Toronto Blue Jays news and notes for the weekend of December 10th
The Blue Jays have exited the winter meetings with more questions than answers, but with one week (or is it two?) remaining until opening day 2017, time remains to patch the roster together.
Here are some stories that you might have missed from the week that was in Blue Jays coverage:
International scout of the year
Pablo Cruz, Latin American field coordinator for the Blue Jays, was recently honoured as the international scout of the year at the winter meetings in Maryland. John Lott has an excellent story on the 69-year-old “father figure” here for The Athletic. (You can also subscribe to The Athletic here).
Jays Nest podcast, Ep. 100
To celebrate the 100th episode of the Jays Nest Podcast, Shaun Doyle of Jays From the Couch and I welcomed two special guests to the show earlier this week.
If you missed the episode — you’re forgiven — subscribe here and enjoy our conversations with outfield prospect Anthony Alford and recent 40-man addition Ryan Borucki:
Are the Cardinals done?
Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, who was involved with the reporting of the Dexter Fowler signing, wrote on Friday that there’s a chance the Cardinals “…become more aggressive than previously believed, turning toward free-agent sluggers Mark Trumbo and Edwin Encarnacion as possible pursuits.”
Adding another big fish free agent after Fowler isn’t where many expect the market to go, but as Ian Desmond’s rich deal with the Colorado Rockies shows: expect the unexpected.
For BP Toronto, Tammy Rainey takes a long look at the trade market for left-handed relievers that the Blue Jays could target as they look to rebuild their bullpen. Aaron Loup remains the only lefty with MLB experience prior to 2016, making the position one that Toronto is likely to pad over the remaining months of the off-season.
At Sportsnet, Nick Ashbourne takes a look at some of the players that have been linked to the Blue Jays most often since the beginning of the winter meetings, analyzing which rumours make sense and which don’t.
Blue Jays minor-league RHP Pedro Loficial was suspended 72 games after testing positive for metabolites of Stanozolol (classified as performance-enhancing substance). The 21-year-old Dominican signed with Toronto in July and pitched 6.2 innings with the DSL Blue Jays.
Milwaukee prospect Phil Bickford was suspended 50 games after his second positive test for a drug of abuse. Bickford was selected 10th overall by the Blue Jays in 2013 but did not sign. That pick ultimately turned into Max Pentecost the following year.