Toronto Blue Jays: Releasing Troy Tulowitzki shows commitment to youth movement

Troy Tulowitzki #2 of the Toronto Blue Jays. (Scott Halleran/Getty Images)
Troy Tulowitzki #2 of the Toronto Blue Jays. (Scott Halleran/Getty Images) /

Toronto Blue Jays general manager Ross Atkins announced that  Troy Tulowitzki will not be returning after the team decided to release him from his contract.

With the winter meetings in full swing in Las Vegas, the Toronto Blue Jays decided to fold on Troy Tulowitzki and the rest of his $38 million as a short-term investment that will hopefully pay off down the road.

It seemed like the writing was on the wall for months considering how general manager Ross Atkins didn’t seem convinced that the shortstop could contribute at the level expected of him and what the team was looking for.

In a conversation with reporters back on Dec. 5, the Blue Jays GM made it clear that they were not going to keep around a lesser version of a player who has two gold gloves, five All-Star Game appearances and two silver slugger awards.

"“He will have to overachieve to play shortstop at an above-average level with above-average offensive performance for 140 games,” Atkins told the Toronto chapter of the Baseball Writers Association of America. “That would be unlikely, based on what has occurred in the last two-and-a-half years. That doesn’t mean he’s not going to do it but, candidly, I don’t think that’s likely.”"

Even Tulowitzki said that if he could not compete and if there was somebody else better than him, then he would pack up his bags and step aside and go home. It appears, both the team and Tulo decided that it was in the best interest of both parties to go their separate ways.

What the Blue Jays are showing with this move is their desire to transition to a younger lineup and simply put, Tulowitzki probably wanted no part in being a part of a rebuilding team. The trade that brought him to Toronto was supposed to help an older veteran club contend for a World Series, not part of a young team that’s not expected to compete.

Lourdes Gurriel Jr. will probably be pencilled in as the opening day shortstop with Richard Urena as his backup. One thing Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet points out is this move gives Bo Bichette a chance to show if he can be an option at some point this season or next.

Obviously, the attention turns to whether Russell Martin will be a part of the team next season and if Atkins will pull the trigger on trading Marcus Stroman or Aaron Sanchez. It is becoming clearer that the Blue Jays are in transition and aren’t being subtle about it either.

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What do you think about the decision to release Tulowitzki? Should the Blue Jays continue to move players and who should be the next to go? Let us know in the comments below.