AL East Notes: Lester, Norris, Blue Jays, Cashman

In an appearance on WAAF’s Hill-Man Morning Show, Jon Lester explained recent comments that he wouldn’t necessarily go to the highest bidder this offseason (via WEEI’s Rob Bradford). “…I don’€™t need to go to the highest bidder if that isn’€™t going to make me happy,” said Lester. “I’€™m not going to just take the highest bid, the money, the most years just because it’€™s in front of you. … I make decisions based on me and my family and is this place — “whether it’€™s Boston or one of the other 29 teams –€“ is this place going to be good for me and my family?” Lester did note that he could still end up signing the highest bidder, of course, but the happiness of his family will be the top priority. Lester also repeated that he doesn’t have any hard feelings toward the Red Sox, and he discussed his farewell to owner John Henry as well.

Here’s more from the AL East…

  • Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopoulos appeared on Sportsnet 590 The Fan with Mike Wilner and Ben Ennis today, and Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith provides some of the highlights. Of particular note was the fact that Anthopoulos said top prospect Daniel Norris could be a factor out of the team’s bullpen in September if he continues to pitch well. The 21-year-old Norris has skyrocketed up prospect rankings this year on the heels of a 2.25 ERA with 11.2 K/9 and 3.0 BB/9 in 108 innings across Class-A Advanced, Double-A and Triple-A.
  • Nicholson-Smith also writes that the Blue Jays have made several waiver claims this month, but none have resulted in the acquisition of a new player. The team isn’t expected to make a trade today, but it will need to clear a roster spot for the returning Edwin Encarnacion. Nicholson-Smith notes that the Jays are willing to cut ties with out-of-options players, and Anthopoulos has expressed some frustration with Juan Francisco‘s strikeout tendencies. However, he adds that the Blue Jays do value Francisco’s left-handed power.
  • Yankees owner Hal Steinbrenner isn’t committing to bringing back longtime general manager Brian Cashman in 2015, but the Yankee GM tells George A. King III of the New York Post that he’s not bothered by the situation. “That’s the process,” said Cashman, whose contract expires after the 2014 season. “There isn’t much to say at this point. That’s for another day.” Steinbrenner’s comments to King were of a similar nature, as he chose to focus on the season at hand rather than the future of his GM.
  • Steinbrenner also says he’s had no recent conversations with Alex Rodriguez, writes’s Bryan Hoch, but the Yankees are expecting A-Rod to return in 2015 following his 162-game suspension. The 39-year-old former MVP has three years and $61MM remaining on his contract.

53 Responses to AL East Notes: Lester, Norris, Blue Jays, Cashman Leave a Reply

  1. nickgarciataria 11 months ago

    With each at bat I find myself getting more and more skeptical about Francisco. I honestly see him the one being replaced.

    • Bertin Lefkovic 11 months ago

      What would it take for the Yankees to be able to get Juan Francisco from the Blue Jays? Maybe a package including Mark Buerhle and Ricky Romero as well?

    • Jaysfan1994 11 months ago

      I swear if Kawasaki and his horrible defense and outfield singles “pop” isn’t sent down and Goins isn’t recalled before Fransisco’s potential outright assignment, I will stop watching the Jays all together.

      The entire Seattle series was a testament to how bad the Jays defense is right now, they still haven’t figured out that in big ballparks where the ball doesn’t carry, defense usually keeps you in a close game. Like it hasn’t been impossible for them to score runs in Anaheim, Oakland and Seattle this year.

      • thefridge99 11 months ago

        I highly doubt that you’ll stop watching the Jays altogether.

        • Jaysfan1994 11 months ago

          I’m so disappointed with this team, it’s been 20 years since a Canadian team has won anything in any major sports in local sports. This country has become a joke in local sports with no major athletes wanting to compete here because of the built in pressure’s of desperate fans thinking the roof is always going to collapse.

          In baseball specifically, the media is crazy for a sport they don’t understand.

