Jays make HUGE splash and now become a team to beat

Alex Anthopoulos, the General manager of the Toronto Bluejays has been taking some slack as of late, with another losing record, key injuries, losing manager John Farrell, etc. But on Tuesday evening, he shut his critics up, for a little while anyways. Anthopoulos got in the driver’s seat and put the pedal to the metal, acquiring speedy shortstop Jose Reyes, starting pitchers Mark Buehrle and Josh Johnson, IF/OF Emilio Bonifacio and backstopper John Buck.

Now on paper, these guys didn’t have such a great season with their new team in Miami, but with the right mix of vets and young guns the Jays now have a very solid-looking roster, and I don’t think Anthopoulos is done there.

Leaving the Jays organization is shortstop Yunel Escobar, pitcher Henderson Alvarez, IF Adeiny Hechavarria whom had a short stint to showcase his talents, catcher Jeff Mathis, and 3 prospects in the Jays system. This trade is definitely a short-term gain in return for a long-term pain. The Jays did give up on young players and prospects, but at the same time, Anthopoulos has been stocking up, and felt this was the right time to unload some of the organizations youth for what some people call a one-sided trade, for the time being. The Jays really will benefit from this trade starting this year, as they desperately need the help on the mound, and acquiring 2 solid pitchers in Buehrle and Johnson will help immediately. Jose Reyes adds something the Jays struggled to find within their system, a lead off man. They tried Colby Rasmus, Anthony Gose, and speedy fielder Rajai Davis, but the consistency was not there. Now with Reyes, he provides a solid batting average, with power and a ton of speed giving the Manager of the Jays (whoever that may be) a very strong start to their batting lineup.

What could happen now? Well the Jays now have 3 catchers, Buck, Arencibia and young prospect d’ Arnaud. If I were a betting man, i would assume that Anthopoulos would find a new home for Arencibia. Sources say d’ Arnaud is ready to make the jump to the big league and Buck could fill in and even split duties if need be. So what about pitching? Ricky Romero was given the “Ace” status before the season began, but a terrible second half really derailed his confidence, therefore forcing something to happen.

The Jays roster could look pretty dangerous, especially if Anthopoulos is not done yet, and if free agents will consider Toronto now that they have a solid team on paper. We can’t forget about guys like Morrow, Santos, Lincoln, Janssen, Lawrie, Bautista, Encarnacion to name a few. I’ve been a Jays fan my whole baseball fan life, and I can honestly say this is the first time I’ve been really optimistic in quite some time now. The Jays still need a new bench boss, so until then, I will fill in.

Batting Lineup                                      Pitching                                           Relievers

1- Reyes (SS)                                          1 – Buehrle                                      1 – Lincoln

2- Lawrie (3rd)                                     2 – Morrow                                      2 – Janssen

3- Bautista (RF)                                   3 – Romero                                      3 – Crawford

4- Encarnacion (DH)                         4 – Johnson                                     4 – Carreno

5 – Rasmus (CF)                                  5 – Cecil                                            5 – Oliver

6 – Buck / d’ Arnaud                          6 – Hutchison                                 6 – Jenkins

7 – Izturis (2nd)                                   7 – Happ

8 – Lind / Cooper (1st)

9 – Davis (LF)

Closer

1 – Santos

-The Blueline Caper

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