TORONTO — Ross Atkins departed the Basic Managers Conferences on Thursday afternoon with none strikes to indicate for his time in California. However he was assured that the suitable groundwork had been put in place to get the method began.

Atkins hinted on Wednesday that the Blue Jays had been probably closing in on their first acquisition of the offseason. He considerably downplayed that evaluation throughout a scrum with reporters Thursday, but it surely does appear as if headway was made.

TORONTO — Ross Atkins departed the Basic Managers Conferences on Thursday afternoon with none strikes to indicate for his time in California. However he was assured that the suitable groundwork had been put in place to get the method began.

Atkins hinted on Wednesday that the Blue Jays had been probably closing in on their first acquisition of the offseason. He considerably downplayed that evaluation throughout a scrum with reporters Thursday, but it surely does appear as if headway was made.

Traditionally, the GM Conferences do not end in plenty of transactions. Seattle and Tampa Bay had been among the many groups lively at this 12 months’s gathering, however most organizations use this time to assemble info and begin mapping out their subsequent strikes. Greater than something, the conferences are a prelude to subsequent month’s annual Winter Conferences in Las Vegas.

“We touched base with everybody that we got down to contact base with, and nearly everybody that has the potential to make our group be higher, and really feel like we’ve an excessive amount of info that we did not have 4 days in the past,” Atkins stated.

The Blue Jays have fairly a little bit of flexibility of their seek for pitching. Toronto has to plug a few holes in its beginning rotation, and not less than a pair extra within the bullpen, but it surely has the assets and prospect capital to get it achieved in numerous methods.

Toronto is presently assessing the free-agent marketplace for beginning pitchers. The Blue Jays have expressed an curiosity in a reunion with veteran lefty J.A. Happ and the membership is anticipated to observe a secondary group of starters, which incorporates the likes of Trevor Cahill, Drew Pomeranz and Garrett Richards.

Video: Chisholm on Blue Jays’ curiosity in a J.A. Happ return

The Blue Jays even have extra items on the 40-man roster they intend to buy. Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Aledmys Diaz, Brandon Drury and Devon Travis are within the combine for 3 beginning infield jobs, and that is earlier than factoring in a late-April promotion for Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and the attainable return of Troy Tulowitzki. Richard Urena gives extra depth as a utility infield choice.

“We do want so as to add pitching on some stage and a way,” Atkins advised reporters. “So I might see a situation the place we undergo the offseason, make no trades, and solely purchase pitching in free company. I may see a situation the place there’s a possibility to amass pitching by way of commerce.

“What excites us is to match up extra pitching with that younger Double-A, Triple-A and just-now-transitioning group to the Main Leagues. If we are able to add to Sean Reid-Foley and Ryan Borucki and clearly Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez, if there is a approach so as to add to that group, then that is actually thrilling. If that begins to line up, then that aggressive window is enjoyable to consider.”

New eyes on Teoscar
The Blue Jays have but to call a alternative for the not too long ago dismissed first-base coach Tim Leiper, however whoever the fortunate candidate finally ends up being shall be tasked with working with Teoscar Hernandez on his outfield protection.

Hernandez regressed within the discipline this 12 months, committing defensive miscues that seemed to be as a lot psychological as they had been bodily. The 26-year-old usually had hassle studying the ball off the bat and even dropped a number of routine catches in left.

The Dominican native made eight errors and completed with -16 Defensive Runs Saved, which was third lowest amongst AL outfielders. Toronto cannot stay with that kind of efficiency for much longer, however the membership hasn’t given up on Hernandez’s potential fairly but. The Blue Jays will process the brand new coach with coming in and making an attempt to implement some new approaches.

“That shall be a precedence for us this offseason,” Atkins stated when requested about Hernandez’s protection. “I’ve talked to his agent about it. I’ve talked to Teoscar about it. Teoscar is among the hardest working guys we’ve, so it is an amazing alternative.”

Gregor Chisholm has coated the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Comply with him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Fb, and hearken to his podcast.



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