Alex Anthopoulos met with Jeff Blair on his Fan 590 radio show this morning in an uncomfortable, fascinating interview that curiously didn’t begin when it was originally scheduled, and featured the GM, at one point, holding himself back from speaking, because he didn’t want to “spark something.”

The subject matter was, of course, the freshly-announced signing of Ervin Santana by the Atlanta Braves, and while Anthopoulos danced around saying anything terribly concrete how his team factored into the deal, he did all he could to make clear that the Jays thought the had a deal with the pitcher, presumably on Saturday when it was being reported a deal was imminent.

Of course, if Alex’s aim was to say that but not say it, he could have briefed ol’ Gibbers on it first:

I guess Gibbons was just hinting it, too, but clearly that’s what happened. Or… at least… that’s the story.

Or, actually it’s the unofficial, wink-wink, nudge-nudge, story.

The official story is that the money was there — because, of course, it always is when the Jays miss out on a player (which, of course, is always) — bu Santana was bound and determined to pitch in the National League. Never mind that Colorado was involved, according to many reports, and his overwhelming desire never materialized at that point. Never mind that the option wasn’t even on the table until Kris Medlen and Brandon Beachy got hurt and the Braves suddenly became an interested party.

Never mind that Ken Rosenthal, in his piece on the deal at Fox Sports, explains it thusly:

Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos looked like he was on the verge of a coup when the Jays were the apparent front-runner for Santana. Anthopoulos had waited all offseason for a bargain on a starting pitcher, and his strategy seemed likely to pay off.

The Braves’ sudden urgency, however, demonstrated the risk of a GM waiting out the market and effectively getting too cute.

That’s sure what it sounds like. And given that, this is an impressive attempt at messaging from the Jays, who provide us with enough of a kernel of truth at each turn to maintain at least some plausibility. By the look of it Santana did ultimately decide he was better off pitching in an NL park. And it’s certainly possible, given the way that the rumour broke on Saturday, coupled with the verbal posture taken by Anthopoulos and Gibbons during their interviews today, that the Jays genuinely felt they had something done.

Aaaaaaand… let’s just ignore the bit where we cocked the whole thing up.

If that’s really the story, it’s a tough pill to swallow — and while he didn’t confirm it, that’s exactly what Anthopoulos sounded like he was trying to do during this radio hit. He even added what sounded like a passive-aggressive dig at Santana, responding to a question from Blair about his standing with the players on his club by insisting that everything is positive, and with a tone that again suggested he felt he’d been wronged, he added, ”The players were well aware of how everything transpired.”

Then again, during a scrum with the media following the interview, which has outstandlingly been transcribed by Gregor Chisholm at North of the Border, the GM dealt with a few pressing questions about whether the club was used during the process, and wasn’t quite as emphatic or clear about it, if you read between the lines.

“No. No. That’s probably the only thing I’m going to say. No,” he replied to that line of questioning.

And when he was asked if they were used by Santana’s side to gain leverage? “Normally I would say that. In this case I don’t think I would.”

Hmmm. And when the media returned to the subject of an agreement-in-principle that may not have been honoured, he continued to be evasive — perhaps tellingly so.

Did you have the impression that Santana was going to sign last weekend? There were obviously reports about a deadline being set…
“Um, yeah, you know what, I’d rather not say. I’d probably rather not say.”

You’re obviously being careful with what you say, but on a personal level are you surprised he didn’t end up signing with the Jays?
“That’s another good one. I’d probably rather not say on that one as well.”

Why don’t you want to say…
“You know what, I want to be respectful of everybody. Like I said, I wish him the best, I would have loved to have had him, I know a lot of our players would have loved to have him. I think it’s pretty obvious we were involved, it didn’t work out, I’m trying to take the high road here.”

But you thought it was done on Saturday?
“I don’t think I’ve ever come out and said that. In fairness, I don’t know that I want to characterize the discussions or the negotiations.
Obviously it’s done, he made his decision, he’s in Atlanta. Great signing for them, I wish him the best and sorry it didn’t work out with us.”

There’s obviously a lot you’re not telling us, do the players know the whole story?
“Obviously some guys have relationships with the player. I think the players that are close to him, the players that have relationships, know more than the players don’t have a relationship with him. They were obviously talking to him and trying to recruit him.”

And then this:

You said the reason you were given was that Santana had a desire to pitch in the National League…
“Strong, very strong.”

But the Braves weren’t even in the mix on the weekend when a deal was supposedly done or at least close. It was only after the injuries….
“That’s a good point. That’s a very good point. I think that’s a very good point.”

So it’s certainly the victim pose the Jays are striking, at least in their messaging to those willing to read the subtext, but will it fly? Fairly or unfairly, even if all of the most sinister wrongs they’re hinting at are entirely true, it’s hard to see them as the victim here, except victim of their own cuteness — a culprit they simply cannot afford to succumb to. And yet here we are. The Braves — the ability to pitch in a much more favourable league and park, with a view to his next contract — weren’t an option on Saturday and the decision to try to squeeze just a little bit more blood from the stone seems to have proven extremely costly for the Jays, no matter how they try to spin it.


Image via Dave O’Brien.

Comments (197)

  1. You mean putting all of their eggs in one basket by waiting until there was one credible option remaining blew up in our face? Gadzooks!

    • exactly – risky strategy carries risks.

    • I don’t think this is entirely fair. To sign one of these guys any earlier, they would have had to offer them a contract that was much more then they were willing to pay. It was not that they were being too cute, it’s that it was only when Santana’s price and term dropped to something they were comfortable with were they interested.

      I have no doubt the Jays were in on all pitchers right from the beginning and didn’t like the cost, and I can’t blame them, all of the guys available had major warts.

      • At the price range the Jays want to play, everyone has warts.

        The Jays decided they didn’t want to get in on the Cano’s and McCann’s of the world, even though they play positions of great need for the Jays.

        That’s fine. It makes sense given the financial commitment.

        But if you’re not going to play at that price range, then you’re going to be stuck with guys who have warts.

        To not want to sign the big contracts, but then get concerned with any little bit of inconsistency, health, whatever … it’s like shopping a used car lot and settling for nothing less than a brand new Ferrari.

        • I think you missed the point, why pay $50 million for a guy with warts? Overpaying for mediocre talent is a recipe for dissaster. If a guy with warts is available at a reasonable price, and plays a position of need, then it’s okay to sign them.

          • You overpay for a guy because your team is constructed to only care about the next 2 years and won’t have any significant amount of talent beyond that.

            Value is one thing … but if you leave money left over in your budget and don’t have long-term implications (in the case of a team that just traded away most of its future last offseason) … then you are willing to sacrifice some budget space in future years.

            • Disagree with the part about the next 2 years. AA has stressed all along that he was going to rebuild the farm and he has and the results (including Stroman and Sanchez) will start to arrive within the next 2 years. That he was unable to sign ES however was a mistake. ES would have fit perfectly into those plans.

              • Let’s let Sanchez pitch above Dunedin before claiming he is going to help the major league team within the next 2 years.

                I mentioned it yesterday, but the year Kershaw hit AA, he was still two years away from being a significant contributor at the major league level.

                • “You overpay for a guy because your team is constructed to only care about the next 2 years and won’t have any significant amount of talent beyond that.”

