Blue Jays tender deals to all arb-eligible players

Blue Jays tender deals to all arb-eligible players

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays tendered contracts to all four of their arbitration-eligible players prior to Friday night's 8 ET deadline.

Right-hander Marcus Stroman, infielder Darwin Barney, outfielder Ezequiel Carrera and lefty Aaron Loup all remain under club control. Toronto also announced that first baseman Chris Colabello and utility man Andy Burns cleared waivers and were outrighted off the 40-man roster.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Stroman hoping Encarnacion, Bautista return

Blue Jays ace loves club's chances with or without sluggers

Stroman hoping Encarnacion, Bautista return

PUNTA CANA, Dominican Republic -- Blue Jays right-hander Marcus Stroman has some familiar company at David Ortiz's charity golf tournament this weekend. Two hitters who have backed him throughout his career are also in attendance -- Edwin Encarnacion and Jose Bautista.

But unlike Stroman, who remains with Toronto, Encarnacion and Bautista are two of the biggest bats on the free-agent market.

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Ian Browne has been a reporter for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blue Jays GM reiterates stance on Edwin return

Blue Jays GM reiterates stance on Edwin return

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays haven't ruled out the possibility of re-signing Edwin Encarnacion, but they certainly don't sound like a team that's going to announce his return any time soon.

Toronto general manager Ross Atkins reiterated Thursday afternoon that Kendrys Morales' three-year deal worth $33 million does not eliminate the possibility of bringing back Encarnacion, but it does make a deal "less likely."

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

At Meetings, Blue Jays plan to be movers, shakers

GM Atkins and front office have voids to fill at number of positions

At Meetings, Blue Jays plan to be movers, shakers

TORONTO -- The offseason Hot Stove will be taken to another level at next week's Winter Meetings, and the Blue Jays should be front and center for most of the action.

The Meetings officially begin Monday, and with so many openings on the 25-man roster Toronto is expected to be one of the most aggressive teams. There are holes in the outfield, first base, bullpen and backup catcher, but clarity on the club's future may come soon.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Donaldson, Sanchez honored by Toronto writers

Donaldson, Sanchez honored by Toronto writers

TORONTO -- Josh Donaldson and Aaron Sanchez were the big winners when the Toronto chapter of the Baseball Writers' Association of America announced its annual awards on Thursday afternoon.

Donaldson was named the Blue Jays' Player of the Year for the second consecutive season while Sanchez picked up the Pitcher of the Year and Most Improved honors. Rule 5 pick-turned-key-set-up-reliever Joe Biagini was unanimously voted as Toronto's Rookie of the Year.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Peace & glove: Owners, players reach CBA deal

New agreement includes change to home-field advantage in World Series

Peace & glove: Owners, players reach CBA deal

IRVING, Texas -- Major League Baseball's players and owners reached a tentative five-year Collective Bargaining Agreement through the 2021 season on Wednesday night. The parties will follow up today with a formal document, which then must be ratified by representatives of both sides. 

At 8:40 p.m. ET, an assortment of happy players, owners, lawyers and staffers poured from meeting rooms to exchange handshakes and hugs. That's how quickly 36 hours of round-the-clock negotiations ended, nearly four hours before today's deadline of 12:01 a.m. ET to reach a deal. Short of an agreement, the sport was faced with the best-case scenario of an extension or owners could have imposed a lockout.

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Richard Justice is a columnist for MLB.com. You can follow him on Twitter @richardjustice. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Agent: 'Nothing imminent' on Encarnacion

Yankees, Astros believed to be in play for free-agent slugger

Agent: 'Nothing imminent' on Encarnacion

Edwin Encarnacion is not yet close to signing a new contract, the free agent slugger's agent told MLB.com's Jon Paul Morosi on Wednesday.

Paul Kinzer, Encarnacion's agent, told Morosi that there is "nothing imminent" for his client, although Encarnacion has multiple offers on the table with multiple teams involved.

