Noooooot a lot of good AA photos in our Getty archive.
Today we’ve got some interesting stuff from Jeff Blair, slightly buried in his latest for the Globe and Mail, which ostensibly serves mostly to look at the curious machinations from within the Jays’ infield of late. After running through the laundry list of issues the club has been faced with in the infield so far, and the experiments they’ve played around with, he drops this bomb on us:
Anthopoulos isn’t only talking to his peers about a temporary, defence-first replacement for Reyes during his three-month absence. He’s talking about a significant transaction that might require several moving pieces. What if, for example, his offensive concerns turn out to be best addressed by adding a particular right fielder? No way Bautista balks at a move to third base if it makes the team better able to achieve its ultimate goal; in fact, as he ages he might find third base less taxing on his legs than patrolling the outfield.
It makes sense, of course. As we well know, Anthopoulos tirelessly works the phones– and evidently the waiver wire as well– in order to keep every avenue for improving the club open. Does that mean that anything will come to fruition from his explorations of what’s out there? It rarely does– and it hasn’t yet, as Blair notes also notes:
Even in spring training, Anthopoulos was looking for another everyday bat and that might explain why the Blue Jays have claimed six players off the waiver wire since the middle of March, an unusually high number. Anthopoulos knows he will need to move multiple players to get an impact bat, and that’s been made much tougher by the prospects and players already dealt this winter.
The waiver wire stuff I’m not sure about– as I wrote yesterday, they sure seemed to have found themselves an upgrade on Rajai Davis in Casper Wells, who was D’d FA in order to add Ramon Ortiz. And… hang on, shit! Who might you say was single-handedly more responsible than anyone for driving up the prospect cost of talent over the winter? Anthopoulos!
Maybe he’s fucked himself here, and that’s part of why it’s become so difficult to find what he’s after. More likely, though, it’s because this just, traditionally, isn’t a time of the season when trades get made. So… I wouldn’t exactly hold my breath for a blockbuster just yet, with so few teams ready to wave the white flag on 2013.
But it makes sense from the Jays’ perspective.
And if you were betting on any GM to find a team willing to give up some big league talent right now, you could do a whole lot worse than going with Anthopoulos. The club’s hole at shortstop, plus their apparent confidence in the abilities of Brett Lawrie at second and Jose Bautista at third, means that there are a number of ways he could make something happen, too. Hmmm…