The Rays Tank: Jays shake up AL East with blockbuster trade

Steve Mitchell-US PRESSWIRE

The AL East just got a whole lot tougher.

As if the American League East wasn't tough enough with the big money Yankees, Red Sox, and the surprising Orioles, now Blue Jays GM Alex Anthopolous is straight trolling us, finalizing a monster trade with the Miami Marlins, Tuesday.

The Blue Jays, who don't even have a manager yet, went out and acquired right-hander Josh Johnson, left-hander Mark Buehrle, shortstop Jose Reyes, outfielder Emilio Bonifacio and catcher John Buck for a package of major-leaguers and prospects.

The Marlins, who went out of character last off-season and spent big money to open their new stadium with a bang, shed over $80 million in payroll in the deal, and in exchange will receive shortstop Yunel Escobar, infielder Adeiny Hechavarria, right-hander Henderson Alvarez, left-hander Justin Nicolino, outfielder Jake Marisnick, catcher Jeff Mathis, and right-hander Anthony DeSclafani.

The trade is a monster, and it set the baseball world abuzz.. One of the few remaining Marlins stars, Giancarlo Stanton tweeted, "Alright, I'm pissed off!!! Plain & Simple," shortly after word of the trade broke on twitter. Meanwhile, Jose Bautista added, "Its a good day to be a bluejay!"

The trade may not be finalized until later Wednesday, as it needs league approval due to money changing hands. The Marlins are sending $4 million dollars to Toronto in the deal.

SBNation's Miami Marlins blog called the trade a fire sale, claiming the Marlins have reverted back to their old ways.

On the other hand, Bluebird Banter called the deal, "Insanity!"

There is no doubt the deal with shake up an AL East race that is already in flux with the sudden demise of the Boston Red Sox and an aging New York Yankee team. Anthopolous clearly saw an opportunity to seize a division that may no longer be the class of the American League and swung for the fences.

I'm sure there will be plenty more on this deal throughout the day as more details emerge.

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