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David Adler is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @_dadler. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Jim Callis

The Next Big Leaguers: Blue Jays' Alford

A team-by-team look at future key contributors who starred in the 2016 Arizona Fall League

The Next Big Leaguers: Blue Jays' Alford

The Arizona Fall League always is loaded with talent, and it was stronger than usual in 2016. In the initial installment of MLBPipeline.com's "The Next Big Leaguers," which premieres Tuesday, we focused on five prospects: Dodgers first baseman Cody Bellinger, Twins shortstop Nick Gordon, Cubs outfielder Eloy Jimenez, Red Sox infielder Yoan Moncada and Yankees shortstop Gleyber Torres.

We could have spotlighted many more promising prospects if not limited by time constraints, and below we'll do exactly that.

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Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Winter Meetings will keep Blue Jays busy

Club has several roster openings, but may not make big splash

Winter Meetings will keep Blue Jays busy

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays typically don't make a lot of moves during Major League Baseball's annual Winter Meetings, but there's a good chance that will change this year. With so much work left to do, it kind of has to happen.

Mark Shapiro, Ross Atkins and the rest of Toronto's front office will descend upon the Washington, D.C. area at the end of this week with a lengthy shopping list. Two corner outfielders, a backup catcher, at least two or three relievers and possibly a first baseman, to name a few.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Inbox: Is there a chance Encarnacion returns?

Blue Jays beat reporter Gregor Chisholm answers fans' questions

Inbox: Is there a chance Encarnacion returns?

Why would Toronto sign Kendrys Morales so early and reduce chances of signing Edwin Encarnacion? EE clearly has wanted to come back ... why would they not work towards EE and then go after someone like Morales later?
-- Matthew P., Kitchener, Ontario

I asked myself a similar question after news first broke of Morales' three-year deal, but it's clear Toronto believed it was necessary to strike early. The goal was to re-sign Encarnacion, and according to MLB Network's Jon Heyman, Toronto offered four years and $80 million. When that was turned down, and with no guarantee that a deal could be reached, the Blue Jays moved quickly.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Jim Callis

Blue Jays' Alford among Top 25 Fall League prospects

Blue Jays' Alford among Top 25 Fall League prospects

While the most talented team doesn't always win the championship, it did in the Arizona Fall League. The Mesa Solar Sox wrapped up the East Division crown on the final day of the regular season before rolling to an easy victory in the AFL's one-game playoff for its first title since 2003.

Mesa had the league's deepest lineup, as evidenced by its seven hitters who rank among the AFL's 20 best prospects below. The Solar Sox had star power with outfielders Eloy Jimenez (Cubs) and Bradley Zimmer (Indians) and second baseman Ian Happ (Cubs), all of whom sit in the 20s on MLBPipeline.com's Top 100 Prospects list. They also had emerging talents such as shortstop Yu-Cheng Chang and outfielder Greg Allen, who have been overshadowed in a deep Indians system, and league home run leader Brian Anderson (Marlins No. 4 prospect), who had support for making our list.

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Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Quantrill joining Baseball Canada's Wall of Excellence

Former Blue Jays reliever to become ninth member

Quantrill joining Baseball Canada's Wall of Excellence

TORONTO -- Former Blue Jays reliever Paul Quantrill will be named to Baseball Canada's Wall of Excellence during their national team awards banquet and fundraiser Jan. 14 in Toronto.

Quantrill, who posted a 3.83 ERA over 14 seasons, will become the ninth member of Baseball Canada's Wall of Excellence. The list includes Russell Martin, Larry Walker, Justin Morneau, Joey Votto, Ryan Dempster, Jason Bay, Jeff Francis and Ernie Whitt.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bullpen among areas of need for Blue Jays

With departure of Cecil, acquiring left-handed reliever becomes important

Bullpen among areas of need for Blue Jays

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays have a lot of work to do this offseason, and they can add another item to their to-do list after left-hander Brett Cecil agreed to a four-year deal with the Cardinals over the weekend.

