Rotundor wrote:The jays site has a nice write up if anyone want to read it.
I just don't buy the whole "we can't wait for Thomas to break out of his slump" that the Jays are using as their official public reasoning for this. Thomas had similarly lousy stats at this time last year, and at the end his numbers were OK, though not really worth $10 million and the loss of roster flexibility he created. And if the Jays kept him this year (they're gonna be paying his salary anyway), he would've still probably outproduced Lind/Barajas/Stairs/Stewart/whatever combination of LF/DH they end up throwing out there. His release was clearly about money--Thomas would be a horrible value at $10 million next year (he was a poor value this year and last year too, IMO), and Ricciardi must've been determined to avoid that.
I heard rumours about that clause in the contract as far back as spring training, so not really surprising this eventually became an issue. That clause also made him completely untradable, and having Thomas mope on the bench would've quickly developed into a major distraction, so I'm not sure the Jays had much choice at this point , they had completely backed themselves into a corner.