Roy Halladay isn’t generally known for his interesting interviews. However, his winter getaway fishing on the Amazon provided him with a couple of fun anecdotes today.
According to legend, Halladay, who went to Brazil with Chris Carpenter and B.J. Ryan, wrestled an anaconda in the river. That wasn’t exactly the case, though.
“I was not wrestling snakes,” he said. “I was nowhere near snakes. We were just driving back. We had been fishing all day and we were on the boat driving back. We happened to see a guy sitting on the shoreline without clothes. We couldn’t talk to him. The guides had to talk to him – they were speaking Portuguese. He had been attacked by a snake and escaped. But it had ripped the engine off his boat and left all his stuff out in the river. So we picked up his stuff, picked him up, and drove him back to his tribe I guess you would call it.”
And the reward for his good deed? Well, it seems he passed.
“They have native trees down there,” Halladay said. “The bark’s a little potent when you smoke it, and I think he was partaking of that. It was interesting.”
Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith reports that the Blue Jays and third baseman Josh Donaldson are tabling extension talks as the two sides weren’t able to build any momentum towards agreement on a new contract.
Donaldson said, “We’re not quite there. That, to me, right now is not the major focus and I’m turning the page.” He added, “I want to play this season and really focus on winning games because, ultimately, our goal is to win a World Series and I don’t want to hinder that at all.” Donaldson also said he expects to hit free agency.
The 32-year-old avoided arbitration with the Blue Jays last month, agreeing on a $23 million salary for the 2018 season. He’s a free agent at season’s end. Last year, the three-time All-Star hit .270/.385/.559 with 33 home runs, 78 RBI, and 65 runs scored in 496 plate appearances. Donaldson missed six weeks in the first half with a calf injury, but was able to return and post terrific numbers, so his health — at least that aspect of it — shouldn’t be a concern going into spring training.
If Donaldson does reach free agency, he’ll join a star-studded group that will likely also include Bryce Harper, Manny Machado, Charlie Blackmon, and A.J. Pollock.