Blue Jays will not pick up Jose Bautista’s 2018 option

MLB insiders Arden Zwelling and Jeff Blair break down the news that Jose Bautista’s option will not be picked up by the Blue Jays.

TORONTO – Toronto Blue Jays general manager Ross Atkins confirmed Tuesday that the club end of Jose Bautista’s mutual $17-million option for 2018 won’t be exercised and described as "unlikely," a potential return for the right-fielder.

Speaking with writers during his end-of-season review, he said Bautista was informed of the decision about two weeks ago.

"I don’t believe in closing any doors and speaking in absolutes," said Atkins. "But based on the construction of our roster we feel it’s unlikely that he’s a part of the solution moving forward. Having said that, Jose’s career is remarkable and the last game of the season speaks to what he’s meant to this city and organization."

The move will make Bautista, who turns 37 on Oct. 19, a free agent.