Normally when Jon Morosi “reports” anything to do with the Blue Jays, my response is to say something snide and dig up the ol’ Trolololosi GIF… but I’m sure as hell not going to do that on this one!
— Jon Morosi (@jonmorosi) September 20, 2017
As much as it’s still somewhat controversial to be a Jays fan who wants to see the club double down on the group they currently have (or, more correctly, many of the pieces they currently have, with some surely being flipped elsewhere in order to achieve the most competitive roster possible, both now and in the future), um…. fuck yes the Jays should double down on the group they currently have (or, more correctly, many of the pieces they currently have, with some surely being flipped elsewhere in order to achieve the most competitive roster possible, both now and in the future)!!!
If the Jays weren’t going to re-sign Estrada, they’d have found themselves with an Estrada-sized rotation hole to fill, so why the hell not, amiright? GET IN!
We’ve heard all season that Estrada wants to stay here, and those haven’t just been vague rumblings, either. “I think this team has known since I’ve been here that I want to be a part of this, and I’m hoping to be a part of it next year,” he told Richard Griffin of the Toronto Star last week. “I’m hoping they can make a good offer, or just an offer to keep me here, because I’d like to come back.”
Marco may not be showing that he’s a master negotiator there, but he’s a damn Blue Jay! *SWOON* And while Morosi’s tweet is far from official, it sure seems like this is a thing that really could, and should, happen.
After all, had Estrada spent the last three seasons in another uniform, and hit free agency this winter with the same resume, he would be precisely the kind of starter that the Blue Jays would be targeting. Not too expensive, not asking for a long-term deal, not costing a draft pick, and clear upside in the form of his 2015 and 2016 seasons, as well as stretches of this one — including, as Morosi notes, recently.
What’s not to like about Estrada, really? He logged innings like a champion, pitching through a fucked up back. He’s been an absolute ace when called on in the biggest moments, like the playoffs. And if you look at his 2017 season, there are a lot of peripherals that look very similar to his previous two excellent years, and a few splits that you can squint at enough to feel like his early season troubles are maybe behind him. The return of the home run problems he had in Milwaukee are a concern, as is the disappearance of his otherworldly BABIP suppression, but… uh… I dunno… maybe that’s just the damn balls! And maybe he’s figuring that out! And maybe I’m being overly optimistic because it’s Marco, goddamnit!
And since the deal would almost certainly have to be longer than a single season (wouldn’t it?) [Update: It wouldn’t. Which… apart from how it makes these next couple sentences a bit useless, uh… even better?], it perhaps speaks to the Jays thinking good things about 2019 as well. Oh, they’re probably not thinking pre-season World Series favourite kinds of things — y’know, unless they’re also thinking long and hard about pushing to re-sign Josh Donaldson (which they should be) — but positive enough things to feel actually pretty good about where this team might still be by the time guys like Vlad Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette will be ready to come up and actually make an impact. Which could be soon!
Yes, yes, it wouldn’t be a move without risk, but honestly? Who the hell could they get for “Estrada money” that you’d prefer they sign over Marco himself. (Hint: nobody).
To hell with burning this thing down. Go sign our beautiful baby boy, Jays! (Shit — if you haven’t, basically, already!). [Update: They have. It’s a one-year deal for $13 million. Marco wasn’t lying about really wanting to be here!].