          • thefridge99 11 months ago

            You just threatened to abandon the team because you want a .197 hitter called up and then you complain about desperate fans? You’re part of the problem.

  2. In a weird way, the progress of the Jays’ young talent might end up costing them their shot at the WS. Players like Norris, Stroman, and Hutchinson quickly became too valuable to trade. TB clearly wanted a starter capable of pitching in the big leagues right now.

    • ziggy13 11 months ago

      With the payroll restrictions Toronto’s been facing it’d be idiotic to trade some of the best prospects we’ve had in years for less than 2 years of Price with virtually no chance of re-signing him

      • Bleed_Orange 11 months ago

        I don’t agree at all. The Jays are set up to be very competitive the next two years, the addition of Price could have put them in the position to be in the playoffs, and with the extra year of control they can offer him arb and get draft pick compensation. Obviously the Price’s ‘price’ wasn’t as high as many thought it would be… the Jays really should have gone all in.

        • Jaysfan724 11 months ago

          That was the price for an out of division team. Sanchez, Stroman and Lawrie was not worth Price.

          • Bleed_Orange 11 months ago

            I saw that posted on MLBTR boards quite often but I never saw that as the Rays asking price anywhere. It probably could have been done for less.

        • 1 player isn’t going to take you to the WS. The offense hasn’t been there since the injuries, or as of late anyhow…so doubtful Price gets them over the hump.

          • Bleed_Orange 11 months ago

            But he probably could have gotten them to the wild card this year and made them the favorite in the AL East next year. Again only have so many chances in a life time as the WS, I think the Jays got cold feet on this one.

    • joe smith 11 months ago

      Agreed. Even though I’m dying for this team to get into the playoffs, I’m ok with AA’s decision not to deal young MLB ready pitching for a rental. A rotation of Stroman, Norris, Sanchez, Hutch and potentially Nolin sounds pretty damn exciting. Osuna could be pitching in the MLB before the end of the 2015 season as well. I’d like to see the Jays try to deal one of Dickey or Buehrle before the start of the 2015 season.

      • Spicol 11 months ago

        With his age and performance, I’m not sure Dickey has a ton of trade value. Maybe just enough to get his deal off the books without having to eat salary. I guess that’s good enough for me.

      • Bertin Lefkovic 11 months ago

        Who do you want for Buerhle? I would love to see him pitching in Yankee Stadium next year. What do the Blue Jays need?

        • Jaysfan1994 11 months ago

          Is this a joke? Yankee Stadium might be Mark Buehrle’s one Kryptonite.

          • Bertin Lefkovic 11 months ago

            Yes, but the X factor here is that if he is wearing a Yankees uniform, he will not be pitching against the Yankees. I will take my chances with him. What do you need to get back for him?

      • SouthsideChicagoFan 11 months ago

        The White Sox would GLADLY take Buehrle back. He needs to come back where he belongs. Toronto gets Andre Rienzo and Keenyn Walker while Sox eat all Buehrle’s contract?

      • George Bell 11 months ago

        If Rogers won’t increase the payroll next year Buehrle and his $19m salary need to go

        • Jaysfan1994 11 months ago

          Well, they said they will. Although, I’m skeptical they field a team half as competitive as this one this year.

    • Jaysfan724 11 months ago

      According to Mike Wilner, Tampa asked for Sanchez, Stroman and Lawrie for Price.

      • Jaysfan1994 11 months ago

        I’d give up Lawrie in a heartbeat, Wilner was using a hypothetical to
        what Tampa would want from the Jays since Tampa ended up getting Nick Franklin/Drew Smiley. He’s not privileged to know what they actually wanted because it’s more likely the franchise didn’t ever come close to making a trade with them this year. If The Jays traded Lawrie I’d be celebrating, the guy can’t hit LHP anymore, his splits have indicated that over the last two years and he’s beyond injury prone.

