Mandatory Credit: Mark L. Baer-USA TODAY Sports
There has been a bit of light shone on Blue Jays land this afternoon. The clouds of playoff misery have spread just a bit to let this ray of sunshine in:
Blue Jay fans may be getting exactly what they’ve been screaming for over the last few weeks. After signing Melky Cabrera to a 2yr/ $16M deal and having the first year be a near write off, fans are over the moon about what they’ve seen this year. Melky has put together a wonderful season. It is on par with his 2012 All Satr year with San Francisco. Which leads to the speculation folks had regarding The MelkMan’s abilities. After a positive drug test, the Blue Jays weren’t really sure what they’d get from him.
“…the Blue Jays are hoping this qualifying offer leads to a long term deal”
As it turns out, being healthy and clean agrees with Cabrera. In 2014, he’s been one of, if not, THE most productive and consistent hitters the Blue Jays have. His defensive game is not elite, but it has been solid. Clearly the Blue Jays agree.
In fact, as Heyman goes on to say, they are so enamored with Melky “on and off the field” that they are willing to pay the between $15M and $16M (for one year) that the qualifying offer will command this year. Heyman points out that this is basically doubling his yearly salary. For one year of the production he has given this year, it seems a fair deal. Of course, this may seem like the obvious move. If Melky accepts, the Blue Jays retain his services for 2015. If he does not, the club gets a draft pick as compensation. But, then Melky risks remaining on the market forever (a la Stephen Drew) as teams may not want to forfeit said draft pick to sign him. It would appear the Blue Jays hold the upper hand in this situation.
But, the offer is not all the good news. It gets better. Heyman adds that the Blue Jays are hoping this qualifying offer leads to a long term deal. That makes a whole lot of sense considering Colby Rasmus is sure to depart and the club only has Anthony Gose and Kevin Pillar (with Dalton Pompey as an outside shot) to fill out the outfield. And, considering Melky has already stated that he wants to stay in Toronto, a long term pact just might work out.
The questions will be surrounding just how much to pay and for how long. The history of banned substances and his injury may come in to play. But, the good news is that it looks as though they will have a year to figure it out.