According to the Toronto Star, the Blue Jays are set to offer AJ Burnett 2 extra years and 30 million for him not to opt out of his current deal. So, basicly they are offering him 4 years, 54 million. I think this one might get done, and maybe even before the season ends. The offer does seem a little under-value. Only 13.5 million a year. Maybe if they tore up the old contract and offered 4 years, 60 million then something could get done. If I were Burnett, I would wait untill after the season because it is possible some desperate team like the Yankees offers him something like 4 years, 72 million. Even if he does hit the open market, look for the Jays to aggressivley pursue him. They need a pitcher after losing Shaun Marcum for the year. If they miss out on Burnett, they could still go after other pitchers. Or, they could just go for a bat like Manny Ramirez instead. They have options.
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I recently throght of a wild trade that could potentially make sense between the Blue Jays and Rockies. The Blue Jays trade Roy Halladay and Lyle Overbay to the Rox for Matt Holliday and Garret Atkins. Yes, the Rockies lose a lot of fire power from their lineup, and the Jays lose their ace pitcher, but it still makes sense. The Rockies are said to be looking for an ace and Roy Halladay definatly fits the bill. They need to move one of Atkins/Holliday anyway to open room for Ian Stewart and could sign a big bat left fielder like Pat Burrell or Adam Dunn to fill the void left by Holliday. They could get Burrell or Dunn at a discount because they play in Coors Field and who wouldn’t want to come play there. It would be easier to lure one of them than it would to lure CC Sabathia or Ben Sheets. They also get a solid first baseman option in Overbay just in case Todd Helton is still hurt. This trade makes a lot of sense for the Rockies.
This also makes sense for the Blue Jays because adding Holliday and Atkins to the lineup would instantly give them a lineup that can compete with the Red Sox and Yankees. They lose their ace pitcher, but AJ Burnett is said to want to come back at the right price. If the Jays are without Halladay, I think they pay that price and bring Burnett back. A front two of Burnett and Shaun Marcum is pretty solid. They have other good pitchers as well. The bullpen is very good, and the lineup becomes good with this trade. I think this trade makes the Blue Jays a better team.
The Milwaukee Brewers are probably not going to be as good in 2009 as they were in 2008. Their top two starters: CC Sabathia and Ben Sheets are both free agents. They have a few holes. They need one arm in the rotation, and one or two in the bullpen, as well as a center fielder. They have a good trade chip in JJ Hardy and could possibly entertain trading Prince Fielder. They need to open up spots for top prospects Alcidies Escobar and Mat Gamel. Hardy is more likely to be dealt because his bat would be easier to replace than Fielder’s. Plus, a lot of other good first baseman could be on the market with Mike Jacobs and Ryan Howard in trades and Mark Teixera and Jason Giambi on the free agent market. There should be a huge market for Hardy, with only two above average shortstops avalable via free agency. I have previously said that JJ Hardy for Nick Blackburn would make sense, and I still believe that. Another possibility is Hardy to the Oriols for George Sherrill and Daniel Cabrera. Or to the Blue Jays for maybe Shaun Marcum or Dustin McGowen. The Brewers could always add a piece to make it work. To the Royals for David DeJesus or Ran Mahay and a piece. To the A’s for one of their several pitching prospects. Or maybe for Huston Street instead. To the Giants for Jonathan Sanchez. Or the Dodgers for Scott Elbert or Justin McGownen and a bullpen piece. There are many options. They should pick up the option on Mike Cameron. 10 million is a lot for him, but they have a lot of money to burn and could afford him. I think they’ll spend a lot of money on their bullpen as well. Although, they did that last year and it didn’t work. They could look into resigning Sheets, but Sabathia has no chance of coming back. If they resign Sheets they could be just as good as they were last year, with Yovani Gallardo coming back from injury. The Brewers can still be a very good team in ’09, probably just not as good as they were in ’08.