                  AA’s plan (and Beeston’s for that matter) is for longer than the
                  next 2 years. They’ve said all along that they want to build a consistant team that will compete for a number of years. To that end the rebuilding of the farm was and is a central part. I personally think Sanchez and Stroman will be a huge part and they will
                  arrive in the next 2 years.
                  With regard to the Santana issue, we agree there. I think they absolutely should have overpaid. Just how much I don’t know. But they were saving a LOT of cash over what Santana was initially asking for.

                  • AA and Beeston said their plan was for the long-term before last offseason. During last offseason, they said they were going for a 3-year window. Their actions also indicated that they were sacrificing short-term for long-term.

                    You can’t have it both ways. You don’t trade away more than a handful of your top prospects one year and then the year afterwards say that you’re building for sustained success.

          • Overpaying for mediocre talent? You mean like everyone they got last year?

            Yes that can hamper a small-market team, but the Jays aren’t such a thing. And there was top level talent on the market that they didn’t even bother with. Moreover, if this team was capable of producing any talent internally, it wouldn’t have to overpay, but the inability to produce anything other than marginal big-leaguers this century hasn’t exactly put them in a good place.

  2. Would have liked Blair to ask about 2nd base. I don’t know if AA is hoping a solid 2nd baseman will become available when spring training is over but that is the black hole of suck on this roster.

    • Someone dropped the ball on the off-season. AA was as direct as he gets at the beginning of the off-season on the upgrades required to the roster – none of which he’s been able to achieve other than catcher. If it’s Rogers being cheap and tying AA’s hands on the money side then if I’m AA I’m selling out on the long term by dealing prospects for a pitcher. It’s really odd to me that the Jays have neither ponied up the money or sold out on the future.

  3. No worries – Ricky’s back!!

  4. Who needs him when you have Ricky Romero…

    • Why shit on Ricky right now? He’s actually looking pretty good. Is there a person in Toronto with a soul that wouldn’t want to see him as even an average MLB pitcher again?

      • I wouldnt get my hopes too high, but it would be awesome if he could find some of that old magic on a Major league level.

      • Considering my Romero jersey, purchased at the start of the season two years ago, still hangs proudly somewhere in the depths of my closet, I sure as hell hope he somehow finds his way back to being a useful piece of the puzzle. Not getting my hopes up though.

        As an aside, moths don’t eat polyester, do they?

      • Two dorks called him a clown a few posts back. But that was after his 1st – very bad- outing. I want to stress though that his last 2 outings have been against the Rays, and I don’t trust those f**kers period.

        • Ease up. We saw him out one Saturday night at Oasis patio partying with his buddies after he had a horrible start that same afternoon. We gave it to him pretty good and to be honest, he took it pretty hard. He didn’t even tell us to fuck off. He just hung his head in shame (he looked like he was about to cry!) and left pretty soon thereafter. I remember feeling pretty badly after that.

  5. I’m not making excuses because I think they totally f-ed up the off season, but upon reflection the following is entirely plausible.

    Friday afternoon/night – Santana decides he is ready to sign 1 year deal.

    Friday night/Saturday morning – Jays make offer and are told so far it is a competitive offer and that Santana will make up his mind by 5 pm and will likely sign with Jays if he doesn’t have a better offer. Hell his agent might have even promised to come back to AA if someone made a better offer. i.e. Orioles

    Saturday afternoon- Medlen gets hurt – All bets are off, agent decides to kill 5 pm deadline “promise” and that they will wait and see if Atlanta has any interest.

    Sunday – Braves contact Santana and ask them to wait a day or two as they might have interest.

    It doesn’t excuse the whole off season, but it is possible that AA moved quickly i.e almost had him signed within 24 hours of Santana putting it out there that he was willing to take a 1 year deal.

    Problem was, Jays had no leverage and couldn’t set their own deadline as there were no other SP out there. If this had been January they could have said they needed an answer by 5 pm Saturday as they were close with another SP.

    • Medlen was hurt on Sunday afternoon.

      • you are 100% correct, I honestly thought it was Saturday. I was watching it on TV. It looked bad when it happened.

        But of course I got my days confused.

        Ignore my theory above. Makes it even worse in my view.

  6. From a PR perspective, this played out terribly for the Jays. A week ago, we had all come to grips with the fact that the Jays likely weren’t going to sign Santana. We didn’t like it, but we accepted it… and then Saturday morning brought word that the Jays had signed him (excitement!)… and then word that maybe they had not signed him (WTF?) … and then word that Santana would make a decision by 5:00 PM (anticipation!)… and then that deadline passed with no further word (WTF?)… and then the arse fell out of the Braves rotation and they swooped in to pick up the only pitcher left on the free agent market, leaving the Blue Jays to try to sell Romero to the fans as a possible fall-back option. Jesus.

  7. Well, I guess it’s time to wish upon McGowan staying healthy for once, Hutchison looking like a future star, and Stroman winning rookie of the year.

    I mean, hey, as Blue Jays fans, we’re due, right? There’s gotta be one season in the future where everything goes right, no? Bad luck has to change sometime?

    • I’m totally on this new positive outlook train. We ARE due! We are gunna lose the Wildcard playoff game this year, I can see it now!

  8. AA simply gambled that he could get a player to drop his price and despite nearly succeeding he ultimately crapped out.

    Now he’s got no choice but to double down on that gamble heading into the season. Sure he could still pull off a trade but we all know how much that will cost.

    To me it’s ironic because you could argue he gambled with the trades last year. Going into the winter Beeston himself said AA was very humbled by how it turned out. Now maybe because he was cautious and intent on getting the utmost value this winter from his transactions all he’s ended up doing is taking a bigger risk on the next season and potentially his jib with the Jays. Personally, i don’t think he should go if they don’t make the playoffs but maybe i would rethink that if they have another season like they did last year.

    To me there just has to be a larger disfunction in the organization. You don’t start the year claiming you need big upgrades then say no we love what we got to being desperate for help. Call it PR or damage control the end result is the same.

    I still believe in the offense and pen in a big way. I even believe in Dickey strongly and Buehrle to a lesser extent but that is it. Morrow not at all to be honest. The kids that faced him were shocked at the lack of velocity on his fastball yesterday. Maybe there is nothing there and he didn’t feel the need to ramp it up substantially. Then again, how many times over the last three years has this management group said everything is fine with a player but turns out not to be the case.

    • I think everyone here is missing a point. There is a possibility that AA did not like the FA pitchers at all this year and would not have committed to any of them past a few years. I understand that the team has a window but even than you cant be signing shitty contracts if you believe that the players are not worth it. Maybe he is looking to strike on the next year’s FA pitching class which looks to be a lot better. Point is its not the end of the world and people need to get over it. Also Hutch has no business being in the minors and Stroman if he settles down and gets his control will be in the same boat. These guys need major league innings and experience.

      • Why was the only other action to improve the team signing navarro and trading for kratz?

        • Because there arent any other options. Drew at 2nd is not optimal for that kind of money. Come on guys, everyone knows that we need a balance of veterans and rookies that are making minimum. We simply cannot have a team full of 10+mil/year guys, its simply not feasible.

  9. One of many issues that arise after Santana goes elsewhere … if the Jays couldn’t close him on Saturday, then how many free agents are the Jays really likely to close given the current parameters they operate under?

    Their current intention seems to be to only sign guys where there is limited risk of overpayment and that they won’t win bidding wars. OK, so that takes pretty much every top free agent off the market. That’s fine. But then don’t build a freaking offseason strategy around that.

