Is this getting to be a bit much?
At this point it almost feels as though I’m continuing to bang the drum for us to keep the Tanaka pipe dream alive mostly because of how awesome it would be if it turned out I was actually right to — and, of course, how awesome it would be if the club actually managed to pull off signing him. It’s still a massive long shot, for all the reasons that are by now well-understood — geography, the team’s lack of recent success, Toronto’s small Japanese community, strong-willed and übber-rich competition for his signature, and the club’s own reluctance to do deals of the size that it’s going to take to land him — but you don’t have to look much beyond the Mariners’ deal with Robinson Cano to see how those sorts of issues can be overcome with gigantic piles of cash.
It wouldn’t be very much like these Toronto Blue Jays to go as all-in as it would take, and it’s not really up to them either, but the possibility, however remote, certainly exists that this is more than just the fantastical delusion of idle fans. At least, that’s what an unnamed agent who spoke to Chris Cotillo of MLB Daily Dish thinks:
One agent said that the Yankees, Dodgers and Blue Jays were involved when asked what he had heard about Tanaka. Although reports from Toronto made the Jays seem like an unlikely destination, the agent said that the “Jays are in for sure”.
Feel free to roll your eyes. I mean… I get it. After the whole Yu Darvish thing of a couple years ago — and how impossibly awfully that’s worked out for every team but the Rangers — nobody really has the wherewithal to raise their hopes on this one, knowing how utterly likely it is that they’ll come crashing down by Friday’s 5 PM ET deadline. But there really isn’t much reason to believe that the Jays are out just yet, no matter what Nikkan says, or what the local media will blindly insist about “The Policy” ruling the club out automatically– or what the club may claim after the fact.
Still far more likely than not that they won’t come close to landing Tanaka, but I’m definitely not done watching.