Does Devon Travis Trade Change Blue Jays’ Infield Plans?


Trading Anthony Gose to the Detroit Tigers for 2B Devon Travis addressed a position of need for the Toronto Blue Jays in a cost-effective manner.  The extent to which Travis will succeed in the Major Leagues, along with his timeline for doing so, still remains to be seen, but how has this move changed the Blue Jays’ infield plans for 2015 and beyond?

Second Base has been a weakness for the Toronto Blue Jays since Aaron Hill‘s prime seasons, and Travis represents the first close prospect at the position who may possess an offensive upside.  Travis has a short and simple swing which lends itself to plate coverage and solid contact, and his potential ceiling could be just above a league-average hitter for the position.

That being said, Blue Jays fans have learned from another Travis, last name Snider, that potential is nothing more than a conversation piece until it comes to fruition on a Major League diamond.  Devon Travis was the #1 prospect in the Detroit Tigers organization, but a much more accurate representation of his upside is given by his #9 ranking within the Blue Jays farm system.

Alex Anthopoulos has gone on the record to say that Devon Travis will be given a shot to win the Blue Jays 2B job out of Spring Training if no further additions are made over the Winter, but a start in AAA may be more realistic.

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Dalton Pompey is an organizational case of a young player who rose fast, and only needed to dip his toe in AAA before his big league debut.  Travis has still yet to play at the AAA level, himself, so the Blue Jays may be wiser to start him in Buffalo, then bring him to Toronto if, and when, the right situation presents itself.

Barring a 1-2 year contract for a veteran Free Agent, Maicer Izturis could have an opportunity to win the starting job out of Spring Training, with Ryan Goins acting as infield depth.  This is not a disastrous scenario, and could change any moment with a roster addition, but it involves Toronto putting a lot of confidence in Travis’ ability to rise up and make an impact in 2015, or 2016 at the latest.

Trading for Devon Travis could impact Brett Lawrie, as well.  Over the past year, there has been talks of moving Lawrie to 2B and adding a Third Baseman instead.  It is important to note that the Travis deal came after Alex Anthopoulos had met with Pablo Sandoval‘s representatives.  Knowing he was out of the Blue Jays’ price range, Anthopoulos could now be leaning more comfortably towards Lawrie staying at 3B long-term, if he remains healthy.

It is imperative that the Blue Jays avoid another bandaid at 2B, and finally establish a long-term, impact starter.  Devon Travis could be the answer, or he could very well be another AAAA player that bogs down the position.  What he does offer, though, is someone for Blue Jays fans to place hope on.

When do you think the Blue Jays will turn to Devon Travis as their starting 2B?