Jays let trade deadline day pass without deal
Manager Farrell more concerned with newcomers getting comfortable
Alex Anthopoulos stood pat Sunday as baseball's non-waiver trade deadline came and went.
The Toronto Blue Jays general manager let the 4 p.m. ET deadline pass, content with the deal made earlier in the week that saw the club acquire centre-fielder Colby Rasmus from the St. Louis Cardinals in a three-team transaction that also involved the Chicago White Sox.
Anthopoulos, who didn't speak to the media after Toronto's 7-3 win over of Texas on Sunday, can still make a deal until Aug. 31, but any player involved would have to first clear waivers.
There were rumours in the leadup to the deadline involving Toronto infielder Edwin Encarnacion, catcher Jose Molina and relievers Frank Francisco, Jon Rauch and Shawn Camp.
But both Encarnacion and Molina were still on the field at 4 p.m., while Rauch, Camp and Francisco were still in the Jays bullpen as nothing materialized.
The deal Wednesday to bring Rasmus to Toronto also included former Blue Jay Brian Tallet, Trever Miller and minor leaguer P.J. Walters.
If the Blue Jays had traded some of their veterans away for prospects on Sunday, it would have been an indication Anthopoulos doesn't see the club as a contender quite yet. Meanwhile, if he had loaded up on veteran talent while giving up some youth, the GM would have signalled his belief that the team is ready to take the next step.
The fact that no move was made by a club that sits at 55-53, 10 games behind the New York Yankees in the wild card race, raises just as many questions.
For his part, Jays manager John Farrell said there was a level comfort that the deadline had come and gone as the team heads out on a road trip.
"Whether or not we make any changes going forward, any player is going to have to go through waivers, but Alex is obviously very in tune to that," Farrell said. "We're getting three new players comfortable here and that's probably the first and foremost focus, not [being] worried about people coming from outside. The biggest thing is that the deadline has passed and we're going to Tampa and preparing for that series."
Rasmus broke out of a 0-for-12 slump since joining the Blue Jays, going 2-for-4 with a double and two RBIs against Texas as Toronto took the rubber match of the series on the day Roberto Alomar had his No. 12 retired at Rogers Centre.
Anthopoulos's prized acquisition said he put pressure on himself in his first few games but was more relaxed on Sunday.
"I was a definitely a little nerve wracked, wasn't able to do some of the stuff I want to do," Rasmus said. "But today I felt better, so hopefully that will continue."