Toronto Blue Jays News

Blue Jays: Top ten designated hitters in franchise history

TORONTO, ON - APRIL 01: Manager Charlie Montoyo #25 of the Toronto Blue Jays checks over the lineup card in the dugout before the start of MLB game action against the Baltimore Orioles at Rogers Centre on April 1, 2019 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)
TORONTO, ON - APRIL 01: Manager Charlie Montoyo #25 of the Toronto Blue Jays checks over the lineup card in the dugout before the start of MLB game action against the Baltimore Orioles at Rogers Centre on April 1, 2019 in Toronto, Canada. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images) /
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OAKLAND, CA – MAY 16: Fred McGriff of the Toronto Blue Jays bats during a season game on May 16, 1987 at the Oakland Coliseum in Oakland, California. Fred McGriff played for the Toronto Blue Jays from 1986-1990. (Photo by Michael Zagaris/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA – MAY 16: Fred McGriff of the Toronto Blue Jays bats during a season game on May 16, 1987 at the Oakland Coliseum in Oakland, California. Fred McGriff played for the Toronto Blue Jays from 1986-1990. (Photo by Michael Zagaris/MLB Photos via Getty Images) /

Bringing Up The Rear

10- Fred McGriff / Cecil Fielder (1987)
McGriff:  .247/.376/.505, 20 home runs, 43 RBI, 1.6 bWAR
Fielder: .269/.345/.560, 14 home runs, 32 RBI, -0.7 bWAR

Okay, I’ll admit that it’s a little early to be cheating, but I felt like this was an exception that was worth mentioning. Back in 1987, the Blue Jays employed Willie Upshaw as their primary first baseman, but they also had a pair of young hitters that were making their way to the big leagues and pushing for more playing time. Since Upshaw was still blocking them at first, McGriff and Fielder mostly split time at designated hitter, and they were a productive duo, combing for 34 home runs, and 75 RBI.

9- Brad Fullmer 
2000 Stats: .295/.340/.558, 34 HR, 29 doubles, 104 RBI, 1.6 bWAR

I very nearly included John Olerud‘s 1990 season on the list, but that would have had to drop McGriff/Fielder, or the next guy, which is Brad Fullmer. He was only in Toronto for two seasons, but the left-handed masher made quite an impact across 133 games in 2000, hitting several towering shots into the bleachers.

8- Jose Canseco
1998 Stats: .237/.318/.518, 46 HR, 26 doubles, 107 RBI, 29 stolen bases, 1.5 bWAR

He wasn’t in Toronto for very long either, but it was a lot of fun to watch Jose Canseco in 1998. The bulky slugger was a bit of an ‘all or nothing’ type of hitter, but he showed off the long ball with regularity, and even added 29 stolen bases as a 33 year old. He came with all kinds of baggage, but he always brought the entertainment factor.

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