22
Photo Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports

Jays Extend Estrada For One Year, $13 Million!

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!

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!].

  • Kristen Sprague

    On a side note, I’m all in for giving Joey the proper send off. I’ll standing for him on Saturday but god damn it, it would be nice if he gave us something to cheer for

    • The Humungus

      I’m taking my kids on Sunday. Sitting in the 100’s in RF to get as close as we can afford. He’s getting all the cheers, even if he’s just adjusting his cup.

      • Teddy Ballgame

        Going tonight and tomorrow. Got seats in the 100’s in RF too. I hope he feels the love…although this has been the most depressing final act for a great Toronto athlete that I can remember.

  • Just Jeff

    Well, Marco clearly wanted to be here given what appears to have agreed to.

    This makes the Jays offseason a lot easier. On the pitching side, they really needed 2 starters and 2 left handed relievers in my opinion. Bringing back Marco means 4 spots in the rotation are now spoken for. If the Jays can talk Anderson into a 1 year deal, you could potentially have a AAA rotation of Biagini, Rowley, Borucki, Pannone and Luis Santos. That’s some pretty solid depth and far better than what we had in Buffalo for most of this year.

    I think the Jays need to fork out some cash for at least one high leverage lefty this winter. You can get by with the Aaron Loups of this world as your second lefty coming out of the pen, but if he’s your first option, you’re in trouble. Mayza isn’t ready yet and should start next year in Buffalo. Dermody has been pretty solid (he seems to be throwing a lot harder this year), but I’d prefer he at least start next year as the 3rd lefty out of the pen or in Buffalo as the first lefty to get the call-up if you only opt to have 2 lefties in the Jays pen.

    • The Humungus

      Fernando Abad
      Antonio Bastardo
      Jerry Blevins — $7MM club option with a $1MM buyout
      Craig Breslow
      Brian Duensing
      Zach Duke
      Boone Logan — $7MM club option with a $1MM buyout
      Jake McGee
      Eric O’Flaherty
      Oliver Perez
      Glen Perkins — $6.5MM club option with a $700K buyout
      Clayton Richard
      Tony Watson

      There’s your list of impending Free Agents lefty relievers. Not very inspiring.

      As far as lefty starters that might be good relievers there’s only one guy who won’t be looking for a starter deal, and that’s John Danks.

      So, unfortunately, there really isn’t an available upgrade from what they have now.

        • Just Jeff

          No worries. I had the same response when I looked at that list a while back.

          McGee is the one I would target. Big fastball and has a history pitching in the AL East.

          He’s probably going to be costly though, but I think they need someone of that calibre.

          • The Humungus

            I’d actually be really ok with them bringing Danks in on a minor league tryout as well. I mean, it wouldn’t hurt and a cutter/sinker combo would be good for getting out of jams vs lefties.

  • Barry

    This is terrible and everything is terrible! Cheapskate Rogers signing this old man because they’re too cheap to sign Kershaw! AA is rolling over in his grave!

    (Sorry, I was disappointed that no one had done a fuckhead-asshole take, so I had to bite the bullet and do it myself.)