After the Jays made their big moves this winter, and Rogers finally decided to put their money where for years their mouths had been, a lot of fans took a look at the contract status of Josh Johnson, and at the contract status of Roy Halladay, and made a connection.
Johnson, of course, is a free agent at the end of the season, while the dear departed Harry Leroy has an option for 2014 that only vests if he throws 415 innings combined between 2012 and 13– a virtually impossible task after injuries limited him to just 156 innings last season. The Jays could let Johnson walk and welcome a returning hero eager to jump ship as his Phillies sink into decline, right?
Yeah, about that…
Halladay spoke to the media at the Phillies complex in Clearwater, as reported by Todd Zolecki of MLB.com, and while nobody could reasonably expect him to be edging his way out the door, I’m pretty sure a lot of hopeful Jays fans will be thinking that he didn’t really need to go this far. (Emphasis on the dagger through the heart mine.)
“I think all our dialogue right now has been, ‘How do we get things going in the right direction?’” said Halladay, when asked if he has talked with the Phillies about a contract extension. “Really, that was my concern. I know it was their concern, and I’m not at all worried about next season. I really am not. I’m worried about this year and making the most of this year and then you go from there. But there has been no dialogue, and I don’t expect there to be dialogue. I expect to prepare to go out and do my job and let everything else take care of itself.
“I really don’t [envision myself pitching anywhere]. If I had my druthers, I would be here until I’m done. As good as they’ve been to me, I think they realize I’d be as good to them as I could be. Going forward, I really don’t see myself playing anywhere else. And I don’t want to play anywhere else. This has been the best place I’ve ever played.”
So… yeah. Halladay has never actually hit the free agent market, and could have made a shit-tonne more money in his career if he did. The straight-up capitalism and the attention of it all just doesn’t seem to suit him, and I just don’t think we should expect it to change in the next twelve months.
Anything can happen, of course. This isn’t necessarily a dead end for the pipe dream. But… yeah. If you were somehow genuinely hopeful, I… uh… I think you might want to rethink that a little bit.