Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-US PRESSWIRE
I wrote an article a few weeks ago arguing that the Jays did not have to try and win NOW. I stand behind the sentiment behind that article. When surveying the field, I did not believe that the risks associated with filling the team’s holes (starting pitching, 2nd base, left field, DH, catcher) were worth the costs (massive expenditures on free agency or giving up a significant portion of our minor league prospects) and that the pressure for a win-now move was misguided. I still believe that.
What I did not know was that AA had an offer to fill most of our holes in one fell swoop by picking up half of the Miami Marlins talent without giving up the core of our minor league talent. The Jays did take on a large amount of salary. The Jays did give up two prospects in Marisnick and Nicolino that may, may, blossom into all-star talents in the future. But, the risks in this trade were well worth pulling the trigger. Overnight the Jays turned into a contender in a weakening AL East without jeopardizing the future.
AA took a mighty big swing. Before we find out whether he knocked it out of the park or not, we should recognize that it was the right pitch to swing at. In my previous article, I wasn’t trying to argue that the Jays shouldn’t make major moves in order to win, but that they had to be the right moves. If they right moves weren’t available, then I didn’t think a 100 million contract for Anibal Sanchez or the pressure trying to force it were going to move the team forward.
With the trade and now Cabrera signed the Jays are avoiding sinking their future into over-priced free agents to fill the holes on the team. With that said, I’d be lying if I ignored my greed for moving the chips all in and signing Zach Greinke, Brandon McCarthy, and Johnny Gomes. Unrealistic indeed. What I can say, is that I am excited to see where AA moves next.