What the Blue Jays-Marlins Mega Deal Means for the Rest of the American League East

While most discussion throughout the last couple days has focused on the Miami Marlins selling off nearly all of their assets and the re-loaded Blue Jays north of the border, there’s also a discussion to be had about what the reported massive trade means for Toronto’s competition, the American League East division.

In case you missed it, the trade that went down looks as follows …

Blue Jays receive:

  • SS – Jose Reyes
  • SP – Josh Johnson
  • SP – Mark Buehrle
  • OF – Emilio Bonifacio
  • C – John Buck

Marlins receive:

  • SS – Yunel Escobar
  • SP – Henderson Alvarez
  • Prospects – Andy Hechavarria, Jake Marisnick, Anthony Desclafani and Justin Nicolino
  • C – Jeff Mathis

Owner Jeffrey Loria’s aggressive plan last offseason could not have turned out worse, so maybe this photo looking up to him isn’t the most appropriate. (Photo by ESPN)

So, yes, the Blue Jays obviously improve a lot on paper with this trade. But will it be enough for them to contend with powerhouses like Boston, New York, and even Tampa Bay? And what about the new resurgent Baltimore squad?

While it’s hard to say Toronto can be considered anywhere near a “favorite” in the division before they play together for a substantial period and prove themselves, as the 2012 Marlins were not able to do, the different units that make up their team are definitely much more worthy of hype than they have been in quite some time.

Starting Pitching

Josh Johnson and Mark Buehrle will step in and likely be at the front of the Jays’ rotation. Johnson was finally able to have a healthy season in 2012 and bolstered a solid 3.81 ERA. Based on his at-times dominant numbers from years past, we all know he has the potential to be a top-of-the-line ace … especially somewhere like Toronto that won’t put too much pressure upon him.

Buehrle, on the other hand, will play more of the “Mr. Consistency” role in the rotation and has handled being an “ace” in the American League well for more than 10 years with the Chicago White Sox before going to Miami last offseason. So even he could serve as a viable Opening Day starter. More importantly, though, he’ll be able to mentor the other lefties in the Jays’ rotation, Ricky Romero and J.A. Happ.

While Ricky Romero struggled in 2012, posting a 5.77 ERA, and J.A. Happ hasn’t done much since he dazzled for the Phillies in 2009, Buehrle could help mentor them much like he did with John Danks on the south side of Chicago a few years back. Romero’s 42-29 record from 2009-2011 along with Happ’s 2.93 ERA in 2009 (along with a 10-11 record for the atrocious Astros in 2012) shows that the potential is there for the south paws.

Righty flame-thrower Brandon Morrow will fit in quite nicely to the middle of the rotation after posting a 10-7 record to go along with his 2.96 ERA from 2012. He, along with Johnson, give the Blue Jays someone that can shut you down completely on any given night.

At this moment in time, the Blue Jays have either the 1st or 2nd best rotation in the AL East, as I put them right up there with the Tampa Bay Rays’ unit led by David Price. If anything, that should speak volumes to how much Tuesday’s reported trade turns that unit around instantaneously.


Brandon Morrow flirted with no-hitters on more than one occasion. (Photo by johnathan.mastrella via CC BY 2.0)


While you may not know much about the Blue Jays’ bullpen, I assume most will be surprised to hear they actually have a very good unit. Here’s a quick rundown of Toronto’s ‘pen.

  • Closer Casey Janssen stepped in and saved 22/25 SVO in 2012 while posting a 2.54 ERA.
  • Set-up man Sergio Santos missed almost all of 2012 due to injury, but the organization has high hopes for him after he saved 30 games for the 2011 Chicago White Sox.
  • Ageless wonder Darren Oliver just keeps doin’ his thing, as the lefty posted a tremendous 2.06 ERA in 62 appearances in 2012.
  • Brad Lincoln was very good out of the Pirates’ and Blue Jays’ bullpens in 2012 even though he couldn’t quite figure it out as a starter. As long as he stays in the bullpen, he’s a pretty sure thing in the later innings.
  • Steve Delabar, who would be the 5th option in the ‘pen, posted a sub-4.00 ERA in more than 60 appearances in 2012.

The AL East is pretty good top to bottom in the bullpen department, and it looks like the Blue Jays will be able to keep up with the pack in that respect.


