The Toronto Blue Jays have been relatively quiet in the lead-up to this trade deadline, but that doesn’t mean much in the secretive world of general manager Alex Anthopoulos.
Anthopoulos is reported to be working the phones quite vigorously leading up to the MLB trade deadline, constantly trying to figure out who is available and what teams are asking for players. It is part of his routine to check out what it would take to get some of the high-end talent around the league, but doesn’t necessarily mean that he is legitimately pursuing them.
Now added to the list of players that Anthopoulos is reportedly interested in is Ubaldo Jimenez, the ace of the Colorado Rockies’ staff. ESPN’s Jayson Stark reported Tuesday on his Twitterfeed that one exec told him that the Blue Jays “legitimately want this guy.”
Of course, if the Blue Jays are inquiring about Jimenez, they could add their names to a growing list of teams that have checked out the asking price including the Reds, Tigers, Yankees, Red Sox, Rangers and Indians.
Stark also adds that the price hasn’t dropped at all, with the Rockies asking for “three sure-thing young players, including one pitcher who goes into their rotation immediately.” With that kind of asking price, it still seems unlikely that Jimenez would be dealt.
The Blue Jays just recently designated Jo-Jo Reyes for assignment, and need to either call up or trade for a pitcher to fill out the five-man rotation. The Jays have ten days to either trade or put Reyes on waivers, before they could place him in the minors.
Since Reyes is of similar age to Jimenez, and he had the highest batting average against in the majors, it is doubtful that Reyes could be part of the package sent to Colorado.
Jays management suggested that Jesse Litsch, Brad Mills and Zach Stewart seemed the most likely internal candidates to take the mound on Saturday. But could either of them be a piece in landing a pitcher who has struggled this year but is one year removed from ranking third in the National League in Cy Young voting?
It is suggested then that it would take three young players, a pitcher who is major league ready and then perhaps prospects like David Cooper and Darin Mastroianni, who are both with the Jays’ Triple-A affiliate.
If this is the price that Colorado Rockies are asking, the Blue Jays then have to ask themselves whether Jimenez is worth the cost. Or, if the Rockies are seriously ready to deal, can the Jays outbid the other suitors?