MLB Rumors: Jose Bautista and the Toronto Blue Jays are near a deal, according to Jesse Sanchez. Ken Rosenthal says it would be a two year deal in the $35-40 million range.
Jon Heyman, back in September, projected 3 years, $60 million for Bautista, who supposedly was wanting $25 million per year at one point. The market for the 36 year old has never really developed this offseason, however, as he’s been dealing with a big drop in production last year (his 817 OPS in 2016 is almost 100 points lower than 2015, and the lowest it has been since 2009), a glut of free agent power hitters in the market, and teams apparently being reluctant to inject his personality into their clubhouses.
It seems appropriate that Bautista would stay in Toronto, since we could continue to have animosity towards Bautista and the Blue Jays together, and it would put an end to the “why don’t the Rangers sign Bautista?” talk that has been going on all offseason. The Rangers, by all accounts, feel Bautista would be a bad fit in the clubhouse, and don’t appear to have ever been seriously involved with him.
UPDATE — Ken Rosenthal says that, if the Jays and Bautista do make a deal, it would be for one year with a mutual option.