Despite what many outlets will tell you, the Toronto Blue Jays are not doing anything dramatic by placing Jose Bautista on revocable waivers
The Toronto Blue Jays have placed franchise icon, Jose Bautista, on revocable waivers. You can tell because the old timeline is full of headlines stating so. The Thursday morning “news” is certainly flying. It is causing a bit of a stir in Blue Jays Land.
But, it shouldn’t.
It seems like every year it needs to be explained that August is the time when another trade deadline presents itself. Where the July 31st Deadline allowed teams to trade freely, this one has an added step to the process. Teams will place players on the waiver wire. If another team puts in a claim on that player, the original team has the chance to pull them back (hence the term “revocable”), or work out a trade. If the player clears waivers, then the team has full freedom to trade said player. This is the short explanation of the process that teams take advantage of with just about every player on their roster.
That means that the Toronto Blue Jays would have placed Bautista, and a number of others, on the waiver wire. It is a way to gauge interest in players. Usually, the those with higher salaries tend to go unclaimed. But, one has to wonder if Bautista would be one of those. He is nearing the end of an $18M season that has a mutual option at the end of it worth $17M. And, if that option is picked up and he totals 300 games played, his $20M 2019 option will be triggered. That is a lot of money to commit to paying over the next two years.
For all of these reasons, it is difficult to imagine a team putting in a claim on Joey Bats. Of course, you have to add in his well earned 10-5 rights that allow him to veto trades. Him waiving it would likely have to do with the option being picked up for next season, which could scare off a lot of teams.
Bautista’s situation will be fascinating to watch. For all of the reasons stated above, a deal might be difficult to fathom. This is especially so if you consider the year he is having.
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After slugging his way into the Blue Jays record books, many would argue that his age 36 year has Bautista declining. Just about all of his offensive numbers are down from what we’re used to. He does have 16 bombs and is walking like we’re used to, but he’s striking out at a rate higher than we’ve ever seen in Toronto. His wRC+ of 89 is something we just can’t get used to. This is the first time in 11 years that Bautista is putting up a negative WAR (-0.3 fWAR). Would teams feel like taking a chance on him?
They could. And, if someone can convince him to waive his 10-5 rights, the Blue Jays very well could get something in return from him, rather than waiting for the awkward conversation of not picking up his 2018 option.
Regardless, all of this is getting ahead of things. The cart is well before the horse with all of the headline flying around Thursday. Placing Bautista on waivers means as close to nothing as you can get. So many players get placed on waivers that it is not worth mentioning. But, that won’t stop lots of people trying to use the potential drama of losing a franchise icon as a way to get you to click on their link.
The placement of Bautista on revocable waivers is not news. But, you can bet that we’ll let you know if and when it becomes so. That will be worth clicking on.
*Featured Image Credit: Keith Allison UNDER CC BY-SA 2.0
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Shaun Doyle is a long time Blue Jays fan and writer! He decided to put those things together and create Jays From the Couch. Shaun is the host of Jays From the Couch Radio, which is highly ranked in iTunes, and he has appeared on TV and radio spots.