Blue Jays roundup: Stro-Vegas, Encarnacion swinging


The Blue Jays news cycle is creaking to a halt, so let’s take a moment to smile about some off-field team bonding and a recovering slugger

Things are quiet in the land of the Blue Jays. I’d follow that with the traditional “…too…quiet…”, but this level of buzz appears to be the norm as Mark Shapiro and Ross Atkins take a patient approach to the fast-moving market.

It’s been a quiet day league-wide, too, with the biggest news being the Ken Giles package that is going from Houston to Philadelphia. Former number one overall pick Mark Appel emerged as an unexpected piece of the deal, joining Dansby Swanson are recent top selections being traded this week.

So along with giving you a place to take the floor and discuss what’s on your mind this slow day, let’s also highlight some lighter Blue Jays news. First up, it seems there’s a team meeting being held this weekend. In Vegas!

Seeing Marcus Stroman and Josh Donaldson together in Vegas? Fantastic. Seeing Troy Tulowitzki alongside them? Even better. Tulo seems to be the co-worker you have that, while you know he’d be a joy to spend time with outside of the office, politely declines your invitation on Friday evening because he has plans to work on a file until 1AM.

Tulowitzki had also expressed some discomfort following the trade from Colorado to Toronto this past season, saying that he might need a full offseason and spring training cycle to set his feet again. Toronto is the first “new” organization of his career, so for whatever it’s worth, it’s great to see him relaxing with teammates.

Of a more important baseball note came this Instagram video from Edwin Encarnacion yesterday of him doing a swinging exercise:  

Encarnacion underwent sports hernia surgery shortly after the season, and while he’s fully expected to be recovered well ahead of spring training, it’s good to see the progress. Between groin, hamstring and hand injuries this past season, the Blue Jays slugger was operating at a level less than 100% for the majority of 2015.

That’s been the story with Encarnacion over the past few campaigns, and perhaps it’s why he’s still hit with the “injury prone” tag despite averaging 140 games per season over the past five years. Often nicked up, but rarely out. He’ll need to keep his health above water again in 2016 as he’ll potentially be playing for a free agent contract.