The Toronto Blue Jays announced Wednesday that general manager and executive vice president of baseball operations Ross Atkins has been signed to a five-year contract extension.
"Simply put, Ross makes the Blue Jays better," team president Mark Shapiro said in a statement released by the club. "I am extremely pleased that he will continue leading our Baseball Operations group during this exciting era for our players, staff, and most importantly, our fans, as we move closer to building a sustainable championship contender for years to come."
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Atkins expressed his gratitude after signing the extension:
"Coming to Toronto with my family has enriched our lives in countless ways and having the opportunity to remain a Blue Jay is something I do not take for granted," Atkins said in that same statement. "I want to extend my heartfelt thanks to Edward Rogers and the Rogers executive team, Mark Shapiro, and the talented individuals that I am fortunate enough to work with every day. I cannot wait to continue our pursuit to bring World Series Championships back to Canada and celebrate with our fans when that day comes."
Atkins, 47, came to the Blue Jays after a long stint in Cleveland's front office and has served as the team's GM since late 2015. The Blue Jays advanced to the ALCS in Atkins' first season on the job, thanks largely to the holdover core but then entered a rebuilding phase that eventually saw them crater to 95 losses in 2019. The Jays began to emerge in the abbreviated 2020 season, however, as they finished four games above .500 and qualified for the expanded postseason field. This past offseason, the Jays complemented the impressive young core helmed by Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette with prominent free agent additions like George Springer and Marcus Semien. As such, Toronto profiles as a contender in the AL East for 2021. The Blue Jays enter Wednesday's slate with a 3-2 record and in a three-way tie for first place.
Shapiro, himself, signed an extension through 2025 earlier this year, which in tandem with the Atkins deal means that Toronto will have stability in the front office for years to come.