Blue Jays may have some unlikely trade pieces to offer
Players like Tellez and Jansen could be nice trade pieces, but if the Blue Jays want to make a true impact move ahead of the deadline then they’re going to have to give up a headliner.
Enter Nate Pearson.
For what it’s worth, I’m nowhere near ready to give up on the fireballer who has struggled to stay healthy since the beginning of the 2020 season. That said, I can understand why his value may have dropped in the eyes of the Blue Jays’ front office, at least compared to how they viewed him a year ago. At that time I would have argued that he’s untouchable, but these days I’m not so sure that’s the case.
I believe that the Blue Jays’ front office will be aggressive in July, but I think there is a list of young players that they won’t trade. That probably includes names like Alek Manoah, Austin Martin, Simeon Woods Richardson, and maybe Gabriel Moreno, but I’m not so sure that Pearson would make that untouchable list anymore. He’s been surpassed by Manoah on the Baseball America prospect rankings, and I’m sure the Blue Jays feel the same way about the situation at present.
I don’t believe that the Blue Jays will shop Pearson, but I’m sure there will be rebuilding teams asking about him. For the Jays to consider moving a pitcher with his potential, I have to believe they’d be acquiring a top of the rotation arm in return, which may very well be on the table. That could include names like betting on a bounce-back from Luis Castillo of the Reds, or maybe Jose Berrios and/or Kenta Maeda from the Twins, but regardless I’m sure it would require a controllable starter for the Blue Jays to pull the trigger on that type of deal.
I’ll reiterate again that I don’t believe Pearson will be dealt this summer, or that the Blue Jays will acquire that impact starting pitcher that they could still arguably use. Instead I think they’ll target some badly needed bullpen arms, and I don’t think they’d move Pearson to make that upgrade. However, if the right starter hits the trade market I don’t think it’s out of the question that they’d consider it. That’s certainly a change from where things stood a year ago.