Bautista’s maket has been a bit nebulous to this point in the offseason, with the Rays and Dodgers showing interest at different points. Toronto was expected to move on from Bautista after signing both Kendrys Morales and Steve Pearce to multi-year deals, but appears to be circling back to Bautista now that he is willing to consider a one-year pact.
Bautista is reportedly looking for a one-year deal greater than the value of the qualifying offer, which is $17.2 million. If the Jays are willing to make an offer in that range (or potentially come up with a creative multi-year offer), they will likely be in the driver’s seat to retain Bautista.
Bautista and Mark Trumbo are the top two free agents left on the board, with Bautista’s former teammate Edwin Encarnacion signing with the Indians last week.