I still can’t say for certain that this will become a regular feature around here for the early winter (looking like it, though, huh?), but again today, with all kinds of movement happening on the trade and free agent markets, and all kinds of decisions being made on players throughout the league who may wind up having some bearing on the Jays’ plans for the off-season, I think it will be a valuable exercise to comb through the latest from the astonishingly fantastic and comprehensive MLB Trade Rumors and add some Jays-related context to whatever is going on out there…
First up, just a couple of other tidbits I felt were best suited to slide into this post, but which hadn’t yet, or in some cases won’t, wind up on the pages of MLBTR:
Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun speaks to Jim Tracy, who has cruelly been listed among potential Jays managerial candidates. But the ex-Dodgers, Pirates and Rockies manager says that he hasn’t heard a thing from the club– and he was employed during the last search, so Alex hasn’t even talked to him. I think we can safely cross his name off the list, thankfully– though in Elliott’s revised fake odds at the bottom of the post, he has Tracy third most likely to get the gig, somehow, behind Manny Acta and Don Wakamatsu. He also gives us several names of guys employed with other clubs who the Jays have yet to contact– and, at this point, presumably won’t.
In a separate piece, Elliott checks in from Indian Wells, and ties a statement from Anthpolous– “If we think we don’t have a chance, we won’t make a phone call”– to the fact that the Jays did make calls or have meetings with the agents who represent Anibal Sanchez, Edwin Jackson and Francisco Liriano. If you read between the lines, it’s almost like the Jays don’t mind people thinking they have money– agents, players, fans, media trolls… it’s all good!
At FanGraphs, Dave Cameron looks at a name that ought to intrigue, in much the way that Scott Baker’s name does: Scott Feldman, who he calls “the poor man’s Brandon McCarthy.” To me, this is exactly the kind of guy who might see a club like the Jays as being his best opportunity– lots of potentially open rotation spots on a team that actually (sorry, trolls) has a shot at being pretty good. Factor in the cost and the fact that a guy like Feldman would allow you to do more elsewhere and… sure, I’d do it.
The Jays have signed 30-year-old right handed reliever Justin Germano to a minor league contract with an invite to spring training. He’s not a hard-thrower– averaged 86.1 on his fastball, per FanGraphs, over 69 innings in the Majors this year (yes, you read that right)– so the usual jokes don’t quite apply. Still, he’s a guy…
The price for Anibal Sanchez appears to be escalating, as we’re pointed to a Jon Heyman tweet in which he says that one team was told Sanchez would cost $90-million over six years, while another said it was $100-million over seven. That’s a pretty rich deal for a guy who looks a hell of a lot like a solid number three to these eyes, but good on him for aiming high in his one big free agent shot– that’s simply the cost of doing business these days, and considering all the national TV money to be distributed over the coming years, let alone all the huge regional TV deals being signed, it’s not like that’s a crippling deal for anyone. Welcome to the new fiscal environment.
The Mariners have reportedly reached out to catchers Russell Martin and Mike Napoli, as perhaps they’re not banking on Jesus Montero being a full-time backstop, or John Jaso being insanely fucking ridiculous at the plate again. Or maybe they just are banking on the fact that Miguel Olivo is shitty. Either way, wasn’t Jack Z just saying that he might trade some of the club’s up-and-coming pitching for offence? Hmmm…
Speaking of trading a catcher, we’re pointed to a Shi Davidi piece from yesterday, in which he noted that the Jays’ pickup of depth catcher Bobby Wilson seems to be an indication that the Jays may be inclined to trade JP Arencibia. Certainly they won’t carry all three next year, but Wilson and Mathis could theoretically– if wholly unspectacularly– hold down the fort for a little while until Travis d’Arnaud is ready next year. If the club tenders a contract to Wilson, it’s an even stronger sign that Arencibia may be getting shopped, Davidi figures.
An ESPN Los Angeles piece suggests some trade candidates among pitchers, including Derek Holland, Gavin Floyd, and Trevor Bauer– two of whom definitely intrigue, and who we haven’t heard a whole lot about (at least, until recently, in Bauer’s case). Beyond the Boxscore already worked out a deal that would send Holland our way! Just do that!
Kenny Ken Ken thinks that the Mets’ reported dangling of their Dickey (note: ha!) may just be a tactic to get the potential Cy Young winner to accept a team-friendly extension– and not a particularly good tactic, Rosenthal figures. Lots of Jays fans have been drooling over this possibility, especially with the Mets needing a catcher, but I don’t see how you give away oodles of years of cheap control on guys for one year of Dickey. Jon Niese, on the other hand…
I know the Jays don’t have pitching depth to spare, but honestly, one guy I’d move a Henderson Alvarez or JA Happ for in a second is Josh Willingham of the Twins. We’re told that industry folk don’t see Minnesota getting back much more than a fourth starter type for Willingham, because he just doesn’t provide any defensive value. I don’t think it would ever happen because of the dollars to Willingham and what it would cost to fill in the rotation hole created, but I’d definitely ask the pitching-desperate Twins about a deal like that, because I’m aiming to not have those guys in my rotation anyway.