The Blue Jays have made the move that is quite possibly the most shocking thing they could do at the Winter Meetings this week:
The Toronto Blue Jays today announce the release of SS Troy Tulowitzki.— Blue Jays PR (@BlueJaysPR) December 11, 2018
Tulowitzki is owed $38M guaranteed per his contract - $20M in 2019, $14M in 2020 and a $4M buyout for 2021. Due to injuries, he hasn’t played in a baseball game in over a year and a half.
With all the comments Ross Atkins has made publicly over the past week, it seemed inevitable that it was an uphill climb for Tulowitzki to be the team’s starting shortstop going forward, but a release at this point in the off season is certainly surprising.
On the other hand, this frees up another 40-man spot and gives Tulo plenty of time to find another opportunity.
Ross Atkins: “Through many conversations with Troy and his representative Paul Cohen, and with consideration to what is in the best interest of both sides, we made the decision to release Troy today.” #BlueJays— Ben Nicholson-Smith (@bnicholsonsmith) December 11, 2018
Tulo’s agent, Paul Cohen: “I’ve known Mark Shapiro for decades. He is one of the most decent, forthright, honest people I know. If they are really going to go with young guys next year, it’s best to give Troy the opportunity now to seek out the best situation…” 1/2— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) December 11, 2018
“In that regard, we’re very grateful to both Mark and Ross Atkins. They could have made a decision in the spring, but it would be a much bigger challenge then (to get Tulo signed) vs. now when not a lot of off-season has taken place.” Cohen added that Tulo, 34, is in great shape.— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) December 11, 2018
Here are some sweet words from Marcus Stroman:
2Lo is my dawg man. Super sad to see my brother go. He’s a winner. Unreal clubhouse presence. Always willing to help and mold young players. One of the best baseball minds I’ve ever been around. His career is far from over. See you soon my bro!— Marcus Stroman (@MStrooo6) December 11, 2018
Thank you for everything, Tulo. We wish you all the best.