    Go after the Kazmirs and the like. And if pitchers won’t rebuild their value in Toronto, then go after guys like Ellis where the Jays can offer the starting spot most other teams can’t (they did this with Navarro and it’s a good signing).

    Not only does it seem the Jays aren’t being honest with their fans … their strategy and failed execution seems to indicate they’re not being honest with themselves.

  10. Here’s hoping not making a move is the best move philosophy works here.
    Not like our moves last year did us any good.
    Sad as it is, I’m trying like fuck to see a bright side….. on this beautiful GTA day……hand gets closer to gun….

  11. i wonder if all this garbage about ‘valuing’ the player takes into account the circumstanes: the AL east, which leads to higher ERAs; other teams’ needs; the current roster make-up and ‘three year window’; etc etc etc.

    considering all the shifting factors, it’s ridiculous to propose there’s a definite value for a player. fuck me. so pissed.

    • again….GM’s aren’t going to be so stupid as to be fooled by results in a vacuum. They are going to take his numbers and adjust them for all these factors. He is going to have to perform that much better in Atlanta than he would have for the Jays to get the same credit.

  12. trade bautista to the marlins. lol. fuck you jay alou.

  13. So let me try and figure this out. Santana wants to pitch for Atlanta because he gets to pitch in a great pitchers park, in a division with several very weak offenses, and in an offensively challenged league in general.

    He wants to do this to create value for next offseason when he is a free agent again.

    Get it. OK.

    But, am I to believe the General Managers that run baseball dont understand the concept of adjusting results for league / park / opposition factors? Really? I am to believe the people whose very jobs depend on understanding such things dont understand them as well as lay people on a baseball blog?

    • The Phillies have a GM who still evaluates players based on homeruns and RBIs. It’s not that ridiculous to think he could get a better contract with better traditional numbers.

      • The thing is, if he actually had success in the AL East in his one year, the sky’s the limit for his next contract.

  14. When AA started this waiting out the market gambit, many people on this board said it was risky because new suitors could appear. Others — including Stoeten, I believe — laughed this off, saying that if AA was in the mix, even if a new team appeared, then surely the Jays would be given the opportunity to counter the bid. Doesn’t seem like that was the case in the end.

    I won’t miss Santana, but this sucks. And if this really worked the way they are hinting at, then we got well and truly fucked. My biggest fear now is some sort of knee-jerk move at another target. Like selling everyone for The Shark,

    • Actually I said that (or words to that effect). I was positive that AA would have the oppourtunity to counter bid and in that way – as he promised – he’d get his 1 (or 2) SPs.
      For me it was glaringly obvious that the way to proceed after last year was NOT to deal the kids, but to invest in guys like UJ and / or ES to give the kids time to develop. After all , it’s just money and the Jays would be getting off (in terms of losing picks) much better than any other team. Rosenthals term ” too cute” is damning but SO apt..

      • I agree with those points. Just once I wish I liked a team that just did their business and got on with it!

  15. Classic poker blunder…you could have bet bigger earlier, and pushed away the other, lesser hands that are just hanging around. You think no one is going to beat your set, so you check instead of putting more chips in the pot. But the river card gives someone else a straight, and you’re skunked. I think I’d like to play AA at poker.

    • That’s a strong possibility of what happened Friday/Saturday…

      But if AA offers $14m & sits on it thinking he’s got the highest & best bid, what would prompt him to increase the bid?

      By Saturday it was rumoured O’s bid $13m + incentives…

      At that point, many suggested if true, increase the bid to $15-16m & to see if the deal can close ASAP

      maybe AA did, maybe he didn’t…maybe Santana didn’t ask for more, maybe he did…

      Saturday will remain a mystery…

      But my sense is AA offered $14m & sat on it.

    • For fuck’s sake, no more poker references. Do you know how many terrible sports writers, bloggers, radio personalities have made the same comments today? The point is Santana didn’t accept the Jays initial offer which they believed to be fair value. AA seems to think he had a deal with Santana, who then backed out, probably on advice from his agent, to wait and see for the exact scenario that played out. Anthopolis isn’t going to offer the guy $20 million, when nobody else is offering more than $15 to get a deal done immediately, especially when he’s fairly certain that Santana had agreed to whatever offered he originally made. Once the Braves were in the picture, no amount of money was going to sway him and the Jays (rightly so) weren’t prepared to offer him a multi-year contract. It’s just frustrating listening to people say “He should have made a one-time, answer immediately offer for Santana”, because we all know players have zero ego and love being pushed around by teams. Christ.

      • A better analogy would be the bidding war for a house. He needed to make a bully offer that Santana could not have refused. I’m not talking about $25 million here, just a couple more than the QO offer. Then Santana would looked better because he could still say he got more than the original QO. Just like multiple bids on a house, AA tried to get best value and just like when you do that in real estate you usually lose end up losing to another person with a higher offer.

      • I don’t think it was suggested to give Santana a deadline, do or die offer…

        And I don’t think at any point did Santana verbally commit…

        it’s possible AA offered $14m, was advised orioles were offering $13m + $X & AA stuck to $14m thinking he had Santana at $14m & he gambled Santana was gonna make a decision ASAP

        AA would look much better & I’m sure we would’ve heard about it by now, if he offered $15-$16m to try to get the deal done on Saturday.

        it’s a strategic decision to offer > $14m on Saturday in light of the O’s offer (if legit) & to try to close Santana Saturday…not saying Santana would’ve accepted but would’ve shown AA went beyond the starting point to close Santana.

        • Stephen Brunt is on Prime Time Sports, he talked to AA and believes strongly there was a verbal commitment which was backed out of as soon as Medlin got hurt. Not saying this is definitive, but it seems pretty legitimate. My reference to people saying a final offer, take it or leave it, was directed at comments the last few days. Again, if AA thought he had a deal, which we have no idea what the actual value of it was, why would he offer more? I still believe that if the Jays had offered $20 million, Santana still would have backed out to talk to Atlanta.

          • So I guess next time they don’t take an agents word for it and get some kind preliminary signature up front.

      • Paul — right on. Seems like people think the Jays could have “made” him sign. How?

        Guy got an offer, waited a little longer. Got the same offer from the NL. took it. I don’t see how the Jays could have “made” it happen any different.

        • No … what the Jays should have done is not leave themselves in this position so that their entire efforts to improve the rotation relied on a free agent not (shocking!) shopping their offer.

          I mean … this strategy would work great in a world where players don’t pay independent parties to get the most money they possibly can.

          But oh yeah … pretty much every baseball player has an agent, so that strategy seems pretty doomed.

  16. even though Colorado is in the NL, the idea of pitching at Coors was probably even less enticing to Santana than the Jays or Orioles

  17. Another in the long list of things this signing reveals … AA isn’t exactly the silent ninja where nobody finds out what he’s doing until it’s done.

    I realize that myth has been exploded before on this site, but this is yet another example.

    • I think part of that is the other teams adapting to AA’s methods. There have been a a couple of articles that have mentioned that. Also Grantland did a fantastic article on the modern day GM and their front offices. It’s worth the read if you can find it. Basically with front offices being as advanced as they are now and that they all work in relatively the same way there is far less room for exploitation than there used to be.

  18. a lot of bullshit coming from that transcribed scrum. everything indicates the player was on the level, despite all the noise around the deadline. ugh. fuck.

  19. The bottom line is that it is now March 15.
    The off season began in November.

    Give or take a couple of weeks, the Blue Jays
    have had 4 months to plug the holes on this roster.