Cecil's departure creates another void in a bullpen that faces plenty of uncertainty this offseason. Closer Roberto Osuna and veteran right-hander Jason Grilli are the only two relievers with guaranteed jobs, and the lack of viable internal candidates should be cause for concern.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blue Jays GM: Encarnacion return 'less likely' now

But Toronto not out on slugger or fellow free agent Bautista despite Morales deal

Blue Jays GM: Encarnacion return 'less likely' now

TORONTO -- The decision to sign Kendrys Morales has made it "less likely" that the Blue Jays will bring back Edwin Encarnacion, but the club insists it hasn't ruled out that possibility.

Toronto officially signed Morales to a three-year contract worth $33 million on Friday afternoon. General manager Ross Atkins hosted a conference call with reporters after the deal was announced, and he was pressed for answers on what the signing means for Encarnacion.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Biagini gets high five from Fallon

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Biagini gets high five from Fallon

Anybody that attends a taping of "The Tonight Show" with Jimmy Fallon at his NBC studio in New York has an opportunity to receive a high five from Fallon when he jogs out into the crowd at the beginning of each episode. 

This offer is extended to everybody except Blue Jays' reliever Joe Biagini, who attended a recent taping with a choice aisle seat and was the recipient of a totally botched high five attempt from Fallon -- which led to the events of Friday night's taping.

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Blue Jays expect big things from Morales

Toronto announces signing of slugger, who impressed with numbers in pitchers' parks

Blue Jays expect big things from Morales

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays' first big move of the offseason became official on Friday afternoon when the club announced Kendrys Morales' three-year deal worth $33 million.

Morales is expected to become Toronto's primary designated hitter, but general manager Ross Atkins did raise the possibility of occasional playing time at first base or in the outfield. Morales is coming off a year in which he hit 30 home runs with 93 RBIs in 154 games for the Royals.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blue Jays protect Urena, Alford from Rule 5 Draft

Lefty Borucki also added to 40-man roster

Blue Jays protect Urena, Alford from Rule 5 Draft

TORONTO -- The Blue Jays protected a pair of their top prospects from the upcoming Rule 5 Draft by adding shortstop Richard Urena and outfielder Anthony Alford to the 40-man roster on Friday evening.

Left-hander Ryan Borucki also was added to the 40-man roster for the same reason. Left-hander Angel Perdomo, right-hander Francisco Rios and reliever Adonys Cardona were among the notable pitchers left exposed, but the club is likely banking on each being too far away from the Majors to be picked.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Hal Bodley

Blue Jays' WS hump could be history in 2017

Toronto poised to make good on promise after falling in ALCS in consecutive years

Blue Jays' WS hump could be history in 2017

For Toronto Blue Jays fans, Joe Carter's legendary home run that won the 1993 World Series seems eons ago.

The image of that historic blast resurfaced when the Blue Jays ended their 22-year postseason drought in 2015 and returned again in '16. But making it to the World Series has become a huge hump in the journey they haven't been able to overcome.

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Hal Bodley, dean of American baseball writers, is the senior correspondent for MLB.com. Follow him @halbodley on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Blue Jays pitchers, catchers report Feb. 14

Toronto begins Grapefruit League schedule Feb. 25, plays 18 home games

Blue Jays pitchers, catchers report Feb. 14

TORONTO -- There is plenty of work that has to get done this offseason, but the Blue Jays have finalized their plans for Spring Training, with pitchers and catchers set to report Feb. 14.

Toronto's pitchers and catchers will be joined by players taking part in the World Baseball Classic and anyone rehabbing from injuries. Physicals are set for Feb. 14, with the first workout to take place the following day.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Inbox: Does adding Morales mean EE's gone?

Beat reporter Gregor Chisholm answers fans' questions

Inbox: Does adding Morales mean EE's gone?

I like the deal for Kendrys Morales, but does it really mean Edwin Encarnacion will not be back? There's room for both.
-- Jason D., Toronto

There's still a chance that Encarnacion returns, but it does not seem very likely. Morales will need to take almost all of his at-bats at designated hitter, and while Encarnacion did play 75 games at first base in 2016, there should be some concern as to whether he can stay healthy enough to start there on an everyday basis.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Howarth to undergo prostate cancer surgery

Blue Jays radio broadcaster to have small tumor removed

TORONTO -- Longtime Blue Jays radio broadcaster Jerry Howarth will undergo prostate cancer surgery next week to remove a small tumor that was discovered during an MRI earlier this year.

