When Alex Anthopoulos blew into town the other day, he had plenty of news to share.
Among the highlights of a pre-game chat with the Jays’ general manager on Thursday were the following nuggets:
* He doesn’t expect to be able to sign the No. 1 pick from last month’s June draft, right-hander Phillip Bickford of Oaks Christian High School.
* The decision on where Brett Lawrie plays — second or third — will be left to manager John Gibbons.
* He still believes the Jays can be a contender this season.
* He isn’t in the market to add a rental player at the July 31 trade deadline.
* He would like to bring pitcher Josh Johnson, a free agent, back next season.
Regarding Bickford, the Jays have until 5 p.m. Friday to sign the 17-year-old. Slot money for the pick is $2,921,400.
“Right now, though, it looks as though we won’t be signing him,” Anthopoulos said. “I guess anything can change."