    They have elected to do nothing outside of Navarro.
    I don’t care whether the blame lies with Rogers,
    or AA or Sheldon on the Big Bang Theory or my aunt Minerva.

    Last year’s moves combined with this year’s nothingness
    is just not acceptable.

    Used to be a big Leaf fan but at some point I just stopped caring.
    I’m not quite there with the Blue Jays yet.
    But we’re sneaking up on it.

    • C’mon, they have not elected to do nothing. They have not succeeded, yes.

      Would you have given > $155/7yrs + 20 M for Tanaka?
      Would you have given > $50/4yrs to Jimenez?
      Would you have paid for some > 30 year old guy that never was a more than adequate pitcher anyways?

      Apparently Santana did not want to play in the AL East for either the Orioles or the Jays. Don’t see how that is AA doing nothing.

      Disappointing, but such is life.

      Go back to cheering for the Leafs. They love paying for expensive vets that end up being millstones around the team’s neck. Maybe AA should get Darcy Tucker. He’ll be off the Leafs books by the end of the year.

      • Maybe we should give them a pat on the back and a “Good Effort” sticker.

        I would not have had to get any of the arms you named
        because I would have bid enough to get Darvish when I had the chance.
        That is not revisionist history, I said so at the time.

        I don’t give a flyin; fadoo about winning the $/WAR derby,
        Winning championships is what matters.

        And people like you who drink the Kool Aid
        and defend Rogers and management
        at every turn are part of the problem.
        You allow them to keep doing this shit, decade after decade.

      • They have elected to do nothing other than sign navarro and trade for kratz. Break down every potential scenario you want and justify their actions however you want. The factis they havent improved the team much if at all after saying they would

  20. So here’s the question:

    Now that free agency has gone down the drain, does AA pull the trigger on a trade? One would assume the price is prohibitive if AA has not yet done the trade, and that cost would only go up now that the other party knows AA has no free agents left to pursue.

    I have to imagine the cost would be at least one of Sanchez or Stroman, plus other prospects.

    • Who is likely to make a big trade at this point? Most teams are done planning for the offseason – it seems that trades generally only happen prior to the start of spring training or else right around the trade deadline. Few significant trades are made between the start of spring training and the trade deadline.

    • I don’t think you see one now. Maybe late May early June when there is a bigger supply of arms available. The only down side with that strategy is that more teams are in the mix for a playoff spot now so even as the supply increases the demand will too. He needs to get lucky and find a weak spot to strike or get lucky in finding an under appreciated arm.

      • Actually, what he’s going to end up hoping for is that few other teams are out of it and that there is a lot of demand from other teams for Rasmus.

        • That would mean the Jays are out of it. You’re not going to get more than a QO pick for a half season of Rasmus. Besides they need to extend him imo, not trade him. When you have Gose saying things in the paper like “if I can figure out how to hit i can play in the big leagues” you can’t be counting on him to be a factor in your future.

          • The QO pick to Rasmus goes out the door as soon as the season starts.

            And as for demand being high for: Melky, Buerhle, half our bullpen and possibly Izturis.


            Cabrera put up .348/.377/.591 last spring training. That didn’t work out too well. Yes, he had the tumor. Yes, he was also a replacement level player 2006-2010, so we still don’t know for sure if any team will want him. If so, they’re not going to be giving up anything significant for a half season of a guy like him.

            For Buehrle, perhaps you missed out seeing how many free agent pitchers signed for less than $18.5 MM per year when the cost was a 2nd round draft pick (or first for some teams). No way anyone wants any piece of Buehrle’s contract.

            Izturis – the worst player in baseball – I don’t see too many playoff teams wanting to add that.

            And the bullpen has been talked about all offseason as something the Jays were going to be able to leverage to acquire pieces. Doesn’t seem to be too desirable, does it?

            • You’re being a little too negative there.

              Obviously we don’t get a QO pick for Rasmus if we trade him, so we’re not going to trade him unless we get something back worth more than a late first-rounder in next year’s draft. Because of that, I doubt we trade him, because that late first-rounder is quite valuable.

              You casually mention the tumour, then talk about 2006-2010 like it was yesterday. 2010 was four seasons ago. At the start of 2010, Adrian Beltre was still considered one of the worst free agent busts of modern times, not the borderline Hall of Famer we’ve come to know him as since. Provided Melky plays this season like he has in recent seasons past, there should be demand for him. I mean, dude, there’s demand for Adam frigging Lind, and you’re telling me that no one will want Melky, provided last year was a tumour-induced blip, something that’s not merely believable, but also logical?

              Buehrle. If you do a leaderboard of total WAR (pitchers only) for 2011-2013, Buehrle comes up at #39. Note that this is being kind to your theory that no one wants Buehrle, because this removes most of Buehrle’s great seasons, in a career in which he’s managed to put up 48 WAR. Anyways, back to the point. On that same list, Ubaldo Jiminez comes in at #49, nearly a full WAR behind Buehrle; and Ervin Santana is at #87, having put up a miserable 4.6 WAR over the past three seasons combined. (Pitchers who have put up more WAR over the same time frame: Josh Johnson and Brandon Morrow, despite the fact they’ve been injured.)

              In short, Buehrle is getting more money than Jiminez and Santana, because Buehrle is worth more money than either Jiminez or Santana. Not to mention, he’s only got two years left on his contract–the back-loaded end, granted, but still: any two year contract is tradeable. And the reason no one signed those pitchers with a 2nd round pick attached is because the pick is valuable, not because of the pitcher involved. The pick is the important part. Buehrle has no pick attached, because you would be trading for him.

              And as for Izturis, he’s a bench player. They’re supposed to suck. That’s why they’re bench players. Only the Yankees can afford to have all $6.5 million of Ichiro on their bench.

              If the Jays decide to blow it up, they will have suitors. But it is yet too early to head down that dark path, because the same reasons why our pieces are desirable are the same reasons we have a chance this season. Not as bright a chance as we thought we had last season, but it’s still a chance. If we don’t lose Reyes for 69 games, Melky for 74 games, Lawrie for 55 games, Bautista for 44 games, and Rasmus for 44 games, we might be looking at a very different season. Yeah, I know, injuries happen, that’s life, but our injuries took out our best players, and at a rate that seems excessive. There’s a chance.

              There’s logical reasons to be negative, sure. But you’re being excessively negative, beyond what logic should permit.

              • I talked about 2006-2010 for Cabrera because he’s a PED user and there is a pretty clear uptick in his performance. he was steady for 5 years at replacement level and then all of a sudden, it shoots up to 3.7+ WAR for 1.7 years. Then he gets suspended for PED. To say that his PED years are indicative of his performance his foolhardy.

                For Beuhrle. Yes, he shows up at #39 for WAR. He’s also being paid like one of the top 10 for WAR (Wainright at $19.5 MM is the 10th highest contract for a pitcher I believe). So, yeah, no one is likely to bite on that. You talk about the 2nd round pick as if it’s something that teams acquiring Beuhrle won’t have to give up … well then what the hell are the Jays going to acquire? 2nd round picks aren’t exactly that likely to make the majors. If the reason teams stayed away from Jiminez and Santana is the cost of a second round pick, then what the hell are teams going to give up for Beuhrle? Both Santana and Jimenez are are much younger and coming off significantly better seasons than Beuhrle and signed for much cheaper.

