Anthopoulos: Blue Jays have pieces to make a move

Blue Jays Senior Vice President of Baseball Operations and General Manager Alex Anthopoulos joined Tim and Sid to talk about what possible trades the team is looking to make heading in to the second half of the season.

Toronto Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos wants to make a move before the trade deadline. It’s just a matter of how much he’s willing to give up.

In a guest appearance on Tim & Sid Tuesday afternoon, he explained the club’s rationale.

“We certainly have the players. The only thing that’s going to be holding us back from a deal is do we want to pay the price in terms of players,” Anthopoulos said. “I have all the confidence in the world we have the players to get a deal done. It’s just a matter of how much it’s going to hurt. We realize we have to give up some of those guys and we’re prepared to do it. Ultimately it’s a matter of how deep you want to cut.”

The Blue Jays boast an elite-level offence, leading MLB in runs scored by a 74-run margin, but the club has not gotten reliable pitching, ranking 23rd in team ERA (4.19) and allowing the sixth-most runs in the majors.

Anthopoulos acknowledged that he is eager to add to the roster, but he preached patience because the trade market has been moving along very slowly as the majority of sellers aren’t quite ready to give up on the 2015 season and deal away their roster players.

“A lot of clubs are saying ‘Look we’re not ready,’” he said. “They want to give themselves as much time as they can. If you start trading guys at this point, attendance can be affected. Those are big decisions to make so they want to wait until the end of July. A lot of parity and that’s certainly going to slow things up. We don’t have anything close. We’re starting to talk a little bit more. The all-star break would be the earliest to get something done.”

However, that doesn’t mean the Blue Jays won’t be aggressive. Anthopoulos mentioned that he would be willing to potentially move a player from the 25-man roster in order to make a trade work, although he admitted it would not be ideal.

“We’re looking to add and it’s hard to take away from the big-league club,” he explained. “I was on the phone with one team (prior to coming on the show) and I mentioned that we may need to be creative. As much as we don’t want to take away from the current 25, we bounced around some ideas and concepts. That’s not the path we want to go down but if we can’t seem to get what we want from a prospect standpoint we’ll need to open it up and be creative, similar to what Oakland and the Red Sox did last year with Jon Lester and (Yoenis) Cespedes. We’re open to doing something like that as well.”

The Blue Jays don’t have a stacked prospect pool at the triple-A level, but the club has plenty of intriguing young trade chips throughout the organization such as pitchers Daniel Norris, Miguel Castro, Jeff Hoffman and Canadian outfielder Dalton Pompey.

Anthopoulos doesn’t see any reason, barring injuries, that the team’s offence will drop-off in productivity, so it appears his focus is on starting pitching, a unit he worked hard to boost in the off-season.

“The opportunities to add starters weren’t there,” he added. “The guys we were interested in either didn’t want to come here or their contractual demands weren’t going to fit. At the same time, we would’ve liked to have added more or have more depth, but we didn’t want to force a move and ultimately regret it. We still have opportunities to do that. It’s certainly harder during the year, but we can be a little more selective right now in the next few weeks.”

“In season though, timing is huge. Within two or three days or a week, someone’s value can skyrocket so if you have a chance to close (on a deal), you better do it fast.”

The Blue Jays have a 43-42 record entering Tuesday’s game with the Chicago White Sox. The club is 2.5 games out of first place in the AL East and two games out of a wild card spot.

When submitting content, please abide by our submission guidelines, and avoid posting profanity, personal attacks or harassment. Should you violate our submissions guidelines, we reserve the right to remove your comments and block your account. Sportsnet reserves the right to close a story’s comment section at any time.