The Toronto Blue Jays need an outfielder (or two) next year. Coincidentally, J.D. Martinez is an outfielder. Seems like a perfect match for the Blue Jays to plunk down somewhere in the neighbourhood of $150 million for one of the biggest free agents out there.
No, no it doesn’t.
If you’re like me, you were a little surprised after reading Jon Heyman’s piece about the Blue Jays being an under-the-radar candidate to the former Tiger/Diamondback. The only bit of news in this piece is that the Blue Jays “have at least considered” Martinez.
In related news, I’ve considered exercising five times a week. I’ve also considered trying not to eat the rest of my son’s Halloween candy after he goes to sleep. But that’s the furthest negotiations ultimately went with my will power.
Ross Atkins remarked the Blue Jays have checked in on virtually every single free agent so far this offseason. The Martinez/Blue Jays thing isn’t 100% non-news, but there’s hardly any new information here that the regular fan can’t discern on their own.
This offseason, it’s important to look at articles like these with a critical eye because headlines can be misleading. It’s kind of like Jon Morosi’s non-report report from yesterday and how the Blue Jays have yet to begin contract extension talks with Josh Donaldson. That’s like reporting on the local hospital that hasn’t been built yet by reporting the hospital still hasn’t been built.
If I had to gauge the Blue Jays realistic interest in Martinez, I’d put it at 5%. He is one of the premiere outfielders on the market, but he’s a Boras client and Martinez will be looking for five-plus years and $150 million or more. He’s also another right-handed bat, not a great defender, which makes him a little redundant in Toronto’s lineup.
The Blue Jays don’t exactly strike me as a team who would be willing to get into a bidding war for this offseason’s top free agent. Instead, their focus might be better used on someone like Lorenzo Cain or convincing Shohei Otani that Toronto the preeminent place to launch his Major League career.
Like most, I’ve never really considered the possibility the Blue Jays may go after Martinez this offseason because the probability of that happening is so remote. There have been no rumours or reports whatsoever connecting the Jays and Martinez.
We may never see another Blue Jays/Martinez rumour or report the rest of the offseason. By the grace of the Baseball Gods if the Blue Jays do somehow pull off the unthinkable and get Martinez this winter, I will eat my words.