                For Izturis. Bench players are supposed to suck. Yes. But bench players are not supposed to be sub-replacement. Bench players are not supposed to hurt a team by 2 wins in the short period of time they touch the field. Izturis hurts a team when he’s on the field. That’s less than you can say about any competitive team’s bench. And definitely not worth multiple millions. If any team would have been willing to just take his salary of the Jays hands, not even giving a player back, AA would have jumped.

        • Demand should be solid for Rasmus, Melky, Buerhle, half our bullpen and possibly Izturis, which won’t really impact the core but shit if we’re at that point midseason, it’s going to be another long July, August, September

          • If the jays are out of it they need to trade the coveted pieces like bautista ee reyes dickey morrow jansen and start the rebuild supplementing the low minors guys.

      • Could possibly see a trade for a bubble pitcher but the question remains, “is he better than what you’ve got?”

    • The low A kids are s’pose to be good though. That’ll solve all our problems.

  21. It will be interesting if any of the Jays players that are closer to Santana will give us any other insight into this mess.
    I have a bad feeling that there was a deadline set by Santana and his agent and then they went back on that, causing a lot of heartburn and ultimately rejection to AA and the Jays organization.

  22. There is no reason not to sign Drew.

    I have no context or evidence of this but I feel like AA’s going to try to wait until he doesn’t have to give up a pick (after Opening Day) to go after Drew.

    • actually it’s after the rule 4 draft in June.

    • The Jays tend to not deal with Boras clients anymore.

    • Boras, I mean Drew, will likely wait until opening day when he won’t be tied to a pick after the season. Clearly the wait and see approach worked with Santana, as teams become more desperate as injuries mount. Unfortunately the Jays seem to hate Boras, and Drew probably won’t agree to play 2nd unless he’s offered a multi year contract, and we all know how much AA despises signing contracts on players terms.

  23. What’s AA’s best FA signing, Navarro? Seems like this will be his undoing.

    • Let’s let Navarro play.

      He was a low risk signing and one that I’m in favor of.

      But the chance of him being a 2+ WAR player are longer than the odds of him being replacement level or worse (like he’s been 4 of the last 5 years).

      • I don’t think he was saying there’s anything wrong with Navarro, it’s that he’s the only upgrade.

        • I’m saying that it’s early to even call Navarro a best free agent signing.

          I think we may soon find that for AA, the answer to who is the best free agent signing will be none of the above.

      • Assuming he gets a full workload, every projection has him being over 2 WAR

        • Assuming he gets a full workload is a big assumption for someone who last caught more than 60 games in 2009. That’s probably a big reason zips and steamer have him at 1.5 WAR.

    • Melky’s going to be good this year.

      • Well after a -1 WAR season last year, he’ll have to be really good just to justify his contract, let alone make it one that provides excess value.

  24. I too have often been the victim of my own cuteness *strike adorable pose*

  25. You can’t exactly pity AA for playing chicken, but do I buy that they were left at the altar? Sure.

    And Stephen Drew’s still out there. At the end of the day, runs added are worth just about as much as defensive runs subtracted.

  26. And this folks, is why AA doesn’t like free agency. It would appear that in order to lure a quality free agent to Toronto, he has to be prepared to grossly overpay to get talent, and even then the player may choose to go elsewhere rather than get beat up on Toronto’s turf if he’s a fielder, or get hit out of the park, if he’s a pitcher.

    So when he makes a trade, the player has to come to Toronto whether he wants to or not. The only thing that will change that will be if the Jays win again, but how are they going to do that when nobody wants to come here?

    Maybe we are going to see AA go back to focusing on drafting talent…?

    I can’t wait to read AA’s tell-all book he writes after he gets fired.

    • Piss off. Grossly overpay? Come on. What the Jays offered him was still below the going rate for free agents based on a dollar/WAR basis. Santana is projected to be worth around 3 fWAR in 2014. That’s worth at a minimum $15 million. Why not just match the offer they made to Burnett at $16 million? Again it was higher than the QO offer but not excessively so.

      Will they have to overpay at times? Without a doubt. But grossly so? Don’t think so.

      • They offered him 14, but he didn’t come to the Jays. That’s my point. He went to Atlanta for 14 million instead. If the Jays want a FA, they’re going to have to pay more than other teams, and probably a lot more. Would he have come to Toronto for 16 million? Who knows. Maybe, but in my mind, he was only going to come to Toronto as a last resort.

        For AA, it must be like when I am going into Chapters and seeing a book sell for $19.95 , or $35.00 Canadian. If I want to buy the book, I have to pay more, every time. And it has nothing to do with the Canadian dollar.

        • You’re missing the point. They tried to get him for a below market amount and lost. You can easily argue that additional cash as in market value or even a small premium would have sealed the deal before the Braves issue.

          • don’t you remember when the nationals, 3 -4 years ago, decided they wanted to start being taken seriously, so they dished out outrageous contracts to jayson werth, and then ryan zimmerman, just to show the world they were ready to pay to compete?

            • Didn’t those same Nationals make the playoffs in 2012? With Jayson Werth and Ryan Zimmerman on the roster? Feel so bad for their fans.

  27. Watching PTS now and Brunt is saying (spinning?) that the Jays had a deal and got stung.

    • Sounds possible but obviously they didn’t do enough or something quickly enough to lock him up.

    • I believe that, the mainstream guys were all reporting it.
      I’d imagine it was something like ok, 14 mil, one year
      sounds good we’ll take
      ok great we’ll send the paperwork.

    • That is no excuse for jays. They didntimprove the team after saying they would at the beginning of the off season. Nothing elseneeds to be considered they simply did not deliver

  28. AA certainly has become the master of double-speak, and has more excuses than vowels in his surname. I’m afraid his time is dwindling as a MLB GM, although you sure wouldn’t know the way that the likes of Elliott and Griffin refuse to ask the hard questions, what with him cloaked in a red&white flag and all…

  29. Everyone in the Jays community panned Santana and prayed he would not get signed by the Jays. Other teams overpaid for the free agent talent that was available and we stood pat, maybe waiting for one or more of these free agents to drop their price or contact years. Santana has no interest and the Jays make a move at what seems the right time, until you factor in the stall tactics by Santana hoping for a better deal he deemed as something better. The Jays miss out on a player they tried to get as a bargain on contract years because the player made that choice. Now everyone wants AA head because some chump we never really liked snubbed us after AA got creative while clearly doing what is best for the team, organizationally and financially?

    • The team has not improved and there would maybe never be a more compelling business or baseball case to improve a team. The business case was clearly bought into if there was money to sign santana. So the thing is the front office failed to improve the team so it is justified to question. Say what you will about the potential prospects of the non elite players the fact is there was ample opportunity to improve with many options in every area of need and they got navarro and kratz to catch and that still projects to be average at best at that position

  30. @TSN1050Radio: . @TSNScottyMac tells TSN Drive that if Kris Medlen didn’t get injured this weekend, Ervin Santana would have been a Blue Jay

  31. According to Stephen brunt. Santana’s agent and the Jays had a verbal agreement on Saturday. The team thought it was a done deal. Then the agent pulled out when the Atlanta pitcher went down. Brunt says blame the agent if anyone is to blame

    • Then just let AA know he should come out & tell the truth…

      Until he comes out & point blank says Santana agreed but backed out, then there was no verbal acceptance by Santana

    • So are we expected to think that the Jays blacklist him along with Scott Boras? Btw, they really need to mend fences with Boras because they have too many self-imposed obstacles to just getting the job done. Jay Alou doesn’t need to be ostracized for what turns out to be a good move for his client after he was advised poorly early in the off season.

