It was speculated for much of the off-season that, back before they found a dance partner in Jeffrey Loria, the Toronto Blue Jays had been interested in acquiring Jake Peavy of the Chicago White Sox. The right-hander had a $22-million club option for this season, and for much of the late season, and October, it seemed as though the White Sox weren’t going to exercise it. They were rumoured to be more interested in dealing him in much the same fashion that the Angels did with Ervin Santana, who was sent to the Royals, and attempted to do with Dan Haren.
There wasn’t much written about the possibility around here– I found myself zeroing in more on the cheaper Haren as a possibility– but it was certainly a thing on Twitter and in the comments. That is, until Peavy re-worked and extended his contract with the Sox not long after Rick Hahn officially took over as GM from the promoted Kenny Williams, at which point there wasn’t a whole lot of reason for us to keep thinking about the well-paid ex-Padre.
John Lott of the National Post kicks off his item on today’s Jose Reyes media availability with a king hell of an admission from Alex Anthopoulos:
A major trade that collapsed just after the World Series set the stage for the blockbuster that brought star shortstop Jose Reyes and four other Miami Marlins to Toronto.
“It was real, real close,” general manager Alex Anthopoulos said of the deal that fell through.
He refused, of course, to furnish details when asked. But he said that trade would have had the same impact on the Blue Jays’ 2013 payroll as the Nov. 19 megadeal with Miami that transformed the Blue Jays into an overnight contender.
Lott goes on to note that the Marlins deal increased the Jays’ payroll by about $44-million.
What might this proposed deal have looked like? It can’t possibly be that difficult to figure out, can it? There are only so many clubs with those kinds of assets to give up and a willingness to essentially punt on 2013, so… let explore some potential candidates.
I’m not sure how entirely new this is, but… it’s Friday, the link dump is coming along slowly, and when the hell else am I ever going to get a chance to post something from Global TV in Saskatoon?
That’s where the Jays’ winter tour is making its latest stop, and where Alex Anthopoulos sat down this morning to answer a few questions– some of them twice!– on the airwaves of the local station. At the end of it he even manages to say something rather interesting!
“We’d love to have a reliever if we could. We’re still talking to Darren Oliver– I’m not necessarily optimistic that he comes back. But we’d love to add one more reliever. We think that would solidify things for us.”
On one hand it smells like old fashioned due diligence, on the other a potentially legitimate depth move. On a third hand it might even seem like a ploy to further establish JA Happ as a crucial late inning bullpen lefty (i.e. in the absence of Darren Oliver), rather than the club’s sixth starter/swingman. But however many hands you can come up with, it would appear as though the Jays have been taking a look at free agent starter Javier Vazquez.
Zach Links of MLBTR and making delicious beef jerky gets us up to speed:
Alex Cora, who serves as the GM of Vazquez’s team in Puerto Rico, told WEEI’s Hot Stove Show that the Blue Jays have also been scouting the 36-year-old, according to Alex Speier on Twitter. It’s not clear if the Red Sox or Blue Jays would be willing to give Vazquez a big league contract, but the Nationals aren’t believed to be considering it.
Obviously whether it’s an minor league deal or not is the rub.
The end of the year is a natural time for reflection, especially if you’re a blogger and want to half-ass your way through a post of some retrospective-ish content– or perhaps a self-congratulatory anniversary post– and go get drunk (as most of us are primarily want to do).
For me, that kind of task was made even easier– theoretically, at least– by the whirlwind two months the Jays had on the trade market following the conclusion of the World Series. No longer would it be necessary to view 2012 entirely through the prism of arm injuries, fan deaths, Romer-woe, eye-black slurs, Farrell betrayal, Lawrie impudence, clubhouse concerns, the spectre of a permanently-closed roof, and whatever else went completely off the rails.
I’ve made up a list of headings for a DJF Guide To The 2012 Blue Jays Season that I may or may not do– a work that’s been half in progress since I decided I couldn’t stomach it back in October– and they’re infinitely more positive now than they would have been if the piece had been posted at season’s end. Nothing is more striking an example of that sea change, I think, than one of the few entries I had completed in full back in my late-September first draft– the one for the letter “A,” and Alex Anthopoulos.
So, as a gift to you as we usher in what should be the best Jays season in decades, here’s what I was ready to lay on Anthopoulos as the season came to a close, in all its vitriolic glory…
Welcome to your Sunday afternoon Dickey watch / a liveblog of my family Christmas, live from beautiful Saugeen Shores, Ontario. Home of Ontario’s finest sunsets. There’s a chance that the Jays will end this afternoon with the reigning Cy Young winner on their roster, and a near guarantee that I’ll end this afternoon with Egg Nog in my digestive system.
#Mets silence may be #bluejays working on Dickey extension. They need that. Remember #expos & Langston ’89. Trade before extension – c-ya
Dickey Update: Looks like most of the updates today are going to be updates about how there aren’t any updates, but if you’re into reading between the lines it appears that this trade is making a transition from NY media style where every offer and detail is leaked immediately, to TO media style where nobody tells you anything until it’s done.