- Kinzer says he is surprised Encarnacion isn’t yet signed. He acknowledges the “glut” of power hitters remaining on the free agent market (presumably including players like Mark Trumbo, Mike Napoli, Jose Bautista and Chris Carter) but says he felt Encarnacion and Yoenis Cespedes stood above that group.
- Encarnacion has gotten three- to four-year offers from six teams, Kinzer says. Most of those offers were for three years. National League teams have been involved in Encarnacion’s market as well as American League teams.
- Encarnacion’s priority, though, has been to return to the Blue Jays. The Jays, of course, made a significant offer to Encarnacion, but that offer came right around the opening of free agency, and Kinzer says the timing wasn’t quite right for Encarnacion, who wanted to assess other teams’ interest. After the Jays signed Kendrys Morales and then Steve Pearce, Kinzer and Encarnacion felt it wasn’t likely Encarnacion would return to Toronto. “We never had any idea that the Blue Jays were going to move that fast,” Kinzer says. He acknowledges the two sides have spoken recently, but says Encarnacion is coming to grips with the fact that he probably won’t be a Blue Jay next season.
- Kinzer says he expected significant offers from teams like the Red Sox and Yankees early in free agency. Those apparently didn’t materialize, and Kinzer says he believes the threat of a lost draft pick had an impact on Encarnacion’s market. The absence of a new CBA early in the offseason was a factor as well, he adds.
- Kinzer feels it wasn’t a mistake that Encarnacion didn’t discuss an extension with the Jays once the 2016 season started. He says that when he negotiated Starlin Castro’s extension with the Cubs, it was a significant distraction for Castro, affecting his eating and sleeping habits. Encarnacion, meanwhile, was very productive in his final year before free agency.