The biggest question mark for the Blue Jays in 2013 could easily be their offense. As good as Jose Reyes is, Yunel Escobar was a formidable shortstop, so Reyes will have to return to his form-of-old for the trade to be a complete success.

With that being said, his presence in the lineup should help out substantially. I project their 2013 lineup (as of now) to look as follows … (2012 stats)

  1. SS – Jose Reyes – .287 BA, 60 XBH, 40 SB
  2. 3B – Brett Lawrie – .273 BA, 40 XBH (125 games)
  3. RF – Jose Bautista – 27 HR, 65 RBI (92 games)
  4. 1B – Edwin Encarnacion – .280 BA, 24 2B, 42 HR, 110 RBI
  5. CF – Colby Rasmus – 21 2B, 23 HR, 75 RBI
  6. C – J.P. Arencibia – 16 2B, 18 HR, 56 RBI (102 games)
  7. DH – Adam Lind – (2011) 26 HR, 87 RBI (limited 2012 MLB action)
  8. 2B – Emilio Bonifacio – .258 BA, 30 SB (64 games)
  9. LF – Rajai Davis – .257 BA, 35 XBH, 46 SB

Now, yes, I know that order can be re-done in many different ways, but the point was simply to show how much potential their order will have. They could also pursue a second baseman on the market and use Emilio Bonifacio as a utility man and pinch-runner, a role in which he’s sure to excel.

And don’t forget about talented 22 year-old Anthony Gose, who the team currently has listed above Rajai Davis on their depth chart.

I’d still expect the Yankees and Red Sox to have a more potent offense than the Blue Jays year in and year out, but Toronto could, at the very least, close that gap somewhat in 2013.

Sorry to all you Yankees, Red Sox, Rays, and O’s fans out there … but the AL East will be even more competitive than it normally is – and that’s plenty competitive already. It’s sure to be an exciting race out east in the ’13 season, as for the first time in, well, probably ever you’ll hear different “experts” pick all of the division’s teams to win the divisional crown.

It’s always hard for a small market team to compete with the “big boys,” but as we’ve seen throughout recent MLB history, it certainly can happen (see Nationals, Washington; Rays, Tampa Bay; and so on & so forth).

About Zach Gropper

Zach Gropper is a sports broadcasting major at Indiana University in the beautiful town of Bloomington, IN. He is from Flossmoor, IL, a small Chicago suburb.
Zach was was the sports director for WHFH 88.5 FM Flossmoor his junior year of high school and Television Station Manager of Viking Television during his senior year.
He runs a White Sox blog at GrabSomeBench.com and also contributes and reports for AssemblyCall.com. Last summer, Zach interned for ESPN 1000 AM Chicago, working on programming for the Waddle and Silvy Show.
He is currently eager to get out into the professional world of sports media, wherever that may take him.


  1. Bob McCown says:

    Since when are the Jays small market? They probably have the biggest regional television audience in baseball with very high television ratings. Yes, their payroll has been in the bottom 3rd of baseball in recent years as they rebuilt their farm system, but we are talking about the 3rd most populous city in baseball with the richest owners in baseball (Rogers Inc). Baltimore and Tampa are the only two true small market teams in the division.

  2. May I simply say what a relief to discover a person that really knows what they are discussing on the internet.

    You actually realize how to bring an issue to light and make it important.
    More and more people should read this and understand this
    side of the story. I was surprised that you aren’t more popular
    because you most certainly possess the gift.

  3. Good day! Do you know if they make any plugins to safeguard against hackers?

    I’m kinda paranoid about losing everything I’ve worked hard on. Any suggestions?

  4. We need more intihgss like this in this thread.

  5. Wonderful site. Plenty of useful info here. I’m
    sending it to some buddies ans also sharing in delicious.
    And naturally, thanks for your effort!

  6. Howard and Binko, what has happened to you two? You used to be fun to debate.Now you both sit in a corner, stick your fingers in your ears, and go “la, la, la” while you repeat drivel that has nothing to do with the conversation you refuse to hear.You ask for proof of numbers, I give it, then you claim the numbers don’t matter, piracy doesn’t matter, and copyright doesn’t matter.Well, they do, and just because you can’t acknowledge the facts on the subject won’t change that.

