I always enjoy Jason Stark's columns. He posted one last night on ESPN styled "Blue Jays enter life without Roy Halladay." Linky It's a pretty good piece about how the Jays are trying to rebuild their team to ultimately compete in the demanding AL east. Lots of praise for Doc as the best pitcher in baseball and the consequences of losing him. And lots of talk about Drabek and the lofty expectations he now faces. But one of the more interesting (at least to me) tidbits in the article was a passage about how Doc apparently was only willing to waive his no-trade clause for a single team - the Phils:
They made the best deal they could make, with the only team their ace was willing to waive his no-trade clause to go to: the Phillies.
The consensus around the sport is that the Blue Jays did amazingly well in that trade, considering they only had one team in the auction house. They got a 22-year-old starting pitcher with big upside in Kyle Drabek. They got a 23-year-old, potential middle-of-the-order hit machine (via Oakland) in Brett Wallace. And they got a 21-year-old catcher who projects to be a starting catcher in the big leagues in Travis d'Arnaud.
That's "three future regulars," said one AL executive -- an excellent take for a team that was "in a box, with Halladay having so much control over the trade."
What's done is done and - all things being equal- I'm pretty damned excited about having Doc locked up in Philly for the forseeable future. But I had never heard - until Stark's column- that Halladay was only willing to waive his no-trade clause for just the Phillies. I wonder if RAJ had any inkling of this when the negotiations were going down. If so, it really changes my opinion of the trade. If Anthropoulos had marching orders to unload Doc and the Phils were the only team he could do a deal with, I would like to think we could have leveraged this a bit better (sort of like we could have leveraged the Cliff Lee trade a bit better) and possibly not given up as much. I know, I know - it's in the past. But it bothers me nonetheless.