Blue Jays: What type of return could Kevin Pillar yield in a trade?
The Toronto Blue Jays will have numerous roster decisions to make this upcoming offseason regarding the future of a number of players including Kevin Pillar.
Kevin Pillar is a cult hero in these parts often referred to as “Superman” for his defensive heroics in the outfield, however, what could the 29-year-old net in a potential trade and do team’s value Pillar in the same light fans do north of the border.
The centerfielder often struggles to produce consistent at-bats and has seen his defensive metrics plummet from years past. Life after Pillar would actually be a smooth transition as right-fielder Randal Grichik could easily slide over and play centre.
But what could the Blue Jays actually net in return for a 2.5 WAR player not poised to hit free agency until 2021? Unfortunately, the Blue Jays will not acquire a prospect plethora in a prospective Pillar swap.
The benchmark for returns would be Adam Eaton who was dealt to the Washington Nationals for a trio of top prospects in 2016. The pale hose sold high on Eaton who was fresh off a 6.1 WAR season and was 27 at the time of the trade.
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A more comparable trade may be the Dexter Fowler trade in 2014. Fowler who was 28 at the time was shipped to the Chicago Cubs after a 1.8 WAR campaign with the Astros in exchange for pitcher Dan Straily and Luis Valbuena.
The Jays are thin in starting pitching depth so if they can negotiate a Pillar swap for an arm, then there is a strong likelihood the Blue Jays could move their longest-tenured player.
There is no questioning Pillar is a solid ballplayer who would run through a wall to catch a ball for his team. However, he may be the most overvalued .252 hitter in the majors and Jays fans may be surprised by the lackluster return the Jays get in a trade for their beloved outfielder.
So put your GM hat on and comment below if you would trade “Superman” and if so, what do you think you could get in return for Pillar.