Blue Jays & David Price: The Impossible Happened


So, David Price is a Blue Jay! It is going to take a while before that sounds normal. The likelihood of the Toronto Blue Jays trading for the right to rent his services for 2 months seemed improbable. In fact, it was just a couple days ago that I wrote they would not. At the time, it was rumored that they were entering a bidding war for one of the best starters in all of baseball.

It just didn’t seem likely. The Blue Jays had just traded for Troy Tulowitzki. Not that it precluded them from making any further deals. But, the Tulo deal made a whole lot of sense. He is under team control for 5 more years at least. This is th ekind of deal GM, Alex Anthopoulos likes. He had already been close to landing Carlos Carrasco and his 4yr/$22M contract. Heck, he even said in his Tulo presser that he’d look at contract value more than anything else.

Also from Jays Journal: Price Deal Thanks to Great Drafting Strategies

And there are other pitchers out there that do come some degree of team control. Take Tyson Ross, for example. He’s got two more years of arbitration remaining. That’s the kind of arm that I figured this club would be targeting. It would mean an upgrade for now and set them up to compete in the near future.

Let’s also remember that AA doesn’t get into bidding wars. That is why he keeps his negotiations quiet. Chances are, if you hear about it, it isn’t happening. Yet, wed’ heard a lot about the possibility of this deal happening. Some of those were weak attempts to link a club with  player to drum up some noise. Then again, maybe they were just really good at looking into the future. Regardless, the whole notion of a bidding war against the likes of the Yankees or Dodgers signaled a defeat before we knew anything was actually happening. It is the Blue Jays way: we don’t have a chance against those guys.

Toronto Blue Jays
Toronto Blue Jays /

Toronto Blue Jays

Which brought me to my thinking about Price being a rental. Trading for him means that he does not come with the chance of a qualifying offer. It means that they would not get a draft pick should he leave for free agency. Which means there is very little in the way of him signing elsewhere over the winter. The chances of the Blue Jays signing Price are slim. We’ve heard that the Dodgers have set him as a target already. And, then we get into the competition thing again. We know AA doe snot compete well in the free agent market. So, does this club think it can use the next 2 months to woo Price and offer him something that could make him not become a free agent? Perhaps.

What is more likely is that this is a move for right now, which is the biggest surprise as a Blue Jays fan. For years, we’ve been hearing about “the future”. Lots of work has gone into building for the future. We assumed that meant that we’d have to wait for all of these draft picks to contribute. We never knew when the future would come. We just assumed it meant avoiding these big trade deadline deals. Up until now, it has. But, this is different. AA shocked us all by doing what we long assumed was impossible.

And, so, dear readers, I admit that I was wrong about this whole situation. I never thought it would happen. But, it has and I’ve never been so happy to be wrong.

This deal shows the Blue Jays’ intent on making the playoffs right now. They are well within a Wild Card spot. And, while they did not address the entire rotation (which would be almost impossible). This deal does give them someone they can rely on in a one game playoff situation. It gives them the best. Going all in for this type of player signals a change in thinking. Or, maybe this was part of the plan all along. Build a team that is good and then strike for that difference maker. Maybe Alex Anthopoulos knew what he was doing the whole time. Maybe I’d been reading the cues all wrong.

Next: Are Blue Jays Still Looking for Pitching?

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