We’ve already accepted that Jose Bautista isn’t going to be playing for the Blue Jays again. He got a legend’s farewell last September in his final game in right field rocking a Jays jersey in front of a packed house. Fans stood and clapped for Bautista at every possible moment thanking him for ultimately bringing baseball back to life in Toronto.
But, in accepting Bautista’s final days as a Jay, I think we were all also expecting to watch him play for another team. According to Jon Heyman, though, there’s a good chance that isn’t going to happen. In his Inside Baseball notes, Heyman says…
Jose Bautista had a couple seven-figure offers (probably $1 million, or just over), but he didn’t think they were commensurate with his value. So he may retire. If so, thus becomes the first case of a player who sought $150 million in talks two years earlier (by some miracle he got $18.5 million after 2016), and was out of the game a year later.
We’ve heard that the Minnesota Twins were interested, which makes sense given that Bautista hit like Barry Bonds at Target Field over his career, and that the Tampa Bay Rays were interested, which also makes sense given the fact they don’t have any real Major League Baseball players under contract and Bautista lives in the area.
I don’t know. I’m on the fence here. On one hand, I’m down to watch Bautista, probably my favourite baseball player of all time, continue to go out and hack it. I’d absolutely love to see him win a World Series or have a comeback season, even if it isn’t with the Jays. That said, I’m also cool with not having to watch him put up, like, a .600 OPS on the Rays and get released in June, which is much more realistic of a scenario than the first one I mentioned.