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Poll time: Should the Jays trade Jose Bautista?

Tom Szczerbowski

Jose Bautista talked to Arash Madani, and said that he would like to finish his career with the Blue Jays. Of course, what else is he going to say "well Arash, I can't wait to get out of this hell hole, say` this isn't being taped is it".

Jose goes on to say that it is 'out of his hands', that it is up to the team to offer an extension but that he would be very happy to stay with the Jays and he feels he can win here.

I'm always of two minds on this. I play OOTP Baseball way way too much (my 2016 Jay just cinched first, with 5 games left of the season, after finishing last in the AL East in 2014 and 2015), and my rule is to trade any player before his 34th birthday, as players (at least in that game) tend to take a sudden turn for the worse at about that age. You might get a good season after that age, but they are few and far between. And after that age other teams tend (in the game) not to want to take them in trade. In the latest version of the game, I couldn't trade him because he had 5-10 status and 'refused the trade'. In the game, it is easier to trade guys because they aren't people. There is no emotional attachment.

In real life, I've heard a lot of people saying he should be traded and, of course, I believe anyone should be traded, if you get good value in return. I think, in the case of Bautista, it would be very tough to get good value back but who knows.

I do think that bad teams (and bad fans) tend to blame losing on the team's best player. They think that if Bautista was any good, we would never lose. They think we aren't losing because we have black holes at second base, third base and center field and our pitching has been somewhere between inconsistent and terrible. The reason we are losing is because of the guy with the 4.0 bWAR and the league leading .398 OBP.

My Expos (a team that was badly run for much of their life) traded their best player, and my personal favorite, Gary Carter, after deciding that he was the reason that the team wasn't making the playoffs because of him, not the lack of a supporting case. It didn't matter that the team didn't have a major league middle infield, that wasn't the reason they lost, it was the major league best catcher we had.  We heard that Carter wasn't a leader, he smiled too much, he spent too much time talking to the media (he even leaved a bit of french),  he called too many breaking balls behind the plate. He was traded away for far to little, went on to win a World Series with the Mets and my Expos never made the playoff again.

We are getting the same sort of stuff about Bautista. He's not a leader (how anyone outside the locker room would know that is beyond me), he's selfish, he's not 'clutch', all sorts of stuff that can't be quantified. I've even been told, on more than one occasion, that Munenori Kawasaki is better than have on the team than Bautista (which makes me mourn what has happened to the education system in this country, but I digress).  Yeah, he's been through a slump but then everyone everyone slumps at some point. And, of course, he got ejected once this year, so he can't be any good.

I'm don't like the idea of trading Jose for the sake of trading him. We'd have to get something very good back. With out Bautista there would be a huge hole in the batting order. We haven't exactly been the offensive juggernaut that we were hoping for this year.

I think it is good for a team to have a player that is the 'face of the franchise'. Someone that the even most casual fan knows. I do believe that, at some point, Bautista will have to move to first base or DH, but we can deal with that when the time comes.

Let's have a poll.