During a radio interview this morning Toronto general manager J.P. Ricciardi revealed
that Roy Halladay is not interesting in signing a long-term extension
and plans to hit the open market once his contract expires after next
season, which helps explain why the Blue Jays are shopping their ace.
“What’s changed is Roy has told us that he’s going to test the
free-agent market,” Ricciardi said, adding that the Blue Jays’ public,
self-imposed July 28 deadline to trade Halladay “can fluctuate … if
we’re down the road with something” but “if we’re not down the road by
the 28th, nothing’s going to happen.”
Jordan Bastian of MLB.com reports
that the Phillies remain the front-runners for Halladay and the Blue
Jays sent assistant general manager Tony LaCava to scout 21-year-old
pitching prospect Kyle Drabek’s latest start at Double-A despite
previous speculation that Philadelphia is unwilling to include him a
Bastian also notes that the Yankees, White Sox, Brewers, Dodgers,
Cardinals, Rangers, and Red Sox “have been tied to Halladay in various
reports.” However, according to Ricciardi “only a few teams have
approached him with serious interest” in Halladay. “Some are serious
and some I would say are delirious,” Ricciardi said.
The New York Yankees have traded third baseman Chase Headley and pitcher Bryan Mitchell to the San Diego Padres for outfielder Jabari Blash. Joel Sherman of the New York Post was the first to report the trade. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic was the first to report that Blash was coming back in return.
Headley, a third baseman, hit .273/.352/.406 for the Yankees last year. He, of course, played for the Padres from 2007 through the middle of 2014, when he was dealt to New York. Mitchell has pitched 48 games for the Yankees, most from the pen, over four seasons, with an ERA of 4.94 in 98.1 innings. He doesn’t strike out many and he walks a lot. He throws hard.
Blash, an outfielder, has hit .200/.323/.336 with eight homers in 279 big league plate appearances. Blash has shown a lot of power potential in the minors, but has not yet put it together in the bigs. Given what the Yankees have in their outfield at the moment, he’s going to be organizational depth or, perhaps, a chit in a future trade.
This would seem to be an exercise in salary clearing by the Yankees in anticipation of another move, as it takes about $13 million off of their payroll. Which is about how much was added to their payroll for 2018 in the Giancarlo Stanton deal. That could get Todd Frazier back for them, perhaps. Or it could help them retain CC Sabathia or go after another starting pitcher. The club likewise maintains an interest in getting under the $197 million payroll threshold which would trigger yet another year of 50% luxury tax payments for the Yankees.