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The Royals and Blue Jays discussed a Billy Butler trade

Dec 12, 2013, 8:25 PM EDT

Billy Butler

Jeff Blair of the Globe and Mail is reporting that the Royals and Blue Jays have discussed a trade involving first baseman-slash-DH Billy Butler. He clarifies that there has been no movement on a deal beyond the initial discussions, and adds that the Jays would receive prospects along with Butler in such a deal.

It’s no surprise that the Royals are making Butler available. He is entering what may be the final year of his contract, earning $8 million. The Royals have a club option worth $12.5 million, and Butler can tack on another $2 million based on performance incentives. Butler is only 27 years old and has a career .823 OPS so he will likely fetch a hefty contract once he hits the open market.

Dealing for Butler may first require the Jays to get rid of Adam Lind. Lind is 30 years old and will earn $7 million in 2014. His contract includes two club options for 2015 and ’16 worth $7.5 and $8 million, respectively. Lind had a bounce-back 2013 campaign after three seasons of mediocrity.

  1. kcrobert10 - Dec 12, 2013 at 8:38 PM

    I’ve been seeing these rumours all day. Wonder what it is we are getting for butler and prospects. Better be bautista if its anything else this is a waste of time for the royals.

    • proudlycanadian - Dec 12, 2013 at 9:04 PM

      The Royals seem to be trying to find a buyer for Butler before he becomes a free agent. A used bag of baseballs plus some bats broken by Bautista is what the Jays offered for him.

      • kcrobert10 - Dec 12, 2013 at 9:31 PM

        Look u can make fun of them all u want but the royals won way more games than the jays last yr and they have a solid young core to build around. This is there yr to make the playoffs if they are trading butler and prospects they are getting something big in return not a bucket of balls or a washer machine. It has to be bautista.

      • proudlycanadian - Dec 13, 2013 at 4:14 AM

        If you had been hearing the rumors all day, then the Royals were leaking information to make it appear that they were active in the trade market. The Jays do not need Butler, unless they plan to ship him elsewhere in a 3 team trade. Bautista is going nowhere.

      • dirtyharry1971 - Dec 12, 2013 at 10:33 PM

        That’s because the Jays have nothing else to offer genius

      • proudlycanadian - Dec 13, 2013 at 4:10 AM

        What are you doing here Harry? I thought you were deceased.

      • proudlycanadian - Dec 13, 2013 at 4:22 AM

        Seasons greetings Harry. Have a great Christmas.

      • dirtyharry1971 - Dec 13, 2013 at 8:18 AM

        You thought I was dead? well I heard that rumor myself actually, it turns out I just found myself in Toronto for some unknown reason and when I realized that I quickly turned back to the good ole USA

      • proudlycanadian - Dec 13, 2013 at 9:09 AM

        M condolences. Enjoy the weather and holiday season.

  2. Mark - Dec 12, 2013 at 8:39 PM

    Not really sure why the Jays would do this. They’ve already got EE for the 1B or DH spot and Lind for the other. Maybe Lind goes back to his replacement level ways, but if that’s the case then the only other LH bat on the team is Rasmus. The Jays need Lind’s lefty bat to balance out the lineup so a trade for Butler doesn’t make a ton of sense.

    • proudlycanadian - Dec 12, 2013 at 9:01 PM

      They are very unlikely to do anything. I am sure that the Royals are approaching many teams in their effort to trade Butler. The Jays were just being polite and were gathering information. If they took Butler, it would almost certainly be part of a 3 way trade in which he is sent to another team.

    • mjbabiak - Dec 12, 2013 at 10:12 PM

      Not really man we have Navarro And Reyes who switch hit and Goins and Colby who hit left. 4/9

      • Mark - Dec 12, 2013 at 10:30 PM

        Reyes isn’t a power bat. He’s great at getting on base but let’s not pretend he’s a middle of the order guy. Navarro has a career 650 OPS vs RHP, so he’s not exactly a threat against RHP. Goins is absolutely worthless with the bat.

        So as I said, the Jays don’t really have any dangerous left handed bats outside of Lind and Rasmus. Getting rid of Lind and replacing him with Butler makes the team extremely vulnerable to RHP, because the only lefty bat with any power would be Rasmus.

        You need left handed power bats in the lineup because otherwise tough RHP will cruise through your lineup.

    • rdillon99 - Dec 13, 2013 at 7:12 AM

      Mark, I get what you’re saying, but you are assuming that the Adam Lind that we saw in 2013 is the real Adam Lind as opposed to the 2010-2012 version which was a hole in the lineup… Even in his good year, Lind is simply a platoon bat. He is absolutely hopeless versus LHP, so the team needs to spend a valuable roster spot to have a platoon-mate for Lind. Butler does not have the same crazy platoon splits and can be used against both LHP and RHP. That saves the team a roster spot to cover off another area of weakness.

      • Mark - Dec 13, 2013 at 7:25 AM

        I’m not assuming anything. Between 2010 and 2012 Lind had an 801 OPS vs RHP. If that’s the floor we’re talking about, then it’s certainly not a bad one.

        He sucks against LHP, let’s not kid ourselves. But there is not an issue with platooning Lind. You’re not wasting a “valuable” roster spot on a platoon partner. You’re going to need to have a backup OF or a backup corner IF and one of those guys should be a right handed hitter coming off the bench. It’s a natural fit to take advantage of the resources you have to platoon a few players. Catcher is an easy spot to platoon, and platooning a 1B/DH or OF is another easy place to platoon.

        Just as Lind could easily be the 2010-2012 version (which again, isn’t that bad against RHP), Butler could also be the below average 1B/DH that we saw last year and in 2011. I’m not saying that Butler is a bad player, just that he’s not the best fit for the Jays who are already loaded with RH power hitters.

  3. cur68 - Dec 12, 2013 at 8:59 PM

    Yeah, WTF? Where would he play for The Beaver Wrestlers? Most likely The Royals called shopping him and that’s about it. The Beav need pitching not hitting. They were in the top 10 for runs scored last season. They were in the bottom 20 for runs allowed. Butler can’t help with whats wrong so why get him? He’s best shopped with the Mariners who seem to be cornering the market on power bats.

    • mjbabiak - Dec 12, 2013 at 10:15 PM

      Because instead of trying to find a DH to platoon with Lind, you can have 1 who can bat well against RH and LH pitchers.

      • cur68 - Dec 12, 2013 at 11:40 PM

        Regardless of pitcher handedness, scoring runs isn’t their problem. Butler hardly addresses a critical need. They need starting pitching, far more.

    • rdillon99 - Dec 13, 2013 at 7:14 AM

      Improving the team’s offense does not preclude them from also addressing their pitching needs. They are not mutually exclusive goals.

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