With the start of the 2017 regular season less than two weeks away, the Toronto Blue Jays appear on the verge of re-signing manager John Gibbons to a multi-year contract extension.
Jon Heyman first broke the news on Tuesday morning, with TSN’s Steve Phillips uncovering the details of the deal later in the day.
BREAKING: Sources tell TSN's Steve Phillips that Blue Jays and manager John Gibbons close to agreeing to 2-year extension with 2020 option pic.twitter.com/ut6HZL3Mg5
— SportsCentre (@SportsCentre) March 21, 2017
Gibbons is expected to sign a two-year extension, plus an option.
The 54-year-old manager was a controversial signing by the Jays back in November of 2012 given his less than stellar first go-around with the team as manager from 2004 to 2008.
After a disappointing season in 2013 where Toronto finished last in the AL East, Gibbons’ team finished with a winning record in 2014.
But it’s the past two seasons that have been wildly successful for the Jays, making it to the ALCS both seasons. The Blue Jays are back on the map for casual sports fans not only in Toronto, but the rest of Canada too, and the Montana-born manager deserves some credit for that.
Despite the success of the past two seasons, Gibbons has his critics. But if management is counting wins and losses, then this seems like a no-brainer for the club.
We’ll see how he manages the team without Edwin Encarnacion in the fold, and with an aging Jose Bautista this season. With many expecting Toronto to take a step back, keeping the blue birds in contention could be Gibbons’ biggest challenge yet.