      Unless he has a smoking gun this is irresponsible reporting on Stephen Brunt’s part, and I confess to being disappointed.

    • That verbal agreement has to come so far down the line as to be completely non credible.

      Is the agent going to come out and tell a reporter he had a verbal agreement he backed out of? Nope.

      Is the player going to tell said reporter he had a verbal agreement he backed out of? Nope.

      Is AA going to tell the reporter? Nope. He had a chance to but didn’t.

      So, it’s unlikely that anyone directly involved in this actually said it.

      When it comes down to a verbal agreement, versus something like a trade discussion, having firsthand knowledge is incredibly important. The subtle difference between an agent saying, “This looks great – I think we’re pretty much set” (no verbal agreement) versus, “This looks great – we’ll get it signed shortly” (verbal agreement) is so minor that it can easily get lost in translation through the telephone game.

  32. But the Braves weren’t even in the mix on the weekend when a deal was supposedly done or at least close. It was only after the injuries….

    “That’s a good point. That’s a very good point. I think that’s a very good point.”

    lolololololololol no way

  33. #SignStephenDrew

  34. AA needs to man up and stop beating on the bush. It’s tiresome reading the same old answers from all his interviews.

  35. It amazes me AA is trying to push this off on Santana. What bullshit.

    When you wait until the eleventh hour you have to expect your odds of getting a deal done are going down by the second. If the player is wavering in the least bit and you say “that’s the best we can do”, you should not be putting letters on his new jersey in the other room. You should be assuming it won’t happen.

    Fact of the matter, AA has likely not improved the rotation over what existed going into the offseason. (Outside of trades that fell through for unforeseen medical issues) that’s completely on him.

    Take the responsibility. Do us all a favor.

    • Amen. Far too many people will give AA a pass on this offseason. Far too many will look at the options this team has as #4 and #5…and even on Morrow, who can’t stay healthy…has never been able to…and buy into preseason hype.

      Bottomline is every other AL East team made improvements. The Jays did not, despite being the one AL East team that publicly went on record after last season saying they would be making improvements.

      You cannot win the AL East with the rotation the Jays have. You just can’t. You won’t. I don’t care how great Drew Hutchison looks, or how many times Rickey Romero goes out there for 3 or 4 innings and only gives up 2 walks. And it’s a shame because this club has a really potent lineup offensively.

  36. So basically, they had a deal but didnt submit the paper work because it was the weekend..then monday rolls around and the braves pitcher gets hurt..and deal is off?

    really? this is not how you do business if you are an agent. not good at all. this will not go unnoticed.

    • If indeed the deal was verbally struck and the agent was the one who walked away from it, then good luck with the new agency, pal. All the other GMs will take notes and make adjustments accordingly.

      • The money follows the talent, not the agent. Boras has been pulling tricks with teams for years and in multiple sports and people still end up signing his players.

        • I don’t see the Jays lining up to buy whatever Boras is selling. I doubt they’re the only ones who feel that way.

          • I don’t see the Jays lining up to buy much of what anyone is selling. It’s hard to credibly claim them as representative of baseball teams and their willingness to sign free agents.

            • Did you look at this crop of free agents? I wouldn’t take this bunch as indicative of anything. If it’s the same next year though I will be pissed.

              • Exactly how many free agents has AA signed since he became GM?

                It’s not like this is the only offseason he’s been in charge of the Jays. Last year, the Jays seemed to be all about acquiring talent, how many free agents did the Jays sign?

                Many of the Jays recent acquisitions were free agents in the 2011-12 offseason. How many of them did he sign?

              • Stop there were so many options to upgrade this team via fa this year and there was an obvious business and baseball case to do just that. They didnt and the team didnt improve plain and simple. Money and rogers is not an excuse since there was apparently money for santana. People say every year fa class is shitty wait tillnext year. This one was absolutely stacked, the jays were out on all the elite talent becuase of the policy and also didnt land the second or third tier players.

                Given AA track record I fear he will again get fleeced in trading cheap young players and prospects for marginal overpaid upgrades when the jays are on the outside looking in but close at the deadline. Make no mistake the jays were fleeced by miami and the mets and the overpay could be justified if the team really goes for it with all these good vets on roster but instead this offseason they didnt do that and continued the toronto sports mediocrity curse.

      • I think Frank Wren likes him

  37. Alex woke up this morning, looked in the mirror and saw Darth Ricciardi’s reflection staring back at him.

    The circle is now complete…

  38. AA’s job could be lost by the end of the season. Today is the first time I’ve considered that.

  39. Y’know…AA would avoid a lot of the name-calling and shit thrown his way if he would just sit down and FUCKING SPILL!! Tell the truth, warts and all – about how his off-season philosophy, or how we thought we had a deal, and then the whole fucking thing blew up….yet again.
    Instead of him being a gentleman, etc in the Old Boys GM club – where we don’t tell stories about each other or players….yeah, right.
    Meanwhile, you’re getting your asshole reamed into a manhole-sized orifice, and the villagers are streaming through the streets, calling for your head on a pike on the castle walls….and the best you can do is “I’d rather not get into that”.
    Pah! Fug that. Show some balls. Show some fire. Show some righteous indignation…at least for the players, as much as the fans. Make it a “them against us” kinda thing.

    • that would be stupid for him to do, why would he start another war with an agent

      • Because being a nice guy has worked out SO well for him, hasn’t it?
        (I see your point – but I’m feeling a little vindictive right now)

    • He is in this mess because he says too much0. IMO a gm should only talk about players currently in the organization, not speculate or reveal what they want to do and let actions speak for themselves in terms of acquisitions. He has either epically failed to temper expectations while revealing a planned course of action and his subsequent incompetence to implement it or is somehow trying to spin something to sell tickets while pissing off fans. The latter doesnt make sense.

  40. “That’s a good point. That’s a very good point. I think that’s a very good point.” Wow…that was insightful. Thanks for clearing that up, Alex

  41. could be imagining it, but in the Blair interview when AA mentioned Jon Garland’s agent a number of years ago as a guy who was “honest and candid” and “exactly what you want from a club’s standpoint”, that wouldn’t be a dig at Jay Alou, would it?

    So the Santana saga over the weekend goes something like: “Erv would love to pitch in Toronto, let’s get something in – what’s that? The Braves are calling?? Good-night Alex!”

    Days later, “Yeah Alex uh, the Braves have matched your offer and Erv, he uh… he’s gonna go pitch for them. Nothing against you guys, but Erv just really wanted to pitch in the NL.”

    Alex is probably thinking they weren’t so gung-hoe about the NL when it was only the goddamn Rockies in the bidding.

    All in all it was the logical choice for Santana, whatever their methods were. It’s a business and sometimes feelings get stepped on. No one will care if Hutchison and one of the other cast of characters vying for a rotation spot take care of business this season.

    Still very confused by the actions of this club over the last 2 years.

  42. Yeah, I know there’s no crying in baseball..blahblahblah
    Yeah, I know it’s nothing personal, it’s just business…blahblahblah.
    Yeah, I know nothing’s worth a shit until the ink is dry…blah.

    But I’d start thinking about being the biggest prick douchebag GM out there…and fuck Scott Boras and his blacklist, and fuck the GM’s Gentleman Club, and fuck all those agents, and fuck…well, fuck everybody.
    I’ve had a bad fucking day…and this is steaming turd meatball on top of it all.
    I’m gonna lay a hurtin’ on the Jameson’s tonight.

