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Clayton, Stairs, and Smith

Since I haven't gone over these transactions in depth, I thought I'd gage how everyone feels about them.

To recap, the Blue Jays:

  • signed Royce Clayton to a one-year, $1.5 million contract.
  • signed Matt Stairs to a one-year contract, though the amount has not yet been disclosed (at least not to my knowledge).
  • drafted Jason Smith, a 29-year-old middle infielder, in the Rule V draft.
The Clayton move is the only one that really leaves me befuddled, especially since he's projected to be the team's opening day shortstop. He has no offensive value, as he posted a 66 OPS+ last season, and his defense is widely considered to be very subpar. The Blue Jays' output at the position was so terrible that almost anything would be an upgrade, but Clayton appears to be a useless player at this point in his career.

The Stairs signing seems harmless, especially since I don't think John Gibbons will be foolish enough to grant unwarranted at-bats to him in favour of younger players like Adam Lind. He appears to be decent insurance in the event that Frank Thomas gets hurt.

As for Smith, he could make the team as the 25th man. He hit .291/.354/.511 in 141 ABs for Colorado's AAA affiliate, Colorado Springs. I have a sneaking suspicion that those numbers are environment-inflated, as they don't match up with the rest of his minor league career and, well, he played half his games in Colorado, which is notorious for its thin air. Furthermore, he was quite old for the league, obviously. In the majors, he hit .263/.324/.424 in 99 ABs.