12:38 PM Eastern

It certainly appears as though the Blue Jays and Jose Bautista have agreed on a long-term contract that will pay the club’s 2010 landslide MVP $65 million over the next five years, with a possible option for a sixth year at another $13 million.

Bautista, who was in Arizona awaiting his arbitration hearing tomorrow, is scheduled to be back in Dunedin soon, which clearly indicates that there won’t be a hearing, which means there’s a deal done, and they likely don’t want to announce anything until he’s there.  Another clear indication that a deal is done is that the Blue Jays have scheduled an announcement for 5:00 pm Eastern this afternoon.

If the numbers are right, it’s a longer term deal than I thought the Blue Jays would be willing to sign, given the price, but I don’t want to try to analyze it until all the facts are in, until the announcement’s been made and until Alex Anthopoulos and Bautista have both said their piece.

It’s kind of why I don’t love posting about things that are “about to happen” and then posting again about those same things once they actually happen.  I generally like to save the posts until the thing actually happens so that we have all the info and there’s not so much repetition.

I believe that Alex has earned the benefit of the doubt over the year and a half he’s been in charge, and that he’ll have strong and solid reasoning to explains what appears to be a pretty big gamble.  Or maybe that’s just it – it’s a pretty big gamble, same as the ones we applauded when he acquired guys like Brandon Morrow, Anthony Gose and Brett Lawrie.

More to come later this afternoon!

12 Responses to “There’s Big News A-Coming”
  1. 1.

    It is rare that agree with you, but here it is i could not agree more with your post. Let’s here the details before rushing to judgement. I give AA the benifit of the doubt.
    their is always risk in any 5 year contract. How much is guaranteed? lets wait and see

    - Matt
  2. 2.

    Mike I don’t understand this one. They were squabling over 7 or 10 million for one year. Now we have deal for 5 years and 13 million? I was expecting a long term deal around 8.5 million/yr.

    - Steve
  3. 3.

    Mike when you say things like “he has only had 5 great months in his career” I think it kind of misses the point. He clearly (hindsight being 20/20) deserved a lot more chance than he ever got until the last year and a half.

    You always root for Snider getting a chance to be what he “could* be. And I’m with you. But when Snider hits 40 homers (for the sake of argument) you’ll be saying “I told you this will happen”. You won’t be saying “It’s a one time thing, don’t start expecting this as his new normal”.

    A season is a long thing and Bautista left it as strong as he entered it.

    A guy who is capable of one of the greatest hitting seasons in history is worth a certain amount of coin, whether he does it again or not. No matter how much I like Vernon or Snider, neither of those guys has done anything to show they even might be able to have such a season. Bautista not only might have such a season, he already had one. And now he’s into his prime years.

    I couldn’t be happier.

    (I don’t think you’re against Bautista; I’m not

    - sons
  4. 4.

    People marvel at the number 54. That’s probably because it’s marvelous. Also telling is, of those 54 left-field blasts,
    8 were against Boston.
    8 off of Baltimore.
    6 against the Yankees.
    4 against Tampa.
    That’s 26 home runs in the East alone. (No wonder he wants to stay in Toronto!)

    Only 13 AL players hit more than 26 home runs over the entire year.

    - The Chosen City
  5. 5.

    If the facts of the contract are as reported, this deal will hang around AA’s neck like an anvil.Bautista is a classic case of a “one year wonder” and it’s now going to haunt AA for 5 years

    - Satch
  6. 6.

    From listening to you on the radio, I figured you were in your late 50′s. But I just saw you on Sportsnet for the first time and realize you are a lot younger. Threw me for a loop.

    Keep up the good work.

    - HaHaHa
  7. 7.

    I’ve read all the usual suspect’s take on the deal, and its this. Its not 5 years for 65 million, really. Its 4 years, 48 million dollars with a $400,000, signing bonus. Or 4 years, 46 mil, depending on the arbitrator. Jose was going to be paid the 7.6 million (or 10.6) no matter what happened on Friday, so AA is only gambling the last 4 years of the deal.

    So, do you sign the ML home run leader, who destroyed a league in the ‘year of the pitcher’ when he’s 14 mil per year? Or do you roll the dice, even if Jose turns out to be a .260/.350/.480 hitter this year, he’s still not too bad a comp to Jayson Werth…. who cashed in this year. And if he turns out to be a .280/.380/.550 hitter, even for a year and a half, well its a huge bargain.

    At least, I hope he’s a huge bargain. But I won’t mind too much if he isn’t because I get to watch him play either way now, don’t I?

    - Greg W
  8. 8.

    Fantastic news!
    The “market value” for Jose’s 2010 season is probably around $30 million. He probably won’t hit 54 again, but one more season even remotely close to that will make the contract a very good deal for the Jays.

    Mike, I read that Jayson Stark thinks the Jays might be a good fit for Pujols. What do you think of the idea? Personally, I hate spending that much $$ on one player. Any names on this list of 2012 FAs stand out that the Jays might target?

    - Dan
  9. 9.

    I think it’s a good and fair signing Mike. Probably what he would have got on the open market and to be honest, while we’re given a 30 year old a long term with prety big money it’s not a huge commitment. It’s nothing like what they gave Vernon, who granted was younger and more of a track record. There’s always the risk that this move doesn’t work out but I’m not sure how anyone can criticize him for this move, regardless of how things pan out.

    - Craig M
  10. 10.

    It occurs to me that my earlier comment suffers from a subtraction error, and robs Jose of 10 million dollars. For this, I apologize.

    - Greg W
  11. 11.

    I truly hope that both parties benefit from this deal. Incredible how most ‘fans’ who saw the Well’s deal as a burden don’t see (through their rose colored glasses) the possibility of another ‘albatross contract’, here. Mike has pointed out that at the time of signing; Well’s, comparatively, had a couple of years with greater consistency.

    I suspect this is the end of his honeymoon, but one has to admire AA for his vision, conviction and willingness to take risks.

    I hope JB has found a new norm and that any rumors which attribute his sudden success to ‘enhancements’ are false.

    - Jerry
  12. 12.

    Amazing that guys would criticize AA for this deal. He was in a no win situation. If Bautista has more success and he’d walked that would have been worse. Shut up people, it’s not your money!! And don’t tell me you guys pay the contracts because most of you don’t go. $65 million over 5 years sounds pretty fair to me.

    - Craig M
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