Day 2: Winter Meetings
For the Blue Jays, there was a lot of talking and idea floating on the first day of these Winter Meetings in Indianapolis. Toronto is keying in on possible trades right now and that will likely remain the focus as we head into Day 2 today.
Obviously, when the words “trades” and “Blue Jays” are in the same sentence today, the first thing that comes to mind is this whole Roy Halladay situation. It’s not going away and the rumors will continue to pop up this week.
The one interesting rumor from Day 1 was the possible emergence of the Rays as a suitor for Halladay — perhaps as part of a three-team trade, but not necessarily. Names involved in the rumor from the Rays’ end were pitcher Wade Davis and outfielder B.J. Upton. In reality, if there is any merit to this, Toronto would have more interest in Davis than Upton, and another Rays prospect would likely be involved.
Looking closer at a potential Rays-Jays matchup, it seems like it could be a fit. Think about it. As a general philosophy, Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos is willing to consider offering a window for teams to discuss a contract extension with his players, but he has said on the record that he would prefer to avoid over-complicating any deals.
The Yankees, Red Sox and Angels will likely want to have a contract extension involved in any potential Halladay swap, especially if the Jays’ asking price remains steep. The same can’t be said for the Rays. A) Tampa Bay doesn’t have that kind of cash and B) Halladay might not want to talk about a long-term deal with a team coming off a third-place finish.
Halladay wants to pitch for a perennial contender for the World Series and he reportedly has a preference to be with a club that trains near his Florida home. Tampa Bay — two years removed from a World Series berth — would represent a one-year solution before Halladay hits the open market.
If the Jays do trade Doc, Anthopoulos also has to explain to the fanbase why he pulled the trigger. A trade to the rival Yankees and Red Sox — while still a realistic conclusion to all of this — would be a harder sell to Jays fans than a swap with Tampa Bay. It would also take the heat off the Jays if Halladay decides to sign with New York or Boston next winter.
Just a thought…
Here are some links from Day 1:
Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter (@MLBastian) for all the latest Jays updates and check back here later for more on the day’s happenings.
UPDATE: 7:55 pm
The Yankees stole the stage on Day 2 of the Winter Meetings, agreeing in principle to a three-team trade with the Tigers and Diamondbacks that will send center fielder Curtis Granderson to the Bronx.
That move does not necessarily mean that New York is about to pull itself out of the running for Blue Jays ace Roy Halladay — the hottest commodity on the open market. Speaking to Toronto, Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos acknowledged that no teams have ended any trade discussions on any of his players.
“I haven’t been told by any team, from discussions and conversations we’ve had, that they are not involved and don’t want to continue dialogue,” Anthopoulos said. “I have not had a club approach me yet and say, ‘That trade scenario we talked about, we’re no longer involved. We don’t want to be involved.'”
As part of the Yankees’ latest blockbuster deal, New York outfield prospect Austin Jackson would head to the Tigers. The Jays had reportedly expressed interest in Jackson in talks about a potential Halladay deal. Anthopoulos indicated that the trade was not likely to impact the Jays’ offseason plans.
“I don’t think it will really change a whole lot,” Anthopoulos said. “We’re very specific in what our wants are and what our needs are, and New York’s needs and ours aren’t necessarily the same — the positions we want to fill, the long-term players that we want to put in certain spots.”
The Yankees might not have informed the Blue Jays that they can no longer pursue Halladay, but the trade will likely lessen the chances of the star right-hander winding up in pinstripes. Halladay also has suitors in the Red Sox and Angels, perhaps the Phillies, and the Rays emerged on Monday as a possible darkhorse to land the pitcher.
ALSO OF NOTE: The Jays have called on Pirates catcher Ryan Doumit. Not huge news, since they’ve been linked to Doumit in rumors for a while. … Pitcher Brian Wolfe has elected for free agency. … Anthopoulos still has numerous talks going on the trade front, looking for young controllable players to help rebuild the Jays’ core. Anthopoulos noted that he is also floating some three-team trades to help the process. … Anthopoulos met with Doc’s reps at dinner on Monday night. … He has some trade offers currently on the table and has had a few free agents turn down offers.