  43. AA on spirtsnet in a few min with Hazel?

  44. I don’t think you will hear anything negative about the agent since Bautista has the same agent and you hope to do business in the future

    • I don’t think Bau is much of a big “agent” type guy. He seems to be a team guy. He took a ridicously team friendly deal three years ago when he probably could have gotten 20+ if he went open market like his agent probably wanted.

  45. AA is paid big bucks to get the job done. Improving the rotation in year two of this three year window with this current core group was priority #1 and he even said as much at the end of last year (“at least one guy, if not two”) and they got nothing.

    AA failed at his job this winter…there are no excuses and there is no way of spinning it.

    Well…I suppose some fans will buy his shit but I’m not.

    • For sure. Getting deals done and not getting screwed is part of his job description. He’s failed and this isn’t the first time.

  46. AA is probably also not fully forthright about this situation because Jay Alou is also Bautista’s agent. If AA says Alou reneged on a verbal agreement and throws him under the bus, then that’s not going to sit well with Jose, and he might well ask for a trade in June once the Jays are out of the race again.

    In a vacuum, you can defend any single one of AA’s non-moves in free agency this winter. Tanaka is an unknown quantity in MLB, Ervin and Ubaldo aren’t consistent, the prices for pitching were just overall too high, etc. That’s all well and good, and there’s a reasonable case for passing on the free agent market. BUT, if you pass on free agents, then you’d better be prepared to make some trades, and AA struck out in that avenue as well. The team with the second-worst pitching staff in the last made exactly zero upgrades to their rotation aside from hoping that Hutchison is the real deal. As much as I’d love to see Drew do well, he’s also a guy coming off Tommy John surgery and no track record of success in even Triple-A, let alone the bigs.

    This team has done less than almost any other team in baseball over the offseason, which is astounding given how they finished last year and how they’re allegedly contenders. Even if we get our wishes granted by the good health fairy and everyone who was hurt/sucky last year returns to form, that likely still won’t be enough.

  47. So…AA also said about four times this offseason “If you can’t improve the rotation then you look to improve at other positions”.

    Ryan Goins at 2b? The worst bench in the AL East?

    Bravo AA!!

    • Agree except for the bench. I think there’s some opportunity to solidify the bench in the next few weeks as the position battles play out.

      • Right jays can pick up the scraps who dont make other teams. Maybe one will be better option than goins mind you. Mayne a trade I suppose.

  48. With how much of a clusterfuck this off-season has been, I hope they don’t make it worse by trading the rest of the farm for a pitcher like Samardzija.

    • thiiiiiis this this

    • Everytime I hear about the Jays scouting Samardzija, I fucking cringe. I hope they leave him alone, but I get the feeling AA thinks he’s the second coming of Randy Johnson, the ultimate late bloomer. But he’s not. I think. I’m pretty fucking sure.

  49. That last paragraph, with that last question was mysteriously absent in the sportsnet media grills AA video…
    And why’s that? It’s as if they don’t want the Jays fans who just read Sportsnet not hear all the line of questioning

  50. We keep overlooking the fact that the jays always have one foot in the door and one foot out. If they are going to make a run then make an effing run and stop putting the fans through this nonsenae game of “if thr sun and the moon align we might be ok.”

    Spend the money and take a shot. If it doesnt work at least you rebuild knowing that you took a chance.

    • JP did that in 2006 and followed it up with signing thomas the next year and it didnt work out and they canned him and hired aa for rebuild. I had no problem with that. Where is the Thomas of this year?

  51. I didnt see this elsewhere, but from Bruce Arthurs piece tonight in the National Post:

    “The Jays believed they had a deal. Santana’s people had initiated the conversation with Toronto and wanted a one-year deal, and if it began to leak out Saturday, then bet on a deal being verbally agreed to on Friday. Sources indicate Santana had gone so far as to call some friends on the Blue Jays, starting with Jose Bautista and Maicer Izturis. That, more than anything, is why the news leaked out at all.”

    • But the jays players were pitching to Santana to come to Toronto…none implied at all the deal was done…Jbau was imploring management to sign him…

  52. The optimist in me says that this is a blessing in disguise. Analysts including Zaun were quoted saying that Santana is “on the verge of a major surgery, possibly Tommy John.” If he is that adamant of signing in the NL then this guy is not as confident in himself as he should be. Let’s not all step off the ledge just because we didn’t sign a guy who in 2012 was almost THE WORST starting pitcher in the major leagues. Don’t let 2013 erase your memory.

    • agreed.

    • If that was true he would have accepted the Twins 3/33 offer. It most the most guaranteed money on the table and made sense for him if his arm is near blow up mode. Me thinks it’s white washing by the organization… and let’s be clear, Zaun is part of the organization. That’s what happens when the team owns all the media surrounding it. Getting treated with kid’s gloves, like the softball treatment today when it should have been a witch hunt with AA sweating.

  53. Things happen for a reason.

    I’ll say it again. The 2012 jays finished where they did for one reason – injuries. The jays should have ponied up for Josh Johnson and gone right back to what they did before. Develop prospects. Draft. Rolled the dice again.

    Is AA really surprised how this turned out? He went all cheap on Ervin and Ubaldo. Is it really surprising that he got fucked over in the end? That’s what you get man.

    I don’t want to say anything racist, but Anthopolous the Greek should stop being cheap, the time to pony up was and is now.

    Epic fail.

    • Fuckin’ amazing how clearly someone can see when they use those handy 20/20 hindsight glasses, don’t they?
      There’s a difference between “being cheap”, and not being totally irresponsible with your employer’s money.
      Why in god’s name would you pony up for JJ, after the shitstorm he gave the team last year? He’d be taking a roster spot to get you absolutely no wins – and for the princely sum of 10M dollars, minimum. Chances are he can get more wins out of Hutch/Stroman/Drabek/Redmond/whoever than what JJ was offering….and at half the cost.
      Why would you think AA went cheap on Santana? Atlanta offered him exactly the same money – but the guy didn’t want to play in AL, let alone Toronto. Do the math, 14M in a place I don’t want to be versus 14M in a place I WANT to be. This isn’t hard, son. Apparently they HAD a deal, but Santana’s guys went rogue and signed elsewhere. It’s not really an indication of personal weakness on AA’s part.
      And last time I checked…being of Greek heritage isn’t a different RACE.
      Personally, I find your entire post an epic fail – in a non-racist way, however.

    • I said they should resign JJ from the start. But they still will improve over last year. Having a catcher who can call a game will help. If they are healthy though I think they still won’t quite have enough.

    • JJ is fucking done. Not a little done. Fucking Done like dinner. He’s robbing the Padres of 10 mill this year. He probably lasts less than 12 starts before getting sent for a 15-day disabled list “Sit in the corner and think about what you did wrong” breather, followed by a minor league “reconditioning assignment”, followed by outright release by August. Padres GM sees his bonus cheque cut for wasting that money on a done pitcher that pretty much nobody else even had interest in, even his old team that desperately needed a starter and wouldn’t even risk QO money to get the pick.

    • “I don’t want to say anything racist, but ”

      This is usually where you should erase what you just wrote, and then not write down whatever it is you’re about to write.

  54. See this kind of assuming is what is really bad about Toronto Sports Media….and this site is usually great at avoiding those types of things minus the little times its head is reared. This being one of them. Ionno this whole post was nothing but assumptions. That is all.

