Blue Jays-Rockies trade: Raimel Tapia to Toronto, Randal Grichuk to Colorado in outfield trade
The Toronto Blue Jays and Colorado Rockies have agreed to trade their outfielders. The Rockies get Randal Grichuk while the Blue Jays get Raimel Tapia. Teenage prospect Adrian Pinto also moves from the Rockies to the Blue Jays as part of the deal as the Jays send cash to the Rockies, teams announced Thursday.
Looks like Tapia found out when everyone else did too.
Tapia, 28, shot .273/.327/.372 (80 OPS+) with 26 doubles, two triples, six homers, 50 RBIs, 69 runs, 20 steals and 1.0 WAR in 133 games for the Rockies. last season. He’s mostly played left field in his career, but he was scheduled to play for the Rockies and that’s where he’ll likely take over from Grichuk with the Blue Jays.
Of course, the Blue Jays could also play Teoscar Hernández in right field, which would open up the designated hitter at bat for someone not previously designated as a starter (Alejandro Kirk or Greg Bird?).
Grichuk, 30, hit .241/.281/.423 (89 OPS+) with 25 doubles, 22 homers, 81 RBI, 59 runs and 0.8 WAR for the Blue Jays in 149 games last season. He will likely slide into right field.
Being so late into spring training, seeing a trade like this is quite surprising. Maybe there are more moves in the works of the Blue Jays.
We know Grichuk is expected to earn over $10 million in 2022 and 2023 before becoming a free agent. Tapia is expected to earn $3.95 million this season and has one more year of officiating before becoming a free agent. The Blue Jays sent money to the Rockies, but it’s possible it was at least partly to save money while looking to maximize franchise resources elsewhere.
As for Pinto, the 19-year-old Venezuelan plays second, shortstop and outfield. He hit .360/.487/.543 with 41 stolen bases in 54 games in the Dominican Summer League last season, his first in professional baseball. There are a lot of upsides here and the Blue Jays have added that to the organization.
The Blue Jays went 91-71 last season, missing the playoffs by one game, and were aggressive in the offseason while pushing to get back to the playoffs. Here’s the full Blue Jays preview from CBS Sports.