Well that hurt, a lot of us thought the Toronto Blue Jays were about to land Ervin Santana after the news of him being close to a deal broke on twitter on Saturday. This morning we learned that the Jays had lost out and he was headed to Atlanta. What makes this news even more annoying is that all the rumors going around on the weekend was that the Jays were extremely close to a deal with Santana and that he was going to make his final decision by 5:00 pm last Saturday. The two teams that were supposed to be in the running were the Jays and the Baltimore Orioles. It seemed out of nowhere on Wednesday morning when Santana signed a one-year deal for $14.1 million with the Atlanta Braves.
So what does this say about the franchise, or what does it say about Santana himself? I mean is the division that scary, are the Jays that unappealing, is the face the Canadian dollar not being as high as it used to be a factor, is it the stadium, did he not like the team, the coach etc…. I mean what is so appealing about an Atlanta Braves team that has three of their top pitchers already on three DL (Kris Medlen, Brandon Beachy and Mike Minor) is it so he can be the number one? Or is it Simply that Atlanta is a lot closer to the playoffs, being a playoff team the last two years, than the Toronto Blue Jays?
This Blue Jays team would have been a great fit, he wouldn’t have been pressured to be the number one and Santana himself would have made this team a lot more threatening. As for Santana if the rumors are remotely true that he was that close to signing a deal with the Jays and then decided to wait for a better deal, well then what kind of person is he? I’d say not a very good one, but I guess we’ll never know will we.
The down side to not having Santana means that one of the spots in the rotation will go to one of the Jays young pitcher, unless general manager Alex Anthopoulos makes a late deal. I won’t hold my breath though. So far the rotation looks like it will have R.A. Dickey, Brandon Morrow, Mark Buehrle, and J.A. Happ. Based on the spring training results it would appear that the final spot will go to Drew Hutchison. He is really impressing everyone and he could even surpass Happ for the fourth spot.
There is still a lot of time left and nothing is guaranteed, Marcus Stroman, Esmil Rogers, Todd Redmond and even Rickey Romero are trying their best to work their way into the rotation. With some lingering back issues, there might be room for another pitcher to knock off Happ and take a spot in the rotation. This is the second season that Happ has come into Spring Training saying that he deserves a spot in the rotation and he might want to watch his tongue, because people like that tend to lose their jobs.
Is this Blue Jays rotation weaker now that Santana will not join the team? Not necessarily, if Morrow can figure out this not getting injured thing and play a full season and the veteran pitchers pitch like we know they can and their fourth and fifth give the Jays some quality starts then the world could be their oyster. Anything can happen, maybe this is the year the Jays make some real noise.
For now as the fans let it sink in that there will be no Ervin Santana in a Jays uniform. Some fans will mourn for a few days at the missed opportunity, some will be steaming mad that he was not signed or that he didn’t choose Toronto and some will say I told you so, but soon enough people will get over it and complain about something else the Jays haven’t done properly. Look at the bright side Jays fans Santana could become a total bust and a waste of $14.1 million. Keep your heads up since no one actually loses until the real season starts.
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