This past offseason, the Toronto Blue Jays seemed to be one of the busiest teams in the league. They had numerous starters like Marcus Semien, Robbie Ray, and Steven Matz all heading to free agency while the front office also seemed to be interested in pretty much every premier free agent, with the Jays linked to many different players before and after the lockout.
The Jays reportedly offered contracts (or at least kicked the tires) to pitchers Justin Verlander and Noah Syndergaard before they signed elsewhere while also tendering contracts or seeming interested in Corey Seager, Brad Miller, Joc Pederson, and Corey Dickerson, yielding the same results.
Overall, the haul for the franchise was signing Kevin Gausman, Yusei Kikuchi, and Yimi Garcia while trading for Matt Chapman, Raimel Tapia, and Bradley Zimmer prior to Opening Day. Some of the deals the Blue Jays made are not paying immediate returns or are benefitting the squad right now (Kikuchi and his struggles for example) but looking back, the front office did check off quite a few boxes in adding a premier starting pitcher, a strong back end bullpen piece, offloading Randal Grichuk and roughly half of his contract (they owe the other half), and snagging a premier defensive third baseman with some pop in the bat.
The Blue Jays were one of the most active teams this past offseason but they also got lucky when it comes to a few players that decided to sign elsewhere and struggled to play well with their new organizations.
With the season now heading into the middle of August, looking back at the Blue Jays’ flurry of activity, there are a handful of players the club is probably lucky they missed out on for one reason or another. There will always be the ones that got away (Verlander on the Jays squad this year would have been amazing) but others who would have dragged the team down far more than this year’s signings/trades.
Let’s take a quick look at three players that the Blue Jays were reportedly interested in (and even offered contracts too) but were lucky that they decided to sign elsewhere.