The Jays currently have a number of assets that could be considered important pieces for a club when making a run towards the post season. The interesting thing about these pieces is that these players although valuable are pieces that the Jays seem to have alot of depth in position and talent wise.
The Blue Jays bullpen all year has pretty much been one of the most dominant bullpens in all of the MLB and due to the inconsistencies of the starting rotation and injuries, the bullpen has had to carry 8 arms for the greater part of the year. Which hasn't been bad since it has given the opportunity to many of the arms in the bullpen to come out and prove themselves and ultimately put the Jays in a place of power. Most bullpens are lucky have 2 LH pitchers, but the Jays themselves have the luxury of having 4 reliable LH pitchers currently in the bullpen. I would not be surprised to see a guy like Darren Oliver moved out of town. This would still allow the Jays to keep both Loup and Cecil, younger more controllable pitchers in their line-up and open up a spot in the Bullpen to being back a guy like Wagner who was just recently optioned back to Buffalo.
Sticking with the Bullpen and it's resurgence, I see a number of young controllable arms that could turn into closers, with that being said Casey Janssen and his 2014 option could make him a hot item on the trade market and unlike Darren Oliver he would be able to bring a much higher return. Would I hate to see him go? Yeah... I love home grown guys who have said they want to win in Toronto, but the truth is with all the guys performing so well we have too many bodies for only so many spots.
Outside of the bullpen it becomes a little more difficult to determine what should/could be done.
The starting rotation is full of questions. Let's start with the obvious in Josh Johnson. Yes Josh Johnson has been an utter disappointment, and truth is they Jays will more than likely not get offered anything more valuable than a 1st round pick talent that they could get by offering him a qualifying contract and him ultimately choosing to sign with another team. Worse case scenario with Johnson maybe that he accepts the qualifying offer and we have a bunch of pitching depth for 2014 (Could the season have been saved if Hutchison and Drabek were in the minors offering more depth than having to rely on guys like Wang, Redmond, Nolin etc...). So long story short I don't think the Jays will move Johnson unless they get something better than a 1st round talent, but that wouldn't kill their 2013 since he hasn't exactly been a valuable piece of the rotation to begin with.
Outside of Johnson....They aren't trading Morrow, too much opportunity there. I don't think anyone will ever take Romero's contract. Buehrle could go, but he has a few more years at about 20M + so I can't see the Jays being able to move him unless they are concerned with simple getting ride of a contract and not getting much in return. Dickey I think offers alot to the rotation outside of his performance, so that being said I think he's not the ace in 2014, but he will be around. Happ's contract is really solid and doesn't have much market value so he's another I see the Jays keeping around.
As for position players at the start of the year I would have said the Colby Rasmus could be a guy who is shopped, but with the way that Anthony Gose has fallen out of favor I don't think AA is ready to move Colby out of TO. The guy is a stud in the field and has a good bounce back year with the bat. Could JPA be moved? Maybe, but are you'd have to be committed to going to FA to pick up a catcher cause there Jimenez is a little ways away (A little off topic, but I would think the Jays would be good to go and get AJ Pierzynski if they would be in need to a guy who could play 3/4 of the games). Adam Lind could go to a team looking for a solid LH bat, but you I wouldn't think the Jays would see the greatest return again. Outside of those guys, Bautista, Encarnacion, Cabrera, Reyes, Lawrie would all be a part of this team if the Jays are looking to contend in 2014.
On the bench I think we have a move to make. Rajai Davis to me looks is the exact type of guy a team looking to make a run to the playoffs need. Which team doesn't need a team guy who can pinch run and steal 2nd and 3rd late in a game? With Davis a FA at the end of the year and a speedy guy like Gose who can steal bases in the minor's, Davis looks to me as a guy who could bring some return in the FA market. Bonifacio could also be seen as a guy who could be that type of player, but with Bonifacio's ability to play multiple positions (Not well I give you) he proves to be a little more valuable going forward for the Jays. Both Derosa and Izturis won't bring anything in return and Izturis in particular gives the Jays some good bench depth especially with his ability to play a few positions.
So ultimately I think there are some minor deals to be made that will make the team better in the long run, but I don't think we'll see any jaw dropping deals that overhaul the Jays line-up within the next week or so.
What do you think the Jays do at the trade deadline?
Go Jays Go!