Blue Jays Trade Rumors: Yovanni Gallardo in Sights?
The Trade Deadline is approaching and rather than things winding down, things are reaching a fever pitch. There was a flurry of activity as deals were made and then retracted seemingly all night. But, the Blue Jays remained quiet, preferring to bask in the glory of Troy Tulowitzki‘s first start in a Blue Jays uniform. But, things are not staying quiet.
The Blue Jays are apparently looking at the starting pitcher market with much more gusto today. According to Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star- Telegram, the Blue Jays are looking to the Rangers for pitching help.
This is an interesting turn of events for a couple reasons. The Rangers just traded for Cole Hamels. That is an upgrade that helps them now and in the future. Perhaps, they are willing to let Gallardo go because he is a free agent at the end of the season. And, they got their off season purchase early in Hamels. They can save Gallardo’s money and use it for Hamels, which is a much better upgrade. So, they put him on the block in the hopes of getting something for him when they likely have no intention of signing him again.
For the Blue Jays, this would certainly be a rotation upgrade. Gallardo is 7-9 in 21 starts this season. He’s putting up a FIP of 3.70 and a WAR of 1.8. His 50% ground ball rate is something that would play quite well with the newly upgraded defense of the Blue Jays. As well, his HR/9 rate of 0.59 is attractive. His strike out percentage (16.1) is at an all time low, though.
Perhaps he indeed would be an upgrade in this rotation. But, the point remains that he is a rental player. We know that GM, Alex Anthopoulos, wants to avoid renting a player for a couple months and giving up prospects to do so. There would be no qualifying offer attached to the player, which means no draft pick later to go after. No, rentals are seen as a last resort.
Which makes the following tweet from Evan Grant of Dallas Morning News more helpful:
This fits more in line with what we know about how the Blue Jays will be operating in the next couple of days. Gallardo would certainly be a good pick up for any team. But, for a Blue Jays team that is intent on improving this year, but is more concerned about next year and so on, this deal doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. The only way this would happen is if Plan A, Plan B and Plan C fell through.
Or, this could happen as an add on trade to one of those other plans. If that is the case, the Blue Jays will not be looking to give up much in return. In order to get Plan A or B, they’ll have to part with a few more of those coveted prospects. We know that that is not exactly a problem for Anthopoulos. He’s not shy to use prospects as currency. But, as with any deal, you have to wonder what is the best way to use said currency?
In the next two days, there will be lots of rumoring and speculating. The good news is that it is almost over and the truth will come much quicker than a couple weeks ago. It will be interesting to see if the Blue Jays actually are able to pull off Plan A. Or, will they have to go further down the alphabet?
Next: Blue Jays in a Bidding War for David Price?