  7. 18eRuss, I can’t give you the academic reasons, but my understanding is that God’s grace *is* given to all, but so is free will. His grace, by Orthodox definition, is not irresistible (God doesn’t force Himself on anyone), so some may choose to resist His grace. Those who don’t, but rather receive it, are those who are being saved.

  8. Woah nelly, how about them apples!

  9. More and more I wonder if this, this emptiness, is just a product of being a certain age. Is what we have ever enough?I just ended a five year relationship – better to live alone and be lonely than to live with someone and feel that way anyway.Single, no childen, and no relatives close to where I live – some days I cherish my ‘aloneness’ and other days I wonder how it went so wrong. Friends are great but I also sometimes wish for my own people.

  10. Hey, you’re the goto expert. Thanks for hanging out here.

  11. Batmax dit :Bonjour !Bon j’avoue que je ne l’ai pas vu mais je suis sure que cette histoire plairait à mes garçons, je participe donc . Bonne journée !

  12. Maksudnya blog Tonykoes lebih mantaf kan! hahahaBukan bodoh mas, kalau bodoh tentu tak bisa menulis kan? mungkin orang yang laen bisa menikmati tulisan kita, bener ga?

  13. Superbly illuminating data here, thanks!

  14. that you are not bribed, paid, offered anything for free and have no motives in the food world – which makes your blog posts very honest and I have great faith in what you are telling me every time I read your opinions/ experiences.c) your handsome good looks : / (maybe not that one: )Uyen x

  15. I can't WAIT to begin reading my own copy. I have it off to the side, because I"ve been waiting for the perfect moment to sit down and read it. And I think that moment is FAST-APPROACHING. This review just totally makes me want to drop everything else and get going on it. — My recent post

  16. Finding this post has solved my problem

  17. Hi Tiks, yep..salamat ulit sa mga links . kaya na-post ko din para makapag-earn din yung iba, malaki na ang dolyar lalo na sa Pilipinas…malaking tulong

  18. That’s not even 10 minutes well spent!

  19. Hey bud,you sound like you know what your talking about.What can i take to get big?Im 5 ft 10 in and 195,already lifting and stocky.Thanks!

  20. Keep on writing and chugging away!

  21. This is an article that makes you think “never thought of that!”

  22. That’s a smart way of looking at the world.

  23. Your thinking matches mine – great minds think alike!

  24. hast du vllt. ICQ/MSN?Wäre nice wenn man sich da ein Wenig austauschen könnte!!!LG[]Hallo Manuel,das ist echt wenig.Es ist wichtig, dass du viele Kalorien zu dir nimmst!Das kann auch heißen, dass du dich zum Essen zwingen musst, um zuzunehmen.Viel ErfolgThomas

  25. Someone essentially assist to make severely posts I would state. That is the very first time I frequented your web page and up to now? I amazed with the analysis you made to make this actual put up incredible. Great activity!

  26. amazing term wide web site…Greetings, Elegant web websites content. There exists an ailment with each one of the website regarding ie, might check this… AS AN ILLUSTRATION nonetheless certainly is often a market chief along having a good section along with folks should eliminate…

  27. These pieces really set a standard in the industry.

  28. Option # 2 is very elegant; not over the top and not without the demand of observance. The details in the option alone are very eye-catching. I can only imagine what it will look once the entire set is complete.

  29. Ooooh Curtise, you look like butter wouldn't melt with that groovy mini and wig! You'd cause a stir at the PTA turning up like that.What a bloody nightmare. I'd just loose my rag confronted with all that dithering. I remember a friend's school discussing whether to introduce cricket to the school curriculum and it being dismissed as being "too elitist". WTF? Even the street kids in India play it. xxxxxxxxx

  30. What a cute post, Summer! I really enjoyed reading this, it’s so fun to see how other people live. I can’t wait to have my own house! We’re renting now, but it drives me nuts that I can’t just paint walls and go crazy and rip up the carpet. You’ve inspired me to maybe, just maybe re-arrange the furniture in the ‘one of two ways’ possible.

  31. I would amend your “The world does not like the Jews” to read “Much of the world does not like Jews”. I am not Jewish and harbor no dislike for Jews or Israel. I rather like them (well, maybe I don’t like the ones that vote Democrat).