        • If the deal was for Sanchez and Lawrie, I’d probably do it. I see why the Rays would want Stroman, but that would be too counterproductive for the Jays to do it. Detroit could stomach losing Smyly because of the rotation depth, but Stroman is needed.

          • Jaysfan1994 11 months ago

            Stroman has way more upside than Smiley. Stroman in reality since Tampa had to get rid of Price this year, after the way Marcus’s pitched this year, should’ve been able to get Price in a 1 for 1.

            He’s also not going to be a Free Agent until 2020 and is pre arbitration eligible. Tampa needs guys like Stroman playing for them in the majors.

          • Bleed_Orange 11 months ago

            It probably could have been Sanchez, Norris and Lawrie (Lawire to Seattle)

          • Jaysfan1994 11 months ago

            Makes zero sense, Where would Lawrie play with Cano and Seager enriched in stone?

          • I think Norris is basically untouchable at this point.

  3. Sufferfortribe 11 months ago

    ARod is still owed $61MM over the next 3 years? Contracts like this make me glad I’m a small market fan. Just wish we didn’t have the Swisher and Bourn contracts weighing us down. It’s hard enough for us to compete in today’s climate.

    • East Coast Bias 11 months ago

      On the flip side… only 3 more years left, yay. We can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

  4. Mike1L 11 months ago

    Perhaps this is going to sound ungracious, but how many interviews is Jon Lester going to give to the Boston media? As for Cashman, he’s done a good job considering the circumstances, but it wouldn’t surprise me if this was his last year with the Yankees. They might benefit from a clear new voice. And as for A-Rod, the Yankees are stuck with his contract and Steinbrenner isn’t going to say otherwise.

    • Bertin Lefkovic 11 months ago

      The Yankees could trade his bad contract for another bad contract, but the only contract out there that is as bad as his is Ryan Howard’s. I would do that deal in a nanosecond.

      Would the Angels trade Josh Hamilton for A-Rod, Carlos Beltran, and Michael Pineda?

      • Rusty_Arcadia 11 months ago

        While Hamilton hasn’t lived up to expectation, there is no indication that the Angels would trade any of their core players and if they did, it would be for starting pitching.

        • Bertin Lefkovic 11 months ago

          Hamilton is owed $89MM over the next three years. I am not sure that there is another team in the league that would even consider trading for him, much less give up quality pitching.

          A-Rod and Beltran will cost $91MM plus whatever HR bonuses A-Rod earns over roughly the same period of time. I threw Pineda in as a sweetener being a young and controllable, albeit injury prone pitcher. Seems like a fair deal to me.

      • Trock 11 months ago

        How would this benefit the Angels? Although I have a little more faith in Beltran over Hamo, A-Rod is a liability (and has been for a while) and Pineda hasn’t been healthy in a while.

        • Bertin Lefkovic 11 months ago

          Three questionable players for the price of one questionable player should benefit the Angels sufficiently. The only reason that I would even consider doing this deal is because I want A-Rod to go away and Beltran is clearly jinxed by NYC.

          As much of a liability as A-Rod might be, he is probably an upgrade over David Freese, who the Angels might be able to trade to a team like the Blue Jays for a starting pitcher like R.A. Dickey.

          • Metfan9876 11 months ago

            I doubt the Angels would want to put on some more salary in 2 injury-prone, washed up players in A-rod and Beltran. Also, Pineda is a question mark and they need proven starters. That deal makes no sense for the Angels and gives them 2 pieces that they don’t need. Freese, who is relatively cheap and has played well since his awful start to the season and Hamilton is a smarter route for them to go, especially when they are gearing up for a playoff run this year and likely next year.

          • Trock 11 months ago

            I still do not see the logic. Beltran, A-Rod are not change of scenery candidates. Why would the Angels want to be liable at an OF position with an aging Beltran AND have A-Rod on the field at all? No team wants A-Rod. This would never happen in a million years.