  55. If we are to believe they had money for santana it is an absolutely epic failure that the jays did not upgrade at all other than navarro and kratz this offseason. People say fa market stronger next year, bull shit people say that every year. This fa clasd was stacked with many elite players, tons of second tier and abundance of solid veteran role players.

    Cant get mccann ok got navarro and kratz.

    cant get cano how about infante, not him maybe mark ellis, not him kelly johnson, not him brian roberts. No we will go with a guy who cant hit for shit snd no backup worth anything.

    Out on tanaka, dont want to go too msnyyears on second tier? How about maholm and capuano? No lets fast track young unproven guys not near their potential peaks into rotation rathet than developing them properly in the minors … again

    I reallythink they can win but as soon as a couple key guys go down to injury it will again likely be a disaster. For the love of baseball whatever you do dont trade the farm for a futile push to the playoffs at the trade deadline. Sink or swim time

  56. AA should have stopped after the Marlins deal. That deal is fine. The Dickey deal was a gross overpay. That deal never sounded good even when announced. Don’t do that deal and things don’t look as bleak even if they finished last without Dickey. AA used 2 of his blue chips on a 39 yr old and the team was still last. Misjudgements like that get guys fired. If this becomes a tear down (and we’ll know after 45 games), IMO, AA will be a lame duck until a new gm is hired.

    • Not improving the team this offseason is aas potentisl downfall. At least the dickey overpay made sense along with izturis and cabrera signing after the miami trade to try to bolster a roster and compete, otherwise the marlins trade would have made no sense. There was absolutely no justification for not improving this team if the money was there and it seems it was given santana offer. excuses of how they tried or what if current guys do good or acquisitions do bad are horse shit the fact is they completely missed the boat and failed to give the team a better chance to win in a situation whrn there is likely no better time to do so.

    • The marlins deal was not great either. The buerhle contract is ludicrous. Reyes contract is fair value or let’s say full value. And Johnson was a catch twenty two. If he did well, we would have needed to pony up big cash this year. If not, well it was worse than if not. But knowing Rogers, the jays are handcuffed by salary. We would still have these issues because of how much salary we took on. If you buy 20 million dollar players, they better play like superstars, and buerhle is not a superstar, never has been, and Reyes was once but that was a long time ago.

      • Dont blame rogers and you dont know them in relation to this team and neither do I. The fact that there was thr offer for santana shows that money wasnt the issue.

        in terms of the marlins trade I say we were fleeced. There is some hindsight there but there was foresight enough to say it at thr time. I had no problem with it but do now that they havent followed it up to take a legitimate run wiyhin the window and are now in limbo. They changed the rebuild philosophy but arent following it up and that doesnt make sense.

  57. Next year when Santana becomes a free agent, will a team need to give up a 1st round pick to sign him?

    • If the braves offer him the one year qualifying offer and he turns it down then yes.

      • Then the jays should have offered 15 mil

        • You don’t get it. It only depends on the offer in the upcoming offseason.

          • Its worth the risk

          • Right…after the 2014 season is done, then the QO is made for the upcoming 2015 season….which will probably be set at around $15 MM.

            And you’re right the Jays should’ve made an offer of $15 MM for the 2014 season for 2 reasons:
            1/ It’s a minimal outlay compared to what they can afford and much cheaper than they thought they’d have to spend.

            2/ They almost certainly would’ve gotten a refusal from Santana on a QO for the 2015 season because of the fact he’s going to try and build value this year for a long term contract when 2014 is over. That would give them an extra pick between rounds 1 and 2 in the 2015 draft.

  58. WELP…
    (Disgruntled sigh.)

    This stinks.

  59. Simple yes or no…with the glorious ability to use hindsight; give Josh Johnson $14m for one year instead of cutting him free? He couldn’t have been much worse in 2014, no?

    Also, although nowhere near quantifiable, wonder what all the other Domincans (that make up enough of this roster) think of the GM/Club/City (if you want to get technical) these days?

    Whatever the combination of events was in losing Santanta, the fact that someone who should be a slam dunk given the friends he has on this team, still chooses another team, speaks volumes that have been alluded to here and other threads.

    • Should’ve given JJ the QO…

    • No. If you happen to know in advance that you’re not going to successfully sign anyone, then you go with whatever you have in the system, then try to make a Tom Candiotti-type of deal mid season. Give one or two lower prospects a chance to get hot to prepare for that trade.

      The only season to spend $14M on a qualifying offer is if you believe that money magically stops having value once the season ends. Fortunately, money doesn’t work that way.

      • Well that’s definitely re-writing history.

        Trading Stroman and Sanchez would be the equivalent of trading Whiten and Hill. Then toss in another young pitcher to be the equivalent of Boucher.

        Hill had just completed his rookie season and was the #49 prospect the year before per baseball america.

        Whitten was the #25 prospect by Baseball America just before the start of the season.

        Those were not lower prospects who got hot. Those were two of the most highly valued prospects in baseball.

    • Absolutely not.
      Yes he can be worse.
      They’re disappointed but they’ll get over it ,it was a business decision.
      Doesn’t speak volumes,it was to reset value with a pillow contract.

      • The entire league (and JJ) knew how bad JJ was. His worth was somewhere between the 8 million he signed for and something less. The Padres got a clause that allowed them to keep him for a 2nd year at 4 mill if he had less than 7 starts.

  60. The jays might still get a second basemen. In Seattle aren’t franklin and ackley both trying to land a job? They want a full time outfielder really bad. Maybe the jays are showcasing Sierra. Also I heard Arizona has two young prospects as well going for second base. Jays could trade happ and a reliever for one of those maybe.

  61. Ok, I get the disappointment…and the whole “left standing at the altar with a wilting bouquet”
    But shit…we move on. This team is arguably better than last season – what with JPA and his epic fail of a season gone, JJ and his 2 wins gone, Wang & Co. not starting, Boni and his hands of stone gone and Goins in, Reyes back, Lawrie back, Melky back…and a few others, no doubt.
    And there’s no reason to think the Jays won’t make a move sometime during the season to pick up a guy if the need is there, or if they think that they’re close enough that he’ll make a difference.

    • “And there’s no reason to think the Jays won’t make a move sometime during the season to pick up a guy if the need is there, or if they think that they’re close enough that he’ll make a difference.”

      You mean aside from the fact that this entire offseason, the need was there and they failed to pick up anyone?

      I’d say that’s a great reason to think that the Jays won’t make a move during the season.

  62. The deciding factor is Santana would rather pitch in the N.L.

    A week ago – there was no N.L. teams in on Santana.

    As every good card player knows – if you try to milk every penny out of someone, they may draw out on the river.

    That happened to us..

  63. Everyone says the jays are in HUGE TROUBLE for not doing much. And these same critics couldn’t go a day without out mentioning world series possibilities after last season’s moves. Whatever the media says, think the opposite. This site included. Jays will be fine this year. Maybe a disappointment, but not as bad as you think.

    • The problem is not that we suck, the problem is that we are built to win now, and are maybe 4-5 wins from taking a very good shot at the wildcard. By not adressing 2 out of the 3 glaring holes on the team, we fail to capitilize on the opportunity. We stood to gain the most to upgrade 2nd base and Starting pitching but we came out empty handed.

      That’s what’s making people mad.

      • With or without Umbaldo or Ervin, this team will still have holes. With expectations clearly very VERY low for a supposed wild card team, the jays will be able to breath and perhaps perform. I expect lightning to strike with a few surprise players.

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