  32. I was really confused, and this answered all my questions.

  33. Right on-this helped me sort things right out.

  34. "Blitstein"Why am I not shocked?Arline Geronimus shares Mr. Blitstein's ethnic background. In fact, the entire article reads like an elaborate joke written by Kevin MacDonald.

  35. Your article perfectly shows what I needed to know, thanks!

  36. I guess finding useful, reliable information on the internet isn’t hopeless after all.

  37. A perfect reply! Thanks for taking the trouble.

  38. 97.You are a fool. I will laugh at you when the surgeon opens your belly slaps the sh#t together and closes with the cheap sh#t. I can also promise you that will happen. Theres always a work around.

  39. La fostul CSP (consiliul de stat alplanificarii) asa era moda… ca bancul cu cati purcei a fatat scroafa. Din un purcel ajung 10 pana la ceausescu si ala da ordin: un purcel la export, restul de 9 la consum intern…

  40. That’s a creative answer to a difficult question

  41. Dites Ôh Darth, Grand Gourou !Je vais peut être poser une bête question….. Mais m’en fou ^^Quelle est la différence entre T/x et F/x ??F, je vois…. Mais T ?!Merciiii

  42. De toute façon, on remarque fréquemment des capitales non accentuées sur lemonde.fr et dans des articles écrits par des journalistes, alors un commentateur qui fait une faute de français, ça n’est pas le fin du Monde !

  43. A bit surprised it seems to simple and yet useful.

  44. Dette bildet oser kjærlighet! LOVELY!Fineste helgen til deg! Nyt den og kos deg masse:) Jeg skal bake fastelavensboller i morgen *kos*Smil og klem

  45. Pretty nice post. I just stumbled upon your weblog and wanted to say that I have truly enjoyed surfing around your blog posts. In any case I will be subscribing to your rss feed and I hope you write again very soon!

  46. I was talking the other night with a friend of my son’s, they’re 20-1 years old. My son’s friend’s dad is a die hard union guy. His mom has worked at wallyworld for 18 years (He thought that was strange but I guess love conquers everything, eh). Anyway, his mom had never received a bad evaluation, had never been written up. Now that she is getting close to retirement the management has started to nit pick her, writing her up for any and everything they can. Bottom line-get rid of them before they retire.

  47. Holy concise data batman. Lol!

  48. :Kunstler was born in New York City to Jewish parents. . .Kunstler has faced virulent criticism for his pro-Israeli stance in the debate over the Israeli–Palestinian conflict.The "social critic" has received "virulent criticism", oh my.

  49. Eu quero kit Always!Erica Cherubinilidifaria Reply:fevereiro 22nd, 2010 at 10:34 AMOlá, Erica, tudo bem?Você deixou o comentário depois do prazo, por isso não participou do sorteio.Tks pela visita!Lidi

  50. Hi ya Mandy. I'm having the same problems as you with Blogger and just leave what I can which hasn't been very many lately !!I adore your card, I love all the scary details and your Tilda is just fantastic, great colouring.Take care,Hugs,Jo x

  51. Jetzt moment. Ich kann also einen Nazitweet absetzen, der überall auf der Welt gesehen wird, nur nicht in D? Man könnte man das Wort von Zurückhalten/Vernichten von Beweismitteln hier einwerfen. Und durch proxies dürfte das dann eh umgehbar sein?Zudem haben wir ja sicher auch noch nicht das Flickr-problem vergessen. D.h. Twitter könnte auf dei IDee kommen, jegliches zeigen von ‘nackter Haut’ bei Twitter für D einzuschränken.Willkommen in den Vereinigen Germanischen Emiraten. (Tschuldigung.)

  52. My favorite cooking magazine is Cooking Light. I admit that I used to like it better than I like it now (the format has changed), but it’s still my go-to magazine for recipes. I’ve never looked at Eating Well, though! Hmm…perhaps we should trade place for a little bit – you can have my SoCal sunshine and warm temps and I’ll take your cozy snow:-)Carrie recently posted..

  53. Hi, i read your blog occasionally and i own a similar one and i was just curious if you get a lot of spam remarks? If so how do you reduce it, any plugin or anything you can recommend? I get so much lately it’s driving me crazy so any assistance is very much appreciated.

