The Toronto Blue Jays are in an odd place right now in the AL East. At 45-45, they're 10.5 games out of the division lead, and that margin is growing daily. However, Toronto just just two games out of the second wild card berth, currently held by the Detroit Tigers. But with Jose Bautista's wrist injury knocking him out of action for at least 15 days (and possibly more, depending on the diagnosis), it doesn't look like the Jays will be able to make a run for the playoffs this year. But to replace Bautista on the roster, the Blue Jays *didn't* bring up Travis Snider, a highly touted former prospect that has struggled in 232 games in the majors.
Instead, Anthony Gose got the call. Gose is a former Phillies prospect that was traded to the Astros in the Roy Oswalt trade, and then immediately flipped to Toronto for Brett Wallace. Gose is a totally different player from Snider, who is a more complete player than Gose, who thrives on his speed. On any account, I'm not exactly damning Toronto for promoting Gose, just curious as to why he got the call as opposed to Snider.
Snider is in a strange place right now with the Jays. He has a .963 OPS with ten homers in AAA this year, and while it's the PCL, Snider is also walking at an increased rate and striking out less. There's nothing left for him to prove in AAA, and with Gose's promotion, I'm starting to think that Snider isn't long for this organization.
Now, the return for Snider could be interesting. He's the type of player that could be the centerpiece of a deal for a major league player, like Anthony Rizzo was when being dealt to the Cubs this past offseason, or he could be a player dealt for a prospect, like in the aforementioned Wallace-Gose trade. What could this mean for the Blue Jays? Well, if they have designs on contending this year if they get good news following Bautista's MRI today, they can use Snider to try to acquire a pitcher. Snider would be a very attractive centerpiece of a deal for someone like Zack Greinke or Cole Hamels, or him alone could be enough to get a lesser pitcher, like Francisco Liriano or Jason Vargas. Or, a team looking for a corner outfielder (like say, the Mets or Pirates) could trade a prospect to Toronto for Snider, and throw him into a starting role immediately.
Either scenario would probably work for the Blue Jays, and would improve their club in the long-run compared to letting Snider rot in AAA. Whatever ends up happening, I think that in two weeks, Snider isn't going to be a member of this organization anymore.
Photo courtesy of Daylife.com
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