Following the Toronto Blue Jays' recent move to acquire reliever Drew Storen from the Washington Nationals in exchange for outfielder Ben Revere, it looks like general manager Ross Atkins might already be working on a fresh new deal. Jeff Blair of Sportsnet.ca reports, citing a scout, that Toronto is considering to shop starting pitcher R.A. Dickey.
The Blue Jays have strengthened their bullpen by adding Storen, and they also have the proper depth to give Aaron Sanchez another shot in the starting rotation. The potential move to release Dickey might be a risky one, NBC Sports pointed out, but it could also be partially for budget reasons as the 41-year-old pitcher is owed $12 million in 2016.
Dickey, has had a successful professional career since starting with the Texas Rangers in 2001. He had played for several teams including the Seattle Mariners, Minnesota Twins and the New York Mets. The Blue Jays acquired him from the Mets after winning the NL Cy Young Award in 2012.
For the past three seasons, Dickey has been a dependable part of Toronto's rotation, throwing more than 200 innings in each. While he is no longer the ace that he once was during his time with the Mets, the veteran knuckleballer remains effective, posting a 3.91 ERA last season. He also managed to log at least 214 1/3 innings in each of the last four seasons.
The Blue Jays already added a couple of starting pitchers in Jesse Chavez and J.A. Happ this off-season and now has six starters on its roster. Drew Hutchison, Aaron Sanchez, Marcus Stroman and Marco Estrada could all be positioned as starters--they leave the team with an extra arm, making rumors of Dickey's release even more plausible.
Meanwhile, the trade between Toronto and Washington happened on Friday, resulting to the latter sending Revere to the former's bullpen in exchange for Storen. It also involved the Nationals sending cash to the Blue Jays to cement the deal.
The 27-year-old Revere was acquired by Toronto from Philadelphia in late July, posting a .319 average in 56 games. The left-handed hitter added 31 stolen bases in the past season, making it his fourth season with 30 or more.
Storen, on the other hand, has spent his entire six-year career with the Nationals, amassing a solid 3.02 ERA. During the last season, he had 29 saves in 34 opportunities. The Indiana native appeared in 58 games for Washington last year, adding 67 strikeouts in 55 innings. Two years ago, the six-foot-one right-handed pitcher logged a 1.12 ERA, allowing him lead all National League relievers that time. Storen will join a promising bullpen that already includes Roberto Osuna, Brett Cecil, and Alex Sanchez.