Inbox: What will Blue Jays do at Deadline?

Beat reporter Gregor Chisholm answers fans' questions

July 5th, 2017

Who do you think are the top two Blue Jays who will get moved at the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline?
-- @wearsy1

There is going to be an endless stream of speculation about Toronto's plans for the upcoming Trade Deadline in the coming weeks. We're barely into July, and already there have been reports about the availability of big-name players such as Josh Donaldson, and J.A. Happ. I still think it's a little far-fetched to believe this team is going to start a full-blown rebuild. A more likely scenario would see the Blue Jays retool for next year and beyond.
The top players available likely will be Toronto's pending free agents. , , Joe Smith and are among those without guaranteed deals beyond 2017. If Smith can get healthy, he'll become a very enticing piece for a team looking to upgrade its bullpen. Estrada is coming off arguably the worst month of his career, but he's a proven performer, and with four or five starts to go before the Deadline, there's time to rebuild value.
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If this team goes into a retooling phase, would it keep Donaldson until Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is ready, or would he be the first to go based on what the Blue Jays could get back?
-- Carmine, Milton, Ontario

Guerrero will not have any impact on Donaldson. Sure, they play the same position, but there's no guarantee that Guerrero will remain at third base, and he could move over to first or DH if Donaldson remains in the fold. Guerrero, the Blue Jays' top prospect according to, also is at least a couple of years away. He has yet to play above Class A, so there's plenty of time to figure this out. The bigger question is whether the Blue Jays will be willing to pay top dollar for Donaldson or risk losing him at the end of next year for nothing.
A Donaldson deal before July 31 doesn't seem very realistic, but Toronto should at least listen to offers.'s Jon Paul Morosi reported that the Cardinals are interested, but they have yet to open trade dialogue with Toronto. The same could be said about a lot of teams, and these rumors will only continue to pick up steam.
Can the Blue Jays contend in 2018? If the answer is yes, Donaldson likely sticks around. If the answer is no, he could be moved in the coming weeks, or more realistically, in the offseason.
What are the chances of Bo Bichette and Guerrero being promoted to Double-A before season's end?
-- Carlos G., New Jersey

Next to nonexistent. Bichette, the club's No. 5 prospect, and Guerrero are lighting it up at Class A Lansing, and they will represent the Blue Jays at the upcoming SiriusXM Futures Game. Both have a bright future, but the organization is going to take a cautious approach and make sure they have the proper time to develop. A promotion to Class A Advanced Dunedin before the end of the year makes sense, but the two sluggers are unlikely to advance all the way to Double-A until midway through next year.
Will go right to the 'pen, or will the Blue Jays wait a bit to see about 's health?
-- @SeanBinns

Sanchez will return from the disabled list to make Friday night's start against the Astros. The initial plan was to move Biagini into the bullpen at the same time, but the club is in a holding pattern with Stroman. The 26-year-old developed a small blister during a start against the Yankees earlier this week, and he remains questionable for his next outing. If Stroman is unable to go, Biagini will remain in the rotation for one more start.
To what extent are Blue Jays coaches held accountable for on-field performance? Are they fair targets for criticism?
-- @MrBasquill

Managers and coaches often become the scapegoats for underperforming teams, but what most people don't realize is that by doing that, they are giving most of the players a free pass. Hitting coach Brook Jacoby oversaw the league's best offense in 2015. Pete Walker has developed a reputation over the past couple of years as one of the top pitching minds. Manager John Gibbons has taken the exact same approach, Spring Training included, to the past couple of years ,when Toronto went to the AL Championship Series. Some changes eventually may be made, but the main reason why is that too many Blue Jays are having subpar years, and the players themselves need to be accountable.
Do you think either Stroman or had a good chance of making the All-Star team? If so, why didn't they make it?
-- @OhkStan

Osuna definitely qualifies as a snub. He was recently named the AL's top reliever for June, and he entered play on Wednesday having converted each of his past 19 save opportunities, which is the longest active streak in the Majors. Add in a 2.18 ERA and 46 strikeouts, and a case can easily be made. Strikeouts aside, Osuna's numbers are better than New York's , but Betances was voted in by his fellow players. And with and also deserving spots, that left no room for Osuna. Stroman is having a strong year as well, but I'm not convinced he belongs in the snub category.