The Toronto Blue Jays had a very successful 2020 season, clinching a playoff berth for the first time since 2016.
However, if the team truly hopes to contend in 2021, they are going to have to make some big moves this offseason.
The Blue Jays have been rumored to be interested in nearly every big-name free agent that this year’s class has to offer. With no big signings just yet, the Blue Jays are hoping to land at least one of the big names as we approach the 2021 MLB season.
Here is a list of three wishes that the Blue Jays are hoping come true in the year 2021:
1. The Jays sign/acquire at least one of LeMahieu, Lindor, Springer, Brantley
As most Blue Jays fans are well aware, they have been at the forefront of discussion when it comes to interest in the top free agents in this year’s class.
DJ LeMahieu has been one of the best players in baseball since joining the Yankees prior to the 2019 season. Although both New York teams appear to be interested in the 2020 All-MLB first-team player, Jeff Passan of ESPN reported that the Blue Jays have “emerged as significant players” in the sweepstakes.
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Francisco Lindor is a player that the Jays front office staff is very familiar with from Cleveland. It is no secret that the Blue Jays are pursuing the 4-time all-star and could make things interesting in the stacked infield.
George Springer has been another player that the Jays have had significant interest in since the conclusion of the 2020 season. Many executives believe that it is a two-team race between the Jays and Mets for the 31-year old stud, according to Jeff Pasan of ESPN.
Michael Brantley is not one of the flashy names, however, Brantley has put together a phenomenal career when he has been healthy. If the Jays can add him to their outfield, it could go an incredibly long way for their hopes of competing as early as 2021.
2. The Jays add one or two more quality starting pitchers
If you look down the Blue Jays roster, the one position that clearly needs to improve is the pitching staff. Besides, ace Hyun Jin Ryu, the Blue Jays lacked depth and consistency throughout the pitching staff. Here are a few pitchers that the Jays have been rumored to be interested in, who would be impactful players on the Toronto roster.
Trevor Bauer is the #1 starting pitcher in this year’s free-agent class. Bauer is coming off a spectacular 2020 season in which he led the NL in ERA, WHIP, and CG on route to his first Cy Young award. At age 29, Bauer appears to have many years left and he could form a deadly duo at the top of the rotation alongside Hyun Jin Ryu.
James Paxton is another big name that the Blue Jays have been rumored to be interested in. The biggest concern for Paxton over the years has been his health. When Paxton is healthy, he has the potential to be a very solid second or third option in a rotation. Paxton is also Canadian, so it is no surprise that there is intrigue in returning back home.
3. The Jays young stars continue to develop and perform at a high level
With young studs such as Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Bo Bichette, Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Cavan Biggio, and Austin Martin on the roster for years to come, the future appears to be bright north of the border. After making the playoffs this past season, the Jays hope to take that next step and really compete for a title this coming season. If they hope to have any shot at doing this, they are going to need these young studs to step up and continue to improve.
If these three wishes come true, the Blue Jays and their fans could be in for a great year in 2021.