Toronto Blue Jays: Marco Estrada receiving attention from Royals

TORONTO, ON - MAY 27: Marco Estrada
TORONTO, ON - MAY 27: Marco Estrada /

The Kansas City Royals are reportedly interested in pitcher Marco Estrada, but what are the chances of the Toronto Blue Jays actually trading him?

The Toronto Blue Jays have been as inconsistent as ever, since returning from the All-Star break. With a 3-4 record, they remain at the bottom of the AL East entering Friday’s action, with 5.5 games and seven teams standing between them and that coveted second Wild Card spot.

With this in mind, the conversation continues as to what the Blue Jays will do, with the no-waiver trade deadline fast approaching? Options include retooling and undergoing a complete revamp of the roster.

No doubt, contending teams will be waiting in the wings, ready to test the Jays’ resolve and potentially influence what direction they eventually take. This includes the Kansas City Royals.

According to a report from SB Nation’s Chris Cotillo, the Royals have been linked with Marco Estrada. Certainly, they need another starting pitcher, but why go after Estrada?

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The 34-year-old is currently suffering through a nightmare period, which has seen him record an alarming 9.50 ERA since the start of June. If he continues on his current trajectory, he will set career-worsts for ERA and WHIP, since becoming a regular starter in 2012.

So again we ask, why Estrada? Part of the reason likely comes down to the Royals’ belief they will have to give up less at this point. After looking good through the first two months of the 2017 season, his loss of form has likely lowered his value.

In addition, you imagine Kansas City truly think the 2005 sixth round draft pick can regain the form which saw him excel during his first two seasons in Toronto. He had career bests for ERA and WHIP in 2015, then followed this up with his first All-Star selection last year.

Of course, these very reasons the Royals want Estrada, will likely also be why the Blue Jays would like to keep hold of him at this point. Of course, this could be dictated by whether they expect him to return to Toronto next season?

If the Mexican-born pitcher does rebound, the Blue Jays can make a qualifying offer. However, if this is rejected and even if Toronto do receive some compensation, it will likely be less than whatever haul they would get for trading him now.

Overall, the Blue Jays are in a difficult position, when it comes to deciding what to do about Estrada. In truth, whichever path they take, there will likely be some regret.

Next: Bad timing for Jays to start a rebuild

Put yourself in Ross Atkins’ shoes – what are you going to do with Estrada? Obviously the return package is a significant factor, but are you prepared to move him or not? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.