Attn Jays Fans: Pack the Rogers Center Friday Night
As rumors run rampant about the evident departure of Roy Halladay from Toronto, Friday night could mark the very last time the Doc gets called to the mound as a Blue Jay in Toronto. It is surely to be a sad day in Toronto sports history when the best Blue Jays pitcher of this generation is traded away, but there is no better way to commemorate his career in Toronto by filling to the Dome to the brim.
The sad reality is that Roy Halladay is not planning on re-signing with the Blue Jays after his contract ends next season. As difficult a pill it would be for Jays fans to swallow, it would be in the best interest for the franchise to trade Halladay, while his stock is high, for the best assets another team is willing to give. This scenario much more agreeable than losing Halladay to free agency next year, while only getting a compensation draft pick in return.
The best thing that the Blue Jays can give to Halladay for his ten years of sensational service would be to get him a World Series ring. JP Riccardi can do this by understanding the Jays’ roster as a team that is good, but not good enough for the AL East, and reacting to the fact that there are three teams ahead of them in player talent and development in their own division.
In return, Halladay is willing to waive his no-trade clause and put the Blue Jays in a position to build for the future. If Halladay gets traded, he is a Blue Jay through and through and only wants the best for the organization that drafted him as a high schooler out of Denver. He is thankful for the career opporuntity that the Blue Jays have given him and is willing to reward them by making himself available.
Halladay’s decision not to re-sign in Toronto when his contract expires is undestanable. He has won a Cy Young with Toronto and has established himself as one of the league’s best pitchers, but now he simply wants to win.
The word “win” is only three letters long, but it makes a world of a difference when choosing a career path in professional sports. In this case, Halladay’s concern has always been winning, and wanted to do it in Toronto, but unfortunately, was unable to.
In a fantasy world, Halladay will pitch a complete game, something that he has come to be associated with over the past few seasons. After the third out, the team will lineup on the mound and shake hands then Halladay will tip his cap to the 40,000 plus fans in attendance, as they cheer his name.
If Halladay is unable to go the full game, Cito Gaston should pull him in the middle of the inning, so that the fans have the opportunity to cheer him off the field as he walks to the dugout.
Even if he goes seven strong innings and is over the century mark in pitches, Gaston should let Halladay go out for the eighth inning, let him to throw his warm up pitches and then make a mound visit to take him out of the game.
This way, Halladay can walk off the field and the fans have the opportunity to properly send off their team leader.