Toronto Blue Jays News

Five Blue Jays Rebuild Trades, and the Prospects Returned

Matt Howorth
Apr 2, 2018; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Josh Donaldson (20) celebrates after hitting a home run in the sixth inning against the Chicago White Sox at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 2, 2018; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Josh Donaldson (20) celebrates after hitting a home run in the sixth inning against the Chicago White Sox at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports /
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PITTSBURGH, PA – AUGUST 27: J.A. Happ #34 of the St. Louis Cardinals in action during the game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on August 27, 2021 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA – AUGUST 27: J.A. Happ #34 of the St. Louis Cardinals in action during the game against the Pittsburgh Pirates at PNC Park on August 27, 2021 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) /

2.       J.A. Happ Trade to Yankees for Brandon Drury, Billy McKinney

At the time of the trade in July of ’18, Happ was fresh off his first All-Star appearance at 35 years old, had a record of 10-6 and a 4.18 ERA in 20 starts, and was in the final year of 3-year $36MM contract he signed with the Jays prior to the 2016 season.  From 2015-17 with the Jays, Happ accumulated a 3.43 ERA (122 ERA+) and 3.02 strikeout-to-walk ratio.  At the time of the trade, Happ was a 12-year major league veteran, with record of 102-82 and a 3.95 career ERA.  Drury, the 24th overall pick in 2013 MLB draft, had two strong years with Arizona early in his career, but struggled to find playing time in New York after dealing with health issues (blurred vision and migraines).  McKinney was hitting .230 in 2018 at the time of the trade, with 13 homers and 35 RBIs in 62 minor league games in the Yankees’ farm system.

Update:

J.A. Happ – Following the trade to NY, Happ threw 274 innings for the Yankees from 2018-20, posting an ERA of 4.13 and a WHIP of 1.19.  Following the 2018 season, the Yankees signed Happ to a two-year, $34MM contract.  He subsequently signed with the Twins and, now 39 years old, is with the Cardinals organization. His career fWAR is 21.8.

Brandon Drury – In his 2.5 seasons with Toronto, Drury did not recapture the production he had with the Diamondbacks. In 447 plate appearances in 2019 he hit .218/.262/.380, and in 2020, Drury slashed .152/.184/.174 over 49 PA. He was signed by the Mets to a minor league deal following the 2020 season. His career fWAR is -0.6.

Billy McKinney – Now 27, McKinney hit .230/.291/.439 in 122 games over three seasons with the Blue Jays. After getting only three at-bats with the Jays in the shortened 2020 season, McKinney was DFA’d and claimed off waivers by the Brewers. Now with the Dodgers organization, his career fWAR is 0.4.

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