Blue Jays first baseman/designated hitter Adam Lind is under team control through 2016, but it sounds like he may not be long for Toronto.
Bob Elliott of the Toronto Sun talked to an unnamed “executive” source who says “the Blue Jays are getting a lot of interest on Lind and not just from American League teams.”
Lind had a horrible three-season run from 2010-2012, at one point passing through waivers unclaimed because no other team wanted the rest of his contract, but the 31-year-old bounced back to hit .301 with 29 homers and an .856 OPS in 239 games during the past two seasons.
That includes a .321 batting average this year, although as usual Lind struggled mightily against left-handed pitching and was mostly platooned. Platoon first basemen/designated hitters aren’t exactly hot commodities, but with team options for $7.5 million in 2015 and $8 million in 2016 he’d fit in plenty of lineups.
Japanese League commissioner Atsushi Saito announced that Japan’s professional baseball season will open on June 19. Teams can being practice games on June 2. There will be no fans. Indeed, the league has not yet even begun to seriously discuss a plan for fans to begin attending games, though that may happen eventually.
The season will begin three months after its originally scheduled opening day of March 20. It will be 120 games long. Teams in each six-team league — the Central League and Pacific League — will play 24 games against each league opponent. There will be no interleague play and no all-star game.
The announcement came in the wake of a national state of emergency being lifted for both Tokyo and the island of Hokkaido. The rest of the country emerged from the state of emergency earlier this month. This will allow the Japanese leagues to follow leagues in South Korea and Taiwan which have been playing for several weeks.
In the United States, Major League Baseball is hoping to resume spring training in mid June before launching a shortened regular season in early July. That plan is contingent on the league and the players’ union coming to an agreement on both financial arrangements and safety protocols for a 2020 season. Negotiations on both are ongoing. Major League Baseball will, reportedly, make a formal proposal about player compensation tomorrow.