Blue Jays: All-Star game an eye-opener for Marcus Stroman?

TORONTO, ON - MAY 26: Marcus Stroman #6 of the Toronto Blue Jays delivers a pitch in the first inning during MLB game action against the San Diego Padres at Rogers Centre on May 26, 2019 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - MAY 26: Marcus Stroman #6 of the Toronto Blue Jays delivers a pitch in the first inning during MLB game action against the San Diego Padres at Rogers Centre on May 26, 2019 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images) /
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While he didn’t get to pitch because of a sore pectoral muscle, it sounds like the All-Star game was an eye-opening experience for Marcus Stroman.

While Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Nate Pearson stole the show over the first two days of the All-Star break, unfortunately the Blue Jays didn’t have an active participant in the All-Star game to keep the theme going.

That’s because Marcus Stroman decided to ere on the side of caution after dealing with a sore pectoral muscle in the last week before the break. He was still in Cleveland to join his All-Star teammates and join the festitivities though, and it sounds like the experience left a bit of an impression on him.

It’s one of the worst kept secrets across baseball that he is available on the trade market this summer. That said, the Blue Jays don’t have to trade him if they don’t find a worthwhile return, as he’s still under contract control for the 2020 season, and he’s also young enough at 28 years old that he would make a lot of sense as an extension candidate.

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The topic has been repeatedly discussed, and even openly with the media by Stroman. We don’t know everything that goes on beyond the scenes, but I think it’s pretty obvious that the Blue Jays haven’t been serious about offering their best starter an extension, at least based on the comments that Stroman has made to the media.

He hasn’t necessarily come out and said it, but we can’t fault Stroman if that leaves him feeling a little bit unwanted by the only franchise he’s ever known. Given the need for starting pitcher both now and in the future, it’s gotta be a little bit confusing for the former Duke University product as well.

However, if Stroman ever doubted what kind of value he can bring to a big league roster, I’m sure his talent was reinforced in Cleveland earlier this week, especially around a bunch of players that know he’s going to be on the trade block. In fact, have a look at the tweet he sent out earlier this morning.

The line “awesome to see how many opponents want me on their team” feels like pretty much the final nail in the coffin of Stroman’s eventual departure, at least to me.

He’s consistently expressed his love for the team, the city, and the country, and has mentioned many times how he’d like to stay in Toronto for the long haul. However, we’ve witnessed a bit of a shift in his thinking this year (understandably so), and I’m starting to wonder if the Blue Jays could get him to stay now even if they changed course.

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Chances are we’re going to see the former first-round pick in a new uniform before the end of the world, and hopefully that will mean the Blue Jays got maximum value if they do trade him. Either way, it sounds like Stroman is fully prepared for whatever happens next, and might even be getting excited about it.

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