Should Blue Jays explore Marcus Stroman trade options?
With the Toronto Blue Jays slipping out of the playoff race as this month’s trade deadline draws closer, rumours continue to swirl around several players on the ball club.
While J.A. Happ‘s name is the one most associated with a possible trade, another pitcher on the Blue Jays staff who could bring considerable return is Marcus Stroman. Under team control for the next two seasons, Stroman has a favourable contract and impressive track record that would surely garner interest on the trade market.
The question remains, though: Is trading Stroman in the Blue Jays’ best interest longterm? Jeff Blair and Kevin Barker debate that very question on Baseball Central.
Toronto Blue Jays: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. ready for return, promotion
There’s no denying it’s been a tough season for the Toronto Blue Jays. They have a 42-48 record entering Wednesday’s action, and are sitting 14 games back of the second wild card spot in the American League.
However, it’s not entirely bad news for Blue Jays fans, if a report on Tuesday is anything to go by. As per Rob Longley of the Toronto Sun, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is almost ready to return from a strained patellar tendon in his left knee after rehabbing in Florida.
In addition, according to sources, Longley writes that the team is seriously considering promoting Guerrero to Triple-A in Buffalo. In fact, he was just days away from joining up with the Bisons last month, before his injury with Double-A New Hampshire.
There is no denying the 19-year-old was worthy of consideration for Triple-A before his injury. He has been a revelation in New Hampshire this season; arguably even better than expected.
Guerrero has a slash line of .407/.457/.667 through 53 games, with 11 home runs, 18 doubles and 55 RBIs. He leads the Double-A Eastern League in several categories including; batting average, OBP, slugging percentage and OPS.
Regardless, if speculation of the pending promotion turn out to be true, this is somewhat surprising. You would think the Blue Jays would want to be cautious for their star prospect, especially as the strained tendon represented his second injury in just a number of days.
First things first though, Guerrero has to actually get back to action. Wednesday represents a key step in the process, as he is scheduled to do some base running to help determine if he is indeed return to play again.
Toronto Blue Jays: Roberto Osuna case pushed back to August
July 9 was a date a lot of Toronto Blue Jays fans probably had imprinted on their minds. After all, it represented the trial date for Roberto Osuna‘s domestic assault case to be heard.
However, the case has now been pushed to Aug. 1. As per Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi, this decision was made, to allow for further discussions between the defence and crown.
Osuna’s lawyer, Domenic Basile, explained that they are looking to find a resolution through a peace bond. If they are successful, it would result in the charge being withdrawn.
As per Davidi, under the terms of a peace bond, Osuna would make certain promises and face certain conditions. This would include agreeing to undergo counselling.
The 23-year-old has always maintained his innocence. However, if a peace bond cannot be agreed, pleasing not guilty will mean the case proceeds to trial.
Regardless of how the matter plays out, Osuna is not expected to serve any jail time. This is his first such assault charge, while also being the least serious one within the category.
Understandably, there are those who will question why the 2017 All-Star didn’t appeal his recent 75-game suspension by MLB? However, Basile advised that such a move would potentially drag the process deep into next year.
Of more importance, is the repeated stance that Osuna is not guilty. Basille briefly discussed the suspension and the case shortly after appearing on behalf of his client at Old City Hall courthouse in Toronto, on Monday:
“I want to make it clear, there is no admission of guilt by Roberto Osuna with respect to what happened with Major League Baseball, They imposed that suspension. He’s not appealing it and he’s not going through the process. It is a confidential agreement between Major League Baseball and the players association but again, there’s no admission of guilt by Roberto and it doesn’t change anything in the criminal court.”
Regardless, what we do know is that the 75-game suspension is more severe than was anticipated. Previous cases of a similar nature have incurred bans ranging between15 and 51 games.
Instead, as per Davidi, the suspension is the third longest ever under the joint domestic violence policy. There was even a report which suggested MLB were able to interview the alleged victim of the domestic assault, although Basille claimed this was news to him.
Osuna is expected to begin a rehab assignment on July 14, in Florida. He is eligible to return to action in the Majors on Aug. 5.
The Blue Jays have already stated the Sinaloa, Mexico native will return to his role as team closer. However, it remains to be seen if they will throw him straight in at the deep end, or slowly ease him back into action.
Toronto Blue Jays Rumours: 4 trade destinations for J.A. Happ
Last season, theToronto Blue Jays did their best to get the best return for their top trade deadline chip in Francisco Liriano by acquiring Teoscar Hernandez.
Once again, the team will be looking to hit a home run with J.A. Happ who should fetch a better return but there’s a lot of unpredictability with the trade market. It usually starts with how many suitors there are, and how many pieces the Blue Jays would like to get back.
The Liriano-Hernandez deal is a perfect example of getting a quality piece rather than trying to get multiple players that might not all pan out. Obviously, the difference the value Happ has should mean that the Blue Jays will probably look for multiple pieces.
It is unclear what Toronto would try to get in return for the left-handed pitcher and he should get a team’s top prospect not necessarily a team’s number one player but a player that is closer to the MLB like Hernandez was.
Another point is that the Happ is a free agent that could return to the Blue Jays if that’s what his plans will be which would be a win-win situation for the team.
Here are the three teams that should be the frontrunners for Happ.