Toronto Blue Jays: C+
Freddy Galvis, INF (free agent); David Phelps, RHP (free agent); Clayton Richard, LHP (trade with Padres); Matt Shoemaker, RHP (free agent); John Axford, RHP (free agent).
The offseason started with the hiring of Charlie Montoyo as the new Blue Jays manager to replace John Gibbons and officially start a new era in Toronto. In terms of player moves, the Blue Jays did what they needed to do.
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They added a couple of veteran starters as well as a couple of relievers, including John Axford’s minor league deal. They also added veteran shortstop Freddy Galvis to shore up the infield after trading away Aledmys Diaz for prospect Trent Thornton, who could very well make his debut this coming season from the bullpen or even as a starter. Matt Shoemaker has some valuable upside as a No. 3 starter and Clayton Richard adds a veteran presence to a young pitching staff led by Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez.
Many fans wanted the Jays to sign Bryce Harper and even though he’s still a free agent and there are some mystery teams interested in him, realistically speaking it is extremely unlikely the former MVP ends up in Toronto. It’s also a move that doesn’t seem to fit Ross Atkins’ plan. There are arguments in favor of signing him, others against that idea, but putting the Harper dilemma aside, Atkins has made some moves that could pay dividends in what is expected as a bridge year until the wave of prospects starts to come up.
It may not have been the most exciting offseason for Blue Jays fans, but it was one in which the front office did more or less exactly what they said they would do: Exercising patience and making sure their decisions were made with the long term goals in mind.