Toronto Blue Jays 2018 Outfield Depth Chart
In 122 games last year, Grichuk held a .238/.285/.473 slash line with 22 home runs and 59 RBIs. Currently, steamer projects Grichuk to hold a slightly better slash at .241/.293/.487, hit 25 home runs, and hold a .325 wOBA. However, with increased playing time and a solidified outfield role, Grichuk could gain the confidence needed to outperform these expectations, which is something I expect to happen.
Defensively, Grichuk has proven to be versatile and capable. It is also intriguing that last year, despite playing the most time in left field, his best numbers were in right field—the spot he should fill with the Blue Jays. Last year, while playing 55 games in right field, Grichuk held a .991 fielding percentage, committed just one error, added 3 outfield assists, and was worth 2 Rdrs. Expanded over 140 games, this would add up to a .990 fielding percentage, 2.5 errors, and 7.6 outfield assists. Rounding up, 8 outfield assists would have been just one off of tying for 4th in the league with Giancarlo Stanton and Hunter Renfroe.
Despite his April offensive outburst last year, expect Pillar to go back to his old numbers this year. However, perhaps without the pressure of leading off, Pillar may make slight improvements on his offensive game. Really, though, unless he improves his eye at the plate, he’ll never be much of an offensive threat. Projected at .269/.312/.412 with a 26/79 strikeout to walk ratio, Pillar projects to have yet another classic Pillar offensive year—nothing flashy but nothing that will really, badly hurt the team, either.
A perennial gold glove award snub, Pillar will undoubtedly keep his spectacular defensive play in 2018. This is where most of the value of Pillar is found. Holding a .997 fielding percentage, adding 8 assists, committing just one error, and worth 15 Rdrs, Pillar’s defensive numbers speak for themselves. As well, entering just his age 29 season, there shouldn’t be any worry about regression, yet.