  5. Bertin Lefkovic 11 months ago

    If the Phillies were interested in swapping bad contracts, I would take Ryan Howard’s $60MM over two years to A-Rod’s $61MM+HR bonuses over three years. With Tex becoming so brittle, it would be better if their primary DH can also play 1B. If necessary, I would also swap Shawn Kelley for Jonathan Papelbon and not resign David Robertson this offseason, letting Dellin Betances know that the closer job is his once Papelbon’s contract runs out.

    • Bleed_Orange 11 months ago

      Don’t hate the thought process of a Howard for Arod swap, biggest issue I see there is that Arod can’t DH in the national league.

      • Bertin Lefkovic 11 months ago

        No, but he could learn to play 1B and the OF, which probably takes somewhat less of a toll on the body than 3B, but even if not, that is no less or more problematic for the Phillies than the fact that Howard cannot DH in the NL. If anything, Howard could probably benefit more from the DH than A-Rod.

        • Jaysfan1994 11 months ago

          I can’t see A-Rod at 40 years old running in the outfield and not pulling something. The outfield is a much harder position to play then a lot of people think. A-Rod at 1B sounds something more realistic seeing as it’s less physically demanding.

  6. Rusty_Arcadia 11 months ago

    I think what Lester is trying to say is, if the RedSox want to outbid everyone and pay him a lot of money to return, that would be awesome. But, if the Red Sox aren’t the highest bidders, he’d still like to return.

    • daveineg 11 months ago

      No, I think he’s seeing the Cubs and Theo as his spot. Winning in Boston? Been there, done that. Winning on the north side of Chicago? Priceless.
      Nice sentiments but we’ve heard that from guys before but until the union pulled them to the side and reminded players of the dossier they had on each one of them.

  7. Vandals Took The Handles 11 months ago

    I’ve lost all respect for Lester.

    He’s supposed to be a professional. He’s being paid an astronomical salary to help the A’s win the pennant. His A’s teammates are trying to win a pennant. Why doe he have to keep talking about his free agency and he Red Sox? Can;t he just tell the media that the stretch run is on and his focus is on helping his team win? That he’ll discuss his free agency after the season?

    I have not seen any other potential 2014 free agents doing what he’s doing.

    • Jaysfan1994 11 months ago

      Astronomical? He’s being paid way below market value this year. I do however agree with everything you’ve just said besides that. It’s kinda like he’s hinting there’s no chance he stays in Oakland for next season.

  8. Bertin Lefkovic 11 months ago

    I predict that the Yankees offer Lester 6/$150MM, the Cubs offer 6/$135MM, the Red Sox offer 4/$90MM with a vestable team option for a 5th year worth $20MM with a $10MM buyout, and Lester signs with the Cubs. The only way that the Yankees get Lester is with a 7th year and vestable option for an 8th year. I don’t think that Lester relishes the idea of going back to Fenway in a Yankees uniform. If the Red Sox offer 5/$100 with a vestable option for a 6th year at $20MM, I think that they would get him. I hope that I am wrong.

  9. thefridge99 11 months ago

    You’re panicking and I expect to see you still posting here a year from now. If not, good riddance.

    -Loyal fan since ’87

  10. Jaysfan1994 11 months ago

    I’m not panicking, I’m not a fool who waits for paint to dry in a water filled lake.

    Answer my question given and tell me how this team expects to ever win games without solid infield defense and pitching that can’t strikeout the side in order to elevate that poor infield defense? I’ve lived my whole life without a Canadian team winning anything so I fully expect you not to understand, you went through the Leafs success of the early 90’s and the Canadiens and Flames winning the Stanley Cup. Also the Jays being perennial contenders.

  11. Jaysfan1994 11 months ago

    Answer my question given and I’ll gladly admit I was wrong to think of jumping off the bandwagon, if of course you have any remote evidence to support your claim. Until then, you’re just living in denial.

Leave a Reply