TORONTO — Blue Jays Nation may not have seen the last of Josh Towers. As Mike Rutsey reports in the Toronto Sun today, Toronto plans on bringing Towers back for 2008.
"At this point we intend to bring him back," Jays GM J.P. Ricciardi told the paper. "We need all the pitching that we can get. We plan on Towers being here."
Towers, who made $2.9 million last season in the final year of the two-year contract he signed after ’05, is eligible for arbitration this winter. So, he could garner around $3 million. Considering the options on the free-agent market, Ricciardi is content with Towers as his fifth starter at that price.
"For the fifth spot in a rotation, for $3-million bucks, that’s what starters are going for," Ricciardi said. "Just look at the numbers and do the math."
Towers’ numbers have been the issue, though. Even so, it looks like Towers will once again be in the mix for the fifth spot, along with Jesse Litsch, Casey Janssen and Gus Chacin (if healthy). The Jays still have some interest in Matt Clement, but only if it’s with an inexpensive contract.
The Jays have also reached out to free-agent catcher Michael Barrett, but his status as a Type A free agent may make Toronto hesitant to sign him. If they signed Barrett, the Jays would have to give up a first-round pick, which the club doesn’t want to do. Meanwhile, the Jays are still talking to Sal Fasano about being their backup to Gregg Zaun.
Yesterday, David Purcey was added to Toronto’s 40-man roster. This was just a paperwork move, but it does protect Purcey for the upcoming Rule 5 Draft, which will be held at the Winter Meetings. To make room on the roster, the Jays designated outfielder Cody Haerther for assignment.
So, there’s some baseball news for you guys to chew on. I’m going to go back to grieving over Michigan State basketball’s tough loss to UCLA. Ah well, at least the Spartans ballers are giving me something to root for these days. The Bulls are just killing me and the Bears have been thoroughly disappointing.