Halladay puts 50-50 chances on trade

ST. LOUIS -- As trade talk continued to swirl around Roy Halladay, the Toronto Blue Jays ace on Monday estimated his chances of being dealt before the July 31 trade deadline as 50-50.

"For me, it would be a flip of the coin," Halladay said after being named the starting pitcher for the American League for Tuesday's All-Star Game at Busch Stadium.

Halladay, who deftly maneuvered around a barrage of questions for more than 15 minutes, said he would not mind going to the National League or a bigger market.

"I'd rather hit than face [Derek] Jeter, [Alex Rodriguez], [Hideki] Matsui and [Mark] Teixeira," Halladay said.

He added: "I think there is so much that goes into it. I'm still not 100 percent sure which direction we're going in in Toronto. If Toronto does decide to do something, it's really going to be something that helps the organization. There's going to be a lot of pieces; it's going to be complicated. I think it's going to be kind of 50-50."

Halladay, who is under contract for next season at $15.75 million, has a no-trade clause and would have to approve any deal. He did not say whether an extension would have to be part of any deal.

The Blue Jays have sent scouts throughout the majors and minors as they try to gauge the talent pool they might get back for one of the game's best pitchers.

"It's a tough situation, but you always want to win," Halladay said. "You want that chance to win, that's every player's dream. For me, I'm looking [at] it as they're exploring options. Something may come of it, something may not. I'm trying to keep the emotions out of it as much as I can."

Halladay, 32, has been part of the Toronto franchise since the Blue Jays selected him in the first round of the 1995 draft. He has a career 141-69 record, a Cy Young Award and six All-Star Game appearances on his résumé.

Halladay is respected throughout the Blue Jays clubhouse for his work ethic and professionalism, so the trade speculation is having an impact on both him and his Toronto teammates.

Jays second baseman Aaron Hill, who is also in St. Louis for the All-Star Game, thinks Halladay's emotional ties to the city of Toronto and the Blue Jays' franchise could make it difficult for him to sign off on a trade.

"Doc loves Toronto,'' Hill said. "He loves the guys, so I think we're in a good spot and hopefully he won't go anywhere. But if it happens, he'll deal with it then.''

In the meantime, Hill and his fellow Jays are thinking about more than the emotional and professional loss they'll suffer if Halladay leaves Toronto.

"You think about what might happen if you lose him,'' Hill said. "The other thing I'm thinking about is, 'Gosh, I might have to face him one day.' Hopefully that will never happen.''

Jerry Crasnick covers Major League Baseball for ESPN.com.