Toronto Blue Jays: Brewers reportedly interested in J.A. Happ

OAKLAND, CA - JUNE 05: Ryon Healy
OAKLAND, CA - JUNE 05: Ryon Healy /

With the Toronto Blue Jays struggling to stay in contention, the Milwaukee Brewers are ready to make a move for pitcher J.A. Happ.

It was almost literally a case of one step forward and two steps back for the Toronto Blue Jays, as they embarked on their post-All-Star break schedule. After winning on Friday, they suffered two tough defeats, to lose their weekend series to the Detroit Tigers.

Statistically speak, the Blue Jays are not out of contention yet. They’re just 5.5 games out of a wild card spot as of Monday morning, with 71 games remaining.

However, this is not just a blip anymore – no longer can the Blue Jays claim it’s still early in the season. We’re past the halfway mark of the regular season schedule and they have been at the bottom of the AL East pretty much all year.

Even manager John Gibbons is no longer prepared to sugarcoat matters. Speaking to Sportsnet‘s Ben Nicholson-Smith on Sunday, Gibbons said:

"“Really, the way we’ve been playing, we’re where we should be the way we’ve been playing in all phases of the game.”"

No one is is expecting the Blue Jays to throw in the towel on this season just yet. However, if things continue along their current trajectory, at some point soon they will have to consider their options, especially with the non-waiver trade deadline fast approaching.

With this in mind, an intriguing report has surfaced, courtesy of Ken Rosenthal. According to the FOX Sports‘ reporter, the Milwaukee Brewers are interested in J.A. Happ.

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Happ has taken a significant step back from last season, when he recorded a career-high 20 wins and just four defeats. However, you could argue most of the team has taken a step back.

Further, Rosenthal adds it’s highly unlikely the 34-year old will be moved between now and July 31. The Blue Jays plan to contend in 2018 and Happ is under team control for one more year, at a very reasonable $13 million.

Regardless, you can understand why the Brewers would have interest in the southpaw. In theory he’s an attainable option, especially compared to their other reported target, the Oakland Athletics’ Sonny Gray.

Milwaukee has surprised of lot of analysts this season and are eager to strengthen their bid for the postseason. The question is, what are they prepared to offer the Blue Jays, in an attempt to change their minds on trading Happ?

Next: Where do the Jays go from here?

If you’re in the Blue Jays’ position, what’s your present state of mind? Are you ready to throw the towel in, or do you still genuinely believe they can turn things around and make a surge towards a wild card spot? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.