A few weekends ago the baseball world (or at least I) was shocked by the news that the Seattle Mariners and New York Yankees swapped talented, young players Michael Pineda and Jesus Montero. While it would later come out that the M’s had been shopping their young arm for a bat, the deal took many by surprise. Monday night during their State of the Franchise event, the Toronto Blue Jays shed light on their trade talks with the Mariners and why negotiations ultimately fell through.
Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos has done most of his wheeling and dealing via trade. Though the Jays were reportedly in on the bidding for free agents Carlos Beltran, Prince Fielder and Yu Darvish this offseason, Toronto failed to sign any of the high-profile players.
Instead, Toronto used its deep farm system to revamp their bullpen. While their overhauled ‘pen is impressive and should post improved numbers in 2012, the Blue Jays apparently had their sights set on a larger trade acquisition this winter.
While addressing fans last night, Anthopoulos admitted to fans that a certain trade that the Blue Jays weren’t able to make this offseason fell apart because the other team wanted a major-league-ready player from Toronto’s roster.
Reading between the lines, Jeff Blair of theglobeandmail.com added that the deal in question involved the Mariners and Pineda. Blair noted that several sources have since said Seattle was requesting Blue Jays third baseman Brett Lawrie in the deal. Toronto wasn’t willing to part with Lawrie, and the Mariners ultimately turned their attention to the Yankees and Montero.