Toronto Blue Jays news and notes for the week of December 19th
The Blue Jays’ off-season continues to grind on quietly, but over the past week, the same can be said for most teams in the league.
It could stay that way for some time unless there is some movement early in the week, as the league’s transactional cycle tends to halt through the holidays.
Here are a few things to catch up on from the past several days of Blue Jays coverage:
The Bautista reports only grow stranger
An interesting note was included in Mark Topkin’s Saturday piece for the Tampa Bay Times.
“But it remains possible, with the major if of the price being discounted enough, that they would give up their competitive balance draft pick, No. 31 as of now, and go big in signing slugger Jose Bautista. Until he gets his money elsewhere, there will be whispers of a potential one-year Toronto revenge tour while playing from the comfort of his Tampa home.”
There is some logic in the mention of Bautista’s Tampa home, but if his market were to regress to the point where the Rays were a legitimate option, would he not be likelier to take a slightly less rich deal to play with a legitimate contender? Money talks, of course, but after getting a taste of the playoffs the past two seasons, Jays-to-Rays seems like a rather unappetizing and unlikely move.
Last week for Sportsnet, I took a look at Toronto’s current starting rotation depth and the unique variables that each of them face in 2017.
2017 bullpen options
The Blue Jays’ bullpen is shaping up to be a big, wide competition this spring unless some reliable pieces are added via free agency or trade. Given the current prices on the open market, however, that might not be easy.
Danny Barnes should enter 2017 with an inside track on a middle-relief job, and given his ability to pitch lefties well, he could have some decent value to the Blue Jays. Jays From the Couch took a look at Barnes here, while Ryan Mueller of JFtC also broke down Bo Schultz’s case right here.
Rebuild? Re-tool? Re-_____?
Carve out some time for Andrew Stoeten’s piece at VICE Sports last week entitled ‘Why a Blue Jays rebuild could be coming soon’.
Jays Nest Podcast
No regular podcast this week from the Jays Nest, but Shaun Doyle and I will keep you updated on Twitter through the week. Since we appreciate our listeners so greatly, we didn’t have the heart to give you 45 minutes on the Jeff Beliveau signing for Christmas.
In the meantime, subscribe using these links to listen to the last two episodes that feature interviews with top prospects Anthony Alford, Bo Bichette, and Ryan Borucki.