Howarth revealed the diagnosis during a television interview with CTV News. He credited the MRI with detecting the disease in its early stages, so doctors are very optimistic the surgery will be successful.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Encarnacion, Bautista reject qualifying offers

Encarnacion, Bautista reject qualifying offers

TORONTO -- The inevitable became a reality on Monday afternoon as Edwin Encarnacion and Jose Bautista decided to take their chances with free agency instead of accepting Toronto's qualifying offers.

Encarnacion and Bautista had until 5 p.m. ET to accept a $17.2 million qualifying offer for next season. They declined and will continue to talk with other teams. The Blue Jays, meanwhile, will receive a compensatory pick in the 2017 Draft if either player signs elsewhere.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Halladay inducted into Florida State League HOF

Halladay inducted into Florida State League HOF

CLEARWATER, Fla. -- Minnesota Twins catcher Joe Mauer and former two-time Cy Young Award winner Roy Halladay were among nine inducted into the Florida State League Hall of Fame Class of 2016 during a ceremony on Tuesday night.

Mauer, the '09 American League MVP and a six-time All-Star, played for the Class A Fort Myers Miracle in '03 and '04. The No. 1 pick in the '01 Draft, Mauer said that the FSL was his first real introduction to what life would be like in the Major Leagues.

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Corey Long is contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Market for Bautista likely to be wide open

Market for Bautista likely to be wide open

Jose Bautista has been one of the best power hitters in the American League for years, and one of the faces of the Blue Jays alongside Edwin Encarnacion. This offseason, other teams finally have a chance to make a run at him.

The 36-year-old Bautista, even coming off a down year in 2016 in which he was limited to 116 games by injuries, hitting .234 with 22 home runs and 69 RBIs, is commanding interest from multiple teams as a free agent.

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David Adler is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @_dadler. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cuba's Gurriel Jr. signs 7-year deal with Blue Jays

Cuba's Gurriel Jr. signs 7-year deal with Blue Jays

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. -- Lourdes Gurriel Jr., ranked No. 6 on MLBPipeline.com's Top 30 International Prospects List, has agreed to a seven-year, $22 million deal with the Blue Jays.

Tweet from @LGjr19: Gracias @bluejays por darme esta posibilidad!!! Muy emocionado por formar parte de esta… https://t.co/fgOBEtwHZH

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Jesse Sanchez is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Donaldson wins second straight Silver Slugger

Blue Jays 3B likely to finish in top 10 in AL MVP voting for fourth consecutive year

Donaldson wins second straight Silver Slugger

TORONTO -- For the second consecutive year, Blue Jays star Josh Donaldson has captured the American League Silver Slugger Award, presented by Louisville Slugger, at third base.

Donaldson becomes the fifth player in Blue Jays history to win the award in back-to-back seasons. He joined Jose Bautista (2010-11), Carlos Delgado (1999-2000), Joe Carter (1991-92) and George Bell (1985-87) on that list when the award was announced Thursday night on MLB Network.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Stroman has fun at the Raptors game

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Stroman has fun at the Raptors game

The Toronto Raptors hosted the New York Knicks on Saturday night at Air Canada Centre, and the team had a special guest on-hand: Blue Jays right-hander Marcus Stroman.

He headed to the game to support two premier Blue Jays fans, DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry.

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Dickey leaves Blue Jays, signs with Braves

Veteran knuckleballer, who spent four seasons with Toronto, says club's pitching remains strong

Dickey leaves Blue Jays, signs with Braves

TORONTO -- R.A. Dickey's tenure in Toronto officially came to an end Thursday morning after he agreed to a one-year, $7.5 million deal with the Braves.

The contract includes an $8 million club option or a $500,000 buyout for 2018. The Blue Jays did not make an offer, which hardly comes as a surprise considering the team has five starting pitchers under contract next year.

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Gregor Chisholm has covered the Blue Jays for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB and Facebook, and listen to his podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.