Gausman, 30, was aggressively pursued by general manager Ross Atkins last winter and turned down a multi-year contract to accept an $ 18.9 million qualifying offer from the San Francisco Giants.
By adding Kevin Gausman & Yimi Garcia over the past 24 hours, the #Geais bleus significantly improved their pitch
The addition of the pitch is still not finished… and on the players’ side, discussions are also continuing. As you might expect, the Jays keep in touch with some of the best free agent sticks
– Ben Nicholson-Smith (@bnicholsonsmith) November 29, 2021
But that initial court made an impression and the Blue Jays managed to sway it this time around after following a solid 2020 with a 2021 star for the NL West champions.
“More than anything, the decision was made on comfort,” Gausman said in an All-Star Game interview in July. “It’s hard to want to sign somewhere for several years when you don’t know what to expect, all the more so adding all the COVID (uncertainty). The fact that they’re in Buffalo has nothing to do with my decision, but after the fact you think about these things and it’s like, maybe we made the right decision. I love Toronto, it’s one of my favorite cities, I’ve always loved playing there. He has a special place in my heart because I made my debut in Toronto and they made me a very competitive offer.
“But the $ 18.9 million one was just too much to pass up and I was going back to a place where I felt comfortable with everyone I knew was going to be in place, from the pitching coach. to the manager, to all the strength coaches, knowing that they were just going to let me do what I did the year before and managed to do it. All of these things are taken into account. “
The Blue Jays held meetings with him on Sunday and estimated their odds of landing him to be 50-50. His contract is the second richest ever awarded by the franchise to a pitcher, behind the seven-year $ 131 million extension that Jose Berrios signed earlier this month.
Put some respect on this man’s name! There are people that you play with in your career who are just really amazing human beings. Gaus is one of those guys. The good guys win and Toronto just got a ball. https://t.co/sl4Lwpu8T2
– Alex Wood (@Awood45) November 29, 2021
Berrios and Gausman form an impressive 1-2 punch up front of the rotation, with Hyun Jin Ryu, Alek Manoah, Ross Stripling and Nate Pearson currently in place to round out the staff.
Another starter is still on the Blue Jays’ wishlist and they keep in touch with AL Cy Young award winner Robbie Ray, though it’s not clear if they want another big budget starter on the books. .
They also need an infielder after Marcus Semien struck a seven-year, $ 175 million deal with the Texas Rangers.