LOS ANGELES, March 14, 2013 — The Toronto Blue Jays went from being an irrelevant team that finished with a 73-89 record in 2012 to being a legitimate contender for the American League East pennant. This happened almost overnight when they swooped in and pulled off the heist of the winter.
That heist came in the form of a trade with the Miami Marlins and the reward was Jose Reyes, Emilio Bonifacio, Josh Johnson, and Mark Buehrle. Then the Blue Jays went out and signed R.A. Dickey, the 2012 NL Cy Young Award winner, to be the ace in a rotation who, if healthy, has the potential to be great.
Unfortunately, Toronto also rewarded Melky Cabrera with a two-year contract worth $16 million for being able to effectively procure and use steroids. Cabrera was suspended 50 games in the middle of a career year for testing positive for banned substances while playing for the San Francisco Giants in 2012. Cabrera’s name also recently surfaced on a client list from an “anti-aging” clinic in Miami.
The Blue Jays could be one of the most improved teams this season. They will need to be if they hope to fend off Tampa Bay and Baltimore.
Projected payroll: $113,775,000
Notable Players Out: SS Yunel Escobar, 2B Kelly Johnson, C Jeff Mathis, RHP Carlos Villanueva, RHP Henderson Alvarez, RHP Brandon Lyon
Notable Players In: SS Jose Reyes, LF Melky Cabrera, 2B Emilio Bonifacio, C Henry Blanco, RHP R.A. Dickey, LHP Mark Buehrle, RHP Josh Johnson, RHP Jeremy Jeffress
Prospect Watch: OF D.J. Davis and RHP Aaron Sanchez
Highlight Hitter: Jose Bautista (ZiPS 2013 Projections:
Highlight Pitcher: R.A. Dickey (ZiPS 2013 Projections
Projected Lineup: C J.P. Arencibia, 1B Edwin Encarnacion, 2B Emilio Bonifacio, 3B Brett Lawrie, SS Jose Reyes, LF Melky Cabrera, CF Colby Rasmus, RF Jose Bautista, DH Adam Lind
Projected Rotation: RHP R.A. Dickey, RHP Brandon Morrow, LHP Mark Buehrle, RHP Josh Johnson, LHP Ricky Romero
Projected Closer: RHP Casey Janssen
Manager: John Gibbons
Projected 2013 Finish in AL East: 1. TBA 2. Toronto Blue Jays 3. Baltimore Orioles 4. New York Yankees 5. Boston Red Sox
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