With Brett Lawrie likely to clear waivers following his release, could the Canadian infielder possibly be a fit with his former team north of the border?
Brett Lawrie, who was once a very promising young player for the Toronto Blue Jays, will likely find himself starting the 2017 season with a new organization for the fourth year in a row, after having been released by the Chicago White Sox on Friday afternoon.
Lawrie, 27, had avoided arbitration with the club earlier in the offseason, agreeing to a non-guaranteed 1 year deal worth 3.5 million. The White Sox decided to cut bait early in the Spring, and saved themselves a few bucks in the process.
The former first round pick back in 2008, hit with a slash line of .248/.310/.413, smacking 12 home runs and driving in 36 runs in only 94 games. Injuries have been a big factor for Lawrie so far during his six-year career, as he has had trouble staying on the baseball field for a full season of action.
The Blue Jays currently have a second baseman who is also having trouble staying on the diamond for a full season, that being 26-year-old, Devon Travis. With Travis, there is no guarantee the career .300 hitter will be ready for the start of the new season, therefore, making Brett Lawrie a possible fit.
Darwin Barney and Ryan Goins are the current options if Travis is not ready for opening day. Although, this is not a necessary move, It is hard not to think about the possibility of adding the Canadian to this solid group. Lawrie has the ability to be an everyday player, and represents potential upside, while with Goins and Barney, it is most likely a situation of what you see is what you get.
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Lawrie brings the ability to play a very solid third base, as the hot corner is his finest position. If Donaldson is in need of a day at DH, Lawrie can replace the third baseman who succeeded him via trade in Toronto. Of course, Lawrie was the biggest piece moving to Oakland at the time of the trade which landed the “Bringer Of Rain” with the Blue Jays.
If Lawrie is able to stay healthy, he has the ability to put up very good numbers. The problem for him thus far in is that he has not been able to stay on the playing field.
With Donaldson being the everyday third baseman, and Travis being the everyday second baseman, if healthy, Lawrie will not be relied upon to play everyday. This could be very beneficial for him, keeping him off the disabled list. He would be a very solid role player for Toronto, as he brings a great glove with positional versatility, and a power bat off the bench.
There are a few concerns with acquiring Lawrie though. He does not have a great reputation, as he has in the past rubbed his teammates the wrong way. Rebuilding teams in both Oakland and Chicago, have basically given him up for nothing in the past two offseasons. The Athletics traded him for minor league depth, and the White Sox are going to have to eat (a little bit of) money in order to release him. It makes me wonder, If these front offices would rather dump him, instead of keeping him around the younger players.
Although there are a few concerns that would come with signing Brett Lawrie, there are more reasons to bring the fiery infielder back home. It is really hard not to explore the possibility of a Brett Lawrie return to Toronto, and it could turn out to be a risk worth taking.
What do you think about the idea of Brett Lawrie returning? Let us know your thoughts below.