All sorts of varying reports this… er… what time is it? Morning?
Anyway, all sorts of reports today about Ervin Santana signing with the Jays. Or maybe the Orioles. Or maybe someone else if a better deal comes along by 5 PM. Or… well… why don’t you lay down and I’ll fill you in…
It started this morning, at least according to my timeline, with tweets from Jon Morosi and Buster Olney, with Morosi tweeting that he’s in Dunedin today and that the Jays people he spoke to were optimistic about their chances to sign Santana, while Olney added that the Jays have played their hand extremely well if they land him, “and they’re working on it.”
MLBTR then went whole hog, passing along a tweet from Dionisio Soldevila of ESPN Deportes, who said that the team and Santana had agreed on a one-year deal would pay him $14-million. Not so fast, though, tweeted Joel Sherman of the New York Post, saying that the deal was being worked on, but wasn’t done. Enrique Rojas of ESPN Deportes then added that Santana indeed has a $14-million offer from the Jays and will sign it… if he doesn’t get a better one by 5 PM. But then, in a piece at ESPNDeportes.com also added that a deal from the Orioles is on the table: a $13-million one with performance incentives — something the Jays won’t do.
About this I will be blunt (if a bit wordy): Santana is no great shakes, though I tend to believe that the awful bump in his road that was 2012 likely happened because he was hurt, that the home run issues at Rogers Centre are overstated, and that the injury concerns aren’t such a big deal on a one-year contract. And if the Jays don’t sign him, and it’s because of some horseshit self-imposed rule from Anthopoulos that only adds to the long list of natural handcuffs this team has, you can pretty much fire him and Beeston and anyone else in this dumb organization who supports that, as far as I’m concerned. Especially if Santana goes to Baltimore along with Ubaldo Jimenez.
Sadly we can’t call for firing ownershp (what are we, Islanders fans?).
Of course, that may well be all of last night’s sweet delicious booze still talking (and I really did have a great time at the Press Club on Dundas, hearing about Paul Bako!), but seriously, if he wants incentives that might pay him more, give him the damn incentives or up your offer until he thinks it’s better. Whatever fear you have of a repeat of the Frank Thomas debacle or some kind of poisonous clubhouse atmosphere where a guy only goes around looking out for number one, um… is it really worth not adding the strong potential of two or three damn wins to your final win total over? Be fucking serious, man. Don’t give us another Yu Darvish gut-punch here, for fuck sakes.
We’ll keep updating this post as the story develops…
2:50 PM Update
Lots of pessimism out there, and for good reason, I guess, given that it currently looks like the Jays might actually be shockingly-dumbly willing to fall on their own sword on this one. That may change still, of course, but for now here’s one more thing to add to the ol’ shit gumbo, via Max Wildstein of Outside Pitch:
A rival exec said “From what I’ve heard, (Ervin) Santana will be an Oriole” #Orioles
— Max Wildstein (@MaxWildsteinMLB) March 8, 2014
In his next tweet he goes further:
Source: All signs point to P Ervin Santana and the #Orioles agreeing on a deal
— Max Wildstein (@MaxWildsteinMLB) March 8, 2014
OK. That’s cool, Jays. Not sure why anyone should give a shit about this team, since you obviously don’t, but… whatever, it’s just baseball, right? Pffft. Let’s just smell some fake grass and melt on some plastic seats and pay $12 for a fucking beer and not care about the results. There’s a winning fucking marketing pitch for ya! I have all kinds of other gems too, in that vein. Call me! Oh… right! You already did ask me (and a bunch of other bloggers/Twitterati, or something?) to help with your social media nights, which… is bizarre, to say the least. Fittingly Cracker Jack, though, I guess.
Of course, we probably shouldn’t get too worked up about Wildstein, despite the following he has on Twitter. He did tweet earlier that a “source” (the internet?) was telling him that Santana had signed with the Jays, and also “corrected” folks thinking Santana’s self-imposed deadline is 5 PM by telling them it’s 4 PM, even though obviously that’s just because MLBTR said so, and they operate on Central Time, and the original source said 5 PM ET. So… let’s maybe stop retweeting him, eh Griff?
4:35 PM Update
Does this mean anything? Not really — no more than the fact that on Twitter we’ve been following tweets Ervin Santana is favouriting (like this one asking Jays fans to RT if they want him to sign here, or this one congratulating him on trolling both Jays and Orioles fans by following a whole bunch of both), or the fact that I’m somehow trending in Canada (ahead of #pooped!) at the time of this writing [blows on fingers, scratches lapel]– but this is somewhat interesting nonetheless: according to a tweet from Jon Morosi, Jose Bautista has followed Ervin Santana’s suit and is no longer represented by Bean Stringfellow. Both pitchers followed agent Jay Alou, who resigned from his position as Head of Latin Baseball at Stringfellow’s Proformance agency this week.
Forgive me for being the tiniest bit optimistic for a second, but you’d have to think Jose has had some kind of contact with Ervin through all of this. And we’d heard stories earlier in the off-season about Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion lobbying the Jays to sign their friend. So… I don’t know… is it that outlandish to think that maybe this is where he wanted to be all along, and the whole Orioles involvement and self-imposed deadline thing is just a way to extract as much as he can from the Jays before grudgingly signing on their terms? I’d sure like to fucking think so, but it’s still pretty hard to at the moment.
5:05 PM Update
Oh fuck right off. According to a tweet from Jon Morosi… well… this:
Source: Ervin Santana has not set a deadline to make a decision and is prepared to wait “days” before signing with a club. @FOXSports1
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) March 8, 2014
So… there’s that.
5:12 PM Update
There’s also this: Roch Kubatko of the Orioles’ broadcaster, MASN, tweets that both the Jays and Orioles have similar offers, around $14.1-million on the table. And then he lays this on us:
And that’s it, folks. #orioles weren’t aware of any deadline. Maybe cause 1 didn’t exist.
— Roch Kubatko (@masnRoch) March 8, 2014
Well that was a waste of an afternoon, huh?
5:23 PM Update
So this is a little bit interesting. Remember two updates ago when I mentioned the stuff about the relationship between Bautista and Santana? Seems like it might be a thing. Here’s Jose in Jon Morosi’s serendipitously-timed big picture piece on the Jays at Fox Sports:
“It’s not the same players: We’re missing Josh Johnson, who was supposed to be a big key to our rotation,” Toronto right fielder Jose Bautista said of the 2013-2014 comparison. “One-fifth of your rotation shouldn’t be overlooked. That’s important. That’s why it’s so important that we add (Santana).”
Morosi adds that Bautista has been following the Santana negotiations closely, and throws us this bone, too: “if the Jays spend $14 million on a one-year deal for him, as they would like to do, they will buy a chance to dream again.”
As for the Bautista stuff, I’m not sure how comfortable we should be about a player openly campaigning to the media for the team to sign his friend — especially a player who might have genuine sway — but… I mean… he’s not wrong. Ryan Oakley, as he often does, hits the nail on the head:
Bau shouldn’t campaign for the Jays to sign his friend but the right fielder should also not be only member of the org who makes any sense.
— Ryan Oakley (@thegrumpyowl) March 8, 2014
6:55 PM Update
Enrique Rojas confirms that the Jays and the Orioles are indeed involved here, and that offers are on the table, though he also tells us that a couple other teams are now sniffing around as well. I’d embed the tweet, but it pretty much just says that, only in Spanish.
So… yeah. Doesn’t really change anything, but there’s some news-ish for ya.