Are They Aggressively Pursuing Contract Extensions?
It certainly would make sense to get deals done sooner with a few younger core players. 2021 MVP fInalist and Silver Slugger, two-time All-Star and 2022 Gold Glover Guerrero has said on multiple occasions, including as recently as this week, that he’s open to extension talks; but apparently no conversations yet this year despite supposed plans to continue talks. So are the Blue Jays playing a dangerous game by not aggressively pursuing extensions with young stars like Vlad, Bo and Alek?
Of course there are still 66 days until Opening Day 2023 when the Blue Jays visit the Cardinals. Vlad and Bo won’t be free agents until after the 2025 season. Varsho and Kirk are under team control through 2026, while Manoah won’t be a free agent until after the 2027 season. There is still time, but as they say in Latin, tempus fugit — time flies!
Recent examples where the Blue Jays could have offered extensions also offer a lesson how not to do it. Starter Marcus Stroman, closer Ken Giles and 2020 rental starter Taijuan Walker all mentioned how the Blue Jays front office never even made formal contract offers. As Stroman told Rob Longley of the Toronto Sun, the Blue Jays never offered a contract extension despite GM Ross Atkins saying there were talks. “There was nothing offered ever from their perspective,” then-28-year-old Stroman said after being traded to the Mets in late July 2019.
Let’s hope there isn’t similar confusion or miscommunication around the front office’s stated intention to continue extension talks and the apparent lack of conversations yet this year with Vlad! What do you think Blue Jays fans, how aggressive should the team be in trying to sign these players to contract extensions?