Blue Jays: Shapiro Preparing for Life After Bautista and Encarnacion

If Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion both leave, Mark Shapiro is firmly focused on the potential long-term benefits for the Toronto Blue Jays.

Toronto Blue Jays president and CEO Mark Shapiro made his highly anticipated appearance on Sportsnet 590 The FAN on Friday. As you’d imagine, there was quite a lot to discuss during the 40-minute segment with co-hosts Jeff Blair and Stephan Brunt.

Everyone had different things to take away from the conversation. One of the most interesting aspects, related to the possibility of losing both Jose Bautista and Edwin Encarnacion after this season.

Understandably, one of them leaving would be bad enough, but losing both would be a doomsday scenario for a lot of people. However, Shapiro doesn’t quite see it like this, instead preferring to focus on the potential long-term benefits.

For the former Cleveland Indians general manager, he noted that if Bautista and Encarnacion leave, it immediately improves the Blue Jays financial situation. Certainly, coming to an agreement with both, would compromise the organizations ability to use money elsewhere.

On top of this, Shapiro is encouraged by the draft pick compensation they would receive, if both players reject qualifying offers. With the Blue Jays looking to strengthen their farm system, two first round draft picks would definitely help.

Of course, while it is smart to be ready for a future without the two All-Stars, this doesn’t mean the Cambridge, Massachusetts native doesn’t want them back. As far as he is concerned, negotiations are still very much ongoing.

Toronto Blue Jays

Nov 2, 2015; Toronto, Ontario, Canada; Toronto Blue Jays new president Mark Shapiro speaks to the media during an introductory conference at Rogers Centre. Mandatory Credit: Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

However, Shapiro would like to see the talks take place in a less public domain: “The best way to get a deal done is to not talk about it publicly.”

Certainly, some of the comments made by Bautista and Encarnacion to the media haven’t necessarily helped. Likewise, if the claims that the Blue Jays front office leaked the details of Bautista’s initial demands are true, then Shapiro needs to get a handle on things at his end.

One last thing to note from the conversation with Blair and Brunt, is the 48-year old Shapiro will not be offering any player options to the two home run sluggers. As far as he is concerned, they are “ridiculous”.

No matter whose side you’re on in the club’s discussions with Bautista and Encarnacion, ridiculous is probably the right word to use about the circus nature of events right now. Ultimately, regardless of if you’re a fan of Shapiro, he’s right that any future talks should take place in private.

What did you take away from Mark Shapiro’s interview? Did anything in particular stand out for you, and if so, what? Let us know in the comments section below.