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Blue Jays and Colby Rasmus agree to one-year contract, avoiding arbitration

Jan 14, 2013, 4:16 PM EDT

Blue Jays' Rasmus stretches during practice at their MLB American League spring training facility in Dunedin Reuters

Colby Rasmus and the Blue Jays have avoided arbitration with a one-year, $4.675 million deal.

Rasmus has been a huge disappointment since coming to Toronto, hitting just .213 with a .657 OPS that’s a 120-point dropoff from his production in St. Louis, but he’s still only 26 years old and center fielders with 25-homer power aren’t easily found.

However, even with a mediocre 2013 season he’d be in line for a big raise next offseason for his third and final year of arbitration and that would make Rasmus a non-tender candidate. Or he could get back on track, have a strong season at age 26, and give the Blue Jays a tough decision to make in terms of offering him a long-term deal heading into his 2014 walk year.

  1. goawaydog - Jan 14, 2013 at 4:25 PM

    huge disappointment = $4.6 million, I am so in the wrong line of work, huge disappointment at my job = resume updating event.

  2. okwhitefalcon - Jan 14, 2013 at 4:28 PM

    Apparently the deal was sealed when the Jays sweetened the offer by going against club policy and offering a lifetime supply of Skittles and chili dogs.

    A 4 episode arc on Honey Boo Boo was allegedly on the table as well with the Jays and Raz’s representation neither confirming or denying.

    Story developing.

  3. proudlycanadian - Jan 14, 2013 at 4:42 PM

    I thought that batting average was no longer important in “advanced metrics”. It appears that I was mistaken. He also had 23 home runs and 75 RBI’s which placed him 5th among AL CF’s in both categories. He was also one of the many Blue Jays who was injured in 2012.

    • paint771 - Jan 14, 2013 at 4:54 PM

      Agreed (sort of). Having watched pretty much every game since he arrived, I’d say Colby’s problem isn’t that he sucks, just that he’s devilishly inconsistent. When he puts it together for small stretches, he looks pretty fierce and you really get a sense of the player he could be (but, it must be said, never has been).

      That said, with all the activity this offseason, he’s gone from “okay enough and with upside” to “glaring weak spot in the lineup” in a hurry, and unless he really steps it up in 2012, he’s clearly not looking like the long term solution in center field he was acquired to be. Hell, I think it’s as likely he’s fighting for playing time with Gose/Sierra by season’s end as he’s in discussions for a long term deal. But, as Aaron said, could go the other way too – given the importance of 2013 to this franchise, I’ll take “tough decision” all day long in that context.

      • stlouis1baseball - Jan 15, 2013 at 10:29 AM

        Paint: I feel for you. Please know this has all played out previously. I was a huge Rasmus fan. Dude has serious talent. Can hit moon shots. Runs the bases well and plays solid Centerfield. However, all of this only comes together about once every other month for a two week strectch when he isn’t suffering from “Starling Castro Syndrome.”
        I would add that in lieu of being “devilishly inconsistent”…
        I would say he is “devilishly complacent.”

    • paperlions - Jan 14, 2013 at 5:00 PM

      That is a good point. He should have pointed out Rasmus’ .289 OBP (last among AL CF), .297 wOBA (last among AL CF), wRC+ of 85 (last among AL CF), and his 1.4 fWAR (last among AL CF).

      Hurt or not, those are almost exactly the same number Rasmus put up in 2011, and they are barely worse than he did in 2009. The point is….that seems like an awful lot of money to pay arguably the worst everyday CF in the majors.

      • cur68 - Jan 14, 2013 at 6:19 PM

        Ordinarily I don’t go in for dissing on BeaverMen players but…<i.sigh yeah. Now I must go and shrive my soul for this.

      • paperlions - Jan 14, 2013 at 6:23 PM

        I am rooting for Rasmus. I was a huge Rasmus fanboy since the day he was drafted, I was pissed when StL traded him for what I thought was peanuts….for whatever reason, he’s just never put it together. He has totally abandoned the solid plate approach he had all through the minors.

  4. saints97 - Jan 14, 2013 at 7:47 PM

    I am stealing this line from someone here, but:

    Colby Rasmus, a 5-tool player from a 2-tool family.

    I wonder if Tony Rasmus (dear old arrogant dad) is still blaming Tony LaRussa for his son’s problems? Who is Colby blaming? That dude was just gushing to the Toronto media about how horrible St. Louis and LaRussa were to him.

    Sadly, the dude has massive amounts of talent, but he just has a 5 cent head that he can’t get out of.

  5. dirtyharry1971 - Jan 14, 2013 at 8:53 PM

    and in other news snow is reportedly said to be cold!!

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