- Buster Olney, Senior Writer, ESPN Insider
When the for-sale call on David Price came from Detroit Tigers president David Dombrowski on Wednesday afternoon, sometime around 3 p.m. ET, Toronto Blue Jays general manager Alex Anthopoulos asked Dombrowski how quickly he thought he might make a decision. Was this destined to come down Friday, in the last hours before the trade deadline?
No, Dombrowski replied, it can happen quickly. And in that moment, Anthopoulos had no idea that in about 12 hours, he would have a deal in place for the All-Star left-hander. The two executives worked quickly through proposals and counterproposals, and by 3 a.m. ET Thursday morning, the framework for the deal was in place, subject to the usual ownership approval and review of medical records.
This is how it can happen in the final week of July, when deal-making is compressed like balled-up white bread, and some teams venture beyond their usual boundaries to trade for difference-making players. Rival evaluators examined the prospects the Tigers got for Price, and the ones the Reds got from Kansas City for Johnny Cueto, and have agreed that the Royals and Blue Jays were aggressive in their bids.
"I can't argue with Dave's choice," said one executive, referring to Dombrowski's haul. "He got a great package of players."