Jays not willing to part with Hoffman


According to recent reports within the industry, the Blue Jays were asked about including first round draft pick Jeff Hoffman in a trade for the Atlanta Braves outfielder Justin Upton this off-season. The Jays answer, similar to that in the Dan Duquette saga, was an unequivocal no.

As mentioned, this is the second time the young Jay has been involved in trade talks this off-season (that we know of) with this time representing the first transaction in a deal for on-field talent. This time it was a for a star, a player the Jays desperately could have used to improve the depth of the current outfield class in 2015.

With that said, the Jays were right to decline this trade.

Upton is a great player. At 27, he’s still young enough to make a difference down the road. Last season he produced 3.9 WAR with a .270/.342/.491 slash in his eighth season in professional baseball. His glaring flaw is his defence as he hasn’t posted a positive UZR score since 2011. If it were 2011 and this trade were presented, there would be no reason to not make this move.

With that said, Upton’s contract will have to be renewed at the end of the season. Given his recent success, it’s inconceivable to see him signing a deal with the Toronto Blue jays with a higher likelihood of him testing the free agent market next off-season.

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Thus, the trade decision is summed up with one simple question: Would you trade Jeff Hoffman for year of control of Justin Upton? Even with the current, “winning window” argument, it wouldn’t make much sense to give up years of control of a possible ace for a player who may or may not provide an upgrade for the duration of one season.

Given the amount of teams who have asked about Hoffman, it’s not hard to venture that the Jays really have something here in the young pitcher. It should be seen as a great organizational move that the Jays didn’t put today’s needs before tomorrow’s in this proposed trade.