Hyun-Jin Ryu agrees to four years with Blue Jays
We are seeing a lot of trading action come in before Christmas, with the Toronto Blue Jays looking to extend their roster as efficiently as possible over this weekend.
As the festive season can negatively disrupt trade talks, with a break in discussions normally occurring, Toronto will be delighted with their weekend business.
They have now acquired one of the best left-handed pitchers from the National League in the form of Hyun-Jin Ryu, who comes on a four-year deal worth $80m, following impressive performances for the Los Angeles Dodgers.
There had been a feeling that he may not recover from a serious groin issue in 2018, but he has bounced back since to be one of the biggest available names of his calibre up for trade in this winter period
Ryu is coming off a season where he made the All-Star list for the first time, with a 2.32 ERA, which was the best in all of the National League.
There is little wonder that the Blue Jays decided to make the swoop when they knew he was available.
It was yet another deal for superagent Scott Boras, who has been tying up plenty of deals over the last few weeks.
Toronto have not stopped there, and have also worked on a deal to bring Travis Shaw in for one year on a $4m contract.
This has essentially been a swap deal on infielders between Toronto and the Milwaukee Brewers, who took Justin Smoak on a similar deal last week.
Shaw, who still has time on his side at 29, had a poor season in 2019 compared to the two years before it, which could be why his value has dipped.
He was sent to play with a Triple-A team for a month to show that he needed to work on his form, but if the Blue Jays can bring out the best in him again, then he is certainly worth a punt.
The Brewers have decided to cut loose with a lot of players after a failure to get far enough in the playoffs.
They came second in their division, losing out in a tight race to the Cardinals.
This pushed them to the wild-card race, where they lost out to the Washington Nationals, the team who eventually won the World Series.
Shaw talked of how he “wanted a fresh start”, and he may well find that a change of scenery helps him get back to his best form.
Words: Mason Crain