80 19 112.1 112 41 35 6 22 75 147 1.193 1.8 6.0 3.41
2011 3 6 4.00 13 83.1 86 40 37 8 25 61 101 1.332 2.7 6.6 2.44
2012 4 2 2.57 6 35.0 29 11 10 1 7 25 153 1.029 1.8 6.4 3.57
2013 1 4 6.04 16 44.2 51 32 30 5 21 46 62 1.612 4.2 9.3 2.19
5 Yrs 26 29 3.81 84 450.2 458 218 191 40 120 357 109 1.283 2.4 7.1 2.98
162 Game Avg. 11 13 3.81 36 195 198 94 83 17 52 155 109 1.283 2.4 7.1 2.98
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 10/17/2013.

However, there is a caveat in those stats. The trick to being tough on the mound is taking your turn on it every fifth day, something that Anderson has struggled with. In fact, health issues have kept the talented pitcher from throwing a full season’s workload each of the last four seasons. And let’s face facts, the Blue Jays have had their fair share of problems with pitchers taking their scheduled turns in the rotation over the last two seasons. That said, there may not be a good match here.

Would the Blue Jays really want to swing a deal of prospects to the A’s to pick up a pitcher who will just become another heavy weight on the rehab trail? I think I’ll leave that to astute tweeter ajdavis24 to respond to that question.

With that all said, Anderson is only 25-years-old and could feasibly make his way back. Still, for a team nursing the likes of Kyle Drabek, Drew Hutchison, and Ricky Romero‘s broken ego, there is likely a better option out there to spend on.

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  • RyanMueller

    I won’t do it, not for high level prospects. I would much rather give Cecil or Rogers another shot at the rotation before trading for another oft injured pitcher.

    • Kyle Franzoni

      Agreed, how do you justify adding another, albeit relatively inexpensive, injury reclamation project to a team that needs a sure thing?

    • Andrew van Laar

      Wow… barely cracked 100 IP in once in 4 years? I wouldn’t touch him in a trade.

  • Justin Jay

    I hope they don’t… that doesn’t help the depth at all. His injury history reminds me of that of Janssen’s. If the view on him is to be a starter, it doesn’t make sense. If it’s to be a relief pitcher, it still doesn’t make sense. I’m with RyanMueller. Let’s get a guy who is actually going to throw 190-230 innings and be somewhat effective in doing so. I think Cecil or Rogers could do it. Rogers especially, if he could be more consistent. I think Hentgen can get him there.

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