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Sunday Bantering: Solarte Activated, Donaldson trade complaints

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MLB: Toronto Blue Jays at Seattle Mariners Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

Yangervis Solarte has been activated off the DL and will play second today. Solarte hasn’t played since August 11 and he hasn’t had any rehab games. He’s hitting .233/.287/.397 with 17 home runs.

The Blue Jays have a team option on him for next year and the year after. I’m thinking that they won’t be picking up that option (unless they can trade him) as we seem to have a mess of infielders, I don’t see Solarte having a spot on the roster.

It isn’t surprising, but other contending teams aren’t happy with the Blue Jays trade of Josh Donaldson to Cleveland. Ken Rosenthal, in the Athletic, tells us that the Red Sox (among others) are unhappy that some rules were dodged to make the trade.

There is a rule against trading injured players. The rule is to protect the receiving team from getting damaged goods.

In Donaldson’s case, he was able to start a rehab assignment, played one game, went on trade waivers. Then he was pulled out of the next game (because of soreness). When the next game was rained out, Josh didn’t ‘miss a game’ and played in the next one.

And then he gets traded. He arrives in Cleveland and goes back on the DL. He was ‘healthy enough to be traded’ but not heathy enough to play.

“I guess he got re-injured on the plane,” one rival executive said, sarcastically.

Another executive said the Indians skirted a rule requiring a player who suffers a recurrence of an injury on a rehabilitation assignment to remain inactive for five days before starting another one. But due to a technicality — Donaldson’s activation between his trips to the DL — the Indians did not need to wait five days.

I’ll admit I wondered how the trade could be made, because he obviously wasn’t healthy. But Cleveland didn’t care, they are happy to have him on the DL right up until playoff time. The deal didn’t cost them much, apparently $1 million (with the Jays playing the rest of what’s left of his contract) and Julian Merryweather.

Adding this in:

According to a source, a league official contacted every club with potential interest in Donaldson and issued a warning of “buyer beware,” noting Donaldson’s assertion that he could not play and seeming ambivalence about getting traded before he was fully ready physically.

Apparently Cleveland and Donaldson talked before the deal was complete and Cleveland assured him that they wouldn’t make him play right away. Cleveland could have had him sit on the bench for a few days, instead of sending him out for rehab, which might have looked better.

I can understand other teams being upset, especially since Shapiro and Atkins came to the Jays from Cleveland and it is entirely possible that some favors were called to make this deal.

And the Jays didn’t want to be forced to give him a QO. They are up to their armpits in infielders. Vladimir Guerrero should play third next year (likely after a couple of weeks in the minors). Josh really shouldn’t be a 3B in the future, but we have Smoak and Morales with contracts manning the spots Josh would play. Not to mention Tellez. I can’t imagine Donaldson would turn down a QO. Unless he plays comes back and plays great for Cleveland, I don’t see him getting more than a 1-year deal next year.

If Donaldson is able to play in the playoffs and he plays like he has for the last 3 years and not how he played early this year, I’m sure the complaints will get louder. Of course, the complaining teams could have traded for Josh, but that doesn’t change that some rules seem to have been broken in this deal. Or at least fudged the rules.

Cleveland wasn’t worried about getting damaged goods, but that doesn’t change the rule. I don’t think the other teams’ complaints will change anything.

Solarte bats 7th. Rowdy Tellez plays DH, batting 5th. And Reese McGuire catches Thomas Pannone. We have 5 rookies starting today.