Springer, Blue Jays finalize $150M, 6-year contract
Springer became the most prominent among baseballs free agents to reach an agreement, a $150 million, six-year contract with the Toronto Blue Jays, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez, File)TORONTO, ONT – All-Star outfielder George Springer finalized his $150 million, six-year contract with the Toronto Blue Jays on Saturday, becoming the most prominent free agent to reach an agreement this offseason. He would get $50,000 each time he makes an All-Star team, is World Series MVP, earns a Gold Glove or a Silver Slugger. The Blue Jays reached the postseason and was swept 2-0 by the eventual AL champion Rays in the first round. It remains unclear whether the Blue Jays will be allowed to return home for 2021 season.
Lester, Kluber, Hand boost free agent total to 175
Kluber gets a $1 million buyout, and the club has said it is interested in re-signing Kluber to a less expensive deal. Lester gets a $10 million buyout from the Chicago Cubs that completes a $155 million, six-year contract rather than a $25 million mutual option. Milwaukee turned down Gyorko and Sogard, a day after declining a $15 million option on 2011 NL MVP Ryan Braun. The White Sox declined a $12 million option for Encarnación and a $7 million option for González, who will receive a $500,000. Kluber gets a $1 million buyout, and the club has said it is interested in re-signing Kluber to a less expensive deal.
Blue Jays clinch 1st playoff spot since 2016, beat Yanks 4-1
Toronto Blue Jays players, coaches and staff celebrate a 4-1 win over the New York Yankees in a baseball game in Buffalo, N.Y., Thursday, Sept. 24, 2020. (AP Photo/Adrian Kraus)BUFFALO, N.Y. – Barred from playing in their own ballpark this year because of COVID-19, the vagabond Toronto Blue Jays have found a home in the playoffs. The Blue Jays extended their lead when Biggio and Bo Bichette hit back-to-back, two-out doubles in the third. SEVEN UPRyu became the first Blue Jays starting pitcher since Aug. 22, 2019, to pitch into the seventh. Blue Jays: RHP Taijuan Walker (4-3, 2.86) starts Friday in the opener of a three-game series against Baltimore.
Braves' Markakis hits walkoff HR after opting into season
Atlanta Braves' Nick Markakis, left, celebrates with Adeiny Hechavarria (24) after hitting a game-winning home run in the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Atlanta Braves Thursday, Aug. 6, 2020, in Atlanta. Markakis was added to the active roster on Wednesday after changing his mind about sitting out the year. Following the homer, Braves players circled home plate with plenty of distance, waving their hands in the air as Markakis finished his trot. Manager Charlie Montoyo said before the game Waguespack was recalled when right-hander Trent Thornton was placed on the 10-day injured list. Following a chat with home plate umpire Alan Porter, Waguespack left the field without making a pitch and Montoyo instead brought in Rafael Dolis.
Biggio HR, Blue Jays begin 2020 odyssey by beating Rays 6-4
The Blue Jays were blocked by the Canadian government from hosting this season because of coronavirus concerns, and hopes of shifting home games to other big league cities didn't work out. First of all, this whole year has been crazy, but its been especially crazy for our team, Biggio said. You get an opening day start usually because of what you did the year before," Morton said. Blue Jays starter Hyun-Jin Ryu, second in NL Cy Young voting when he was with the Los Angeles Dodgers last season, allowed three runs and four hits in 4 2/3 innings. Toronto manager Charlie Montoyo said it felt awesome after all the uncertainty the Blue Jays have endured recently.