  54. Just wish to say your article is as astonishing. The clarity in your post is just spectacular and i can assume you’re an expert on this subject. Fine with your permission allow me to grab your feed to keep updated with forthcoming post. Thanks a million and please carry on the rewarding work.

  55. This article is a home run, pure and simple!

  56. als mp3-File downloaden oder als Audio-Podcast via iTunes ziehen. Da die vorherigen Podcasts (von Apparat und Rustie) nicht mehr downloadbar sind, ist hier diesbezüglich möglicherweise Schnelligkeit

  57. Hi Aunt Ruthie,One of my favorite memories as a child was having the garden my mom and dad planted very close to our swimming hole. My brother and sister and I used to pick a handful of plump peas, or a red ripe tomato and feast before cooling ourselves in the clear cold water! It was total bliss.I’m so very excited to see your new book! :-)

  58. You’ve hit the ball out the park! Incredible!

  59. Nice site to be on, I’m leaving for Scotland and Ireland this coming Sunday the 5th of September. I’m looking forward to seeing Ireland once again.Les Redding,Prince George British Columbia, Canada.

  60. Listen, nitwit science person. The solution to GLOBAL WARMING is simple, beginning with you shutting down your computer/electric/heat/gas/phone and riding a horse. Second–the easiest–go back to the 1970′s, look up how they solved GLOBAL COOLING back then, and reverse the process.If you can tell me specifically HOW GLOBAL COOLING was reversed, I might–just MIGHT–considering listening to you about global warming.

  61. / Alexa, that’s awesome that you’ve put it into action already. What a go-getter! What you’ll find is the more you do it, the easier (and more addictive) it becomes. It’s great to clear your mind and deep deep on the work you love!

  62. What a great site indeed comments content news constantly up to date and quality,this site now and much faster high-quality and fast site that comments are always up to date, admin really want to thank us, it's thanks to such a beautiful site comments we gain knowledge we and listen from this site music

  63. I was really confused, and this answered all my questions.

  64. Comme le souligne Olivvv, il faut effectivement cocher débogage USB, et bien s’assurer d’avoir les drivers USB propre à votre tél installés (par ex pour Sony Ericsson il suffit d’avoir leur logiciel PC companion d’installé car les drivers y sont inclus).

  65. I'm so glad you received it! Yah, I know that the yo-yos were *ahem* not "tactical", but I had a hard time finding yo-yos. I'll keep my eye out and maybe I can send another care package with upgraded yo-yos.Take care!Emily

  66. It’s like you’re on a mission to save me time and money!

  67. You’ve really captured all the essentials in this subject area, haven’t you?

  68. Olha pessoas, também passei por isso. É muito degradante que a medicina anda achando sobre os deficientes auditivos. Também sou super independente, pós graduada e ainda ouvir esses absurdos! É uma humilhação que a REOUVIR faz com as pessoas. Fico p…com a medicina que se acha um deus e que tem o poder sobre nós “ignorantes”. Eu percebo que ela se tornou lucrativa…É só perceber e ficar atento a cada palavra dos médicos. Vi cada absurdo… Como podemos confiar em médicos?

  69. I’ve been looking for a post like this forever (and a day)

  70. Wow, that’s a really clever way of thinking about it!

  71. Wow these are the amazing looks of bikes.. & I am happy for these are coming in India. Its a good news to all Indian people. I will give best wish to this bike for best selling.

  72. I enjoy you because of your whole labor on this website. Kim delights in getting into investigation and it’s really easy to understand why. Most of us notice all regarding the powerful tactic you render very helpful tactics through this web site and as well as strongly encourage participation from other ones on this issue and our girl is in fact starting to learn a whole lot. Take advantage of the remaining portion of the new year. You are performing a stunning job.

  73. I can drink a quart of water and therefore 2lbs of weight in 60 seconds.‘gaining weight!’ what does that mean? how are we measuring what was gained? Was it blood, lymph, fat, bone, muscle, glycogen etc and how are we SCIENTIFICALLY measuring it? Some dodgy pair of skin calipers or a 500$ dexa scan test at the obesity clinic?I get people crying on the phone to me cos they ‘gained 5lbs’. I tell them that I can shit and piss 5lbs in an hour.Its all about being objective.

