Blue Jays: Oops! Who saw this coming from Gio Urshela?

TORONTO, ON - AUGUST 10: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. #27 of the Toronto Blue Jays reacts as he is held at third base by Gio Urshela #29 of the New York Yankees after hitting a triple, allowing 2 runs in the 7th inning during MLB action against the New York Yankees at Rogers Centre on August 10, 2019 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - AUGUST 10: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. #27 of the Toronto Blue Jays reacts as he is held at third base by Gio Urshela #29 of the New York Yankees after hitting a triple, allowing 2 runs in the 7th inning during MLB action against the New York Yankees at Rogers Centre on August 10, 2019 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Cole Burston/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit

Former Blue Jay Gio Urshela has transformed into an All-Star calibre player for the New York Yankees this year, and I did not see that one coming.

The Blue Jays just wrapped up a series with the New York Yankees over the weekend, and it was definitely an encouraging one for the fans of Canada’s only team.

The two clubs may have split the four games series, but it was encouraging to see the young Blue Jays lineup hold their own against one of the most dangerous teams in baseball. Of course, the Yankees aren’t at full capacity due to the ridiculous streak of injuries their roster has undergone, but the depth they keep coming up with has been more than sufficient, and that includes former Blue Jay Gio Urshela.

Some of you might not even remember him, and that’s because he had a very brief stint in Toronto last year, spending most of his time in Triple-A Buffalo. All told, he ended up playing in 19 games as a Blue Jay, and slashed .233/.283/.326 in 43 at-bats. Given all of the talented infield depth in the Blue Jays’ system, they made the understandable trade to send him in New York last year, receiving “cash considerations” in exchange.

More from Jays Journal

Turns out that was one of the better decisions Brian Cashman has made in the last couple of years, and he’s made a lot of good ones.

Urshela has been a different player since arriving in New York, and this season he’s a big reason why the team is still in first place despite losing so many key players throughout the year, including Miguel Andujar, who was slated to be the regular third baseman. In his absence Urshela has found an opportunity and he’s made the most of it, slashing .320/.367/.570 with 17 home runs, 26 doubles, and 61 RBI in 309 at-bats. In other words, he’s turned himself into an All-Star calibre player, and he cost the Yankees next to nothing to acquire.

To be fair to the Blue Jays on this one, I definitely didn’t see it coming, and I won’t believe any of you who say you predicted this would happen once he left town. He had played in a grand total of 158 big league games, and last year’s batting average was a career high, albeit in just 43 at-bats. When you consider that he’s an infielder, and the Blue Jays needed to make room for the likes of Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Bo Bichette, Cavan Biggio, and others, letting him go last season was a pretty obvious decision.

Every now and then though, a player will come back to haunt you after joining a new team. The Blue Jays have had this happen before, perhaps most famously with Chris Carpenter‘s jump to ace status after landing in St. Louis. On the other hand, they also acquired Jose Bautista for a low level prospect, and re-acquired Edwin Encarnacion from the waiver wire before they became All-Stars. It happens, even when you don’t see it coming at all.

Next. Talent it undeniable, and people are taking notice. dark

So as frustrating as it is to see Urshela flourishing as a Yankee and knowing that the Blue Jays basically gave him to their division rival, I’ll give Ross Atkins and company a pass on this one. I doubt even Urshela thought things could go this well for him.

facebooktwitterreddit