8/11/09

He Gone

Well, it actually happened.

After a weekend of wondering, the Jays let Alex Rios (and all the money he's owed) walk and he's now a member of the Chicago White Sox.

Not getting anything in return (aside from salary relief), the Jays are taking a big risk here in the public eye, as, for all his faults, Rios is still a young, 2-time All Star who has shown a ton of potential. Sending him to the White Sox with nothing coming the other way is basically admitting they made a mistake with his contract extension.

I think the only way to really judge this is to wait until the off-season. If the team uses the 'financial flexibility' that dumping all the money they'd have to pay Rios gives them and puts all or most of it back into other areas of the team, then I think this could be a positive for the team. Now, I'm not terribly confident that ownership will do this, but I'm going to have to give them the benefit of the doubt, for now.

What I dread the most, however, is Rios reaching the 30-35 home run potential that most fans thought he was capable of a few years ago. The "wouldn't he look good in a Blue Jays uniform right about now" that we'd hear from whoever's giving us the highlights whenever he has a good game that coincides with a rough patch in the Jays season would get old fast. It's happened before with lesser players (Dave Bush).

Anyway, the eternal optimist in me thinks that this could end up being good for the team in the long run. Rios has shown that he can be a very good player, but if Rogers allows Ricciardi (or whoever the GM may be) re-spend his salary on free agents (or take on someone's salary in a trade), then the Jays could come out ahead.

1 comment:

eyebleaf said...

I love Rios, but I got tired of waiting for that 30 HR Rios to arrive.

You're right; we can't judge this until the off-season.

But I think you make a good point: they admitted they made a mistake with Rios's contract extension, and I'd rather they admit that mistake, and move on, and cut their losses without having to pay any of Rios's salary.

He's not worth $12 million a season.