Blue Jays Trade Deadline: Learning from Past Deals

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Mar 1, 2015; Dunedin, FL, USA; Toronto Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos watches during spring training workouts at Bobby Mattick Training Center. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

So much has been written and talked about with regards to the Toronto Blue Jays’ possible run at the playoffs in 2015. What will they do heading into the July 31st Trade Deadline? There are certainly lots of ideas out there. Will they chase Johnn Cueto? Cole Hamels? Or, will they dial back their targets in favor of keeping their coveted prospects? Perhaps, they will look back on past deals in an attempt to glean some kind of insight that might help them make their decision.

There are 3 obvious examples of the Blue Jays heading into the Trade Deadline with a goal in mind. That goal was to make an attempt at winning. They were in the chase of a playoff spot and needed to make a decision and on a move that would help propel them forward. Two of those three times it paid off.

Toronto Blue Jays
Toronto Blue Jays /

Toronto Blue Jays

In 1992, the Blue Jays traded for the rental of David Cone. The move can be said to have worked since it resulted in the first World Series championship this country has ever know. In 1993, the club made a move to bring in the best base stealer of all time. Rickey Henderson came over from Oakland. While he didn’t contribute much himself, the move can be seen as a success as it brought yet another championship to Toronto. It would be the last championship this country has ever know.

The Blue Jays had another opportunity to make a playoff push in 2000 when they were 1.5 games out of the division lead. It was actually a rather eerily similar situation to this season. This year’s club isn’t as close to a playoff spot as they were back then. But, that time, they opted to go after a B level pitcher to help their potent offense out. They went to the Texas Rangers for an average pitcher in Esteban Loaiza. In doing so, they made what turned out to be one of the worst decisions this club has ever made. They gave up a prospect who would go on to be a great major league players for years.

And, such is the risk of making these deals. In order to compete or to win, you have to sacrifice some young, possibly unknown talent that could make you regret your decision. Or, you could give up big talent that doesn’t pan out and you go on to win! In this day and age, club’s (and fans) value prospects much more than they used to. This leads to the question of pulling off a big trade mid-season one that does not have a sure fire answer. There is no right or wrong, perhaps.

But, there are certainly 3 examples that can be used to show both sides of the debate. Let’s take a look!

Next: Renting Glory Pt.1: David Cone

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