Didn’t see that one coming
(1) Gio Urshela for $25,000 (NYY) – August 4th, 2018
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This one stings bad for Blue Jays fans as they gave up a soon-to-be Yankees stud for basically nothing. Since joining the Yankees, Gio Urshela has hit .310 with 104 RBIs in 650 PA. The Blue Jays should have at least had the wherewithal to trade outside the division, especially for an MLB-ready player with five cheap years of control. That said, at the time it would have been nearly impossible to predict Urshela’s breakout.
The Jays gave him just 46 plate appearances before moving him over to the Yankees. For a team right in the middle of the rebuild phase, there was no reason not to at least use Urshela as a placeholder for a couple of months to see what they had in him. At the time, trading him to New York was simply a case of having to make room on the 40-man roster. Urshela had shown flashes of excellence (especially defensively) and if they gave him a chance, the Jays would have one more young stud on their roster with years of cheap control. What’s even most of a kick in the shins in that the Blue Jays are now looking for an answer at third base, and Urshela could have provided just that if they’d had a crystal ball back then.
That’s not how it works though, and while Atkins and his staff have made some regrettable decisions during their tenure in Toronto, in all, it looks like they’re on the cusp of being competitive for many years to come.