UPDATE, 11-7-07: This isn’t really an update. Ricciardi kind of clarified his comments, saying that the Jays aren’t shopping Burnett. But he never said they were in the first place. He originally said if he was blown away, he’d trade Burnett. The only people confused were those who didn’t closely read his original comments.
FROM 11-6-07: Blue Jays GM J.P. Ricciardi has said something interesting things to the media in recent times, from lying to the public about B.J. Ryan’s injury to questioning A.J. Burnett’s manliness. It’s not that his actions and opinions are astounding; it’s just odd to see a GM so publicly frank about things.
Today, Ricciardi was upfront with ESPN about the possibility of trading Burnett. If he’s blown away by an offer, he’ll trade him. It’s not really a groundbreaking assertion. I imagine most GMs feel that way about most players.
In Burnett, another high impact arm enters the trade market. His opt-out clause after the 2008 season effectively makes his contract worse than a one-year deal, as we discussed here. Jerry Crasnick says the Cardinals, Phillies, and even Orioles are possible fits. I could imagine the Braves, Mets, Astros, and Diamondbacks expressing interest as well. Burnett has no-trade protection against 15 teams, so that might require compensation. He’ll earn a reasonable $12MM in 2008.