By: Adam Pasternak
By now, I’m sure everyone knows about David Price’s record setting deal with the Boston Red Sox. He is now the highest paid starting pitcher in MLB history, but look for Zack Greinke to break that record in the coming weeks (or even days). Price will receive a cheque for $1 million every 10 days. Life is good for David Price. After early reports that Toronto was Price’s preferred destination, he shocked the whole country of Canada by signing with arguably the Jays biggest rival, the Red Sox. In fact it was later revealed that the Jays did not even offer him a contract. As well, it was reported that Price had actually almost signed with the St. Louis Cardinals, but that Boston increased their offer right at the end.
Personally, I never thought Price was coming back to Toronto. The Jays simply don’t have the budget and you just can’t build a team around a guy who’s eating up $30+ million a year of your budget. Price, and of course his dog Astro, are joining a Red Sox team who underperformed last season, to say the least, but if they can get healthy and their young pitchers can perform, they will be hard to beat. Price is entering a situation where it’s World Series or bust, every year, no matter what. He’ll be playing on one of baseballs largest stages at Fenway Park and the pressure will always be on. Can he deliver when the pressure is at its highest? A do-or-die game at Fenway is not an easy game to pitch in whatsoever. His postseason woes are known, but the Red Sox are hoping that he can overcome his terrible postseason record and take the Sox to the promised land. He does have an opt-out clause after his third year, but unless they go under .500 for all three years, being at age 34, I’m sure he’ll want to keep his $1 million every 10 days pouring in.
Toronto on the other hand can’t dwell on the loss of David Price. They must move on and look to the future. Stroman is the ace, plain and simple. He is the leader of the staff, no matter the age differences between him and other starters. Estrada should fill that second spot, with the returning J.A Happ penned in at the three spot in the rotation. From there they have ageless R.A Dickey and then possibly newly-acquired Jesse Chavez, or last seasons fifth starter, Drew Hutchison, to round it out. There is also the possibility that Aaron Sanchez could rejoin the rotation, and that Roberto Osuna could be stretched out as a starter. I don’t think making Osuna a starter is the answer, and I say this because I’ve witnessed it go wrong when Texas tried to do it with Neftali Feliz (who I hadn’t even seen pitch since Texas lost in the World Series a few years back until he did this past postseason out of the Astros bullpen). The Jays are still looking at other available starting pitchers, but don’t expect anything big. The next thing the Jays need to worry about is the bullpen, especially the back end. Again, don’t expect any major moves this offseason, but it will be interesting to see what they do to makeup for the loss of price and also later in the season, to see what they do with the expiring contracts of Edwin and Bautista.
What do you think of the Red Sox landing Price on a historical, 7 year $217 million deal? What should the Jays do to overcome the loss of Price? Comment below!
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