Opinion: Three reasons the Blue Jays were right not to sign Price

Blue Jays fans hung their heads in despair when they learned David Price will earn $217 million over seven years as a member of the Boston Red Sox. Last season, with the Detroit Tigers and Toronto Blue Jays, Price went 18-5 with a 2.45 ERA, and finished second in CY Young voting behind Dallas Kuechel.

The Red Sox have had experiences with bad contracts. Josh Benjamin of Forbes said, “The team already has multiple terrible contracts on the books, as third baseman Pablo Sandoval is due $70 million over the next four years after batting just .245 with 10 home runs and 47 RBI in an injury-riddled first season in Boston.” Hanley Ramirez is also owed $88 million over the next four seasons.

Although Price possesses spectacular career numbers in the AL East division, the Toronto Blue Jays were right to let Price go. Here are three reasons why.

  1. Lack of Pitching Depth

Since the Blue Jays have different holes to fill in their lineup for the upcoming seasons, it would not be good for them to spend most of their money on a star player.

According to Sportsnet’s Shi Davidi, Blue Jays manager Mark Shapiro said, “For me with David Price, it’s never a question do you want David Price. That’s silly. Of course, yes, we want David Price. It’s a question of how do you build a championship team within the parametres you’re given. It’s as simple as that. We have all the resources necessary to build a championship team, but they’re not unlimited, it’s a business like any other business. We had multiple holes to fill, and putting all those resources in one player really would have created a team with one complete hole in the rotation with nowhere to fill it. It really wasn’t much of a choice.”

Coming into this offseason, there were a number of contracts that the Blue Jays were forced to consider. First, Marco Estrada was in his first year as a Jay and was due for an extension. Last year, Estrada went 13-8 with a 3.13 ERA. The Jays also had issues regarding their bullpen. Top reliever Mark Lowe needed to be re-signed at the same time the Jays needed an upgrade in his position. According to Steve Adams from MLB Trade Rumors, Lowe agreed to a two-year $13-million contract with the Detroit Tigers, which is a huge loss for the Blue Jays. Since the Jays only managed to sign one of three free agent pitchers, they will need to bolster their pitching staff if they want to have another chance at winning the AL East title next year.

  1. Salary For Next Offseason

Core players for the Blue Jays, such as Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion, are in the final year of their contracts. This year, Bautista will earn $14 million and will be looking for a new contract worth around $20 million next year. Encarnacion is also in the final year of his $9-million contract. He will be looking for a contract about the same as Bautista’s. Third baseman Josh Donaldson, second baseman Ryan Goins, pitcher R.A. Dickey and relief pitcher Brett Cecil will also be looking for contracts next year. Jays’ fans should not expect to sign R.A. Dickey for $12 million next year because of his age, but the other contracts of core players should cost the Jays at least another $60 million. If they signed Price this offseason, the Blue Jays would have $30 million less to spend in the 2017 offseason.

  1. Playoff performance

The Blue Jays didn’t trade for Price to make the postseason, they traded for him to win the World Series. In his postseason career, Price owns a 2-7 record with a 5.12 ERA in 63.1 innings. That is not good enough for this Jays team. Not for $30 million/year. According to Mark Townsend from Yahoo sports, Price said, “I’m saving all my postseason wins for the Red Sox.” Toronto will be playing Boston in the season opener at the Rogers center, so viewers should expect harsh remarks aimed at Price if he will be starting for the Red Sox.

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