LOS ANGELES -- Kevin Pillar will see a lot of happy faces when he walks into the visiting clubhouse at Dodger Stadium on Tuesday. The veterans on the roster have been looking for help all offseason, and Pillar has a track record of success at the big league level.
But leaving Toronto was difficult for the 30-year-old outfielder. He spoke to Blue Jays reporters with tears in his eyes and said the trade brought "a lot of mixed emotions."
"It's all I've ever known," Pillar said, according to Sportsnet. "You spend a lot of time here, you spend more time here than you do in your home in the offseason. I spend more time with people here than I do with my own family, so that part of it is hard."
Pillar said the trade, finalized Tuesday morning, brought him some relief because he had heard his name in trade rumors. It also moves him much closer to home. He was born about 30 miles from Dodger Stadium and starred at Chaminade College Prep in West Hills, a suburb of Los Angeles. The Blue Jays drafted Pillar out of CSU Dominguez Hills in 2011.
"Aside from maybe going back to L.A. or Arizona where I live, being on the West Coast is going to be a pretty good opportunity for me to be a lot closer to my family," he said.
It won't be long before Pillar sees the Blue Jays again, though. The Giants visit Toronto on their next road trip.