Is that the best way to allocate resources?
I thought about including a few others to this list, including George Springer, who I mentioned on the opening slide. However, I’d be okay with the Blue Jays accepting most of the cons with Springer, especially because of the way he’d fit and improve the current roster.
I’m not sure I feel the same about J.T. Realmuto.
Let me first say that I’m fully aware that Realmuto is one of, if not the best all-around catcher in baseball, and that he’d make pretty much every team better with his presence. I won’t deny that for a second, and I certainly understand why the Blue Jays would consider jumping on the opportunity to sign him.
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That said, I have to wonder if that’s the best way for the Blue Jays to allocate their resources. Realmuto wouldn’t come cheap, as mlbtraderumors.com predicted a five-year, 125 million dollar contract for him back in November. While I think it’s entirely possible that he can prove to be worth that contract, I think the Blue Jays could use that 25 million on other areas, such as the rotation and the bullpen, and get by with what they have behind the plate in their own system.
It’s a position of strength for the Jays right now, with five catchers on their 40-man roster. That includes Danny Jansen, Alejandro Kirk, and Reese McGuire, who we saw in the big leagues in 2020, and prospects Gabriel Moreno and Riley Adams. Personally, I’d be okay with using a combination of Jansen/Kirk again in 2021, especially because of the potential for growth from the youngsters. Neither will produce at Realmuto’s level, but for a savings of roughly 24 million, it’s probably close enough, especially with the offensive firepower around the rest of the lineup.
That said, Ross Atkins and the front office could change my mind about signing Realmuto depending on the subsequent moves they make. If they turn around and use Jansen/Kirk as a main piece to acquire a frontline starter, then it’s worth considering. That doesn’t change that Realmuto would be considerably more expensive, but it depends on the opportunities created as well.
If we’re strictly looking at signing Realmuto vs. guys like Springer, or D.J. LeMahieu, I’d much prefer the Blue Jays strengthen another position besides catcher. That said, I’ll admit that I won’t be upset if Realmuto ends up signing either, I just think there are options currently available that make a lot more sense.