Based on the projected salaries for this year’s starting pitching market, the Blue Jays have plenty of affordable options to upgrade their rotation, at least in theory.
For one reason or another, there’s a very slim chance that the Blue Jays will get serious in the bidding for Gerrit Cole or Stephen Strasburg. We could talk about why that’s a foolish notion on it’s own, but I’d rather move on for now and be blown over in surprise if I’m wrong.
Even if the Blue Jays aren’t ready to spend on the top tier of free agent starting pitchers this off-season, it’s widely assumed that they’ll be looking to upgrade their rotation before the 2020 campaign gets underway. After a year that saw them relying on inexperienced options like Jacob Waguespack, Trent Thornton, and many others, and occasionally even inadequate ones like Edwin Jackson, there’s a clear need for improvement. They had far too many games started by an “opener” for my liking as well, even if it was born out of necessity at that point.
The good news is the front office has already started to address the need by acquiring Chase Anderson on Sunday. The Brewers were reportedly waffling on whether or not to pick up his 8.5 million dollar salary, and instead accepted Chad Spanberger as a low to mid-level prospect from the Blue Jays instead. Anderson will help, but he’s not enough on his own to boost the needy group.
The assumption is that they’ll bring back Matt Shoemaker as well in the last year of his arbitration eligibility, and hopefully add one more veteran to the group. Whether they’re looking for a long or short term option to fill that need, there are plenty of options available on the market. Beyond Cole and Strasberg there likely aren’t any aces, but the Blue Jays don’t need that in order to move the needle, even if it would be nice.
Let’s have a look at some of the affordable options that the Blue Jays could offer a contract. According to mlbtraderumors.com and their off-season predictions, there should be several to choose from.