It was announced two nights ago that the Blue Jays did not win the bidding rights on Japanese pitcher Yu Darvish. The Texas Rangers won with a bid of $51.7 million for the right to talk contract with the pitcher. The Blue Jays made an offer of $50 million, according to Richard Griffin of The Toronto Star.
While some fans were hopeful and eventually disappointed in the Jays not spending more to get Darvish, I am glad they did not win and can spend that money, which we know they can spend, on bettering the team as a whole.
If the Jays won, they would have had 30 days to try to sign Darvish, who was looking for more money then C.J. Wilson’s 5-year, $75 million contract from the Angels. Those are some steep demands from a player who has no track record of pitching in North America.
The pattern of japanese pitchers being successful here is non-existent, as Hideo Nomo, Dice-K Matsuzaka, Kei Igawa, and the late Hideki Irabu are examples of pitchers who came with a lot of fan fare but fizzled out after a couple of seasons. Whether that would have happened with Darvish, we will find out, but it is always a calculated risk.
The $50 million they were going to use on the bid for Darvish I think should be utilized to upgrade two positions, starting pitching and first base. In my opinion, the Jays should offer Prince Fielder about $20 million per year for three to five years, and package Adam Lind in a deal to Oakland for Gio Gonzalez.
Fielder would be a much better upgrade than Lind and provide Jose Bautista with legitimate protection in the line-up. Gonzalez, while not a true ace, could step into that role or the number two slot, so the Jays could have a rotation of Ricky Romero, Gio Gonzalez, Brandon Morrow, Henderson Alvarez, and Kyle Drabek/Brett Cecil/Dustin McGowan.
The benefit of having Gonzalez and Fielder is that both are young, and in the case of Gonzalez has a decent and team-controlled contract.
If the Jays want to make some noise in the American League East, acquiring those two players would put teams on notice.
Two heads are better than one.
Thoughts? Leave a comment below or e-mail Ty Norton