Bob Elliott begins his article in today’s Toronto Sun by asking the… um… question, “OK, raise your right arm if you had Joel Carreno as third man out of the chute in the Blue Jays starting rotation to open the 2012 season?”
I’ll bite, I thought to myself as I began what figured to be a look at the Jays surprising fifth starter– who actually had a pretty fantastic tiny sample of a stint in the club’s bullpen last season. What I found, however, was a piece that morphed from there into an exploration of all that went wrong in the Jays’ pursuit of starting pitching over the off-season– and as usual, Elliott has added a little something to our picture of exactly it all went down.
“Seattle GM Jack Zduriencik and scouting director Tom McNamara would move Pineda to the Jays, but wanted third baseman Brett Lawrie, plus another prospect,” Elliott tells us.
We basically knew this already, but the “plus” part seems new– and that’s where things get interesting… or at the very least kinda funny.
“From what I hear,” an unnamed executive tells Elliott, “they didn’t even discuss the ‘plus’ part of the deal. Toronto said no at Lawrie. I would have done the same.”
On Mat Latos, who the Jays reportedly came up short on, the Padres choosing instead to deal with Cincinnati, the story is again similar to what we’ve heard, or at least could have inferred. “Not sure how Toronto could have bettered the Reds’ offer when it came to putting major leaguers in the deal,” said a NL scout, according to Elliott. “They have few to spare. Now if you want to talk minor leaguers? They’ve got a ton coming … and fast. They’ve done a real great job of a) adding scouts and b) the scouts have been diligent. They have more athletic kids than we do.”
Wait… those last two sentences were uttered by a scout? WHAT YEAR IS THIS!?!? GET OUTTA HERE!
As for the other Major pitching prize of the winter trade market, Gio Gonzalez, if our intrepid reporter’s
drinking scouting buddies are to be believed, the Jays may not have even been interested. “I don’t think he would have been a good fit for the AL East,” said one, ”especially pitching at Yankee Stadium or Fenway where umps don’t call third strikes against the home team.”
But again, it’s not exactly earth shattering. In fact, it’s… well… honestly, I mostly just wanted to point out that the Jays said “fuck no” to the Mariners on the question of Pineda for just Lawrie by himself, let alone another prospect. So nails.