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Thursday Bantering: La Russa hired, Osuna outrighted and free agent stuff

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Toronto Blue Jays v Philadelphia Phillies Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images

Keith Law has his list of top 50 free agents. Top of the list is George Springer. He would be interesting for the Jays. An above average CFer, who has both power and gets on base. But a lot of teams will be in on him.

Some others of note:

3. Trevor Bauer. Great pitcher with a personality that can turn people off.

4. Marcus Stroman. Another whose personality could turn people off and he missed all of this season. It will be interesting to see what he is offered. Will he take a 1-year deal to build value?

9. Kolten Wong. A very good defensive second baseman. We could use some good defense up the middle. A contact hitter, who can take a walk, but no power. Wong won the Fielding Bible award for best defensive 2B in baseball.

10. Jackie Bradley Jr. Speaking of good defense up the middle. I’d imagine the Jays will, at least, talk to him.

12. Justin Turner. He’s 36, so no one will be offering 6 years. A short term contract to get us to Jordan Groshans?

13. James Paxton. Canadian content.

14. Andrelton Simmons. I’d love a SS with a great glove. He would fit.

17. Ha-Seong Kim. SS from the KBO. Just 25. Will he be a SS here? Law thinks he’ll be a utility guy.

19. Taijuan Walker. I’d love to see him back. Apparently he enjoyed his time with the Jays.

33. Corey Kluber. He’s 35 and pitched just an inning this year. Won’t be looking for more than a one-year deal.

37. Blake Treinen. A hard throwing reliever. We can always use another of those.


The Astros have out-righted our old friend Roberto Osuna. Osuna had Tommy John surgery and will miss next season and he is a free agent after next year, so the Astros aren’t losing anything by letting him go.

As you know we traded him after he had some domestic violence issues here. Ken Giles David Paulino and Hector Perez. Paulino is no longer with the team. Perez spent the year at the ‘Alternate Training Site’, pitching 1.2 innings for us.

In his time with the Astros Roberto had a 3.0 bWAR. Giles, with the Jays had a 2.3 bWAR. So just on the two, it was a fairly even trade. If we get something out of Perez, the trade is a win.

The Astros took a PR hit, making a joke of their ‘zero tolerance’ rule for domestic violence. But then the Astros are at the bottom of the league in PR over the past few seasons.

Also placed on outright waivers is Brad Hand from Cleveland. Cleveland is buying out his $10 million contract option.


The rumors (well maybe more than rumors, Jeff Passan is reporting hit as done and that some in the White So front office aren’t happy) are that the White Sox are hiring 76-year-old Tony La Russa to be their new manager. I find it hard to believe. I guess he would be old school choice. Anti-analytics, gudging players by the look in their eyes or some such crap.

I’m pretty sure he won’t be pulling pitchers before their third time through the order.


MLB.com is having a vote for the All MLB Team. There are three Blue Jays in the running:

  • Cavan Biggio as top second baseman.
  • Teoscar Hernandez as one of three top outfielders.
  • Hyun Jin Ryu as one of five top starting pitchers.

Vote here.