Jose Bautista

Jose Bautista’s free agency is heating up – and it’s only just begun.

The Toronto Blue Jays all-time home run leader is starting to take calls from other teams while mulling his options in Canada.

Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports reports Bautista met with the Boston Red Sox and discussed potentially taking over freshly retired David Ortiz’s spot at DH. Bautista’s agent Jay Alou reportedly downplayed the meeting as Bautista chatting with old friend Frank Wren. Losing Bautista and David Priceto Boston in back-to-back years would certainly sting for Toronto.

On the complete opposite end of the spectrum, Alou told Heyman that Bautista is considering accepting the Blue Jays’ one-year, $17.2 million qualifying offer. It’s a long shot considering the weakness of the free agent market, but Alou mentioned the slugger’s love for the city of Toronto as a potential reason for that possibility.

“He loves the city, loves the fans. I didn’t realize how much he loves it there. And he really feels he has unfinished business.”

While Bautista might like to stay in Toronto, his best bet to cash in as a free agent is pursuing opportunities elsewhere. The 36-year-old is coming off an injury-plagued, down season, so for a budget conscious team to invest a likely triple digit contract in him doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. Stranger things have happened, but unless Bautista accepts his QO (or a significantly smaller deal than he could get on the open market), a reunion in Toronto is unlikely.

To quote Neil Sedaka, “breaking up is hard to do.” For Bautista and the Blue Jays, it seems inevitable.

[FanRag Sports]

About Liam McGuire

Social +Staff writer for The Comeback & Awful Announcing.