Link-O-Rama: Halladay, Kendall, Smoltz, Dye

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* Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos revealed that trading Roy Halladay within the division “will never be a stumbling block.” That’s a smart approach, if only because it’s tough to get maximum trade value for a big-name player without involving the Yankees and Red Sox to some extent.
* General manager Doug Melvin hinted yesterday that the Brewers may go young at catcher rather than re-sign veteran Jason Kendall. “We paid $5 million for the position in the past,” Melvin said. “I don’t know if we can do that again.” Milwaukee has a pair of upper-minors catching prospects in Jonathan Lucroy and Angel Salome, and Kendall hit just .241/.331/.305 this season.
* John Smoltz reiterated that he wants to pitch in 2010, and it sounds like both sides are open to another season in St. Louis after he posted a 4.26 ERA and 40/9 K/BB ratio in seven starts with the Cardinals following a brutal stint in the AL.
* Jermaine Dye admitted yesterday that “it doesn’t look good” for his chances of a sixth season with the White Sox after the team chose a $1 million buyout over his $12 million option for 2010.

Jake Diekman will miss at least half of the 2017 season

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 9: Jake Diekman #41 of the Texas Rangers works against the Toronto Blue Jays in the sixth inning during game three of the American League Division Series at Rogers Centre on October 9, 2016 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
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Rangers reliever Jake Diekman will have surgery on January 25 to help alleviate ulcerative colitis, an inflammatory bowel disease. As a result, the lefty will miss at least half of the 2017 regular season, Jeff Wilson of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports. Diekman was diagnosed with the illness when he was 11 years old. He has brought awareness to the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America with a “Gut It Out” campaign.

Diekman, who turns 30 years old on Saturday, finished the 2016 campaign with a 3.40 ERA and a 59/26 K/BB ratio in 53 innings. He came to the Rangers from the Phillies in the Cole Hamels trade on July 31, 2015.

The Rangers and Diekman avoided arbitration last Friday, agreeing to a $2.55 million salary for the 2017 season.

The Blue Jays and Bautista have reached a one year deal

TORONTO, ON - OCTOBER 19:  Jose Bautista #19 of the Toronto Blue Jays looks on during batting practice prior to game five of the American League Championship Series against the Cleveland Indians at Rogers Centre on October 19, 2016 in Toronto, Canada.  (Photo by Vaughn Ridley/Getty Images)
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It’s been on the verge of happening for a few days now, but now it’s official: the Toronto Blue Jays and Jose Bautista have reached a one-year deal with a mutual option. The deal is pending physical. An announcement making the deal official is expected later in week.

The exact financial figures have not been disclosed, but Jon Heyman reports that it will be in excess of the $17.2 million Bautista turned down when he turned down the Jays’ qualifying offer.

Bautista had a tough 2016, hitting .234/.366/.452 with 22 home runs and 69 RBI, and some clubs likely considered a long-term deal for the 36-year-old too risky, this leading to the relative lack of reported interest in Bautista by other clubs. But back-to-back ALCS appearances by the Jays and the success and popularity Bautista has experienced in Toronto make his re-signing there a pretty sensible move for all involved.