  74. Ab fab my goodly man.

  75. It’s a real pleasure to find someone who can think like that

  76. I can’t hear anything over the sound of how awesome this article is.

  77. It’s in reality a great and useful piece of information. I’m glad that you just shared this useful information with us. Please stay us up to date like this. Thanks for sharing.

  78. Hi, i believe that i saw you visited my weblog thus i got here to “go back the desire”.I’m trying to to find things to enhance my site!I guess its adequate to use some of your ideas!!

  79. I can’t believe I’ve been going for years without knowing that.

  80. Ak porušuje študent zákon, môže SOZA apoň raz uviesť paragraf autorskeho zakona, s ktorým je také konanie v rozpore? Rád si takú vec dohladám a zvážim moj výklad zákona.

  81. Jag tycker också att man ska vara försiktig att uttala sig om människor man inte vet något om. Men jag har inte uttalat mig om någon jag inte känner

  82. That’s a smart answer to a tricky question

  83. When you think about it, that’s got to be the right answer.

  84. We learn from mistakes. I also made a lot of mistakes and learned a lot.I think the most important thing is, to find a problem to solve it and enough big market. I applied a few times in hub for startups, but at end I was accepted, as I learned, what I did wrong at the beginning.Good luck.

  85. BION I’m impressed! Cool post!

  86. Survivalista (admin) pisze:O czosnku pisałem nie ze względu na właściwości, tylko ze względu na smak. Sól warto mieć nie tylko ze względu na to, że jest smaczna i potrzebna do życia, ale to też jeden z lepszych konserwantów, do kiszenia i peklowania.

  87. That insight solves the problem. Thanks!

  88. Juhuuu, tror jammen jeg er først i dag, he he morgenfugl du vet, men da gørr kjedelig pÃ¥ kveldstid… trøtt som fÃ¥… Fantastisk lekkert tÃ¥kebilde, den legger seg over trærne der som ei dyne Asti, vakkert Ã¥ se pÃ¥. Fin fin førjulstorsdag ønskes deg snuppa!! Litt for tidlig Ã¥ ønske God Jul ennÃ¥, blogges og jabbes vi :-)

  89. Multumesc frumos pentru apreciere! Ma bucur ca atat de multi gandesc "ecologic". Speram sa scot la iveala cat mai multi tineri care tin la bogatiile oferite de tara noastra. Inca o data mii de multumiri pentru cuvintele frumoase si pentru "publicitate"!

  90. This shows real expertise. Thanks for the answer.

  91. Gotta go OR! Patient care is much better when anesthesia puts all the patients to sleep! Of course, you still have to deal with surgeons. You just learn to live with the surgeons.We joined WW over here, too! God luck!

  92. It’s good to see someone thinking it through.

  93. Thanks guys, I just about lost it looking for this.

  94. Boom shakalaka boom boom, problem solved.

  95. I think long hair can look as professional if done right. I'm 21 and have shoulder length hair – I like it short (easy care) and tend to go with kind of bobbed styles. The lower maintenance, the better – I'm useless at doing my own hair. I used to love my long hair, but one day looking at photos I realised it didn't do me any favours – it got long, thin and stringy. Not hot.

  96. Just reading the chart notes from ER or hospital could make me cry!Pages and pages of repetitive nonsense and the actual life saving information is not there! We are aproaching the EHR tower of Babylon, where communication is impossilble. Why can we not have a single platform and technology like Taiwan?

  97. Geez, that’s unbelievable. Kudos and such.

  98. I suppose that sounds and smells just about right.

  99. That’s an intelligent answer to a difficult question xxx

  100. Thanks for starting the ball rolling with this insight.

  101. It’s imperative that more people make this exact point.

  102. I can’t believe I’ve been going for years without knowing that.

  103. I think you’ve just captured the answer perfectly

  104. There’s nothing like the relief of finding what you’re looking for.

  105. If you dont mind, where do you host your blog? I am shopping for a good host and your webpage appears to be extremely fast and up most the time

  106. Mizerii sunteti voi ca nu realizati efortul intelectual si brainstormingul din spatele iTunes, si o prezentati ca si cum voi sunteti miezul.Nu-s pe tarlaua mea să-È›i zic un “marÈ™ mă…” da’ pot să-È›i transmit cu drag că eÈ™ti extrem de priceput să mănânci căcat…

  107. Way to go on this essay, helped a ton.

Speak Your Mind