I woke up this morning wondering if Alex Anthopoulos had forgotten all about his promise to address the “state of the franchise” this week and give fans an update on which direction the Toronto Blue Jays would be taking.
After dragging in the city’s best writers in on their weekend off, most of them stuck it out to ask AA all the pertinent questions about what’s happening with the Blue Jays. You can listen to the full call here at the Fan 590, or just check out the brief synopsis below:
- AA feels like Toronto has the potential in the coming years to compete along with teams like the Angels, Red Sox, and other top market teams.
- He wants to continue to build the core of this team, and will continue to make changes to the scouting and support staff.
- When asked about trading Roy Halladay, AA said he was reluctant about trading Doc, but gave the typical J.P. Ricciardi statement “he has to be open-minded about a trade making this team better in the long term”. In the type of tone that Anthopolous spoke of, it sounds like Halladay will be around in 2010 and if the Blue Jays can remain competitive next year then he could re-sign.
- Alex is NOT actively shopping any of his players, but he is pursuing alternatives to upgrading certain positions.
- He doesn’t believe in adding three or four free agents in any given year.
- Aaron Hill will not be moved from second base to cover shortstop. Adam Lind will not fill in at first base, unless they need him to move somewhere else (like the rumoured trade involving Chris Snyder and Lyle Overbay)
- Anthopoulos doesn’t consider this a “rebuilding phase” but more of a “building phase”.
The overall tone from this phone call was hopeful for the future, but it seemed like the main focus for Anthopoulos was that they really want to develop the scouting and be more thorough with their player development. It sounds like they don’t feel buying up high priced free agents is a long-term solution, and building a strong young core of a team is the only way that the Blue Jays will be able to compete with the Yankees and the Red Sox.
At no point was there a set dollar amount discussed in terms of payroll, however it does not sound like the 2010 payroll will be leaps and bounds higher than 2009.
Well, at least we have some answers now!