Blue Jays and the Kendrys Morales epidemic

BALTIMORE, MD - APRIL 9: Kendrys Morales
BALTIMORE, MD - APRIL 9: Kendrys Morales /

The Toronto Blue Jays brain trust have made their fair share of quality acquisitions since taking over the helm, however, the Kendrys Morales signing continues to be the Achilles heel that plagues the team.

The Jays wasted no time inking Kendrys Morales to a three-year, $33 million dollar pact after bidding farewell to Edwin Encarnacion at the conclusion of the 2015 campaign. Unfortunately for General Manager Ross Atkins the free agent market failed to materialize that offseason and Morales could have been signed for a much lesser term had they not jumped the gun in November.

Morales offers virtually nothing on the defensive side as he is a below average defender at first base and handcuffs his manager when he occupies the designated hitter spot in the lineup. The defensive oversight is easier to swallow when Morales is swinging a productive stick.

This season, however, Morales has struggled mightily at the plate hitting .152/.236/.278 with three home runs in 24 games. He is also currently hitless in his last 22 at-bats, a streak spanning over five games.

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The Blue Jays continue to inject youth into their lineup and it is just a matter of time before Morales is going to be relegated to the bench permanently. The Jays may be better suited designating Morales for assignment and eating the remaining financial commitment on his contract to free up the roster spot. He is owed $11 million this year and an additional $12 million next year if the Jays do decide to cut bait with the 34-year old.

Morales did swat 28 round trippers last season but it appears opposing pitchers are throwing him a steady diet of breaking balls which have been problematic for the slugger to say the least this season.

John Gibbons could definitely afford the flexibility to award his players a day off defensively if Morales did vacate the DH spot permanently. A decision will inevitably have to be made if Morales continues to falter at the dish in the coming weeks.

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The Jays are going to have to him regardless so might as well release him, eat the money and get a player in there who can help the team win on both sides of the diamond. It’s time to end the Morales epidemic once and for all.