According to Jon Morosi of Fox Sports, the Toronto Blue Jays have reportedly reached an agreement on a one-year pact with free agent Travis Shaw.
The Blue Jays have agreed to pay Travis Shaw a base salary of $4 million, however, incentives for plate appearances could boost the deal up in the neighborhood of $4.675 million for the 2020 campaign. According to Morosi, Shaw will earn an extra $175K for 350 plate appearances and then an additional $125k for eclipsing 400/450/500 and 550 appearances at the dish.
The 29-year old infielder earned $4.675 million last season with the Milwaukee Brewers but was ended up a free agent after the club did not tender him a contract following a disappointing season where he hit just .157 in 86 games.
Shaw will see his fair share of at-bats at first base and designated hitter while also spelling off Vladimir Guerrero Jr. off at third base from time to time. This signing will presumably nix any chance of an Edwin Encarnacion reunion north of the border although Encarnacion could compliment Shaw’s inability to hit lefties in a platoon. The Blue Jays had reportedly also tabled an offer to the slugging first baseman.
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Shaw has tremendous power and should benefit from the homer-friendly confines of Rogers Centre. Prior to last season, Shaw had back to back 30+ homer seasons with the Brewers hitting a career-high 32 round-trippers in 2018. If Shaw can bounce back to his former self, he could add some legitimate clout to the middle of the Blue Jays offensive attack.
In 592 career games with the Red Sox and Brewers, Shaw has hit .243/.327/.451 with 99 homers and a 10.6 WAR over five seasons.
Shaw will look to rebuild his value north of the border in 2020 on what could be a team-friendly deal if he regains his homer stroke. He will also add some infield depth in the event Rowdy Tellez falters with full-time reps.
A decent, low-risk signing by the Jays front office although some fans may be disappointed Encarnacion will not be returning.