Blue Jays: Trade talks weighing on players minds
It appears that the offseason trade rumblings weighed on the minds of a few Toronto Blue Jays players including Lourdes Gurriel Jr. The brain trust was very active in their quest to improve the roster which prompted the trade winds.
Gurriel Jr. addressed the media in regards to the constant trade speculation admitting it “wasn’t easy”. The outfielder opted to rather focus on himself and his training regime rather than dwelling on things out of his control.
The 27-year old was often rumoured as the trade bait in the pursuit of starting pitching as he would garner a more fruitful return than that of Randal Grichuk or others. Gurriel is also on a team friendly contract which makes him appealing to opposing General Managers. The native of Cuba is not eligible for free agency until 2025 and will earn a modest $3,928,571 million in 2021.
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Outfielder Randal Grichuk also mentioned to the media that he thought he may be headed out the door following the rumoured signing of Michael Brantley. That turned out to be a “red herring” as the veteran inked a deal to return to Houston.
The Blue Jays front office was very quiet on the trade front this offseason acquiring just Steven Matz from the Mets via trade. Regardless, the speculation and rumours ran rampant as the team was said to be in on nearly every free agent or traded player this offseason.
The signing of George Springer shifts the outfield as Grichuk will swing back over to right field while also seeing time as the designated hitter. Gurriel and Teoscar Hernandez will share left field while Hernandez also sees time as the DH.
We often overlook the psychological effect and toll the offseason rumour mill can have on a player. Thankfully, Gurriel is still a Blue Jay and will hopefully be one for a long time to come.